The Mediterranean hinterland around Nice, Cannes and Antibes is an inexhaustible playground for cycling enthusiasts. The speed with which you can go from the sea to an alpine environment is amazing. Going up these mountains will take you from an overcrowded coastline to a place that exudes serenity.
Entering the Préalpes d'Azur is a bit like entering a wonderland. Very quickly you will be surrounded by perched villages, small uncrowded roads, plains and karst plateaus. There are so many clues to explore! The clues are not, as their names might suggest, riddles to be solved. Instead, they are deep gorges formed by rivers with turquoise waters. They often consist of a succession of natural basins which are very suitable for canyoning. For example, the clue of Aiglun is, with its 300 metres (984 ft) of vertical cliffs, one of the most spectacular in France.
This Collection, which starts from the town of Grasse, follows the cycling route of the Grand Tour des Préalpes d'Azur. It covers 285 kilometres (177 km) over five stages and offers a very exotic journey. The average daily distance of 57 kilometres (35 mi) makes it accessible to all. Despite being challenging at times, this route will delight cycling enthusiasts.
The villages you pass through are each more beautiful than the next. Although they may look similar, they all have their own charm. Thorenc, Valderoure, Sigale, Saint-Antonin, Ascros, Toudon, Tourette-du-Château, Revest-les-Roches and Bouyon (to name but a few) are sure to seduce you.
The unspoilt landscapes you encounter along the way are enchanting. In addition to the clues of Saint-Auban, Riolan and Aiglun, you will discover the geological curiosities of the Calern plateau and the Caille polje. Don't miss a visit to the Monts d'Azur Biological Reserve, which is home to European bison and wild horses.
The town of Grasse, known for its perfumes, is at the beginning or end of the itinerary and is the urban chapter of this splendid route. Grasse is well served by regional trains which accept all bicycles. This is why I have chosen to start the route from this famous city’s train station.
The weather in this region is often very mild, so the route can be done from spring to autumn. However, avoid winter as you’ll be travelling at altitudes of over 1,000 metres (3,281 ft) and it’s not unusual to find snow until early spring.
My Collection of the French Alps will be ideal if you decide to extend your holiday in these special places. For more information, click the following link: komoot.fr/collection/1404212/de-cols-en-canyons-les-alpes-d-azur
Ready to get going? Create and customize your own version of this adventure using the full Tour below as a template.
Last updated: January 27, 2023
The route starts from the Sncf train station in Grasse, the capital of perfumes. It takes the Napoleon road which takes you to the village of Saint-Vallier-de-Thiey after 13 kilometers of a steady climb. A small cafe in one of the bars of the town will perhaps be welcome.
The climb continues until you…
For this second stage you will have twice as many descents as climbs, and these 50 kilometers will take place without you even noticing it.
The route begins by taking the Lane valley which leads respectively to the hamlets of La Ferrière and Valderoure before going up the Artuby to the town of Saint-Auban…
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Between cute perched villages, clues and canyons, quiet roads and breathtaking views, you will be amazed today! To start, you will get to know this superb river that is the Riolan. It will be difficult not to dismount to take pictures.
The village of Sigale which presents itself shortly after, will dazzle…
The distance as the crow flies between your starting point and your end of day stage is very short. This evening's village, Bouyon, is indeed located on the other side of the Estéron valley.
The route takes multiple detours to make you travel in the end about 51 kilometers. The difference is enormous…
This last stage takes place today near the Cheiron mountain, which is also a biological reserve. As you approach it, you will successively pass through the villages of Bézaudun-les-Alpes, Coursegoules, Cipières, and finally the village of Gourdon, which forms the junction between the highlands and the…
Bike Touring Collection by Vincent Reboul
Bike Touring Collection by komoot
Bike Touring Collection by cycliste_tricolore
Bike Touring Collection by Jesko