From the port of Roanne, the greenway follows the towpath of the Roanne canal in Digoin. 25 secure and marked kilometers await cyclists, hikers and Sunday strollers for an adventure by the water. From Roanne to Saint-Pierre-la-Noaille via Charlieu, the green lane of the Loire is suitable for all audiences.

1 - Roanne: the marina

In the heart of Roanne, the marina gives the start of the Roanne canal in Digoin. You can explore this charming and pleasant site on foot, by boat or by bike. With a basin 800 meters long and 80 meters wide, Roanne is the most inland port in France.

You can find electric bike rentals at the harbor master's office and if you have sea legs, electric boats are also available. The port can accommodate up to a hundred boats and barges.

Historical point  : In the XIXe and XXe century, the Port district had its heyday with coal. In 1936, the port reached its maximum tonnage with 545 tonnes of goods unloaded or loaded.

Departure from the Véloire to the marina of Roanne, in the Loire department
© Guillaume Masseron / RT

2 - Mably: The merlin

A new door to enter the Véloire. The merlin has a pond for fishing or to meet around a picnic. 

The Merlin ULM base is very close. So, get off the bikes and take the time to witness a microlight take off or landing, you will see the children love it!

Walk along the canal from Roanne to Digoin
© Guillaume Masseron / RT

3 - Mably: Lock of Cornillon

Located near the gravel pit with birds in the town of Mably, the Cornillon lock is close to the mill and the castle of Cornillon. The castle, inhabited all year round, is even visible from the Véloire.

How does a lock work? The boat enters the lock. The lower doors and valves close. Then, the upper valves open, allowing water to enter the lock and raise the boat. When the water level matches that of the upstream part of the canal, the upper doors open and the boat continues on its way. The same procedure is to be followed in reverse for boats going downstream. 

Admiration in front of the Mably lock in the Loire department
© Guillaume Masseron / RT

4 - Briennon: the marina

On arrival at the port, you will be able to distinguish the Saint-Irénée church which has an old choir dating from the end of the XNUMXth century.e century. On a sunny day, the reflection of the church in the water embellishes the canal. 

The Briennon marina is perfect for a picnic stop. It is an ideal setting for a well-deserved moment of relaxation after 15 kilometers of pedaling. In summer, young and old can enjoy the Muséo'parc du Marinier, its miniature golf course and its water games.

Historical point  : In the XIXe century, the port experienced a significant development and allowed trade and industrial development of the surroundings. 

Passage to the Briennon marina in the land of Charlieu Belmont
© Guillaume Masseron / RT

5 - Pouilly-sous-Charlieu

The banks of the Loire are an integral part of the village of Pouilly-sous-Charlieu. You will follow the banks of the Loire and may see herons, egrets or beavers. You will cross the Sornin (Gustave Eiffel) bridge.

Before entering Charlieu, you can take a short detour and admire the Couvent des Cordeliers, located in the town of Saint-Nizier-sous-Charlieu.

Snack break in Pouilly sous Charlieu in the Loire department, on the Véloire
© Guillaume Masseron / RT

6 - Charlieu

Charlieu, this medieval city, classified as "Most Beautiful Detours in France" and "Village of character in the Loire", invites you to explore. Indeed do not miss its Benedictine abbey (Cluniac site), its Saint-Philibert church, its half-timbered buildings and its many medieval streets. If you want to prolong the pleasure, you can go to the hospital museum and the silk museum. 

Notice to gourmets : stop by the Pralus store to awaken your senses. A praluline® or an infernal bar ... will certainly make you happy. 

7 - Saint-Pierre-la-Noaille

After a cultural visit to Charlieu and the purchase of the most famous praline brioches, it's time for a snack. What could be better than Saint-Pierre-la-Noaille and its green setting for this little gourmet break?

This charming village has a beautiful heritage, the remains of the castle of Saint-Pierre dating from the XNUMXth century.e century and its imposing square tower. The Château de La Garde and Marchangy is added to the list of exceptional buildings. These private properties cannot be visited and are only visible from the road.

Find out more

End of the Véloire at Saint pierre la Noaille in the Loire department
© Guillaume Masseron / RT