In the plains as in the mountains, the madness of cycling holidays

The city of Utrecht is definitely inventing beautiful ones! This Dutch city, which hosts the start of the Tour de France on July 4 (this day, the riders will set off for a time trial, the next day they will pass in front of the Dom cathedral), had already invented the ‘bicycle- stop’. It is now announcing the construction of the largest bicycle parking lot in the world: it will be able to accommodate 12,500 bikes, nothing less! The goal ? Put a brake on the wild parking of bikes around the central station. Because in Utrecht, the 100,000 inhabitants use their bikes daily in the city center.

Loire Valley bike

We are not there yet in France, but cycling is also on the rise. We know the success of the Vélib in Paris and its ilk in the big provincial towns. But, it’s not just daily commuting. Now weekends, holidays and therefore tourism also rhyme with bicycles and other mountain bikes. Tour operators like Terre d’Aventure or La Balaguère and a few others offer bike tours, free or accompanied (depending on their tastes), but the craze seems such that The Guide du Routard is releasing these days a guide called The Loire by bike, instructions for use. This publication relays the promotion, already old, of this activity by tourism professionals in this region.

chartres Compostela too!

Much better, this year, Center-Loire Valley, launches, the first site dedicated to cycling tourism in the region and launches a new route: Saint-Jacques by bike.

Six cycle routes and 14 loop networks or more than 3000 km are to be discovered on which offers precise routes, dynamic mapping and detailed sheets to discover its territory.

Via Chartres and Tours, Saint-Jacques à Vélo is a 380 km route in the Center-Loire Valley region which borders on the path traveled by hikers on their way to Saint-Jacques-de-Compostelle. Those who are part of a pilgrim approach will be able to draw from it a new way of living the path. Those who subscribe to a more profane approach will nonetheless have an amazing experience thanks to this crossing of Beauce and Touraine following the valleys of the Eure, Loir, Loire and Vienne.

But many other regions or cities also use the bicycle to promote their destination. For example Brittany.


And all of Brittany!

Brittany offers new ways to take off by bike on its territory. Let’s judge!

* Gourmet holidays for two in Morlaix Bay: a magnificent one-week itinerary for couples! From Plougasnou to Plouescat via Carantec, Roscoff and the island of Batz, the route allows you to appreciate the beauty of the countryside and the local gastronomy.

* A weekend on the Pink Granite Coast by electric bike: it’s a hike gentle for non-athletes thanks to the electrically assisted bikes offered by Trébeurden and Perros-Guirec. The circuit proposes to discover a fairly mineral world between the Chaos of Ploumanac’h and other Breton menhirs.

* A sports day on the Emerald Coast: a first-rate route that alternates cycling pleasure, sport and discovery of breathtaking landscapes from Saint-Cast-Le-Guildo to Pléneuf-Val André via Erquy. The strong elevations will delight the most athletic, rewarded with magnificent views and a few easier portions.

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Brittany has other proposals, adapted to different audiences (young people, seniors, families, etc.) that can be found on the Sensation Bretagne site.

And even in the mountains!

(Photo D. Machet – Val d´Arly)

Of course, a cycling holiday can be scary if you are no longer very young or if you are not very fit. Fortunately, there are now electric bikes, as we have just seen in Trébeurden and Perros-Guirec! This allows you to think about cycling, including in the Alps, whether you are sporty or not! Indeed, the Arly Valley, at the crossroads of the two Savoys, is offering this spring to test the… electric touring bike! By pedaling between the Aravis and Beaufortain mountains, you can explore a region with a thousand flavors without much effort while admiring unique panoramas of Mont-Blanc and the Alps.

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(Photo D. Machet – Val d´Arly)

In the Arly Valley, the tracks run between green meadows and crystal clear lakes. We stop in villages and hamlets, time to discover the good tables or taste specialties: Savoy cheeses, smoked cold meats … And in the evening, typical inns and cozy guest rooms await travelers.

In short, all you have to do is ride a bike, electric or not!

Paula Boyer


Charlotte Gainsbourg: The pain of mourning, her life in New York far from her mother …

Playing in Every Thing Will Be Fine, the new realization of Wim Wenders, the role of a mother who loses one of her children, run over by a car, Charlotte Gainsbourg is brought by the magazine Marie Claire talking about his own injuries and torments. The sudden disappearance of her sister, photographer Kate Barry, in December 2013, resurfaces for this great actress whose skin-deep sensitivity has illuminated screens since her adolescence.

I’m not a very funny person in life“, explains Charlotte Gainsbourg to try to explain why this melancholy label sticks to her skin. While specifying that she is not particularly carried towards the sinister, but that they are also beautiful roles which one proposes to her. She has always assumed her spleen and said moreover last January in Telerama that his parents had “not learned to live happily“: the daughter of the late Serge Gainsbourg and Jane Birkin grew up with the idea that misfortune could be attractive.

If she willingly talks to Marie Claire of his relationships with others, admits to being a bit closed and recognizes his difficulty in making friends – “unlike a romantic relationship which [lui] appears much easier“- as well as her special relationship with her relatives and her family, she will refuse to talk about the mourning of her sister Kate:”I can’t speak publicly about something as serious as this … I don’t want to talk about death and fate, that’s not my thing. The disappearance of my sister is too intimate a personal event. I lost my dad twenty-four years ago, and I’m just starting to talk about it a little bit. There are people who can easily talk about bereavement, but I am not.

Charlotte Gainsbourg will nevertheless admit that having moved to New York with her companion Yvan Attal and their three children – Alice, Ben and Joe – allowed her to escape the heavy daily life linked to the death of her older sister: “I couldn’t stay any longer. I really couldn’t anymore. Here…“But don’t count on her to draw parallels between New York and Parisian lives:”It’s a bit reductive.“Today she is content to go back and forth to France to see her mother who suffers from an autoimmune disease:”All I can tell you is I miss her a lot.”

On the big screen, we will soon find it in Independence Day 2 and in the film that her lover is preparing, whose working title is #the Jews.

Find the full interview in the magazine Marie Claire of the month of June 2015

8,500 “extra” deaths since January due to flu

We sometimes tend to forget about it, but the flu continues to claim lives every year. And in 2015 a little more than in previous years, according to figures from InVS, the Institute for Public Health Surveillance.

The InVS has recorded an excess mortality of 8,500 additional deaths since mid-January. Observing such an excess mortality is not new in winter, but generally the figures for a traditional year are not so alarmist. 2015 is off to a good start.

Towards a record year

This year could reach, or even exceed, the peaks recorded in 2008-2009 and 2012-2013, where the excess mortality had reached 10,000 additional deaths. It is usually people over 65 who are particularly affected, in all regions. For 2015, these deaths are largely due to the flu epidemic, which was particularly virulent during this winter season.

Winter mortality higher than expected

The flu epidemic began to spread from mid-January. ” Winter mortality from all causes is 19% higher than expected winter mortality calculated from the previous eight years, an excess estimated at 8,500 deaths Explains the InVS. However, the institute cannot quantify the share due specifically to influenza, since the figure also includes deaths related to other causes.

Nevertheless, a ” beam “Points to the flu, which played” an important role In this exceptional excess mortality. In addition, since winter is not over, these estimates remain provisional.