2023 Grand Tour – Tour de France
The ultimate bike tour to the iconic cycling race – ride Tour de France
Visit beautiful villages, ride the spectacular climbs, eat delicious food and stay in quality accommodation.
21 stages, Team Presentations, the full 3 weeks
Bilbao Airport, Spain
Full TDFAT A GLANCE
- 26 Days
- Social to Experienced
- All Breakfasts, Multiple Dinners
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
- Support Vehicle
- Mechanical Assistance
- The Full TDF
Bilbao Airport, Spain, June 29, 2023
Paris, France, July 24, 2023
Group Size: 24 guests – 4 staff
Rides: Always a social ride option and for those that want a challenge, we have some epic rides also.
Challenge Rating: We get you to the iconic climbs so that you have all the time to ride them at your pace. Our challenge rides are for experienced riders.
Accommodation: 3 to 4-star hotels, twin-share basis, all breakfasts included, and many dinners.
Social Riding and Leisure: We understand that your cycling holiday is a HOLIDAY! You may not normally ride every day at home. Our ride routes allow you to cherry-pick the sort of riding that you’d like to do. Choose the days you want to climb, the days to ride flat, and days to rest.
Experienced Riders: Your cycling holiday is actually about the bike! Our epic and challenging ride options seek more vertical meters and longer miles. Choose your rest days or recovery rides, or just ride, and ride, and ride.
Cycling Partners and Spectators: You are not interested in riding yourself, but you are a cycling enthusiast who would like to experience the Tour de France live. Whether your partner is a rider, you want to experience the culture along with seeing the race. We have off-the-bike itineraries for you to see the most spectacular areas, such as the plus-beaux (most-beautiful) villages.
Buffet breakfast every day, multiple dinners
Accommodation and Transport
- Transport throughout custom van or luxury coach
- Transport for your bike with professional bike carriers
- 25 nights accommodation 3 & 4 Star hotels
- Scheduled arrival transfer as per itinerary
- 2 x Bikestyle Tours Cycling Kits
- Buffet breakfast daily
- 3-course evening meals mutliple nights
- Wine at welcome and farewell dinners
Professional Ride Support
- Hosted by our experienced tour guides and professional drivers
- Mechanical assistance with your bike
- Ride support vehicle when you need it most
- Navigation assistance on all guided rides
- Sports powders, water, and bars during your ride
Why we Love this Tour
- See 10 stages live of the 2023 Tour de France, including the team’s presentation
- Stay in San Sebastian and the Pyrenees
- Visit the Basque coastline interwoven by the trekkers following one of the famous Camino de Santiago routes
- Climb Col du Tourmalet, and Col du Solour
- Stay on Alpe d’Huez
- Stay on the shores of Lac d’Annecy
- Ride the most famous Tour de France climbs including Alpe d’Huez, Mont Ventoux and Tourmalet
- Enjoy some rest days as we give you a local’s tour of our home region in France, the Tarn
- Visit French wine growing regions, Beaujolais and Burgundy
- Take the TGV to Paris, where we rise early and ride through the most famous Paris sights – Tour de Eiffel, Champs Elysee, Notre Dame, Louvre, and many more
- Much much more
Price: AUD $17,500 (twin share)
Single Supplement: AUD $2990
Note: All trip costs are per person, not including airfare and based on two persons per room. If travelling alone we will match you with a person to share. Alternatively, you may choose to have a room of your own by paying the single supplement.
Note: It is a requirement of Bikestyle Tours that you have Travel Insurance for your trip. Please take out Travel Insurance at your earliest convenience. We recommend at the same time as paying your deposit.
Many guests find it convenient to hire one of our professionally prepared quality hire bikes.
- Hire a bike so that you’re not lugging a bike around on your extended European holiday
- Hire a bike and mitigate damage or delays during international transit
Bike Hire ChargesBike Hire: AUD $1250 Note: Renters of our hire bikes are liable for damages to their hire bike during the period of hire, treat it like you own for the rental period. Bikes are set up to your measurements before your arrival and are fully serviced by our professional mechanic.
This Trip will be Escorted by Former Pro-Cyclist, Pat Jonker
Although born in The Netherlands, Patrick is an Aussie. He often raced with a Dutch licence during his career and has won 12 major European races.
Patrick turned professional at the end of 1993 and he raced with:
- 1993 WordPerfect
- 1994 Novemail
- 1995 and 1996 Once
- 1997 to 1999 Rabobank,
- 2000 with US Postal,(when injury ruled him out of the Tour)
- 2001 and 2002 with Big Mat
He finished 12th overall at the 1996 Tour de France, Miguel Indurain was 13th and that was the year Bjarne Riis toppled the Big Mig. A young up and coming Ullrich was second. Pat is also a former Dutch and Australian time trial champion.
Most South Australian’s know of Patrick’s greatest win in his final race as a professional, the Tour Down Under. It was a fairy tale win for him in front of his hometown crowd and one that we will remember for years to come.
Indulge in the Ultimate Tour de France Journey
Follow the exciting full 3-weeks of the 2023 Tour de France. Your cycling holiday starts in one of our favourite European destinations — the Basque. We will chaperone you to the opening stages and the team presentations of the biggest cycling race in the world. You will see multiple aspects of the first 3 stages before the race enters France. Feel the excitement of the frenzied Basque crowds, who are arguably the most energetic, yet certainly most considered supporters that annually celebrate the Tour de France in the Pyrenees. Moreso in 2023 than any other preceding year.
The 2023 Tour de France enters the Pyrenees in the first week, which is a less than the traditional route. This is because riders will climb the legendary Col du Tourmalet, normally such a climb is reserved for the final week of the Grand Tour. But our trips offer much more than just watching the 2023 Tour de France, you can be a tourist in the infamous pintxos bars of San Sebastian, immersing in their wonderful cuisine and vibrant culture. You will also have the opportunity to achieve your own cycling goals too, with supported rides along the Tour de France routes, along the Basque coastline interwoven by the trekkers following one of the famous Camino de Santiago routes. We incorporate days on our itinerary away from the race so that we have ample time to complete the most famous climbs ourselves – climb Col du Tourmalet, challenge yourself to Col du Solour before taking in the spectacular sights around Cirque du Litor which summits at Col d’Aubisque.
We leave the Pyrenees and stay over in the southwest of France giving you extended time to ride the beautiful South-West and explore some classic French villages. We will continue to follow the Tour in France, picking up some stage finishes in Beaujolais and as the Tour enters the French Alps. As the intensity of the competition elevates, we catch the key stages, including the Queen Stage and the only individual time trial of the 2023 Tour de France. As the race exits the Alps, we’ll take guests to ride the most famous of climbs in the Tour de France, with a side excursion to Alpe d’Huez, Col du Galibier, and Col de la Croix de Fer. See the famous race and ride the most famous climbs of the Tour de France.
Our trip finishes in Paris, by taking the TGV north and riding through the famous Paris sites on the morning that the 2023 Tour de France arrives on the Champs-Elysees. You’ll have the chance to ride your bike along the Champs-Elysees and around Arc du Triomphe, before watching the finale in July. See many stages of the 2023 Tour de France from many different aspects of the race. Including stage finishes for sprinters, mountain stage finishes, feed-zones, intermediate sprints, biggest mountain stages, and the finale on Champs-Elysees. Your trip to the 2023 Tour de France will be book-ended by the official team presentation and the podium presentation.
See 10 key stages of the 2023 Tour de France
- STAGE 1 – 182km – Bilbao to Bilbao
- STAGE 2 – 209km – Vitoria-Gasteiz to San Sebastian
- STAGE 3 – 185km – Amorebieta-Etxano to Bayonne
- STAGE 5 – Pau to Laruns
- STAGE 6 – 145km – Tarbes to Cauterets-Cambasque
- STAGE 12 – 169km – Roanne to Belleville-Beaujolais
- STAGE 13 – 138km – Chatillion Sur Charlaronne to Grand Colombier
- STAGE 15 – 180km – Les Gets to Saint Gervais-Mont Blanc
- STAGE 16 – 22km ITT – Passy to Combloux
- STAGE 21 – 115km – St Quentin-en-Yvelines to Champs-Élysées
Grand Tour – Daily Itinerary
Welcome – 2023 Tour de France
Our staff will greet you at Bilbao Airport this morning at 11 am. Bilbao is recognised as the largest city in the Basque region. Basque has its unique culture, cuisine, and their own language. Situated in Northern Spain, beyond their own language, the region is very industrious, and very active locals continue to make efforts towards it’s annexure from the rest of Spain. You’ll find the people very friendly, and the culture very addictive.
We have a short transfer this morning to San Sebastian, which is a well-regarded tourist destination. Our hotel is close to the old town where you will be able to enjoy the relaxed atmosphere of the Basque country and develop a taste for Pintxos. There are many great restaurants within walking distance. Tonight, we will welcome our guests at a local restaurant, including drinks. It is the perfect opportunity for you to have your questions answered about how our famous cycling trips run, and meet your fellow guests.
During the afternoon, your staff will be on hand to assist with assembling your bike before we head out on our shakedown ride.
- Welcome Dinner
- Warm Up ride around San Sebastian
There are sophisticated cycling networks that navigate through San Sebastian, and the surrounding terrain is conducive to wonderful riding experiences. Importantly, our ride this afternoon is to check that you and your bike are in working order, and for you to meet your fellow travelers.
Team Presentations in Bilbao
Today we make our way to Bilbao for the team presentations. After a full buffet breakfast, we will make the short transfer to Bilbao before riding. You’ll be supported on the road today with our support van and professional ride guides. We’ll have several groups of different paces and shorter options for those wishing to save their legs for the mountains. Right at a comfortable pace and enjoy this spectacular area with multiple scenic points along the route.
When you return to our luxury coach, you can freshen up, even with a hot shower, and store your bike before exploring Bilbao. You’ll have time to check out the Guggenheim Museum, an architectural masterpiece that always hosts a great exhibition of art. Later in the day, we will watch the team presentations as they are announced to the crowds. See every rider participating in the 2023 Tour de France. We suggest that you have a restaurant lunch in Bilbao after your ride, and if top up with a Basque classic of Pintxos for dinner in San Sebastian.
- Team Presentations in Bilbao
- Guggenheim Museum
Our ride today follows the race route of Stage 1 on the Tour de France in Basque. A day for the pro’s you will ride along the course and get a taste of what confronts the tour peloton. You’ll discover that it is not a pedestrian stage, as the Basque country is famous for its undulating terrain. Punctuated by breathtaking views of the Bay of Biscay, world-famous surf beaches, and popular holiday destinations, it is a stunning ride. You have the choice of a shorter or longer option before returning to Bilbao for this afternoon’s team presentations ahead of the 3-week Tour de France.
Opening Stage 2023 Tour de France
It has finally arrived, the 2023 Tour de France. See the opening stage multiple times, for a great vantage point. Expect to see lots of action during today’s stage, the opening stage, in fact, the entire opening week is full of nervous energy. We will catch the race mid-way along where we can see it multiple times. One of the popular locations for tourists is surfers, and it goes hand-in-hand that land conservation is at the heart of this region.
We will watch the race from an area that is also on the famous pilgrimage path — Santiago de Compostela. Guernica lays on a major river estuary that releases in the Bay of Biscay. It has been a strategically important location for conflicts in the past, and with its natural beauty, locals are passionate about peace and conservation. In a nearby forest, local artist Augustin Ibarrola resisted a plan for deforestation by painting trunks and forming an outdoor gallery. The simple act created a tourist attraction and importantly saved the forest from destruction. Worldwide, murals and wrappings on tree trunks deliver an important message to people, be they mental health, climate change, or amnesty.
After watching the race in this beautiful area, we will return to San Sebastian where you can enjoy dinner at a local restaurant.
- Stage One of the 2023 Tour de France
Our ride today explores the roads of Stage 2 of the Tour de France on our way to Guernica. You have the option of starting and finishing your ride in Guernica, which will make it much shorter. Our long ride is about 100km with several small climbs along the route.
Stage Finish in San Sebastian
Today is Stage 2 of the Tour de France, and the race arrives not far from our hotel. The terrain will offer the chance for a small breakaway to hold off a fast-finishing peloton. It should be a spectacle, with an impressive backdrop.
After breakfast we will head out on a short ride, again we’ll offer guests multiple supported ride options. You have the choice of something longer or shorter, and faster or slower. We’ll arrive back at our hotel in time for the final preparations for the race’s arrival.
- Stage Two of the Tour de France - Sprint Finish
Our ride today follows the final moments of today’s stage. Much of today’s stage for the Tour de France has been included in multiple editions of Vuelta a Espana and the Tour of Basque. Some riders will be very familiar with the road, and the local riders will be willed to victory by the fanatical Basque fans. Today will be a memorable day.
Entering the Pyrenees
We transfer to France today. As we farewell our hospitable hosts in the Basque country, we enter the Basque country of France — yes, there is a Spanish-Basque and a French-Basque area. We will follow the final moment of the stage in Bayonne before transferring to our hotel in the Pyrenees.
The French Pyrenees are usually reserved for the second or last week of the French Grand Tour, the Pyrenees will host 2 pivotal stages in the 2023 Tour de France. We will stay in the heart of the Pyrenees with some of the most spectacular rides at our doorstep. Making the most of this situation, we will arrive a day ahead of the race and maximize our rides.
Our accommodation in the Pyrenees is at a wonderful family-run hotel, and each night our hosts will present fabulous local produce so that we are fuelled for the next day.
- Enter the Pyrenees
Our ride today follows to coastline into France and onto the finish in Bayonne. It is a flat ride, a perfect day to rinse the legs and prepare for the mountains tomorrow.
Col du Tourmalet, Legendary
In a break from traditional stages of the 2023 Tour de France utilise the famous roads of the Pyrenees in the first week, although race organisers defy tradition often these days. Riders will climb the legendary Col du Tourmalet — the climb needs little introduction, other than it was included in the race before Mont Ventoux, Alpe d’Huez, or even Col du Galibier. We will ride the legendary climb today, in the same direction that the race does later in the week.
- Climb the legendary Col du Tourmalet
We call this ride the perfect-100. Because it is exactly 100km and about 2000m of climbing and importantly the last 40km is entirely downhill. There are no time pressures today, so climb at your own pace and if you get tired, stop take some photos before going again. For those that are concerned about making the complete loop, we will transport you to the base of the main climb, so that your legs are fresh for the difficult part of the climb. There is always the option for some uplift closer to the summit.
Ride the Pyrenees – 2023 Tour de France
We’ll re-focus on the race today after riding a legendary climb yesterday. Today, we will see the stage start in Pau, a popular stage town in recent editions of the Tour de France. We will ride over a climb that was included in 2022 where the eventual winner, Jonas Vingegaard demonstrated possibly the greatest moment of sportsmanship in 2022 — his combatant Tadej Pogacar lost control on gravel through a corner, and Jonas eased up so that Tadej could rejoin the battle for the queen stage to the Hautacam.
There are too many historical moments to recall from previous editions of the Tour de France — the edition where Lance Armstrong was dislodged from his bike by a spectator’s plastic bag on Luz Ardiden comes to mind. So many legends of the sport, and so many legendary climbs. We love the Pyrenees.
- Stage Start in Pau
- Ride the Hautacam
Our main ride today involves arriving in Pau for the stage start. There is a small climb along the way, and our easier option goes through Lourdes and past the famous Grotto. If you’d like to watch the entire stage from a local bar, which is often an option taken by our guests then there are several alternatives ride that we can suggest, such as Luz Ardiden and the Hautacam — after all, they are popular to do together, and if the second gets too tough, turn around and your hotel is at the base of the Hautacam.
Col du Soulor and Col d’Aubisque
This is an early treat in the 2023 Tour de France, the opening week of the Grand Tour includes a stage on the legendary Tourmalet. We will ride early this morning and give you the opportunity to watch the race close to our hotel later today on the final climb.
- Ride Col du Soulor and Col d’Aubisque
- See the Tour de France near our hotel
Our ride today is another of our favourites. Behind our hotel are the slopes of Col du Soulor and Col d’Aubisque. There is also another category 1 climb that connects us to the base of Soulor. This is a treat. Once you reach the summit of Soulor, the 9km to Aubisque may be the most spectacular road that you will ever ride following Cirque du Litor. You will be rewarded with expansive views across the valley, impressive mountains, and a balcony road. Riding rarely gets better than this.
We leave the Pyrenees today and will make a stopover to the start village of today’s stage before transferring you to Toulouse-Blagnac airport this afternoon. We will be dropping off some of our group today at the airport as we continue onto Southwest France for some great riding.
We understand that chasing the race can be tiring for the three-weeks, so we have the next few days riding through our local area not far from Toulouse. Ride in the backyard of Laurent “Ja-Ja” Jalabert before we reconnect with the race on our way to the French Alps.
- Welcome to Bikestyle HQ
Pic de Nore
We’ll take another day away from the race today and ride our favourite climb in France. Favourite as it is our local, and it was included for the first time in the Tour de France only recently. The most famous cyclist to come from this area is Laurent Jalabert, and each year there is a dedicated amateur cycling race in his honour.
We have left this evening available to you with a free itinerary. So you can have dinner at one of the local restaurants in town.
- Ride Pic de Nore - Bikestyle training climb
- Visit Bikestyle HQ
We don’t have any time pressures today, and the climb to Pic de Nore is manageable. It is situated on the border of the Tarn region and Aude region. It is the highest road on the Montagne Noire. Upon reaching the top, you are rewarded with views of the Pyrenees and the Mediterranean – it is a special place.
For a shorter ride, we will show you some of the stunning villages around the area, as well as visiting some of our favourite patisseries.
Today we will explore the capital of the region, Albi in the region of Tarn. Albi attracts a large bike expo each year and has hosted stage finishes and stage starts before. Albi is most famous for its large brick cathedral. Even if you’re not religious the scale of the church and the volume of brick is mind-blowing.
On our way between Castres and Albi, we will make a stopover in Lautrec, where the famous renaissance painter Toulouse-Lautrec once resided. This evening we’ll head into Castres for dinner along the river Agout.
- See the largest free-standing brick building in the world
- Ride through the France Sunflowers
Our scenic ride today has a few undulations, but nothing too steep or long. It is picturesque on quiet country roads, some lined with Plane trees, through fields of sunflowers, and the vineyards of Gaillac – the local wine area. You may finish the ride in Albi for the short ride, and our longer ride will return on an alternative route.
Canal du Midi
It is the first rest day of the 2023 Tour de France. You’ll find Monday is a much slower pace in France, and many shops are closed on Monday. Furthermore, roads are much quieter. We will take the opportunity to ride the quiet roads of the area and understand some of the local history along the way.
This is our final day in the Southwest. We’ll seek out some more great riding in the area. Our ride today will head to the market square of Revel – a beautiful village. You’ll also see some of the history of the region on today’s ride. A religious sect that was prominent in Southern France was the Cathars. One of the cornerstones of the Cathar belief was that they regarded men and women as equals. They flourished in the 12th century, but they conflicted with the teachings of the Catholic Church, and not surprisingly the Catholics devastated towns, cities, and culture of southern France. This period in the early 13th century was known for the Cathar massacres, sadly Cathar followers were mostly women and children. Many of the beliefs for fairness and equality still permeate through those living in Southern France.
- Visit Revel
- Ride along the Canal du Midi
We have two ride options today, both with pass-through Revel and the great market square. We road some of the Montagne Noire range a couple of days ago. Our longer ride will explore more of this side of the mountain. On this side is a controlled dam, which was installed for the development of Canal du Midi, a UNESCO-recognised feature.
Once used as a transport route between the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean, Canal du Midi needed a perpetual water source. Fortunately, Montagne Noire is like a massive sponge, and has seemingly endless spring water that could feed water for the Canal system – a pumping system was engineered. Consequently, the ride through the mountain area is densely forested and the canopy keeps us cool while riding.
We have a long transfer today, but we will pause part way through and watch some of the stages through the Auvergne region —a region known for its volcanoes. We will travel through the heart of France, the geographical center at least. The Central Massif is popular with local tourists for its connection with nature. Villages are fascinating for are custodians of rich history, particularly through trade and religion. The landscape is ancient and there are multiple protected areas for nature reserves.
Tonight, we arrive in the Burgundy region, which is best known for its wine varieties. Joining us for dinner tonight is our GC Classic trip, in which you will travel through the French Alps together and onto Paris for the final 10 days of the 2023 Tour de France. We will host a special welcome dinner for you to meet your fellow guests.
- Ride through the Central Massif
- Meet your new Tour de France guests
Our ride today will break up our transfer into two parts and give you an opportunity to ride in Auvergne. This region has produced some of France’s greatest cyclists, and it is no surprise when you experience the roads and terrain through this lesser-known area of France. The locals often venture here for their holidays – particularly those seeking active holidays in nature.
Burgundy Wine and Beaujolais
This morning we will travel the short distance north along the Soane River. Ultimately, we will arrive in the popular wine area of Burgundy — where the famous varietals of Chablis, Chardonnay, and Pinot Noir originate. Enjoying the southeastern slopes of the Soane River, the climate is idyllic for delicious wine. We will be joined today by one of our guides who runs a winery in Beaujolais producing a limited selection of vintages each year, typically using Gamay grapes. There are very strict rules under the governing bodies for how the vintages are grown and prepared. This guarantees that each vintage is reflective of the area, its climate, and the grape variety.
- Ride along the Soane River
- Ride through the vineyards where Chablis, Chardonnay, and Pinot Noir originate
We will ride this afternoon through the wineries and understand why the world continues to have a deep fascination for the Burgundy region. We will ride along the quiet country roads with varied terrain. There isn’t anything too difficult on our route today, as it is mostly about the scenery and reflecting on the fact we are riding our bikes through France. Today is your opportunity to live the experience rather than swooning over the television broadcasts with helicopter shots of wineries, perched villages, chateaux, and architecture of the roman and renaissance periods.
Beaujolais Stage Finish
Our day has arrived when we get to see the 2023 Tour de France live. We will ride this morning and arrive at the stage finish town of Belleville-en-Beaujolais. The terrain for the race today will be taxing on riders, as there is a little reprieve. For those that have made the breakaway, staying there will be tiresome. As the stage nears its conclusion it passes through the vineyards of Beaujolais where some more challenging climbing confronts. The uphill finish should produce an excellent contest for a whittled-down group of riders. It should be an exciting stage finish to be a part of.
- Stage 12 finish
- Ride through Beaujolais
Our ride today takes us to the stage finish. We will explore a few more roads through the vineyards of Beaujolais, including the final challenging climb that confronts riders. Our shorter, or easier option follows the Soane river taking you directly to Belleville-en-Beaujolais.
Mountain Finish to Grand Colombier
We’ll see another stage finish today. This time, however, it will be a mountain stage finish to Grand Colombier. The Grand Colombier has been used many times before for the Tour de France, it has several short switchbacks at the bottom of the climb before it climbs up beyond the tree line. It is not officially in the Alps, but from the top of the climb, you have a stunning view of Mont-Blanc.
After breakfast, we’ll travel to Culoz, at the base of the climb, and ride from there. You can ride up as far as you wish and watch the race before returning back to our transport. After seeing the race, we will travel to our next hotel, on the shores of Lake Annecy. Annecy is also one of our favourite destinations in France. The pristine waters are classified as Europe’s cleanest lake, and Annecy itself is often referred to as the “French Venice”. Waters from the lake flow into the Rhone River, and the old town takes advantage of the cool waters on hot summer days. Whereas the waters were once used solely for industrial purposes.
- Ride the final climb of stage 13
- Spend the night in Annecy
We ride the final climb of today’s summit finish. It can be surreal to ride the climb along with the many supporters, who on foot and bike climb to an advantage spot for watching the professionals’ race later in the day. Enjoy the entire atmosphere, as it builds through the day, and enjoy the many nationalities making the pilgrimage to support their favourite riders.
Lake Annecy and Queen Stage
Today’s stage is the Queen stage of the 2023 Tour de France. There are 5 category climbs, with the two final climbs being the toughest. Lance Armstrong was recorded having said that “it was his toughest day on a bike, ever” when asked about Col de Joux Plane. There are many climbs through France that have a consistent gradient, where riders can settle into a tempo, or rhythm and build their effort toward the summit. It is typically how you ride a climb fastest. However, Joux Plane has an inconsistent gradient, one that breaks the tempo, requiring concentration and perseverance. It will be a classic Tour de France stage today.
We will travel to the final climb of today’s stage, giving you an opportunity to ride it yourself. We have an easier, and more touristic ride option available for others before watching the race come through. We will return to Annecy this evening, where you can walk through the old town to a nice restaurant of your choice.
- Stay on Lake Annecy
- Ride Col de Joux Plane
Our main ride today is the climb of the Col de Joux Plane. It is part of the Portes des Soleil itinerary, close to the Swiss border. The climb is just under 12 km in length, with an average gradient of between 8% and 9%, it is one of the toughest climbs of the Tour de France. Even though it may not appear that on paper. For a shorter ride option, we have a scenic ride on a gentle slope to the Cirque de Fer de Cheval. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, where as many as 200 waterfalls appear after the snow melts bringing the ecosystems to life and welcoming spring. Even at the height of summer, waterfalls continue to flow and are popular for hikers to explore. We will also go through a Plus-Beaux village, a village that is officially recognised as being the most beautiful in France.
Ride the Time Trial Course
After having breakfast this morning, we will head our way up the valley toward the finish of today’s stage. In a few days, the race will ride a mountain time trial. We will use today to ride the time trial course for ourselves before catching up with today’s stage near its end.
After watching today’s stage on one of the final climbs we will travel further up the valley to the base of Mont-Blanc, in Chamonix
- Ride Stage 16 Mountain TT route
- Stay in Chamonix
Our ride today follows stage 16 of the 2023 Tour de France, the mountain time trial. It is a course that is not purely for the climbers, as they will also need to be strong at the individual time-trial discipline. Once we finish the course, we will join onto today’s stage route and enjoy lunch before watching the race come through this afternoon.
Visit Mont Blanc
It is the final rest day of the 2023 Tour de France. Riders will be enjoying some extra rest, but still head out on a ride today of about 90 or 100km, as their engines will need to be firing tomorrow for the individual time trial.
We’ll take the opportunity to play tourist. We have two options from which you can choose today. For the pedestrian-paced itinerary, start early and catch the gondola to Aiguille du Midi, which is situated just below the peak of Mont Blanc. There is no better view of Mont Blanc than at Aiguille du Midi. No better view of the French Alps for that matter. If vertical heights don’t petrify you, stand in the glass room at the summit, and you are suspended high above the Alps for an unparalleled view.
- Gondola to Aiguille du Midi
- Ride into Switzerland
Our less-than-pedestrian option today allows you to ride into Switzerland for one of the greatest climbs in the area. You may not be fooled as our ride summits at a point that feels like the production set of James Bond 007. The Tour de France finished a stage here in 2016.
We cross into Switzerland before turning up the climb to Finhaut-Emosson dam. The hydroelectric scheme has a 180m-high wall that barricades 227 GL.
Individual Mountain Time Trial
Time trials are one of our most favourite stages at the Tour de France. We’ll have had a chance to ride the course earlier, and today it is the Pro’s turn on the mountain time trial for Stage 16 of the 2023 Tour de France. The course offers gains for the strong trim trialist, but it also offers terrain for the mountain climbers to challenge — Who wins today? It will be difficult to choose. Irrespective of the winner, the exciting race situation for the final week will be established on today’s stage.
We will ride down to the time trial this morning and take a short ride over some of the nearby climbs, or something flatter for an easier option. Then we will freshen up and watch the race. With riders setting off at 1-minute intervals, and later 2-minute intervals for those within striking distance of the race leader.
- Stage 16 of the 2023 Tour de France
One of the advantages of our accommodation today is being at the top of the valley. This means our ride this morning has gravity on our side. A pleasuring ride with thanks to the gradient profile, you will arrive at today’s time stage feeling like a contender for today’s stage. It will surprise you with the velocity with which riders climb today’s course.
Stage Start in the French Alps
We will travel to the stage start today, giving you lots of time to enjoy the start village in St Gervais-Mont Blanc. Riders are embarking on the toughest stages in the Alps today before they start their journey north toward Paris tomorrow. It will be one of the slowest stages today with 4 categorised climbs. There will be some nervous energy at the start village.
Once the race heads out, we will follow them out and ride the first climb of the stage before traveling on to our next hotel. For the final 3 nights, we will stay on Alpe d’Huez, arguably the most famous of all Tour de France climbs. From our family-run hotel, we will be able to enjoy some of the most famous Tour de France climbs in the French Alps before setting off to Paris.
- Ride Col de Saisies
- Start village in St Gervais-Mont Blanc
Our climb today is Col de Saisies, which is 13 km in length and has an average gradient of about 5%. It is a gentle climb and a long descent where we will meet up with our transport. For those wanting a shorter ride option today, we will stick to the valley roads, thereby avoiding the climb.
We don’t have any time pressures, and lots to do while we are staying on Alpe d’Huez. We will pick off some of the great climbs, visit some beautiful villages, and do some obligatory shopping. This is a summer mecca for cycling. Millions of cyclists are estimated to ride the Alpe each Summer. Several people have completed Everesting on Alpe d’Huez (the equivalent of 9 ascents), and unverified 11 attempts have been completed in 24 hours. These are impressive statistics.
Without comparison, Marco Pantani still holds the fastest ascent of Alpe, with a time of around 37 minutes. He was observed applying his brakes on the corners of the ascent as he was going so fast… The only records that we’ll have in sight today are personal milestones, be it your first attempt, or trying to better a previous time, or just taking as many photos as possible. The 21 switchbacks are always an adventure.
- 21 switchbacks of Alpe d’Huez
- Stay on Alpe d'Huez
Ride the 21 switchbacks of Alpe d’Huez. Each numbered corner is marked by a sign, with previous winners of the stage to Alpe d’Huez recognised. Break the climb into 3-sections, and ride a steady tempo, it is a very achievable climb and more rewarding than the effort it takes.
Three Cols for the day – French Alps Tourist
There are multiple options available today. We have a few riding options, and we also have a scenic tourist itinerary should you wish. Our rides will set off in the morning, with two possible finish locations. You can finish in Bourg d’Oisans, for some lunch and some shopping. Our transport will return you to our accommodation during the afternoon.
If you choose to stay around Alpe d’Huez today, you also have the scenic option to take the gondola to Pic du Midi, above Alpe d’Huez. Situated at over 3,000m in elevation there are stunning views across the French Alpes, and it is possible to see Mont Blanc also.
Being a flatter stage of the Tour de France today, you will be able to catch the final hour of the race at a local bar and enjoy a personal day in the French Alps.
- Ride Col du Glandon
- Ride Col de la Croix de Fer
If you’re seeking a long ride, including another famous climb, we suggest the ride to Col de la Croix de Fer with a brief stopover at Col du Glandon. Of course, we have the option to return up Alpe d’Huez, making it a 3-climb day.
There is a lovely loop around Alpe d’Huez, that includes a visit to a lake, the Alti-port, and the top of Col du Sarenne. The benefit of this ride is that it is completely at altitude so it will stay cool on a hot summer day. It is possible to extend this ride and return along the stunning balcony road that enters the main climb to Alpe d’Huez from about one-third of the way up. The views are spectacular, and the road is extremely quiet.
TGV to Paris and Farewell Dinner
We will set off from our hotel this morning, bound for a fast TGV trip to Paris. We will transport your heavy luggage and bicycles to Paris for you so that you can relax on the train and enjoy some rest. Take your GPS cycle computer with you and measure our speeds on the train.
You’ll arrive well ahead of your luggage. So on arrival, you can explore the local village close to our hotel. There are some lovely boutique shops and lovely bars and restaurants. Paris is one of the greatest locations to sit at a café and discuss the trivial matters of the world and people watch. Of course, there is a stage on television this afternoon also.
This evening we will go to a fine-dining restaurant together and enjoy a 3-course meal, with drinks. We will celebrate our travels together, our achievements, our funny moments, and the great company that we share seeing the biggest stages of the 2023 Tour de France.
- TGV Fast train to Paris
- Farewell dinner in Paris
Today is the finale in Paris for the 2023 Tour de France. The race is much a parade and celebration of the jersey winners and the team that holds the yellow jersey will do some photography during the stage, as well as have a glass of champagne on route. But as the riders arrive on the Champs Elysees, normally lead out by the team with the yellow jersey, the intensity lifts and all teams work for their sprinters. This is because a victory on the Champs-Elysees for any rider is one of the highest achievements in the sport.
This morning we will ride before breakfast through the sites of Paris. Before the city awakes, it is often known for its slow starts, especially on a Sunday morning in July. The perfect opportunity to ride along the roads of Paris and visit the most significant monuments.
This afternoon, staff will assist you to the Champs-Elysees for watching the final stage. It Is incredible to witness to speed with which the riders travel along the cobbled surface of the Champs-Elysees. See the attacks, the strung-out peloton close the gaps, and ultimately the final sprint before the presentations. After the presentations, you can find a nearby Paris restaurant for dinner.
- Ride through Paris - see Champs Elysees, Arc du Triomphe, and Eiffel Tower.
- See final stage of the 2023 Tour de France
Our ride this morning leaves from our hotel and rides along the Left Bank of the Seine passing the many significant locations of Paris. Our ride plan includes Pont Neuf, Notre-Dame, the Louvre, Place de la Concorde, Champs Elysees, Arc du Triomphe, and Eiffel Tower. There are lots of opportunities for photos, and the cruisy ride is a wonderful way to finish our trip to the 2023 Tour de France. After our ride, we will return to our hotel for a big breakfast, with a broad selection of buffet options.
Farewell from 2023 Tour de France
Sadly, our trip to the 2023 Tour de France has come to an end this morning. Our staff will bid you farewell from our hotel this morning. You may like to stay on at our hotel for a few days exploring the city of lights. Furthermore, some of our guests transfer to an apartment at another hotel today. If you are departing today, the hotel concierge will be able to assist you with transfers to the airport to connect with your flight.
Ride Challenging Climbs with the most experienced Tour Operator at Grand Tours
Grand Tours for 27 years
2023 will proudly be our 27th year of organising trips to the Grand tours, making us among the most experienced tour operators at Le Tour.
If you’ve ever stayed up late watching le Tour de France on TV and swooning over the imagery, we’ll help you make your dream come true by bringing you there live and letting you cycle the famous roads yourself!
- 20+ years of experience running Tour de France trips
- Different trips and itineraries to suit your holiday preferences
- Accommodations in 3 & 4 star hotels
- Luxury transportation throughout your holiday
See the race at various stages including the start, finish, epic climbs, and routes in small French villages. Go beyond the typical tourist areas of France and celebrate Le Tour in a friendly French town.
However you want to experience the Tour de France, we have a trip for you.
Book your 2023 Tour de France trip now and be a part of the largest annual sporting event.
Why Book with Bikestyle Tours?
A COVID-Safe plan
- All staff and guests must complete a pre-travel questionnaire prior to the start of the trip
- Bikestyle Tours complies with the COVID requirements of the local authorities (Tourism and Accommodation, Bike Tours); such as controls for social distancing, cleaning and hygiene, vehicle transport
- Check your departure and return requirements for your country of residence
Are Trips Guaranteed Departures?
We make every effort to guarantee departures to give you peace of mind that once you’ve booked your trip – you’re going! We do not cancel trips due to insufficient numbers leaving you stranded.