TOUR DE FRANCE RIDE PYRENEES EXPERIENCE
WHAT TO EXPECT ON TOUR
Living like a local is the experience Velo Tours provides. There's no daily grind of changing hotels or transferring stage to stage to follow Le Tour. You unpack for a week in a large 18th century chalet on the main street of Bagneres-du-Luchon so you can relax and immerse yourself in the local culture and enjoy a true French cycling experience.
As a group we eat, sleep and ride together each day which creates a personal, 'family' atmosphere that has you sharing your achievements and your failures and supporting and inspiring each other every step of the way. Lifelong friendships are formed and amazing memories shared with other likeminded people gathered together, living the same dream.
Some highlights of our 2016 tour. What a great time we have!
2019 RIDE PYRENEES TOUR DE FRANCE
July 12th - 21st
9 nights / 10 days
** TOUR FULL **
- 7 nights chalet accommodation in Bagneres-de-Luchon
- 2 night 4 star hotel stay in Lourdes
- 3 live stages of le Tour de France- Internal transfers
- All breakfasts and 3 course evening meals
- On road vehicle support
- Mechanical support
- Full daily ride brief each night at dinner
- Monthly newsletters that includes a training guide
- Experienced domestiques
- Velo Tours Cycling Kit (knicks, jersey & musette)
- Cap, t-shirt, bottle and backpack
- Electrolyte and gels also provided
Airfares, bike hire and travel insurance are NOT included.
Lunches and alcohol consumed are also NOT included.
*Price is for shared accommodation and subject to change
Your tour starts with your arrival into Toulouse Blagnac airport before lunchtime and a transfer to Bagneres-du-Luchon. Referred to as the "Queen of the Pyrenees", Luchon sits in a valley at the base of three famous cols - the Col du Peyresourde, the Portillon and Superbagneres. Known predominantly for its amazing ski slopes, Luchon is also a spectacular base during the summer months for cyclists because of its proximity to many of the famous climbs in the region. The Col du Tourmalet, the Col d’Aspin, Col du Mente, and the Portet d’Aspet, to name a few, are kilometres from our front door and the roads between take you through beautiful little villages that contain bucket loads of the ‘wow’ factor.
Velo Tours' home base in Luchon is a 4 storey chalet built in the Napolean era located on the main street of town that has been in the same family since that time. It’s typically French décor and fittings and the creaky old timber staircase immediately creates that provencal French environment that you will fall in love with as soon as you walk in the front door. There is free wifi, televisions, bathrooms on each floor and each bedroom has between 2-3 beds with single or double bed options. Ideally located near restaurants, cafes, supermarkets and Billy's Bar (our local watering hole owned by an Australian lady and her French husband), our home away from home provides everything you could want or need to make your cycling holiday in France complete.
After a continental breakfast in the big kitchen each morning, we place our day bags packed with jackets, shoes and other required items into the support van and depart the house as a group for the daily ride. The support van is packed with on course supplies such as water, electrolyte, coke, bananas, chips, biscuits, gels and energy bars and accompanies the group on every ride. The van is at the top of each climb by the time you arrive and drives back and forth along the course throughout the day checking on the comfort and progress of all the group members as well as providing mechanical support and picking up riders who need a lift.
NIGHTLY DINNERS & DAILY LUNCHES
Lunches are mostly taken at local cafes or boulangeries (bakeries) in the villages we ride through each day. We stop at some beautiful medieval villages and towns such as Arreau and Saint Bertrand de Comminges that have great coffee stops and bakeries. Lunch is not provided in your package but you can get a great bagette or bowl of frites (fries) with a drink for around €8. Dinner is at a different restaurant in Luchon each night, with a choice of 3 course menus offering a great range of fresh local products. Your dinner is included in your tour package so this is just one more thing you don't need to worry about while you are on tour.
TOUR DE FRANCE STAGES
We see 2 - 3 stages of the tour - usually a start, a mountain stage and a finish. This is not always possible but we try to make it happen when we can. When taking in a start we ride to the town (or drive, depending on where it is) and then staff will look after your bikes at a local cafe while you take in the sights and atmosphere of the Tour de France sign on activities. You get to ride to the summit of one of the climbs that feature in the days' stage and then descend to the Velo Tours Corner where you can relax inside one of our tents with snacks and refreshments while you wait for the caravan and Tour festivities to arrive.
Pyrenees Bike Hire offer Velo Tours guests great rates on hire bikes if you decide not to travel with your own. A 10 day tour will cost around €330 for a bike specifically built for climbing the mountains and includes spare tubes, tyres and gas cyclinders when required. All you need to bring is your own helmet, pedals, drink bottles and Garmin. The Wilier bike range are full carbon frame with Shimano Ultergra Group Sets, 11/28 Casette and a Compact Crank. Sizes are limited so booking early is essential. For more information on Pyrenees Bike Hire, please click here.
Below are some of the climbs that feature annually in our itineraries, though the list is not all inclusive. Over a 9-10 day tour you will climb at least a dozen of these beauties and will be amazed at your own awesomeness!