Best Route - Le Mans 2022

Best Route - Le Mans 2022

Author
Discussion

SiT

Original Poster:

1,040 posts

173 months

Tuesday 23rd November
quotequote all
Evening,

So next year we are heading over to watch Le Mans, 7 of us travelling separately with Travel Destinations staying at their Glamping site on Porsche Curves - very excited to say the least!

We are travelling from Plymouth to Cherbourg on the ferry and Google maps suggests drive time from Cherbourg is about 4hrs ish.

I was wondering if there are any preferred/scenic routes on the way down? We have some lovely cars and as that leg of the journey is relatively short it would be nice to get some pics/footage on the way.

Anyone travelled from Cherbourg down that could suggest a good route?

Cheers

Si

cn7k7

105 posts

116 months

Wednesday 24th November
quotequote all
The route across to Caen is good, lunch at the Au Normandy in Sées is a popular stop and a great place...guess it depends upon the timing in ferry etc

Tyre Smoke

19,289 posts

233 months

Wednesday 24th November
quotequote all
Done Plymouth to Roscoff many times, it's about 4.5hours from Roscoff. We now go Portsmouth to Caen and its about 2 hours from there. Going to Cherbourg you're just driving down the Cherbourg peninsula so I'd agree, 4.5 hours. I'd say the drive from Roscoff is nicer though.

purple haze

232 posts

196 months

Friday 26th November
quotequote all
I think you will get many recommendations on this SIT and as a previous poster said it all depends on how much time you have because there are some lovely routes down from Cherbourg.

I've been travelling this route for more than 40 years. Now I tend to get the Cherbourg peninsula out of the way by going straight down the N13 to the southern side of Carentan and then go south on the N174 to its junction with the A84.

Keep going south on the D674 towards Vire then on the D977 to Mortain-Bocage. Next take the D907 to Domfront. - a lovely old town with a castle/coffee stops/restaurants etc. I then head via D976/176 to Pre en Pail (perhaps with a divert to Bagnoles de l'Orne a spa town with lake & .casino)

Then it becomes much more interesting. Head SE across les Alpes Mancelles via St Pierre des Nids (divert to St Leonard des Bois if you have time - its lovely) then on to Fresnay sur Sarthe, Beaumont sur Sarthe and finally pick up the old N38 (now the D338) for the last leg into Le Mans. It's not quick but you will enjoy it.

If Lowdrag is reading this who lives Arnage way and often travels back on interesting routes I'm sure he will have many recommendations

SiT

Original Poster:

1,040 posts

173 months

Friday 26th November
quotequote all
purple haze said:
I think you will get many recommendations on this SIT and as a previous poster said it all depends on how much time you have because there are some lovely routes down from Cherbourg.

I've been travelling this route for more than 40 years. Now I tend to get the Cherbourg peninsula out of the way by going straight down the N13 to the southern side of Carentan and then go south on the N174 to its junction with the A84.

Keep going south on the D674 towards Vire then on the D977 to Mortain-Bocage. Next take the D907 to Domfront. - a lovely old town with a castle/coffee stops/restaurants etc. I then head via D976/176 to Pre en Pail (perhaps with a divert to Bagnoles de l'Orne a spa town with lake & .casino)

Then it becomes much more interesting. Head SE across les Alpes Mancelles via St Pierre des Nids (divert to St Leonard des Bois if you have time - its lovely) then on to Fresnay sur Sarthe, Beaumont sur Sarthe and finally pick up the old N38 (now the D338) for the last leg into Le Mans. It's not quick but you will enjoy it.

If Lowdrag is reading this who lives Arnage way and often travels back on interesting routes I'm sure he will have many recommendations
Thank you purple haze, this is exactly what I am after and if it’s good enough for you over 40yrs then it should be absolutely perfect for us! Have you any pics taken on this route during any of your trips?

We have plenty of time as our accommodation is all ready and just requires us to turn up and we are travelling down on the Thursday - what’s journey time roughly for this?

Thanks again!

Si

Tyre Smoke

19,289 posts

233 months

Friday 26th November
quotequote all
Thursday? Going to miss all the qualifying then.

SiT

Original Poster:

1,040 posts

173 months

Friday 26th November
quotequote all
The company we are going with (Travel Destinations) provide a Thurs-Mon package - having never been before I figured a pre-organised package was the best way to go.

Fri/Sat/Sun of racing, beer, eating and general petrolhedonism is all my body/bank can take lol!!!

Si

Nigel_O

2,122 posts

191 months

Friday 26th November
quotequote all
The TD site at Porsche Curves is great - very secure and excellent facilities, plus of course, the private banking on the outside of the entry into the Porsche curves complex. It was brilliant to be able to stagger out of our tent and within thirty seconds being able to watch cars whizz past. Be prepared to stand there slack-jawed at how quickly the top class dives into that first right-hander.

The only downside to Porsche Curves is that its quite along walk to the pits / grandstand area. On my first trip (2015) my feet were pretty sore after daily (often twice daily) walks to the Village.

From 2016 onwards, we took cheap bikes, but that's probably not an option if you're going in nice cars. If you're doing everything on foot, take some decent walking shoes / boots - you'll need them.

Oh - and a decent torch - the campsite is very dark

The showers are warmest in the middle of the night - too much demand for the rest of the day means they are luke-warm at best (not a problem if it gets really hot)

Tyre Smoke

19,289 posts

233 months

Saturday 27th November
quotequote all
Oh, and you'll start planning the next year before you have even finished this one. And you will go earlier, look into other camping/hotel options/grandstand/support van.

We started in 2004 or 5 and packed our TVRs with argos tents and disposable BBQs and arrived Thursday evening. In 2019 we had graduated to my twin axle caravan, two fridges, a freezer, full size cooker, Sky TV, and a roast beef dinner on the Sunday night, with ALL the trimmings and a lovely claret. laugh and were arriving Tuesday morning and leaving Monday morning.

SiT

Original Poster:

1,040 posts

173 months

Saturday 27th November
quotequote all
Nigel_O said:
The TD site at Porsche Curves is great - very secure and excellent facilities, plus of course, the private banking on the outside of the entry into the Porsche curves complex. It was brilliant to be able to stagger out of our tent and within thirty seconds being able to watch cars whizz past. Be prepared to stand there slack-jawed at how quickly the top class dives into that first right-hander.

The only downside to Porsche Curves is that its quite along walk to the pits / grandstand area. On my first trip (2015) my feet were pretty sore after daily (often twice daily) walks to the Village.

From 2016 onwards, we took cheap bikes, but that's probably not an option if you're going in nice cars. If you're doing everything on foot, take some decent walking shoes / boots - you'll need them.

Oh - and a decent torch - the campsite is very dark

The showers are warmest in the middle of the night - too much demand for the rest of the day means they are luke-warm at best (not a problem if it gets really hot)
That’s really useful to know thank and reassuring our chosen accommodation provider has a good setup. We figured there would be some walking involved, considered bikes but have a space issue with that! I am surprised no one has cottoned on and offers out a fleet of bikes you can hire for the weekend! Wondered about some scooters (as in adult micro) but not sure if all the paths etc around the track are tarmac/concrete?

Really excited and looking forward to the trip, it seems so far away but then so did Christmas!!!!! Lol!

Si

SiT

Original Poster:

1,040 posts

173 months

Saturday 27th November
quotequote all
Tyre Smoke said:
Oh, and you'll start planning the next year before you have even finished this one. And you will go earlier, look into other camping/hotel options/grandstand/support van.

We started in 2004 or 5 and packed our TVRs with argos tents and disposable BBQs and arrived Thursday evening. In 2019 we had graduated to my twin axle caravan, two fridges, a freezer, full size cooker, Sky TV, and a roast beef dinner on the Sunday night, with ALL the trimmings and a lovely claret. laugh and were arriving Tuesday morning and leaving Monday morning.
This is brilliant! Lol! I will report back…..

Si

FredericRobinson

2,515 posts

204 months

Saturday 27th November
quotequote all
Nigel_O said:
The TD site at Porsche Curves is great - very secure and excellent facilities, plus of course, the private banking on the outside of the entry into the Porsche curves complex. It was brilliant to be able to stagger out of our tent and within thirty seconds being able to watch cars whizz past. Be prepared to stand there slack-jawed at how quickly the top class dives into that first right-hander.
I’m still majorly narked that that bank is no longer public, when they moved it back as part of the track alterations we were told it was only going to be private for one year while the earth sertled

purple haze

232 posts

196 months

Saturday 27th November
quotequote all
Hi Si - Purple Haze here again.

On the route I gave you ball park figure is that for route I gave you it's just over 180 miles or so and is about 4 hours driving time - but if you take main drag i.e. dual carriageway/autoroute all the way you can take an hour off of that - assuming you keep to the posted speed limits. And there's a good reason to do that - the gendarmes are particularly hot about speeding around the time of Le Mans. On the spot fines which can be heavy if you're well over the limit.

My 3 top tips for first attenders:-

No 1 tip - get yourself a copy of the Michelin Green Guide to Normandy. All the places I quoted are covered there in more detail and it will also give you more options depending on what you are interested in, To start with at the south east end of the Cherbourg peninsula are a number of WW2 places worth visiting - the museums at St Mere Eglise, Utah Beach and Carentan (Dead Mans Corner) to name just a few. Any of these will take at least an hour maybe more. When you're off the main route i.e dual carriageway/autoroute it's much easier to stop for refreshments along the way.

No 2 tip. Don't try and pack too much into your first trip. I can guarantee it won't be your last - and there will be many other years to fill in the gaps

No 3 tip. Attend the 'Great British Welcome' at the village of St Saturnin just north of Le Mans. For the last 20 or so years the village has hosted a themed 'Great British welcome' for all of us Brits who travel each year. It's held on the Friday before the race on what is a quiet day at the circuit - qualifying is already finished. Pistonheads usually has some reserved parking. Probably a 1000 or so sports cars mainly but now not exclusively British on display. Great hospitality from the locals and a chance to spruce your car up - cleaning opportunities!

Hope this helps!

Great Dane

2,540 posts

138 months

Wednesday
quotequote all
purple haze said:
Hi Si - Purple Haze here again.

On the route I gave you ball park figure is that for route I gave you it's just over 180 miles or so and is about 4 hours driving time - but if you take main drag i.e. dual carriageway/autoroute all the way you can take an hour off of that - assuming you keep to the posted speed limits. And there's a good reason to do that - the gendarmes are particularly hot about speeding around the time of Le Mans. On the spot fines which can be heavy if you're well over the limit.

My 3 top tips for first attenders:-

No 1 tip - get yourself a copy of the Michelin Green Guide to Normandy. All the places I quoted are covered there in more detail and it will also give you more options depending on what you are interested in, To start with at the south east end of the Cherbourg peninsula are a number of WW2 places worth visiting - the museums at St Mere Eglise, Utah Beach and Carentan (Dead Mans Corner) to name just a few. Any of these will take at least an hour maybe more. When you're off the main route i.e dual carriageway/autoroute it's much easier to stop for refreshments along the way.

No 2 tip. Don't try and pack too much into your first trip. I can guarantee it won't be your last - and there will be many other years to fill in the gaps

No 3 tip. Attend the 'Great British Welcome' at the village of St Saturnin just north of Le Mans. For the last 20 or so years the village has hosted a themed 'Great British welcome' for all of us Brits who travel each year. It's held on the Friday before the race on what is a quiet day at the circuit - qualifying is already finished. Pistonheads usually has some reserved parking. Probably a 1000 or so sports cars mainly but now not exclusively British on display. Great hospitality from the locals and a chance to spruce your car up - cleaning opportunities!

Hope this helps!
don't think the welcome nor drivers' parade are going to happen anytime soon. The same applies to scruteneering. Now it's just like a longer WEC meeting and without the fair ground and other fun stuff


cn7k7

105 posts

116 months

Thursday
quotequote all
Great Dane said:
purple haze said:
Hi Si - Purple Haze here again.

On the route I gave you ball park figure is that for route I gave you it's just over 180 miles or so and is about 4 hours driving time - but if you take main drag i.e. dual carriageway/autoroute all the way you can take an hour off of that - assuming you keep to the posted speed limits. And there's a good reason to do that - the gendarmes are particularly hot about speeding around the time of Le Mans. On the spot fines which can be heavy if you're well over the limit.

My 3 top tips for first attenders:-

No 1 tip - get yourself a copy of the Michelin Green Guide to Normandy. All the places I quoted are covered there in more detail and it will also give you more options depending on what you are interested in, To start with at the south east end of the Cherbourg peninsula are a number of WW2 places worth visiting - the museums at St Mere Eglise, Utah Beach and Carentan (Dead Mans Corner) to name just a few. Any of these will take at least an hour maybe more. When you're off the main route i.e dual carriageway/autoroute it's much easier to stop for refreshments along the way.

No 2 tip. Don't try and pack too much into your first trip. I can guarantee it won't be your last - and there will be many other years to fill in the gaps

No 3 tip. Attend the 'Great British Welcome' at the village of St Saturnin just north of Le Mans. For the last 20 or so years the village has hosted a themed 'Great British welcome' for all of us Brits who travel each year. It's held on the Friday before the race on what is a quiet day at the circuit - qualifying is already finished. Pistonheads usually has some reserved parking. Probably a 1000 or so sports cars mainly but now not exclusively British on display. Great hospitality from the locals and a chance to spruce your car up - cleaning opportunities!

Hope this helps!
don't think the welcome nor drivers' parade are going to happen anytime soon. The same applies to scruteneering. Now it's just like a longer WEC meeting and without the fair ground and other fun stuff

I think you’re right for 2022 but they will very much want 2023 to be a huge celebration