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REGION: Grenoble to Avignon (France)

TOUR DATES: 22 – 30 JUNE 2018


HOTELS: Bourg-d'Oisans (x2), Modane (x2), Briancon (x1), Guillestre (x1), Sault (x2), 3-4 star hotels

Arrival & Departure transfers
8 nights accommodation (twin share)
8 breakfasts
4 dinners with beer & wine provided
8 guided cycling stages fully supported
Food & drinks during cycling stages
Sierra Sports cycling jersey

PRICE: 2850 € p.p.


Carbon Road Bike Hire: 350 €

DAY ONE – Friday 22 June 2018
Grenoble, France

We will be available to meet you at Grenoble Train Station at approximately 9am. We will prepare the bikes and get things ready for a fantastic cycling route combining Col d’Ornon and Alpe d’Huez. The first 50km follow last year’s Stage 17 TDF route before a detour towards the base of Alpe d’Huez. Now you will test yourself on Alpe d´Huez and its 21 switchbacks. With over 30 stage finishes it is a regular TDF feature and has been centre stage for many famous battles.

During 2015 Nairo Quintana attacked Chris Froome and almost caused a boilover with a stunning Stage 20 ascent. The initial km are some of the hardest so remember to pace yourself accordingly!

Meals: Dinner included

Destinations: Grenoble & La Mure

Ride: 75km cycling

Accommodation: Le Bourg (France)

DAY TWO – Sat 23 June 2018
Col de Sarenne

The initial 10km include a good warm up around the picturesque Lac Chambon. Some flatter km first up will be appreciated as Col de Sarenne rises up from the dam wall. Hardcore cycling fans will have heard of Sarenne as it is actually one of the more remote ascents that links-up with the back of the Alpe d’Huez ski station!

For those looking for a double climb today there is the lesser known Col de Solude on the cards. This climb takes you into the forest and at various points offers simply amazing views back across the valley floor and over to the Alpe d’Huez climb. These roads which the TDF finds impossible to access are perfect for recreational road cyclists looking for pure adventure!

Meals: Breakfast

Destinations: Chambon & Alpe d'Huez

Ride: 90km cycling

Accommodation: Le Bourg (France)

DAY THREE – Sun 24 June 2018
Col de la Croix de Fer

Col de la Croix de Fer is your next major challenge! This is a long 23km climb however it includes two short descents which will give your legs a chance for a quick recovery. Three km before reaching Croix de Fer you will also pass by Col du Glandon and in that way pick up two cols for the price of one! The pro peloton followed this route during Stage 17 of the 2017 Tour de France!

The descent down towards St Jean de Maurienne is fast and concentration and good technique is required! At the base you will have the opportunity to ride the spectacular but short climb Lacets de Montvernier. This climb was used in the 2015 TDF edition and its 18 switchbacks over only 3.5km is simply incredible. Remember: the mythical Alpe d´Huez has 21 switchbacks over 13km!!

Meals: Breakfast included

Destinations: St Jean de Maurienne

Ride: 100km cycling

Accommodation: Modane (France)

DAY FOUR – Mon 25 June  2018
Col d'Iseran

Cycling from the hotel and the mighty Col d’Iseran awaits. At 2770m elevation this giant col is ranked number 1 in the list of highest European passes! From the southern approach the climb measures 33km with an average 4.2% grade. These statistics do not give the full picture though as the final 13.5km average a more challenging 7.5%. It has been used during the TDF on only 7 occasions.

From the top our planned ride descends back towards Col du Mont Cenis. Today these mountain roads are cycling paradise as the nearby Frejus tunnel takes the majority of traffic between France and Italy.  The main attraction is the stunning lake which lies up on this elevated plateau.

Meals: Breakfast & Dinner included

Destinations: Col d'Iseran

Ride: 100km or 130km cycling

Accommodation: Modane (France)

DAY FIVE – Tuesday 26 June 2018
Col du Galibier

From hotel to hotel today’s route only measures 65km but don’t let the relatively low km count fool you. This ride includes the opportunity to ride the Telegraphe (13km) and Galibier (18km) double! The Galibier peak stands at 2640m and to date the Galibier is the highest mountain used for a TDF stage finish. From the top of Galibier you will descend one of the most scenic mountain roads down to Col du Lauteret.

The final 50km of your ride today will also follow the 2017 TDF Stage 17 course. For those who like thermal waters there is the chance this evening to visit an excellent spa facility and treat the legs to some well earnt recovery time!   

Meals: Breakfast included

Destinations: Valloire

Ride: 65km cycling

Accommodation: Briancon (France)

DAY SIX – Wed 27 June 2018
Col d'Izoard

Col d’Izoard sits high above Briancon and will be the first major challenge for the day. The climb is steeped in Tour de France history and was used during 2017 as the Stage 18 summit finish (2360m). For many the ´Izoard´ and its sandy eroded cliffs above la Casse Deserte resemble an amazing lunar landscape. Its 34 TDF crossings have provided many an iconic photo of the race! Our climb from the north-west approach includes 19km at an average gradient of 6%.

During the descent be sure to stop at the Fausto Coppi memorial! At the base there will be a decision to be made! Some time to rest in the hotel at Guillestre or take on Col d’Agnello and ride up to the Italian border? This additional 20km climb and 1400m of elevation gain will bring you to the third highest mountain pass in Europe!

Meals: Breakfast & Dinner included

Destinations: Col d'Izoard

Ride: 95km cycling

Accommodation: Guillestre (France)

DAY SEVEN – Thur 28 June 2018
Col de la Bonette

After a long week of challenging rides we will see how everyone is feeling today. Cycling from the hotel there are plenty of options, including Col de Vars and Col de la Bonette which all own a Tour de France story or two!

Col de la Bonette is the fourth highest mountain pass in Europe yet strangely enough there is the chance to cycle the highest road in France! How does that work I hear you say? Well, Cime de la Bonette, is a 2km teardrop shaped scenic loop which was constructed to take the road to 2802m elevation and give the Bonette special bragging rights!!

Meals: Breakfast & Dinner included

Destinations: Barcelonette

Ride: 115km cycling

Sault (Provence, France)

DAY EIGHT – Friday 29 June 2018
Mont Ventoux

Today the epic climb to Mt Ventoux will test you from start to finish! It is the ultimate challenge for this tour and oddly enough is geographically part of the French Alpes even though it stands all alone in the Provence landscape! The 22km climb with an average grade of 7.4% has seen 16 TDF passings with 10 of these actually resulting in stage summit finishes on the ‘bald’ mountain top. The last TDF stage finish was during 2016 when Chris Froome, Richie Porte and Baulke Mollema all somewhat comically crashed into a race motorbike and were left sprawling.

Meals: Breakfast & Dinner included

Destinations: Gorges de la Nesque

Ride: 90km cycling

Sault (Provence, France)

DAY NINE – Sat 30 June 2018
Tour Farewell

Following breakfast your guides will be able to transfer you to central Avignon train station. This is a 1.5 hour transfer but along the way there will be a short coffee stop in the prize winning hilltop town of Gordes. We will have you in Avignon by 12 noon.

Meals: Breakfast

2018 French Alpes (Grenoble to Avignon)

This French Alpes journey from Grenoble to Avignon is another in our line of Explorer style cycling tours. The tour includes climbs made famous by the Tour de France (TDF) but also other lesser known climbs which the race simply cannot easily access. This combination provides the perfect balance where TDF road recognition and off the beaten track experiences merge to provide memories that will last a lifetime. In particular, during this tour you will scale 4 of the top 5 highest mountain passes in Europe; Col d’Iseran (#1 – 2770m), Col d’Agnello (#3 – 2744m), Col de la Bonette (#4 – 2715m) & Col du Galibier (#5 – 2646m).

The wow factor does not finish there though as other legendary cols including, Alpe d’Huez, Croix de Fer, Izoard & a special final finish atop Mont Ventoux in Provence also await! This is the perfect trip for road cyclists looking forward to the challenge of some of Europe´s biggest mountains in a relaxed and fully supported environment!

Dates: 22-06-2018 to 30-06-2018

Tour price: 2850 € per person (twin share)