Day 8: Solo motorbike tour of France (Reims - Calais)
For an overview of my 8 day tour of northern France through the Alsace region and the Vosges Mountains, click here.
Route: click here for the interactive map (313.6 miles): Reims - Amiens - Boulogne-sur-mer – Calais - London.
By day 8, I was somewhat regretting I had overestimated the amount of mileage that would be reasonable in one day. However, I had to get to Calais for the 8pm ferry, so I left Reims before 7am and headed off to Amiens. I saw the sun rise over hills and roads that were mine alone at that time in the morning.
At Amiens, I enjoyed looking at the bizarre, mismatched houses along the waterfront and stopped for a stretch and a coffee.
Worried about distance (and Saki still making a few clunking noises), I left promptly and drove 5 hours to make it to Boulogne in time for a fishy French lunch of soup, snails and mussels. It was a comparatively short ride of just 30 miles to Calais so I pootled off after a short walk around Boulogne town centre.
At Calais, I parked up by the beach and had a nap in the late afternoon sun. Before boarding the ferry, I visited a local cheese shop to pick up goodies for the friends and family – I would definitely recommend La Maison du Fromage et Vins as they are so friendly and the selection is varied and delicious.
In the ferry queue, I made friends with a group of Italians riding over to the Isle of Man TT Races which passed the time nicely in a hybrid of French-English-Italian-Sign Language conversation about bikes.
I got home at 10.30pm and was absolutely delighted to be horizontal after 300 miles in the seat. I’m not sure where my next bike trip will take me but I’ll be sure to plan less miles per day!