The Euroroute R1 in France (99/71 kilometers)
leads from the channel coast, either from Boulogne-sur-Mer or Calais through Nord-Pas-de-Calais - the most northern French region - to the Belgian border.
The road from Boulogne-sur-Mer to Watten (64 kilometers), where both bicycle routes meet, is surprisingly hilly in contrast to the start of the tour in Calais. The route from Calais to Watten (36 kilometers) along the channel Calais — St. Omer is nearly flat. The Euroroute R1 between Watten and the Belgian border at Oost-Cappel (35 kilometers) crosses the plane of Yser in French Flanders.
The route in France is rather rural. There are contemplative villages and small towns with worth seeing churches along the way. The highlights are the maritime and historic places along the coast and the museum complex "Bunker of Éperlecques“ - a huge bunker from the Second World War.
The unfortunately fragmentary sign-posting for the Euroroute R1 in France states "Route de la Mer du Nord (LF1)". The good quality route leads through narrow side roads with little traffic.
The train via Paris is the advisable choice to arrive at (or to leave from) the start of the tour. In contrast to the train lines through Belgium or the Netherlands, it is possible to reserve a place for the bicycle in the trains (TGV and CNL) between Germany and Paris.
(Source: IS.RADWEG. 2013)