Spring has finally arrived, it is time to get a blast of fresh air ! Today, we take you on a cycling adventure along the Sauldre canal. From Blancafort to Brinon-sur-Sauldre, you will discover the architectural curiosities along the canal.
10 am, departure from Blancafort
Map in hands, we are ready to go ! Before we go, do you know the history of the Sauldre canal ? Let’s take some time to have a little bit of a historical point.
It has been built under Napoléon III from an idea that Léonard de Vinci had and was baptized at the time « the saviour of Sologne ». This canal has participated to the economic development of the Sologne. It allowed to bring the white marl (mixture of clay and limestone) from the Pays-Fort to the Sologne. It has been in service since 1869 and then erased from the waterways in 1926, because of the rivalry of the railway and fertilizers. Nowadays, the 48 km long canal counts 22 locks and links Blancafort to Lamotte-Beuvron in Loir-et-Cher. In Cher, a pedestrian, cycling and horsering route called the « Sente bleue », meaning the blue footpath, allows everyone to go along the canal nicknamed « Without tail nor head ».
Now that you are unbeatable on the history of the canal, let’s ride that bike !
Among the first curiosities that you will find along the canal, you will catch sight of the Castle of Blancafort and its beautiful French gardens, built in the XVth century. It is not a coincidence if it is called the « Castle of Scents ».
11.15 am, stopover in Argent-sur-Sauldre
Already 10 km done ! We enjoy a break here and discover the small town of Argent-sur-Sauldre. On the program : visit of the Musée des vieux métiers (Museum of the old jobs), visit of the church and then why not take a walk in the shady park just behind the church.
Before we go, we couldn’t resist to try the step paddle out ! Not always easy to stand on one’s feet…
After this very nice and rather sporting moment, we left in the direction of the Etang du Puits, 7 km from Argent-sur-Sauldre.
2 pm, Picnic at the Etang du Puits
We chose to take our lunchtime break by the Etang du Puits. This 180 Ha artificial lake has been dug at the end of the XIXth century in order to feed the Sauldre canal. No matter how many times we came here, we still amazed by this bucolic landscape.
When we arrived, we crossed the road of some fishermen : do they want to put a hook on the famous Nicolas the pike ? A legend tells that the giant pike would be so old that a willow pruning would have grown on his head !
For the snack, country terrines, chavignol crottin and Tatin pie accompanied by a good glass of Sancerre should give us some energy for the afternoon.
After a quick nap and a good swim, we are off to go to Brinon-sur-Sauldre, the last stage of our bicycle ride.
3.45 pm, off we go, in the direction of Brinon-sur-Sauldre
Only 14 km left to reach the typically Solognote village of Brinon-sur-Sauldre. On our way, we meet several hikers and fishermen. Passing the Chanteloup lock, we have 8 km left.
Arrived at Brinon-sur-Sauldre, we put down the bikes and set off to explore the country of Raboliot : the most representative novel of Maurice Genevoix devoted to his native Sologne. For nature lovers, a visit to the Maison de la forêt (Museum of the Forest) is a must. Another architectural curiosity that you should not miss in Brinon-sur-Sauldre is its caquetoire church. It is also the last village in the Cher department to house a XVIth century caquetoire church.
Here ends this beautiful day out along the Sauldre canal.
Know that at the Tourist Office Sauldre and Sologne, you can rent electric bikes to allow you to enjoy beautiful cycling days.
Published on 17/08/2020