France - Mont Ventoux to Alpe d'Huez & Vercors is fully booked France - Mont Ventoux to Alpe d'Huez & Vercors

France - Mont Ventoux to Alpe d'Huez & Vercors

21st June 2019 - 7th July 2019 (17 days)

A leisurely loop through the Alps taking in some of the most spectacular scenery in Provence, the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence and Rhone-Alpes, with short moving-on days (average - 62km) and plenty of rest days to laze or explore classic climbs.
Travel to Orange is by European Bike Express. The group moves on every two days with the exception of three nights at Bourg d'Oisans, at the foot of Alpe d'Huez, and Villard-de-Lans in the Vercors. The return is from Valence.
The first rest day, at Buis les Baronnies, offers a Mediterranean climate and ascent of Mont Ventoux. Then the tour climbs gradually north-east in the Préalpes, a limestone landscape of gorges, cols and lakes to the High Alps and Bourg d'Oisans, a cyclist's mecca with opportunities to explore alpine scenery for all abilities of rider. Finally, before descending to the Rhone Valley, the group visits the unusual Vercors plateau.

  • Holiday Type Guided
  • Tour Manager Sheila Simpson
  • Grade Moderate
  • Booking Status Fully Booked
  • Accommodation Hotel
  • Board Basis Half Board
  • Travel Arrangements Coach
  • Road / Off Road Road
  • Holiday Style Multi-centre
  • Vehicle Support Carry Own Luggage
  • Holiday Ref 03163


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France - Mont Ventoux to Alpe d'Huez & Vercors is fully booked France - Mont Ventoux to Alpe d'Huez & Vercors

Friday 21st June

Travel by European Bike Express (Bike Bus) from your chosen pick-up point to Dover for the P&O Ferry crossing to Calais and thence (through the night) to Orange.

Saturday 22nd June

Arrive at Orange (50m) at approx 0630. Cycle to Buis-les-Baronnies (367m) via Camaret-sur-Aigues, Vaison-la-Romain, Mollans-sur-Ouvèze. 50km. Stay 2 nights.

Sunday 23rd June

Free day. Laze by the pool, or ride optional circuits: Col de Fontaube (755m), Col des Aires (644m), Montbrun and the Gorges du Toulourenc, 61km, or the circuit of Mont Ventoux via Col de Fontaube, Col des Aires, Aurel, Ventoux summit (1912m), Malaucene. 103km.

Monday 24th June

Cycle to Serres (666m) in the Alpes de Haute Provence via the Gorges d'Ubrieux, Col de Perty, (1303m), Orpierre. 70km. Stay 2 nights.

Tuesday 25th June

Free day. Optional circuit to St Andre de Rosans, with its ruined priory.

Wednesday 26th June

Cycle to Corps (937m) on the Lac du Sautet via the Col du Festre (1441m), the Barrage et Pont du Sautet. 70km. Stay 2 nights.

Thursday 27th June

Free Day. Optional out and back ride up the beautiful Severaisse Valley. 52-72km.

Friday 28th June

Cycle to Bourg d'Oisans (720m) in the Romanche Valley via Entraigues, the Col d'Ornon (1360m), 52km. Stay 3 nights at this superb cycling centre surrounded by spectacular peaks.

Saturday 29th June

Free Day. Optional circuit of l'Alpe d'Huez (1886m), the Col de la Sarenne (1999m) and the breathtaking balcony road to La Garde. 50km. Or take the bus to l'Alpe d'Huez and explore the alpine pastures.

Sunday 30th June

Free Day. Optional out and back ride to the Col de Glandon (1926m) and Col de la Croix de Fer (2064m) 72km, or descend the Glandon to complete the Col du Telegraph (1566m),  Col du Galibier (2642m), Col de Lautaret (2057m) circuit. 162km. Or a leisurely out and back ride up the beautiful Veneon valley to la Berarde. 64 km. Or take the bus to the Col de Lautaret to explore the Alpine Garden.

Monday 1st July

Cycle to Lac Laffrey (911m) via the Gorges de la Romanche, Sechilienne and a remote forest road. 33 km. Stay 2 nights.

Tuesday 2nd July

Free day. Laze on the beach or optional circuit via la Grande Serre (1346m). 50 km.

Wednesday 3rd July

Cycle to Villard-de-Lans (1050m) in the Vercors via Vif, the Nécropole Nationale and Lans en Vercors, 70km. Stay 3 nights.

Thursday 4th July

Free day. Optional circuit to Autrans, the Grande Breche and the remote forest road to Lans-en-Vercors. 55km.

Friday 5th July

Free day. Optional circuit of the Bois Barbu via le Pas St Martin (1280m). 42km, or circuit to the Col de Romeyere (1069m) and Presles. 66km.

Saturday 6th July

Cycle to the Bike Bus pick up point at Valence via the Gorges de la Bourne, Pont en Royons, Leoncel, the Col du Traffa and Chabeuil, 90km, or via the Gorges de la Bourne, St Nazaire en Royons, Chabeuil. 76km. Depart approx 2200 for the return overnight journey to Calais.

Sunday 7th July

P&O Ferry crossing to Dover and your chosen Bike Bus set-down point in the UK.


Accommodation & Meals

Accommodation will consist of 11 nights in hotels and 3 nights in a gite, all based on two people sharing rooms. All hotel rooms have ensuite facilities, two of which are 2-star and four are 3-star. Meals are on a half-board basis for 9 nights and a bed & breakfast basis for 5 nights.
Vegetarian options will be arranged if requested on the Booking Form though choice may be limited.

Passports, Visa & Health

EU citizens must hold a passport that is still valid on the date of their return to their home country. Holders of non-EU passports are advised to check whether they require a visa. There are no compulsory health related requirements for UK residents, but you are strongly advised to check that your tetanus protection has not expired. You must also carry your European Health Insurance Card.

Travel Insurance

Our Booking Conditions stipulate that, for holidays outside the UK, travel Insurance is mandatory. Details of the level of cover needed and other conditions you should check are stated in the Booking Conditions. CTC Cycling Holidays & Tours Ltd cannot accept responsibility for any costs that may be incurred due to insufficient insurance cover.


The price of £1,680 is based on a minimum number of 8 people taking part in the tour and is calculated at a rate of 1.12 Euros to £1 sterling (based on exchange rates published on on 14 September 2018; please note Booking Conditions, clause 3). If there are insufficient bookings by 12th April 2019, we will contact you and return all monies paid. although in certain circumstances the holiday may still run at below minimum numbers but at the same price.

Price Includes

  • Return coach travel between Orange and from Valence to any Bike Bus pick-up point in England
  • 9 nights hotel, sharing room, half-board
  • 2 nights hotel, sharing room, bed & breakfast
  • 3 nights gite, sharing room, bed & breakfast
  • 18 cycle routes on marked-up maps and as GPS tracks
  • CTC Cycling Holidays & Tours costs

Price Does Not Include

  • Travel to and from your chosen Bike Bus set-down point in England
  • Meals in transit
  • Drinks with evening meals
  • Lunches or refreshments during the day
  • Any other personal expenses
  • Travel Insurance
  • Single occupancy supplement (£40 per night, subject to availability)

Payment Schedule

A deposit of £400 per person is payable upon booking, with the final balance of £1,280 per person to be paid ten weeks prior to departure, by 12th April 2019.


Should you be forced to cancel your booking for any reason you must notify us in writing. Cancellation charges are as follows:

Written notice received:

Before 12th April 2019

From 12th April 2019 through to departure


Cancellation charge:

Deposit (£400)

100% (£1,680)


The Area Covered By The Holiday

Cycle from Orange, in the Rhone Valley, through the gently rolling vineyards and villages of Provence to the Prealps and spectacular high Alps, limestone lands of forests, gorges, cols and lakes. The countryside is increasingly rolling, then mountainous, then descends to the Rhone Valley at Valence. The terrain is not easy but if you cycle fairly regularly and can climb hills, slowly but steadily in a low gear, then you will almost certainly rate the tour as very comfortable. Most people find alpine climbs easier than the equivalent English climbs in that they are well graded and longer, allowing riders to settle into a steady pace. We use mostly minor roads and find the busier alpine roads and villages are populated mainly by fellow cyclists.

Rides & Rest Days

Much of the moving-on days will be spent cycling and sightseeing either from the saddle or at the snack breaks. The led group travels at a pace of approximately 18kmph on the flat, tackling hills at a slower pace, and covers an average of just over 60km a day when moving on. Road surfaces are generally good. Minor roads are used almost entirely, though as with any tour, road closures and landslips can affect our route choice.
You are free to ride separately if you wish, but it is important that you are fit enough to undertake each moving-on day’s ride carrying your own luggage. Discrepancies in hill-climbing speeds are inevitable but, for those who wish to ride in the group, frequent photo opportunities and snack stops should keep everyone together. There are some worthwhile detours for riders who would like to ride further than the led group. A more detailed itinerary, with maps and GPS tracks, will be sent with the final tour information about a month before departure.

Accommodation & Meals

You will almost always be sharing a room. Participants travelling alone will be paired with a same-sex room mate of an age as similar as possible, or a small number booked as travelling alone might choose to take it in turns to occupy a single room. Accommodation will consist of 11 nights in hotels and 3 nights in a gite, all except the gite, based on two people sharing rooms. All hotel rooms have ensuite facilities, two of which are 2-star and four are 3-star. Meals are on a half-board basis for 9 nights and a bed & breakfast basis for 5 nights. The hotels are used to accommodating cycling groups.
Supplies for lunch are bought individually. Stops at mid morning, lunch and mid afternoon are at or near cafés whenever possible. The group is warned to carry extra water when picnics are inevitable. Bottles with covered teats are recommended.


The European Bike Express coach travels from and to York with further stops at Leeds, Wakefield, Sheffield (2 options), Nottingham, Leicester, Northampton, Newport Pagnell, North London, Waltham Abbey, Gravesend, Gillingham and Dover Eastern Docks. The coach driver and steward load bikes on and off the trailer. The Channel crossing is Dover / Calais with P&O Ferries. Drinks and snack meals can be purchased on the coach or at the scheduled service stations or on the ferry. The coach travels through the night in France with seats reclined and lights dimmed after midnight.
When booking this holiday online it is also necessary to complete a booking form for the European Bike Express and to email this to the Tour Manager. The form can be downloaded here.

Group Information

The maximum number of participants will be 10 excluding the Tour Manager.

Weather & Clothing

The climate is Mediterranean to Mountain summer weather and should be warm, even hot, but at elevation in the mountains it can be cold, particularly on the descents; snow could still remain on the 2000 metre cols. Bring lightweight summer clothing, with extra layers with covering for arms and legs for warmth in the mountains or in case of sunburn, a change for evenings and a light waterproof. Sunscreen and a sun hat and / or sun glasses are necessary. A suggested packing list is provided with the final documents.

Cycles & Equipment

A touring cycle, hybrid or lightweight ATB is suitable for this tour. You should ensure your cycle is well maintained, paying particular attention to wheels, tyres and brakes. A low bottom gear (e.g. small chainring the same size or smaller than the largest cog on your rear wheel) is recommended. If you are unsure about gears, please discuss with the Tour Manager.
Mudguards are optional as are helmets (but check your insurance; helmets might be required). Please note it is French law that cyclists outside of urban areas at night, or at times of poor visibility, must wear a retro-reflective gilet and carry lights front and rear. Also flashing lights are not legal. For the moving-on days, either a large saddlebag or small panniers with a top bag or handlebar bag are recommended. Participants will be expected to carry each day sufficient spares and tools to deal with punctures and minor repairs.
You are advised to do some riding before the tour with a similar load to that which you will be carrying during the tour to get a feel for how your bike will handle.

Maps & Guides

Pages of marked up maps with brief route instructions and gpx tracks are supplied. You should carry a map, either paper or on your tablet or phone, in case you become separated from the group or wish to explore further afield. The IGN 1:250,000 "Rhone-Alpes" and "Provence - Alpes - Cote d'Azur", or similar atlas pages, are essential, plus the relevant 1:100 000 maps if you require more detail.
The address, phone number and location of your accommodation will be provided. You should carry these each day and a mobile phone, if you use one.
For more information, Michelin Tourist Guide "French Alps" covers all but Orange, Vaison-la-Romaine and Mont Ventoux. These latter are covered by the "Provence" edition. Both are available in English.

Travel Insurance & Advice

In addition to travel insurance, EU nationals should carry a European Health Insurance Card, obtainable from This enables you to take advantage of emergency medical services free or at a discount under a reciprocal provision that exists between EU member states. Your travel insurer may refuse to meet the extra costs of medical treatment if you do not carry this card.
Before booking you should check the latest travel advice from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office including security and local laws, plus passport and visa information, at or on 0845 850 2829.

Other Information

When booking this holiday online it is also necessary to complete a booking form for the European Bike Express and to email this to the Tour Manager. The form can be downloaded here.