French Alps Classic Cols

  • Welcome to our exciting new tour of the French Alps Classic Cols. This week long tour explores some of France’s most spectacular scenery and tackles some of the Tour de France’s (tdf) most iconic climbs.

    After arrival in Geneva on Saturday we transfer to the beautiful city of Annecy where we spend the first two nights of the tour. Nestled on the banks of Lake Annecy, with a backdrop of spectacular mountains, Annecy also boasts a perfectly preserved medieval old town which makes a fantastic place to explore.

    The tour runs from Saturday to Saturday with 6 days cycling and covers the cols of Semnoz, Forclaz, Tamie, Madeline, Glandon, Croix de Fer, Mollard, Telegraph, Galibier and Alpe d’Huez.

    This tour is aimed at cyclists who like a challenge but the tour is such that the mileages aren’t too long and generally we only take on one of the major climbs each day which should allow time for relaxation in the afternoon and should hopefully ensure that the climbs are achievable for most regular cyclists. It should be noted however that these are long, tough climbs and the tour is only suitable for riders who are used to climbing.

    You will be rewarded by many fantastic vistas over the mountains of the French Alps and gain a great sense of achievement reaching the tops of these iconic climbs.

    The tour runs in much the same way as our LEJOG or Channel to the Med tour with the ‘magic van’ providing refreshments throughout the tour. Your bags will be transported for you each day and we will be having some fantastic picnic lunches amongst some amazing scenery with an emphasis on finding local specialities to ensure that you sample the fantastic food on offer – you certainly won’t go hungry!

    You are provided with detailed route notes and for those with Garmins we also have GPX files of the route (or you can hire a device from us with the route loaded on). Usually a tour guide cycles at the back of the group and there is a support vehicle on hand should you require assistance. We also carry a few spare bikes just in case you have any major mechanical problems.

    At the end of the tour we transfer you back to Geneva to arrive back at the airport for 11.00. We also transport your bikes to the start point in Annecy and back to the UK at the end of the tour. This is included in the tour price.

    2019 Dates:

    Sat 8th – Sat 15th June 2019 Places available

    Sat 22nd – Sat 29th June 2019 Places available

    Sat 7th – Sat 14th September 2019 Places available

  • Saturday: Arrival Day
    Arrive at Geneva and transfer to Annecy. Our guides will set off from our base in Glossop on Thursday with all the bikes and stop a couple of times en route to Dover. We will then be around to meet you on Saturday morning when you arrive. A coach will depart from Geneva at 17.00 to arrive in Annecy for 18.00 to allow time to settle in before the first evening meal.

    Sunday: Semnoz and Lake Annecy (32 or 45 miles) Elevation Gain: 4653ft /1418m 

    Our first ride is a loop which takes you up to the summit of Mount Senmoz which last featured on the penultimate day of the 2013 tdf and on a clear day you may be able to make out to Mont Blanc in the distance. Continuing down to the lake for lunch you can take the shorter route back to Annecy or our longer route around the eastern side of the lake.

    Monday: Annecy to La Lechere (49 miles) Elevation Gain: 5101ft /1554m 

    Travelling alongside the eastern shore of the lake we then climb up over the Col de la Forclaz (de Montmin). The tdf crossed the Col for the 4th time in 2016. If you choose to, you can miss the climb and continue along the lake to meet back up with the route before the Col de Tamie and the decent down to Albertville. A very gentle climb takes you to La Lechere to be in place to start the climb up the Madeline tomorrow.

    Tuesday: La Lechare to St Jean du Maurienne (38 miles) Elevation Gain: 6256ft /1907m 

    Not long after leaving La Lechare, and the valley floor, we start to ascend one of the toughest climbs of the tour, the Col de la Madeline. With over 1500m of climbing over 16 miles, the Madeline is a serious test for any rider. However we will be tackling the mountain fresh and not after having already ridden 100 miles as is often the case with the tdf. The beauty of the climb through forested woodland, cascading waterfalls, stone bridges and finally the spectacular summit is well worth the effort and amazing sense of achievement when you reach the top. You will also be rewarded with a fantastic decent down to the lovely town of St Jean du Maurienne. You also have the option of riding the Col du Chaussy today or tomorrow if you would like an extra ride.

    Wednesday: Glandon & Croix de Fer Loop (39 miles) Elevation Gain: 5843ft /1781m

    Today we tackle another two of the tdfs most classic climbs with the Col du Glandon and the Croix de Fer. Essentially the Col du Glandon is the beast to conquer with the Croix de Fer only another few miles or so to the summit after the Glandon. This spectacular climb has featured in the tdf many times as far back as 1947. Once again the views are sublime and you have another winding descent back down to the valley below.

    Thursday: St Jean du Maurianne to Le Grave via Col du Galibier (42 miles) Elevation Gain: 7710ft /2350m

    This is our longest day in the saddle as we tackle the mighty Galibier however once at the summit, at 30 miles, the rest is almost all downhill or flat as we wend our way to the town of Le Bourg-d’Oisans. After a flat start we first tackle to Col du Telegraph through Alpine woodland. The road descends to Valloire before you tackle the mighty Galibier. After lunch at the top of the mountain you have fantastic descent down to the attractive little village of La Grave, situated in a most spectacular setting.

    Friday: Alpe d’Huez (49 miles) Elevation Gain: 6380ft /1944m

    We leave La Grave and continue towards Bourg-d’Oisans around the turquoise blue Lac du Chambon. Just away from Bourg, we start our climb up the Alpe d’Huez, which must be one of the tdf’s most iconic mountains. After lunch at the top of the climb we take a lovely winding route down the Col du Sarenne which drops us back down to the crystal clear waters of Lake Chambon and back to the hotel in La Grave for our final celebratory meal.

    Saturday: Transfer to Geneva and tour ends

    A coach will pick us up at 8.00 to arrive at Geneva airport for 11.00. Meanwhile your bikes will start their journey back home in our back up van and will stop of a couple of times en-route to Derbyshire

  • What’s Included?

    The tour price includes 7 nights accommodation, 7 breakfasts, 6 lunches, snacks, tea, coffee, & hot chocolate, full trip support including a tour leader that cycles with the group (on smaller groups there will just be back up vehicles), back up van with spare parts and a few spare bikes, detailed route notes so that you can cycle at your own pace, certificate, luggage transfer each day, lots of fun!

    What’s Not Included?

    Evening meals, cycle hire (available for a fee), transport to France, transport from Geneva.

    Group Size

    The group will be a minimum of 8 and a maximum of 25 people. We feel that this size of group works best as there will always be enough in the group for some good company but there won’t be so many people that it becomes overcrowded.


    Accommodation is in clean and comfortable 3 star hotels or top end 2 star hotels when 3 star aren’t available (France has an unusual rating system).  Either sharing a twin or a double room or, if you would like your own space then you can choose the single room option, or sole occupancy of a double .  All rooms are en-suite.


    Covering approximately 260 miles over 6 days we average around 43 miles a day. This tour really isn’t about mileage but about conquering some truly majestic and iconic mountains. Generally you will have finished cycling by early afternoon with time to relax and explore.


    All of your breakfasts and lunches are included in the price of the trip. Lunches will be provided each day in a cafe or restaurant or picnic lunches provided by the guides when the weather is good. Evening meals can be bought at your accommodation or in a nearby pub/restaurant. We also have fruit, biscuits, cake, nuts etc in the back up van that you are welcome to pick at throughout the day.

    Back Up

    An experienced tour leader will cycle with you each day and be on hand to help with any bike problems that may occur. You will have detailed route notes so that you can go slower or faster than the leader if you prefer or you can cycle with the tour guide at the back so that you don’t have to navigate at all.

    A back up van will leap frog the group a number of times each day so that help is never far away. We carry a range of spare parts so that repairs can be made en-route and we will have a couple of spare bikes available in the event that your bike has a serious breakdown.


    We highly recommend that you use a bike that you are used to and feel comfortable riding. Your bike should be fully serviced and in good condition before you start, this will reduce the risk of mechanical problems and unnecessary stoppages along the way. Either a road bike or a touring bike is preferable. We have a range of road and touring bikes available for hire if you don’t have your own bike. We will take your bike over for you if you bring it to us before hand and we will take it back for you at the end of the tour as well (free of charge if you drop off and pick up or we can box the bike and post it to you for a charge).


    This tour is suitable for someone with a good level of fitness and who wants a challenge. If you do plenty of training beforehand you should have no problem completing the ride. We will have a training day in the Peak District available if you would like to join the group before the main event.

    It must be stressed that a good amount of training before the ride will make your tour much more enjoyable and ensure that you finish your ride. We are always happy to advise you about training plans in preparation for the ride.

    Clothing & Equipment

    Clothing for all weathers is recommended so waterproofs are essential. A full recommended kit list is provided and we are always happy to answer any questions that you may have.


    It is highly recommended that you take out adequate insurance to cover against, personal accident, loss of belongings and cancellation cover. This should cover you in the event that you have to cancel the tour anytime after the final payment has been made as we may be unable to fill your place. There are many insurance companies out there and we prefer not to get involved with recommending a particular company and there are so many policies available depending on your own personal circumstances.

  • What happens at the start of the tour?

    The tour starts in Annecy on the first Saturday. The easiest airport for Annecy is Geneva and our guides will be around in Geneva on Saturday morning ready to meet you when you arrive. It’s about 45 minutes from Geneva to Annecy so we have a coach booked for 17.00. If you are arriving earlier then you can leave your bags with our guides if you want to have a look around Geneva before the coach arrives at 17.00. We have a group meal on Saturday night and then the cycling starts on Sunday. We will take your bikes over for you so that you don’t have to take them on the plane. You can either drop them off with us in Glossop, Derbyshire beforehand or meet us on the Thursday before the tour starts as we drive down to Dover. We will stop near Birmingham and at South Mimms services on the M25. Alternatively you can post your bike to us and we will take it over for you.

    What happens at the end?

    After the ascent (and descent) of Alpe d’Huez you have the afternoon free to relax in Bourg-d’Oisins. Meanwhile your tour guides will pack your bikes into our back up van ready to be transported back to the UK. On Saturday morning a coach will arrive to take everyone back to Geneva airport for 11.00.

    How do I transport my bike?

    Your easiest option is to drop your bike off with us beforehand and will will take it over for you and bring it back at the end of the tour – there is no charge for this option. We are based in Glossop, Derbyshire so this may not be a convenient option for you.

    Another option is to take your bike with you at the start of the tour and at the end of the tour you can either take your bike with you on the plane (we will provide a cardboard box and packing material for you and help you to box your bike). Alternatively we can take your bike back to the UK for you and box your bike and post it too you – there is a charge of £70 for this option.

    Another option is to rent a bike from us.

    Whatever arrangements you make we will be happy to help.

    How difficult is the tour?

    The fitter you are and the more training that you do beforehand will add to the enjoyment of your tour and improve your chances of succeeding the challenge. If you need any advice about fitness please contact us and we will be happy to discuss any questions and concerns that you may have.

    What mechanical knowledge do I need?

    We don’t expect you to be an expert bike mechanic but there are a few simple skills that will be a great benefit to you. The most important skill you need to know is how to fix a puncture. It is quite likely that at some point you will have a puncture or two so it is essential that you carry a puncture repair kit & a spare tube or two with you. It is also helpful if you know how to change your brake pads and adjust your brakes and gears however this isn’t essential. Our guides will help you with any repairs and adjustments en-route.

    What are the lunches like?

    Lunches will be a mixture of picnic lunches and lunches in cafe’s or restaurants situated in some picturesque places. We will source local specialities and provide plenty of delicious French food every day of your tour, you certainly won’t go hungry. We will have plenty of food available and will cater for any special dietary requirements.

    Will I be left behind?

    No, a tour leader cycles at the back of the group so that you won’t be left behind if you are worried about cycling too slowly. Throughout the group there will be a mix of abilities and cycling speeds so you will usually be able to cycle with others that cycle at a similar pace. Some people like to cycle fast whilst others prefer to take their time, stop for coffee & cake or stop to take photos etc so whether you are a ‘speed demon’ or more of a ‘tourer’ there usually will be someone to cycle with each day.

    What are the groups like?

    Obviously each group is different but generally they are a fun, friendly, helpful & adventurous bunch. There will be people of all ages and from all walks of life. We tend to get quite a few older riders although there will always be a few younger riders as well. So far our youngest rider (for the Lands End to John o’Groats tour) was 15 & the oldest (for the Channel to Med Tour) was 82. We think that a group of 20-25 is ideal as there will be plenty of people with similar interests & character without being such a big group that it becomes too much.

    Generally the group will be split 50/50 between people travelling alone and people that travel as a pair such as two brothers, two friends, two partners. There will be plenty of people to socialise with throughout the day and in the evening.

    Many of the people on this tour will have cycled on a tour with us previously so you may even bump into someone you know!

    What happens in the evenings?

    Once you have arrived at your accommodation you should have chance for some time to relax, have a shower etc before the evening meal. We usually arrange somewhere to eat for the evening meal so that we can all get together & you won’t be left alone if you would like to eat with others. Quite often will simply arrange a certain pub to meet up & just drift in when you are ready whilst at other places we have a set time to eat – it just depends on the location.

    Does the support vehicle follow the group?

    No, the back up van doesn’t drive behind the group at all times but the van shouldn’t be too far away if you require assistance. In the morning we have a group brief and set off cycling, meanwhile the backup driver will collect all the luggage from the various B&B’s and hotels. Once all of the luggage has been loaded, the support vehicle will leapfrog the group stopping when necessary. The backup driver will be at the lunch stop should you need anything from the van & in the afternoon will go on ahead to ensure that your luggage is in place before you arrive.

    How much luggage can I take?

    There is limited space in the back up van to store luggage. We therefore request that you try to keep your luggage size to a minimum and try not to bring too much with you. Washing clothes can be done en-route so you shouldn’t need to bring a clean set of clothes for every day. The ideal size for luggage is 70 x 50 x 30 cm and a weight of 15-18kg (or less).

    What training should I do?

    The more the better. We will provide a training guide for you so that you can build up your cycling strength and prepare for the ride in the correct way. It is important that you cycle two long days back to back whilst training & also that you cycle on some hills. We hold training weekends at the start of the season so that you can meet with others in the group, ask any questions you may have & also test yourselves amongst the hills of the Peak District.

    What bike should I use?

    The most suitable bike for this trip is a road bike, however it is entirely up to you what type of bike you use.

    Please ensure that your bike is fully serviced and in good working order before the start of the trip.

    Tyre inflation & rubber composition is important & a tyre width of 25cm is recommended for this tour. Please ensure that you have hard wearing tyres with plenty of tread.

    You are going to cycle 260 miles so it is important that your bike won’t let you down. You may want to fit new brake blocks, tyres & inner tubes before you start the ride and also bring 3-4 spare inner tubes, pump, puncture repair kit and multi-tool to carry with you each day. It is essential that you are able to fix a puncture.

    It is also advisable to have lights from & rear lights on your bikes and try to be a visible as possible.

    Can I hire a bike from you?

    It is advisable to use your own bike if possible however we realise that it is not always possible to use your own steed so you may wish to hire one. We have two types of road bike and three types of hybrid/touring bikes bike available. Details of these bikes can be found by clicking on the ‘Tour Extras’ tab.

    All of our hire bikes come fitted with cycle computer, pump, 2 water bottle cages, bell and front and rear lights. There is also a small saddle bag with a spare tube, multi-tool, puncture repair kit and tyre levers. We can also provide a helmet for you at no extra cost.

    What gear should I take?

    We provide a suggested kit list so please contact us if you would like a copy sending to you.

    What is the male / female ratio?

    This varies with each group. There are usually more guys than gals but an average would be about 1/4 ladies and 3/4s gents.

    Why France?

    France is a wide and diverse country which contains a variety of different and changing landscapes. France is also 1/4 as densely populated as the UK and much more rural so the roads are quieter and cyclists are treated with much more respect.

    France is the cultural home of cycling and everyone has heard of the Tour de France. We will cycle through some of the iconic landscapes that you will have seen whilst watching the tour.

    France enjoys much better weather than the UK so chances of a dry and sunny tour is much more likely than if tackling LEJOG although it must also be noted that it can get very hot in the summer months.

    France is also well known for it’s gastronomy and also fine wines and we will do out best to ensure that you sample plenty of the delights on offer. Added to that a rich culture, medieval villages and stunning architecture all of which makes France an ideal place for a long distance cycle tour.

  • Booking

    To book a tour please send a completed booking form and (a) Deposit of £250.00 per person for tours of 7 days or longer or £50.00 for all other tours or (b) The full holiday cost. If only the deposit is paid at time of booking then full payment of the holiday is required no less than 8 weeks before the start of your holiday. No further reminder is sent. If you book your holiday within 8 weeks of the holiday start date, the full holiday cost is required at time of booking.

    Cancellation by Us

    In the unlikely event that we have to cancel the tour you will be entitled to a full refund of all monies paid or we will move you to a different tour date if you’re able to do so. If the tour is cancelled because the minimum number of people required to operate this tour hasn’t been reached then you will be notified no less than 3 calendar months before the departure date. If the tour is cancelled by us we will not be responsible for any incidental expenses that you may have incurred such as travel expenses, visas etc & no compensation will be paid to cover these expenses.

    Cancellation by You

    If you have to cancel your holiday then please notify us as soon as possible. We always try to be fair and will always try to move you to different tour date if possible. If you cancel your tour less than 8 weeks before your tour start date then you will lose all monies already paid. It is for this reason that we strongly recommend that you take out adequate travel insurance to cover cover this.

    Notice of Cancellation Charge (% of Full Price)

    Length of time before the tour is due to startCancellation Charge
    More than 60 days before start dateDeposit
    Less than 60 days before start date100%

    Cooling Off Period

    If you decide to cancel your tour after receipt of your booking form you will be entitled to a 14 day cooling off period. During this time you will be entitled to a full refund of any monies paid.


    B&B Option – double or twin

    If you chose the B&B only option you will stay in a mixture of B&B’s, hotels and country pubs. If you are travelling with a friend then you will be roomed together in a twin or or if you’re with your partner then you will be in a double room (or a twin if you prefer). If you are travelling alone then you will be roomed with another member of the group in a twin room (same sex). The actual stopovers may change from the advertised accommodation providers, if this happens then an equivalent standard of accommodation will be used nearby. The majority of the rooms you stay in will be en-suite however you may stay in a couple of rooms that are not en-suite.

    Single Room Option

    If you choose the single room option you will have your own room for the duration of the trip. This will be in either a single room or single occupancy of a double room in a mixture of en-suite and non en-suite rooms.

    Sole Use of a Double room Option

    If you choose this option you will have a guaranteed double room to yourself throughout the tour. You will always have an en-suite each night of your tour. There may be a rare occasion when you have a separate bathroom but this is very unlikely.

    YHA (Youth Hostel) Option

    This option is only available for the 14 day LEJOG tour. If you chose the YHA option you will stay in a mixture of hostels, hotels & B&B’s staying in single sex dormitory rooms, single rooms, twin rooms & triples.


    On tours with 8 people or less in the group then there may only be one tour guide with you who will drive the back up van each day. Tours with 8 – 15 people in the group will have two tour guides with one guide driving the back up van and the other guide cycling with the group or both guides driving a back up van each. Tours with 16+ will have a guide that cycles with the group plus two back up vans do provide support.

    Cycle Hire

    If you choose the cycle hire option you will be provided with your bike at the start of your tour. The bike comes with everything you need for your trip although some people like you use their own saddle, peddles and/or helmet (just let us know beforehand). At the end of your tour you can simply hand your bike back to us when you finish cycling. Please see the additional cycle hire sheet for details of the bikes we have available.

    Minimum Number

    If the minimum number of people required to run the trip is not met then we will have to cancel the trip. You will be notified at least 3 calendar months prior to the start date of the trip if the minimum number (usually 8 people) hasn’t been met & you will receive a full refund of all monies paid.

    Consumer Protection

    In order to comply with EU Travel Regulations 1992 your deposit & final payment will be held in a separate account until your holiday is completed. This is to ensure the financial security of your holiday.


    It is compulsory that you take out adequate holiday insurance including medical cover, personal accident, loss of belongings & cancellation cover. We cannot be held responsible for your own illness, injury or loss/damage of your bike or belongings while on holiday.

    EHIC – European Health Insurance Card (for EU nationals travelling in Europe)

    This card entitles you to greatly reduced or free state medical services throughout Europe, including Switzerland. We recommend you send off for one of these before the trip and carry it with you. It’s important to bear in mind that these cards are not a substitute for travel insurance and adequate travel insurance is compulsory for this tour. This link will give you all the information you need about the EHIC.


    Cycling is a potentially dangerous activity & the risks involved should be considered before undertaking such a trip. We will be cycling mostly on quiet back roads however there will be times when we cycle on busier roads where traffic density is higher. All persons undertaking this tour do so at their own risk & Peak Tours cannot be held responsible for any accidents that may occur whilst on the trip. For further details please see our risk acknowledgement statement here which forms part of these conditions.

    Data Protection

    Please ensure you have permission from all people involved in the booking to give us their contact details. We take all reasonable precautions to ensure our customer’s data is kept safe and secure and only use the contact details we have to send information connected the booking and the occasional email newsletter. You can update your communication preferences with us at any time, please see our full privacy policy here.


    By signing your booking form you agree to the booking conditions as outlined above. Peak tours will carry out our obligations as detailed in the tour itinerary & any information supplied to you.


  • I loved the route, as each day offered different views and challenges. I thought the last day was of a good level of challenge and a great round up. Some of the other tours have quite a hard final day and I’m pleased that this trip ended a little more gently and with a sense that we had arrived.

    The brew stops provded by Isolbel were truly fantastic, with lots of local fruit and a cgood set of staples like nuts, banana’s etc. There were plenty of hot and cold drinks though you might need to retire one of the flasks!

    I adored the picnic lunches. They were great fun and very tasty, even in the challenge of the hotter days in southern France. Nigel and the team chose some really great locations for both the brew stops and lunch.

    I loved the tour and was terribly sad to find the tour had finished. It’s my 3rd tour with you and I thought it was just an incredible experience.

    Anonymous, Aug 2017

    Fantastic selection of hotels and the way they varied from the very fancy to the pretty basic (the monastery) added to the interest of the whole tour.

    So well thought out. I felt as if I saw the great variety of countryside there is to see in France. The shortening of the distances on the days with heavy climbing was just right.

    Nigel, Sam and Isobel made a fantastic team. The did everything they possibly could to ensure everyone had the best possible holiday.

    Helen Weaver, August 2017

    This tour was brilliant. Well done, we all said Peak Tours was our best trip compared to other operators.

    Martin Gloster, August 2017

    All the hotels were either of an excellent standard or rather interesting. Where else can you stay in a converted monastery with it’s own attached chapel. Wonderful stuff, no complaints at all.

    Very few busy roads, excellent views and scenery, interesting little villages. Again, absolutely wonderful. Distances were nicely achievable each day, but with a great sense of achievement.

    As a vegetarian I did have some worries about finding enough to eat, but there was always plenty for me on the trip and Isabelle was wonderful when we had pre-booked meals, she always phoned ahead to make sure there was something on the menu for me. She is a real asset to the company and especially to this trip.

    Wonderful team leaders, Nigel is so enthusiastic and is magnificently supported by Isobel and Sam. They worked well as a team but Nigel in particular is ideal. The hotels were good, the vans were where they were supposed to be when they were supposed to be. All bags arrived, can’t fault it.

    Roland Dearman, Aug 2017

    What a route!! Outstanding, almost perfect.

    As someone who has spent their life organising I thought you and your team outstanding.

    Nigel, Sam and Isabelle were fantastic and actually above and beyond.

    Will be doing again probably, it was that good.

    Chris Grime, Aug 2017

    It was a lovely route, using smaller roads wherever possible and giving us a different insight into the different regions of France.

    This was my first long cycle tour and it surpassed my expectations. Many thanks to all at Peak Tours for enabling me to tick off something that’s been at the top of my bucket list for years!

    Rob, Isabelle and Chris are all lovely people who all wanted us to really enjoy the trip and they are naturals at keeping everyone happy. Even when we set off in pouring rain they could raise a smile from us. Rob and Chris both kept those of us flagging at the back going!

    Kate Whitaker, Sept 2017

    Excellent. Traffic free until Nice. Was surprised how deserted a lot of the route was. Will be looking forward to another Peak tours trip soon.


    James and Virginia Lamb, Sept 2017

    Had a fabulous time


    Mike Earrey, Sept 2017

    Fantastic quiet roads, interesting scenery – not to mention the downhills!


    Janet Webber, Sept 2017

    As with LEJOG, the route was excellent, taking us to areas it would be difficult to explore by car. Thanks Steve.

    Plenty and varied options at brew stops including local delicacies (Thanks Isabelle!) Picnic lunches were very enjoyable. Always plenty of choice wherever you were in the peloton. A nice group of varying riders mixed well so it didn’t take long to learn everyone’s name. For me it ran like clockwork – if there were issues it didn’t show.

    I had a great time on LEJOG in 2015 and have had an excellent time on this tour. I have no hesitation in recommending Peak Tours and I have on several occasions

    I can’t think of anything which could improve the tour. I am amazed that you can get 26 riders from one end of the country to the other, feed and water them in style, provide comfortable accommodation each night and get them home safely.

    Keep doing what you’re doing, it works!

    Thanks to everyone


    Peter Adam, Sept 2017

    Good route, good weather and good company. What’s not to like?


    Paul Tomlinson, 10 day tour September 2017

    A work of genius – interesting, beautiful roads – excellent road surfaces, not too busy – a real triumph! Well done to whoever devised the route!


    Thor Beverley, 10 day September 2017

    Relied on the Garmin 95% of the time. The accompanying information about the history and region was very informative and appreciated. Route notes, when used were spot on.


    Bernice Ellis, Sept 2017

    It was really good to get the emails before, everything was 100% clear, no hiccups at all.

    Rob Chris and Isabelle were so good, I personally couldn’t fault them. Glossop office and staff all great too, we really felt looked after properly.


    Simon and Liz Whelan June/July 2017

    The route was really good. Only a couple of sections with busy traffic but otherwise no problems..Picnics were superb. Restaurant lunches good but some took too long. Van snacks excellent. Tour leaders were first class, could not have been more helpful, supportive, positive.

    10/10, loved it!


    Mark Bottomley Jun/July 2017

    The guides make a huge difference on the trip, and the ones we had were really good.  I certainly appreciated getting to the hotel and finding the luggage waiting for is in the room (rather than dumped in the lobby like on some of the Marmot Tours we’ve been on) and I also was glad to see that the guides seemed to have time for everyone, rather than treating you as a second class citizen if you’re not one of the fastest (which I’ve also experienced on one trip).

    The brew stops and picnic lunches were great.


    Matt Young June/July 2017

    My 4th tour with you. That must tell you something!

    Best one I have done yet! You do what you do extremely well, can’t think of anything you should change.


    Colin Sewell, June/July 2017

    The picnic lunches were excellent and the brew stops were good. This trip has been my focus after my triple bypass operation in September. It certainly has helped my recovery. This tour was all I hoped for and more. Thank you for organising such great trips.



    Graham Gregory September 2017

    As Nigel our guide told us, each day gets better and better and boy was he right! Stunning scenery and magical descents!



    Alan Dunger September 2017

    How would I rate the tour? Excellent.

    Any recommendations? I absolutely loved this trip.  I have done the LEJOG with Peak Tours previously, but that was with a friend who I ride with regularly.  This time I came with my husband who is a lot fitter than me so I was a bit anxious as to how that would work out and also how he would feel being on an organised trip. But I needn’t have worried.  Friends and family keep on commenting on how happy he looks in my photos and we both had an absolutely brilliant time and made friends who I’m sure we will see again.



    Jacqueline Payne September 2017

    Well what can I say...have just had a most FANTASTIC time, despite the weather (which wasn't that bad and actually made cycling more comfortable in my eyes...) it was an amazing 2 weeks. Am extremely glad to report that the organisation, office back up, brew stops, general helpfulness and willingness to go the extra mile of the Peak Tours Team, have not wained in the intervening years since I did the inaugural Dover to Cape Wrath tour in 2013!!


    Janet Webber September 2017

    Just to let you know that we have had a fantastic time on the Channel to Med tour - only one more day to go - sadly!!!

    I want to adopt Rob - he is such a lovely lovely guy 😀! He is superb, kind, gentle, so supportive and encouraging!

    Isabelle is fantastic - we all love Isabelle, such a kind and thoughtful lady and so organised.

    Chris's first experience and he is doing well 😊. He is very keen to please and has worked hard throughout the tour.

    We will continue to sing the praises for Peak Tours - so well organised, attention to detail, attitude etc etc - all pitched perfectly!



    Pauline and Mick Bedwell Sept C2M

    I daren’t tell my wife, but this is the best holiday I can ever recall having - I’d do it all again tomorrow!

    Rod Wark August 2017

    I'll start with the same complaints that I had after I completed LEJOG in June, the tour and the distance were not long enough! Never have I enjoyed my cycling more than this year having been granted 2 passes by my wife to complete 2 fantastic tours.

    The accommodation varied from very basic to very smart which added to the experience. The route could not be faulted from the flat lands of the north, to the tough climbs of Mont Ventoux and the Verdon gorge, and the fast technical descents are the very reasons why I ride a bike. The GPX files were spot on I did not use the route notes. The food was very good although I did miss the bowl of porridge and fry up I had on LEJOG but we were in France to experience the culture as well as ride so that's ok. Isabelle and the brew van were legendary particularly on the wet days when a cuppa, slice of cake and a warm smile was all I needed to crack on with it. I was lucky to ride with some fantastic people the group size was just about right as it split into small groups of similar abilities, however the day we ascended Mont Ventoux the group was a whole as we all waited at the summit until everybody had made it. The organisation of the tour was very good everything it seemed to run like a well oiled machine.

    Now a word about the guides, 3 totally different people but what a team they were, I thought they were all outstanding. Nigel's passion and enthusiasm for what he does is a credit to him, Isabelle is such a nice warm lady who cares so much about what she does always with a smile on her face, Sam who was always there ready to help whenever he was needed, I thought they were all a credit to Peak Tours.

    The tour overall was excellent just what I was looking for in a cycling holiday, in fact I would certainly do C2M again without hesitation. I would also recommend Peak Tours to anybody without a doubt.



    Ivan Matthews August 2017

    I did the Channel to Med 5th to 20th May with Peak Tours and can only describe it as absolutely fantastic. The route was unbelievable, the scenery too beautiful to describe in words, impressive chateau’s, medieval towns, castles, mountains, vineyards and a great group of fellow cyclists of varying ages and abilities. What more could you want

    The route is as described on Peak Tours website. All the hotel accommodation was good and as usual with Peak Tours they were often at the top of a short climb but all were in lovely locations. The route along the top of Gorge of Verdon was spectacular and well worth the climb of getting to the top…

    The tour guides, Rob, Tony and Isabelle were exceptional, they could not have been more helpful. The brew wagon followed the same format as the LEJOG, coffee stop between start and lunch and another between lunch and destination, lunch was sometimes in café, pubs or as a relaxing picnic under the trees.


    Mal Dinsdale May 2017

    The route, route notes and gpx were superb. From one stunning section to another. I loved the variety from gentle climbs to those two 15 mile down hills in a single day. The scenery was breath taking and the rides through it were awesome.


    John Pringle May/June 2017

    Amazing! Roads are so quiet compared to LEJOG. Scenery is stunning and varied. Hills are a challenge without being frighteningly steep both for climbing and descending Highlights were the climb out of Mont Dore, the ascent of Ventoux and the Gorges Du Verdon -the latter was a wonderfully chilled out day with beautiful views and plenty of time to enjoy them. Once we’d got out of Caen, there were no cities or busy roads until Nice, which was a lovely change from the UK. We found that the amount of distance and ascent on most days was perfect for having a good days riding but still having time in the evening to look around the towns.

    Lunches were fantastic. The picnics were really well done and Rob and Mark got a bit competitive about providing the best! There was plenty of choice and good quality fresh food and the local fruit tarts were much appreciated. The lunches provided by the cafes and restaurants were also great. Brew stops were superb. Isabelle did a great job of getting fresh seasonal fruit and cutting it up for us so we could try everything without having to eat too much. There was also plenty of choice in terms of sweets, biscuits and dried fruit and nuts so that all tastes were catered for.


    Cath and Julian Walls May/June 2017

    As one of the guides said, it gets better and better as the ride progresses. He wasn’t wrong. I particularly appreciated the country routes and the fact that we largely avoided urban areas. Some of the scenery was truly breath taking, and introduced us to areas we had not known about before. So, full marks on the route.

    The picnics were brilliant with plenty of choice and flare. Those meals in restaurants were also v good. The balance was about right for hotel meals versus eating out.

    I thought LEJOG was brilliant but this was even better. And all of us in the group agreed. It was a great two weeks and I just loved cycling through beautiful and often dramatic countryside. The organisation worked seamlessly and all we had to worry about was if we had the energy and strength to get up the hills. And the brew van made sure we did!I would recommend this tour to one and all – and already have!



    Nicholas Martin May/June 2017

    Great trip I really enjoyed it. Excellent route showing a lot of the stunning scenery of France on predominately quiet roads (best way to see France) Very good hotels for the price we paid for the trip (does not need to be better) Some of the isolated hotels showed signs that they are struggling but this added to the character of the trip. (They were not dirty). Food at breakfast and lunch was very good again adding to the character and Mark and Rob had a health competition going for the best spread. (I miss the cheeses already). Obviously with any trip there are factors that cannot be catered for, the weather and group but particularly the group was extremely good. (You cannot go to Frances mountain regions in summer without the occasional thunder storm).

    I would like to thank Rob, Mark and Isobelle for the support in making the trip so good. Particularly Isobelle who was always working hard to make sure the trip ran smoothly, from constantly cutting up fruit at the brew van to being on the phone in the afternoons, as she checked we all passed safely by.



    Keith Elliot May/June 2017

    Great trip I really enjoyed it. Excellent route showing a lot of the stunning scenery of France on predominately quiet roads (best way to see France) Very good hotels for the price we paid for the trip (does not need to be better) Some of the isolated hotels showed signs that they are struggling but this added to the character of the trip. (They were not dirty). Food at breakfast and lunch was very good again adding to the character and Mark and Rob had a healthy competition going for the best spread. (I miss the cheeses already). Obviously with any trip there are factors that cannot be catered for, the weather and group but particularly the group was extremely good. (You cannot go to Frances mountain regions in summer without the occasional thunder storm).

    I would like to thank Rob, Mark and Isobelle for the support in making the trip so good. Particularly Isobelle who was always working hard to make sure the trip ran smoothly, from constantly cutting up fruit at the brew van to being on the phone in the afternoons, as she checked we all passed safely by.

    Keith Elliot May/June 2017

    What a fantastic trip, so much better than LEJOG in so many ways. Here are my thoughts.


    I thought the route was absolutely incredible. Every day we were enveloped by beautiful farmland, wild flowers, rustic vistas and small hamlets with pretty churches etc. The changing landscape from farmland to woodland and gorges made for an outstanding 2 weeks. As the runt of the litter and the one that didn’t go in a peloton and spent every day telling the rest of the group that it was about journey not destination, you did me proud!

    The guides:

    Isobel - I felt I had made a new friend. She is spirited, dedicated and undoubtedly her French helped us out in more ways than we would have been aware of on a daily basis. She cares about people’s experience and was very nurturing and organised. Great sense of humour and a thoroughly fantastic person to spend 2 weeks with, I loved her.

    Rob - I had been on the Lejog with Rob and again I felt I was cycling with a friend. I loved Rob’s leadership which is understated, non-confrontational and non-didactic. He worked tirelessly to make sure we all had our bikes working and that we enjoyed the journey. A remarkable human being too, who is just a joy to spend time with. The advantage of being the slowest on the journey was that I got to have some lovely conversations with Rob at the back. He is a real find!

    I would absolutely book Peak tours again and would look for tours that had Isobel and Rob on them. They are a credit to the company and are fantastic individuals.

    I adored the holiday, thank you for all your efforts in the office and out in France to make it a truly memorable trip.


    Louisa Perry May/June C2M

    I am crap at filling in forms- I normally get me PA to do it! So my feedback is; it was a great trip and I enjoyed it hugely.

    The guides and organisation were exemplary and they all looked after us very well- even the return of my bike went like clockwork.

    It is a more enjoyable ride than Lejog as it is more of a holiday, but Lejog is more iconic. I was also delighted not to go on a bus this time as I am not used to public transport! (Rob knows what I mean)

    In all seriousness it was excellent; Isabelle fed us well and Rob was an excellent leader-you should increase both their salaries!

    I will be back for Cape Wrath or Italy-perhaps next year or the year after, but nothing can compare with Mont Ventoux, what a climb…



    Charles Ryland May 2017

    I had an immense time on the tour. Channel to Med is a terrific itinerary. I love France anyway, but I was enchanted by the remote, majestic scenery and gorgeous historic villages and towns you took us through. All three of the guides were fabulous. Nothing was too much trouble and they were unfailingly delightful. I have to single out Rob for his poise and credibility as tour leader.  Isabelle was the loveliest mother hen to all of us. Tony was helpful above-and-beyond when it came to my eternal bike hypochondria. They made every aspect of the tour a pleasure, and when that turned out to a bit of stretch (torrential rain, bloody hills), they were adept at adapting plans to increase comfort and morale at just the crucial times.

    With regard to the comparison to the 14-day LEJOG, I thought C2M was overall more tiring (while one of my groupmates thought it was less gruelling than the 10-day LEJOG). The uphill gradients on the French route are less sharp, but they are so *long*. I managed to stay on my bike for the whole of LEJOG, even up the Lecht, but Mont Ventoux absolutely emptied me out (but was amazing too!). I ended several days absolutely shattered. I relish that feeling, but one does need to be prepared for it! The "Everest" comparison for the overall ascent in the two trips of two-thirds versus twice the height (or whatever it is) came to feel really relevant.

    I hadn't been on a bicycle for the previous 8months, so I did find the limits of not doing any specific preparation (expect to be nose-to-tarmac on some of the long hills; and be ready and enthused for a little light strolling and pushing up one iconic mountain...)

    However, my experience was also that a basically active and determined person would be stretched and thrilled by the journey. I feel inspired. And I'm going to treasure forever our 84yo groupmate's motto, that "anyone who hasn't got off and walked up a hill, hasn't tried a hard enough hill"


    Elly Webb May 2017

    It was a fabulous trip! Although very nervous at the start, not knowing what to expect, I can only say that I have enjoyed every minute of it.

    The group was indeed very nice and helpful for each other, but this was made possible thanks to the never ending good work of Isabelle, Rob and Tony.

    You can be proud of having such professional and service minded guides! They are much more than guides, nothing was too much, no matter when or where you were asking for something….

    Thanks again for your nice organization and the good work of Isabelle, Rob and Tony!



    Benneth De Proft May 2017

    I love your tour concept. Thanks for making my trips possible. I would never have thought that at 62 I would be cycling France from the Channel to the Med, as I was not sporting at all when I was younger. The support is amazing and now my family and friends think I’m an inspiration. I’m not – I just persisted in training and got support!

    Gilly Cooper, September/October 2016

    Bloody awesome route – well done. Great roads, quiet roads, stunning views. Now … if you could only make Ventoux a bit flatter!

    Vicki Barber, September/October 2016

    The route was amazing – mostly relatively traffic free and the fabulous descents made up for (almost) the climbs! The brew van will always be a fond memory! The hotels were good also and everyone said how great it was to have the bags in our room at the end of each day. We ran a gite business here in France for 7 years and had hire bikes & prepared routes for our guests so we have a idea of how much preparation has been put into the routes etc – you have done a great job with all the work that must have been necessary and you have a great bunch of people working for you!

    Gordon and Jane Barnes, September/October 2016

    Overnight stops were very good in general. Some were ultra modern and others ‘full of character’ as they were in the middle of nowhere. A really good variety and each night there was a very interesting town/city/village to explore, some stunning medieval sites. There was always a great variety of food at brew stops and the picnic lunches.

    John Pointon, September 2016

    I just wanted to tell you what a fantastic team you have at Peak Tours. The Channel to Med bike ride that I've just done under the expert guidance and care of Nigel, Richard and Dan was just perfect! From start to finish, and I include the 'head office' contingent of Dave, Lee and yourself in the accolades, the service was professional, efficient and friendly, which gave the clients the comfortable feeling that everything was sorted and in control.  As a relative newcomer to the sport of cycling, this was even more appreciated by me than it was with the 'experts'!  More than this, however, was the constant vigilance and care given to ensure the safety and welfare of the 23 cyclists on the trip by all three of your staff - and all done with unstinting goodwill and a boisterous sense of humour so important on a hard expedition.

    Ernie Clark, September 2016

    The tour organisation was excellent from first communication to the final dinner – all needs catered for.

    Keith Rawlinson, September 2016

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