Alpes to Paris

2013 Alpes to Paris Trip

Follow the final exciting mountain stages in the Alps through to Paris, covering the last 9 days of the race including the final stage in Paris.

TRIP DETAILS:

Duration: 10 days (9 nights)
Dates: Saturday, 13 July to Monday, 22 July 2013
Start: Lyon Finish: Paris
Accommodation: Quality 3 and 4 star hotels
Group Size: Maximum 35 people (5 Staff)
Cost: AUD$5950.00 – Single Supplement AUD$1090.00
Deposit: AUD $1000.00
Note: All trip costs are per person, not including airfare and based on two persons per room.

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Inclusions

Optional Extras:

Bike Rental $540.00 (Cannondale Synapse carbon fibre)
Travel Insurance and Car Rental.
Email us for details

Highlights:

  • Experience the final 10 days of the historic 100th edition of the Tour de France
  • Ride the biggest stages of the tour including Alpe d’Huez and Mont Ventoux
  • See the penultimate stage in Annecy
  • Chateau and Lakeside Accommodation
  • High speed TGV train to Paris
  • Enjoy fabulous rides led by the experienced Bikestyle guides

Who is this trip for?

This 10 day trip will follow the Tour de France over its final crucial stages on the climbs of the Alpes and on to Paris for the finish on the Champs Elysees. You’ll get to ride all the big climbs of the final week including Mont Ventoux and Alpe d’Huez, plus enjoy some more leisurely rides exploring some of the most beautiful areas of France. Our trip is topped off by a Sunday morning TGV transfer for the final stage on the Champs Elysees in Paris a perfect end to your trip.

Our trips are geared to suit anyone with an interest in Cycling who wants to see the biggest of the Grand Tours, the Tour de France. This (and riding our bikes) is our main focus for the trip although this trip will incorporate some tourist days as well. We cater for cyclists of all abilities by providing riding options each day. To enjoy our trips you don’t need to be an athlete, but do need to be someone who cycles regularly and in good health.

Each day we’ll have options for rides to suit people who feel like a challenge, or an easy day enjoying the scenery. We ride on quiet scenic roads and where possible we ride on the race course ahead of the race. As with all of our tours you’ll be guided by our expert team of ride leaders, drivers and guides.

See what our clients said about us after the 2012 Tour: Client Comments

Itinerary

Saturday, 13 July 2013: Bienvenue

Our tour starts today at our hotel in the centre of Lyon, where today’s Tour de France stage finishes late this afternoon.

Our hotel is located next to Lyon’s main rail station, Lyon Part Dieu. There are frequent fast TGV services from Paris and other areas of France. If arriving by rail it’s a short stroll to get the hotel today. If you are arriving at Lyon St Exupery airport today then we will provide transfers from the airport to the hotel.

Once you have settled in to the hotel the first task is to assemble your bike, or fit you to your Bikestyle rental bike.  Early this afternoon we will run a ride from the hotel down to the Rhone river which flows through the centre of Lyon. It will be a short ride, just long enough for us to stretch our legs and make sure our bikes are working properly.

This afternoon we will head in to Lyon city where we can explore the old town of Lyon and see the race finish. The city of Lyon is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is a city of many beautiful historic quarters spread out along the river Rhone. The race will pass through the historic centre of Lyon this afternoon, including a steep climb up to the Croix Rousse hilltop which could be a great alternative viewing point for the race. The race will finish at Place Bellecour, the largest open square in Europe.

Tonight at our hotel we’ll enjoy a welcome dinner at a local brasserie a short distance from our hotel. Lyon has a reputation as the capital of gastronomy in France and tonight’s dinner will be traditional French cuisine. Over dinner you have the chance to meet your fellow passengers and Bikestyle staff who will discuss your upcoming Tour de France adventure.

Overnight: Lyon
Meals: Dinner


Sunday, 14 July 2013: First Look at Le Tour

Today is a big day for us, and for the French people as it is the “fete nationale”, Bastille Day. It’s a tradition for French riders to try and score a stage victory today and being a holiday weekend the locals will be out in force to cheer on the local heroes. It’s the longest stage of the 2013 Tour today at 242 kilometres, not hard at first, but with a sting in the tail as the finish is on the summit of Mont Ventoux. If it’s a hot day then the late afternoon climb will be punishing for the riders as Ventoux is a notoriously hard climb in the summer heat with totally exposed slopes over the last 7 kms.

From Lyon we will drive south to Montelimar where we will start our ride to see the Tour de France. We’ll skip the massive crowds, road closures and traffic jams that are part of a tour stage on Mont Ventoux, and instead see the race late in the day as it enters the Drome region north of Ventoux.  This is a lovely area of to ride a bike, so it will be a great introduction to riding in France. We will have a couple of ride options, a ride of about 50 kms and a longer ride of about 80 kms from the hotel to our viewing point for the race.

After the race we can ride, or travel by bus, to our hotel for dinner and a good night’s rest before tomorrow’s big day on Ventoux. We spend the next two nights in a family run hotel in Portes-les-Valance with a pleasant courtyard restaurant and swimming pool.

Overnight: Portes-les-Valence
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner


Monday, 15 July 2013: Le Geant de Provence

Today is a rest day for the pros of the Tour de France, but it’s not for us. Today we’ll take our turn at riding Mont Ventoux and see how our efforts compare with the riders of the peloton yesterday. We may take a bit longer but we’ll enjoy it a bit more perhaps!

We’ll get away in the cool of the morning and travel to the village of Malaucene where we will begin our warm up ride over to the base of Mont Ventoux at Bedoin. This is the most famous and traditional route of the Tour de France that winds its way up through the forest to Chalet Reynard where the well known “moonscape” of Mont Ventoux comes into view. With the hardest section now behind us, the last 6 kilometres of bare landscape provides magnificent views as you pass by the monument to Tom Simpson, who died tragically on the slopes of the mountain in the 1967 Tour de France. At the summit join the many that’ve chosen today to “do Ventoux” and take a photo, buy a souvenir and enjoy the views over the plains below.

For those who want an easier ride today we can propose an option around some local villages that will be much easier and a pleasant way to spend the morning before returning to Malaucene to greet the heroes coming off the mountain.

After lunch in the cool shade of a café in Malaucene we will return to our hotel to relax and another fine dinner this evening.

Overnight: Portes-les-Valence
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner


Tuesday, 16 July 2013: The Stunning Gorges de la Bourne

Today’s stage of the Tour de France is from Vaison la Romaine to Gap, a route that’s been travelled many times in the Tour de France. After a day of rest the riders will be re-energised and this is about the last opportunities for those that aren’t pure climbers to make their mark on the race.

This morning we will leave Portes-les-Valance and travel north towards the Alpes, making a stop along the way for one of our favourite rides  in the region. It’s a short drive to Saint-Nazaire-en-Royans where we will start our ride along a winding road through the stunning Gorges de la Bourne. The first 30kms climb gradually through the sheer rock walls of the gorge before reaching a plateau where it flattens out until the ski resort of Villard de Lans, at about 1000 meters. From here it’s easy going with a great descent to the outskirts of Grenoble for the shorter ride, or all the way to our hotel for the longer route.

We should reach our hotel in plenty of time for a dip in the hotel pool and to catch the final hour or so of the race on TV. We spend the next two nights in a small chateau hotel in a quiet park setting on the outskirts of Grenoble, a great location in the Isere Valley on the route to Alpe d’Huez. Tonight enjoy a delicious dinner in the hotel’s historic dining room.

Overnight: Grenoble
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner


Wednesday, 17 July 2013: The 21 corners of Alpe d’Huez

With the race arriving on Alpe d’Huez tomorrow and the possibility of road closures for the race, we’ll make today our “Alpe d’Huez” day. It will  be a great day to ride the famous 21 switchbacks without any pressure, past all the race fans camped out the mountainside to cheer us on as we ride by.

The ride from our hotel is 45 kms and gently uphill until we reach Bourg d’Oisans at the base of the climb. We will stop here for some refreshments before heading off for up “The Alpe”. The first part is the hardest so don’t be discouraged. The 21 bends will soon pass by. It’s a great climb and you will have lots of cyclists for company. There is a podium at the top where we will take your photo for prosperity!

The first time Alpe d’Huez featured in the Tour de France was in 1952, won by (yes that man again) Fausto Coppi. Coppi attacked six kilometres from the summit to rid himself of the French rider, Jean Robic. He turned the Alpe into an instant legend because his was the year that motorcycle television crews came to the Tour. It was also the Tour’s first mountain-top finish.  The climb is 13.8km at an average 7.9 per cent, with 21 hairpins (les 21 virages), each one named after the winners of stages there.  Marco Pantani’s 37m 35s is recognized by most as the fastest ascent. Why don’t you give it a go?

After your ascent you can return to Le Bourg d’Oisans where there are many cafes where you can relax and maybe watch some of today’s Tour de France time trial stage on TV. There is also a great bike shop where you can grab some nice gear, including souvenir jerseys. Later this afternoon you have the choice of returning in the bus to our hotel, or riding the fast 45km slight downhill back home.

Overnight: Grenoble
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner


Thursday, 18 July 2013: Double Trouble, twice up Alpe d’Huez

This is the day that many race fans have been waiting for, the double ascent of Alpe d’Huez. Although this famous climb has featured many times before as a stage finish and even a time trial, it has never been ascended twice before in the one stage. The first ascent will be from the west up the small road that leads up the Route du Col de Sarenne, which while not as famous as the traditional ascent is possibly harder without the relief that the 21 switchbacks can provide with a change of tempo.

This morning our plan will be to ride from the hotel up the valley and onto the slopes of Alpe d’Huez where we can see the race pass on its historic two ascents.

Once we’ve seen the race pass through the village we’ll head off to beat the traffic and on to our next destination of Lake Annecy, putting us in the perfect position for the next two stages, which are not to be missed.

Our next two nights are spent in a 4 star hotel on the shore of Lake Annecy, one of the most beautiful areas of France.

Overnight: Annecy
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner


Friday, 19 July 2013: Ride Part of the Stage to the Finish

The 20th stage of the race will depart this morning from Le Bourg d’Oisans at the bottom of Alpe d’Huez and head across the mountains to a finish at the ski resort of Le Grand Bornand. This is an epic stage that passes over no less than 5 climbs including 2 hors categorie climbs before finishing at the ski station of Le Grand Bornand.

After a long day yesterday we will be rewarded with a more leisurely start this morning and enjoy the splendid surroundings and lake views from our hotel. The stage finish at Le Grand Bornand is less than 25 kilometres from our hotel so we have a few choices for good rides. One possibility is to ride the final climb of the race following the race course to Le Grand Bornand while another option is to take the direct route across and ride up the final few kilometres to the finish. As always, it’s not possible to cross the finish line however we will get close before the smiling Gendarme asks you to please get off the road!

Tonight we will drive in to Annecy where you can enjoy the atmosphere of the city on the night before it plays host to the Tour de France. It’s a lovely city at night with a good choice of restaurants in the “vieux ville”. Find a seat at a table in one of the canal side restaurants and watch the world go by.

Overnight: Annecy
Meals: Breakfast


Saturday, 20 July 2013: See the Start and Final Climb

The penultimate stage of the Tour de France starts just down the road from our hotel in Annecy and culminates with a brutal finish just above Annecy on the climb to Semnoz and we will be right on the spot to see the race start and the final climb.

As it’s a short stage we don’t expect a start until after lunch so we will offer a scenic ride around the beautiful lower lake and back into Annecy via the bike path that is a converted rail line. On arrival in Annecy we will make a visit to the start of today’s stage where you can see the riders make their way to the sign on area before the stage start and perhaps grab a few autographs and photos. After we see the riders off we will be back on the bikes for our ride up to see the race as it grinds its way up the average 8.5% gradient to the finish in Semnoz.

After seeing the race we will descend to meet the bus for a short transfer to Lyon where we will spend the night in readiness for our TGV transfer tomorrow morning to Paris.

As it’s a big day for us tomorrow, we will have a special farewell dinner tonight, leaving tomorrow evening free for everyone to see the race arrive in Paris and the spectacular fireworks in the French capital to celebrate the end of the 100th edition of Le Tour. Tonight we will have our final dinner in the centre of Lyon, the gastronomic capital of France. This is our chance to celebrate what’s been a great experience at the Tour de France.

Overnight: Lyon
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner


Sunday, 21 July 2013: The Finale in the City of Lights

This morning we will take a short walk to the TGV station where it’s on to the high speed train to Paris, arriving in the French capital late morning. On arrival in Paris we will transfer to our 4 star hotel situated in the prestigious Opera district, close to the Champs Elysees where the race arrives in Paris this evening.

This afternoon we have a special treat in store. We are going to ride through the streets of Paris taking in some of the famous sights such as the Eiffel Tower, the Champs Elysees where preparations will be in full swing, the Arc de Triomphe and the Place de la Concorde. Mid-afternoon we will return to the hotel to pack our bikes (if necessary) and freshen up, get a bite to eat and head down to the Champs Elysees. If you don’t fancy a ride this afternoon then you may prefer to relax and explore the delights of Paris before the race arrives this evening.

The final stage of the 100th edition of the Tour de France will come to a close on the Champs-Elysees as night falls, with the stage finish in Paris set for 9:45pm. If the race timing follows as other years the riders will arrive at the Champs Elysees around 7.30pm but the caravan will be there to entertain you from around 6.00pm.

In another first the peloton will go all the way to the top of the Champs-Elysees and around the Arc de Triomphe as part of the finishing circuit, as Paris showcases itself as the City of Lights. After the presentation a fireworks display is expected to follow and also of course the traditional lap of honour by the teams so don’t expect to be in bed till very late and don’t book an early flight on Monday morning!

The last stage is traditionally a procession until the entrance onto the Champs-Elysees where the racing really starts. Riders traditionally chat, celebrate the final stage, pose for photographs, drink Champagne… sometimes they even dress-up, swap bikes and generally horse around. Once the race gets into Paris, the Yellow jersey and his team lead the peloton onto the Champs-Elysees for what is a big criterium in the centre of the French Capital or in the case of 2013 we can use another French term, nocturne as it will be set in the twilight.

Overnight: Paris
Meals: Breakfast


Monday, 22 July 2013: Au Revoir

Its farewell to your new friends as our tour comes to an end this morning. For those flying out today from Paris CDG airport our staff and coaches will be available to help you on your way.
It is the final day of our tour. Over the past weeks you’ve experienced the excitement of the Tour de France up close, challenged yourself over some famous climbs and hopefully had an unforgettable holiday with Bikestyle Tours. We hope we see you again one day.
Meals: Breakfast

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Inclusions

Tour cost is per person twin share and includes:
-Transport throughout by private luxury coach with custom bike trailer
-Services of our experienced tour guides, plus our coach driver
-9 night’s accommodation, in selected quality hotels (with private facilities)
-Buffet breakfast daily
-3 course evening meals on 7 nights
-TGV train transfer from Lyon to Paris
-Transfer on Saturday, 13 July from Lyon St Exupery airport to hotel
-Transfer on Monday, 22 July to Paris CDG airport
-Mechanical assistance with your bike
-Sightseeing as listed
-Maps and Bikestyle guide to the Tour de France
-Bikestyle Tours cycling jersey, cap and musette bag

 

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If paying by bank deposit or cheque see below

NOTE: Please place number of persons attending in box below

2013 Alpes to Paris Trip ($1000pp)
2013 Alpes to Paris Trip Bicycle Hire $540.00
Tick the box to accept the Bikestyle Waiver and Reservation Conditions. If renting a bicycle you also agree to our Bicycle rental Conditions


  • By paying a deposit you are deemed to have accepted our Waiver and Reservation Conditions.
  • We charge for our trips in Australian Dollars (AUD). We recommend that you check the exchange rate before booking.
  • A surcharge of 1.5% is applicable for payments made with visa or mastercard and 3% for payments made with American Express credit cards.
  • Deposits can also be paid by direct deposit or cheque. Please see below.
  • It is a requirement of Bikestyle Tours that you have Travel Insurance for your trip.
  • * We charge for our trips in Australian Dollars (AUD) and prices shown in other currencies are only approximate. We advise that you check the exchange rate before booking.

If you have any further enquiries please email us at tours@bikestyletours.com

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Payment by Bank Deposit and Cheque

If you wish to pay by Bank Deposit or Cheque please tick the box below to go to our Bank Details

Prior to paying a deposit it is advisable to confirm a place is available by sending an email to our Office Manager Michelle Knibbs, michelle@bikestyletours.com or telephone our office on 1300 882494.

Tick the box to accept the Bikestyle Waiver and Reservation Conditions. If renting a bicycle you also agree to our Bicycle rental Conditions

  • By paying a deposit you are deemed to have accepted our Waiver and Reservation Conditions. If you have any further enquiries please email us at tours@bikestyletours.com.
  • Don’t forget it is a requirement of Bikestyle Tours that you have Travel Insurance for your trip.
    Purchase your International Travel Insurance here.
  • * We charge for our trips in Australian Dollars (AUD) and prices shown in other currencies are only approximate. We advise that you check the exchange rate before booking.

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