France Grand Cycle Tour 2023 - Escape to the French Alps Experience

  • Location

    French Alps

  • Duration

    5 days / 4 nights / 3 days riding

  • Length

    170 to 182 km +

  • Climb

    3,829 to 4,394 m +

13 Jul 2023 - 17 Jul 2023

Three French Alps mountain stages in a row for the 2023 Grande Boucle - perfect for a short Grand Tour Experience.

Seeking some excitement, wishing to ride portions of the world’s premier cycling event in France, but a week away is not possible? We have a solution - a long weekend with three days of riding in the French Alps. The three mountain stages, 13, 14 and 15, will start from flat Chatillon-sur-Chalarone and finish in mountainous Saint Gervais Mont Blanc.

This short escape conveniently over a long weekend offers you 3 days of riding the best portions of each stage, on the day of the race before the gendarmes close the route for the caravan and the pros.

So you have the opportunity to climb a mountain each day with passionate fans from all over the world shouting encouragement; to ride with other cyclists experiencing a little bit of what the pros endure; add in the French cuisine, wine and local aperitifs; fingers crossed perfect weather; the best guides and vehicle support; and you have yourself a short cycle escape that offers La Grande Boucle Experience too.

Total price: From €2,490

  • Level of fitness: MEDIUM - fit enough to ride 2 to 4 hrs or 50 to 100 km per day
  • Watch the world's best cyclists fight for the yellow jersey
  • Ride on all 3 stages, just hours before the pros ...
  • Stay 4 nights in beautiful Annecy
  • 3 days of riding in the dramatic French Alps
  • Expert planning and support from our team (guides, mechanics, drivers)
  • Max group size of 14 (Max client to guide ratio 7:1)
  • Bike rental (carbon frame and Shimano Ultegra Di2 or equivalent) available
  • Day 1 - Thursday 13 July

    Bienvenue en France

    Bienvenue en France and to Dombs, the land of 1000 ponds. We will collect you from Lyon or Geneva Airport and transfer you to your hotel in Annecy area,

    After check-in, we will help assemble and fit the bikes, and then take a leisurely test ride. Back at the hotel we will regroup for pre-dinner drinks hand over the musettes (goodie bags) and discuss the next few days. Dinner will be an opportunity to get to know your fellow riders and to interrogate the Grand Tours Project team.

    Hotel Annecy
  • Day 2 - Friday 14 July

    Annecy to Grand Colombier

    66 km / 1,550 m

    We will start early today to ensure we reach the finish before the race route is closed. Unlike the teams, we will ride an easy 50 kilometres from Annecy, through the suburbs and into the countryside. However, the flat stops here and after a short break and some refreshments, we will start our bucket list climb to Grand Colombier via the stunning Les Lacets - 17 kilometres and 1,238 metres of climbing with a couple of 12 % ramps.

    Once we reach the top, we will find an optimal place for a picnic lunch and to watch the pros attack this classic climb. After the finish, we’ll transfer back to our hotel in Annecy.

    Hotel Annecy
  • Day 3 - Saturday 15 July

    Ride to Morzine

    44 km / 1,222 m or 69 km / 2,179 m

    Today’s stage is considered one of the hardest days of the race. The pros have 6 category climbs to overcome but you have only one and that is the final climb to Col de Joux Plane (11.6 km and 8.5 % average gradient) before swooping down to the finish in the ski resort town of Morzine. We will transfer from the hotel to Saint Jeoire and there, you can decide whether to ride the shorter or longer route. We can regroup in Samoёns and then ascend to Col de Joux Plane followed by the rewarding descent to Morzine.

    We’ll watch the racers arrive and then depart for our hotel in Annecy.

    Hotel Annecy
  • Day 4 - Sunday 16 July

    Annecy to Manigod + more

    55 km / 1,481 m or 60 km / 2,030 m or 98 km / 2,208 m

    Three days in the mountains and our last day is going to be epic. We have created 3 possibilities that follow most of the race route from Annecy. There are 3 category climbs - Col de la Forclaz Montmin, Col du Marais and Col de la Croix Fry. In total 60 km and 2,030 m ascent. But we’re keeping it flexible - you can extend the ride by descending to Thones before Manigod or ride further onto Col de Aravis. Or after watching the race pass us near La Croix Fry we can whoop it up on a 33 km descent via La Clusaz back to Annecy.

    When you have finished riding, the GTP team will collect and transfer you to our hotel in Geneva.

    Hotel Geneva
  • Day 5 - Monday 17 July

    Au Revoir

    Three days of classic French alps, throw in some mountain valleys and a lake et voila - a short escape to recharge your batteries and be inspired to ride throughout the rest of summer.

    We hope that you enjoyed the atmosphere and riding in the French Alps, but our time is up and so after breakfast we will take you to Geneva Airport for your onward journey.

    Safe travels and we hope to see you again in the near future.