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Cycle from lakeside Geneva to Nice, following the historic Route Napoleon. With long, challenging days in the saddle, the magnificence of Southern Alps landscape is what motivates us to keep pedalling!
Our route takes in mountain passes, quiet valley roads and cruising descents. We cycle via the picturesque towns of Annecy and Sisteron as we head through beautiful scenery of towering mountain peaks, spectacular limestone cliffs and gorges, dense forests and lavender fields.
Our unforgettable ride ends with a fabulous descent from the hills through the Gorge du Loup to Nice and the beach, where we have time to relax and appreciate our huge achievement.
Day 1: Meet Geneva
Explore this cosmopolitan city or head for the lovely lakeside gardens and famous fountain.
Day 2: Geneva – Allevard (Cycle approx. 132km)
We leave Switzerland and climb on quiet back-roads into France. Inspiring views of the Alps accompany us as we cycle to the beautiful town of Annecy, a lakeside jewel nestled among mountain peaks. A gradual ascent takes us to the Col du Frêne – our first real encounter with hair-pin bends! We descend to the Isère river, before climbing again to Allevard on the mountain-slopes.
Day 3: Allevard – Corps (Cycle approx. 120km)
Heading back to the Isère valley, we pedal parallel to the river toward the historic city of Grenoble. We continue up a gently sloping hill to Roissard, and on to Mens. Rolling roads take us on until we reach the shores of the lovely Lac du Sautet; it’s then a short climb up into Corps.
Day 4: Corps – Digne-les-Bains (Cycle approx. 144 km)
We start riding on the Route Napoleon, a classic stretch of road that traces Napoleon’s route from Elba in 1815. Many of the roads we ride on today have also featured regularly in the Tour de France. We climb the relatively gentle gradient of the Col de Manse (1268m) – our highest point on the challenge. Entering Provence, we leave the high mountains behind, and head to the old spa town of Digne-les-Bains.
Day 5: Digne-les-Bains – Nice (Cycle approx.. 140 km)
A long, hilly day, we climb Col de Corobin (1230m), which sees up pedalling uphill for almost 10km. The well-earned descent is wonderful – and steeper than the way up! Rejoining the Route Napoleon, we tackle several more testing climbs and descents before reaching photogenic medieval hilltop town of Gréolières, perched high up in the hills. From here we can freewheel almost all the way to the coast, finishing our challenge by the Mediterranean Sea.
Day 6: Nice - UK
Relax on the beach or wander famed Promenade des Anglaises until it’s time to transfer to the airport.