The Tour de France and the Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift on the move for cycling as a means of transport

On the road

Closest KM: almost the entire route between Passy and Sallanches

Before the race, why not treat yourself to a cyclosportive romp between Geneva and Chamonix on the Lake Geneva–Mont Blanc cycling route? Leave behind the cars and motorcycles and enjoy this marked and secured cycling route, which follows the Arve River in the great outdoors, far from traffic and pollution, and runs through protected areas for most of its length. Suitable for solo, group and family rides, this cycling route is all about fun and comfort. The tourist route is free of major difficulties and can be completed by cyclists of all levels. Riding at your own pace, you will discover a range of stunning landscapes over more than 100 kilometres between Lake Geneva and Chamonix.


Departments: Ain, Allier, Ardèche, Cantal, Drôme, Isère, Loire, Haute-Loire, Puy-de-Dôme, Rhône, Métropole de Lyon, Savoie, Haute-Savoie.
Population: 8 million
Prefecture: Lyon
Area: 69,711 km2
Specialities: Beaujolais, Côtes du Rhône and Savoie wines, Lyon specialities (quenelles, cervelles de canut, saucisson.), potée auvergnate, Savoyard specialities (raclette, fondue, tartiflettes, diots, crozets), cheeses (beaufort, reblochon, cantal, bleu d'Auvergne, Salers, saint-Nectaire...), green lentil of Le Puy, waters (Evian, Thonon, Volvic) verbena, chartreuse.
Sports clubs: Olympique Lyonnais, AS Saint-Etienne, Clermont Foot 63, Grenoble Foot 38 (football). ASM Clermont, Lyon OU, FC Grenoble, Stade Aurillacois, US Oyonnax (rugby union), ASVEL Villeurbanne (basketball), Chambéry (handball), Brûleurs de loup Grenoble, Pionniers de Chamonix (ice hockey)
Competitions: women's football world cup, ski competitions (critérium de la Première neige in Val d'Isère), Tour de France passes, Critérium du Dauphiné.
Economy: (8e European region) high-tech industries, automotive (Berliet), metallurgy, rubber, plastics, chemicals, electronics, food processing, textiles, digital, banks, universities, administrations, viticulture. tyres (Michelin). Design. New technologies (Inovallée) Winter and summer tourism. 
Festivals: Fête des Lumières in Lyon, Nuits de Fourvière in Lyon, quais du polar in Lyon, biennale du design in Saint-Etienne, classical music festival in La Chaise-Dieu
Tourist sites: old Lyon and Croix-Rousse, Puy-en-Velay cathedral, Lake Annecy, Chambéry castle, winter sports in Isère, Savoie and Haute-Savoie, Cantal, thermal resorts, Auvergne volcanoes. Caverne du Pont d'Arc. Castle of Grignan. Bastille of Grenoble. Vulcania. Parc des Oiseaux.
Websites and social networks:


Population: 862,000
Prefecture : Annecy
Sub-prefectures: Bonneville, Saint-Julien-en-Genevois, Thonon-les-Bains.
Number of municipalities: 279
Area: 4,388 km2
Specialities: AOC/AOP cheeses: Reblochon, Abondance, Tomme, Tome des Bauges, Beaufort, Chevrotin, Emmental of Savoy, Raclette. Savoie AOC wines, Ayze, Royal Seyssel, Roussette de Savoie. Other labels: Berthoud (STG), Savoy appels and pears (IGP). Specialities and traditional dishes: Génépi, Crozets, Tartiflette, perch fillets (lake fish), diots, blueberry pie, Savoyard fondue, potato fritters, honey, bidoyon (artisanal cider), gentian. 
Sports clubs: headquarters of the French ski federation. Football Club Annecy, GFA Rumilly Vallières (football). Thonon Evian Grand Genève Football Club. FCS Rumilly (rugby union). US Annecy Rugby. Black Panthers of Thonon-les-Bains (American football). Annecy CSAV Handball. Annemasse Basket Club. Chamonix Elite Hockey Club "Les Pionniers". Pays du Mont Blanc Hockey Club. Haute-Savoie Nordic Team
Competitions and major events: Kandahar-World Cup Alpine Skiing (Chamonix Mont Blanc Les Houches). Greenweez Maxi-Race (Annecy). Alps Bike Festival (La Clusaz). Mountain Bike World Cup (Les Gets). Climbing World Cup (Chamonix Mont Blanc). Megève international show-jumping. Evian Championship (golf). Ultra Trail du Mont-Blanc (Chamonix). Biathlon World Cup (Le Grand Bornand). Telemark World Cup (Samoëns and Saint-Gervais-les-Bains). High'Five Festival (Annecy). Rock the pistes (Portes du Soleil). Critérium du Dauphiné. Ski mountaineering World Cup (Flaine). Grande Odysée Savoie-Mont-Blanc. Tour de l'Avenir. Tour des Pays de Savoie
Heritage: Lake Geneva, Mont Blanc and Aiguille du Midi, Lake Annecy. Castle of the Sires of Bonneville. Castle of Clermont. Plateau des Glières (national necropolis). Montenvers train (Mer de Glace) and Mont Blanc tramway. Castle of Ripaille. Aravis pass. Village of Flottins. Pont des Amours (Annecy). Father Christmas' hamlet. Annecy Castle. Quail Bridge. Basilica of the Visitation. La Tournette. Col de la Forclaz. Abbey of Abondance. Cachat bar of Evian waters. Castles of Allinges. Baroque chapels of St-Gervais. Aulps Abbey. Thermal baths of St-Gervais Interpretation centre of the contraband in the mountains
Festivals: International Animation Film Festival (Annecy). Montjoux festival. Guitare en Scène (Annecy). Nomade Reggae Festival. Rock'n'Poche. Megève International Jazz Festival. Pleins Feux Festival. Village des Flottins. Morzine Harley Days. Musilac Mont-Blanc. Radio Meuh Circus Festival. Mont-Blanc Humour. Paradisio Annecy. Les Grandes Médiévales in Andilly
Main tourist sites: Lake Annecy, Annecy Castle, Mont Blanc and the Sea of Ice, Aravis, winter sports resorts of Chamonix, Saint-Gervais, Megève, Les Gets, Morzine and Avoriaz.
Economy: watchmaking (Cluses), screw-cutting, mechanics (Dassault, Alcatel), agriculture and agri-food (Reblochon milk production, tome, Evian water), mountain tourism, sports industry (Dynastar, Salomon, Mavic). Outdoor Sport Valley Cluster, for the economic development of the outdoor sector. Major facilities (Rochexpo, etc.)
Websites, etc.  / / /    

Rich in heritage, extraordinary landscapes, quality agriculture and culinary specialities, Haute-Savoie is an attractive department with an established quality of life. It is thanks to the diversity of its territory that Haute-Savoie is able to make the most of it: mountain landscapes, exceptional lakes, dynamic valleys, etc. From the north to the south of the department, inhabitants and visitors alike benefit from and enjoy a remarkable living environment. 

Haute-Savoie is a true cycling region and since 1947 has provided 21 Tour de France stage towns and 30 of its mountain passes have been ridden by the Tour.

Since 2021, the Haute-Savoie Departmental Council has implemented a genuine policy in favour of cycling. Whether it is in supporting the projects of its 279 communes through the "Savoir rouler" operation set up for schoolchildren or thanks to the hosting of numerous cycling events, Haute-Savoie is fully committed to the practice of cycling.

Km 10.8


  On April 19, 1840, the town of Sallanches was completely devastated by a fire, which left nothing but ashes, 63 people burnt to death and only five houses standing out of the 273 in the town. The disaster provoked a vast surge of solidarity, of which Victor Hugo was one of the first contributors, and it was followed the next year by a typhus epidemic that killed many more inhabitants. It was then necessary to completely rebuild the town after razing what was left of the old one, except for the church and the few houses that had resisted the fire. King Charles-Albert of Savoy-Sardinia financed the rehabilitation, which was entrusted to architect François Justin, who was inspired by the orthogonal plan of Turin to build a new town of Sardinian neo-classical architecture. François Justin had to work again in 1844 to rebuild the town of Cluses, which had also suffered a devastating fire (see elsewhere).  Sallanches is also home to Charly Mottet, twice fourth in the Tour de France (ten participations) and three times winner of the Critérium du Dauphiné. Sallanches has hosted the Tour de France three times, always for starts: in 2016, a time trial won in Megève by Chris Froome started there.   A sporting town (former WBA super-welter world champion Laurent Boudouani was born here, as was cross-country skier Maurice Manificat, a multi-medalist at the world championships, and Olympic medallist Coline Mattel), it is also the birthplace of Michel Bibollet, who contested two Tours de France in 1985 and 1988.    

1980 - Sallanches World Championships: Bernard Hinault's masterpiece
The year 1980 was a special year for Bernard Hinault. In the spring, the Badger signed one of the most resounding feats of his career by winning a gruelling Liège-Bastogne-Liège in the snow and cold. At the same time, the Breton became the first Frenchman after Jacques Anquetil to win the Giro d'Italia. Everything went wrong in the Tour de France, however, when the title holder was forced to abandon the race in Pau due to a painful knee injury. He quickly recovered to win a stage of the Tour du Limousin and to start the world championships in Sallanches in good shape. If Hinault had never shone before in the lottery of the World Championships, it was because flat courses or team intrigues did not favour him. But the Savoy course, with the dreaded Domancy climb, was one of the most difficult ever for the rainbow jersey contenders. The race was a formality for the Badger, who attacked with 150 km to go and scorched all his opponents until the last one, Italian Gianbattista Baronchelli.  

Km 15.4


Home of the Quechua tents, the town is worth a visit for its church of Saint Andrew, whose bell is listed.

Km 18.9


If the côte de Domancy remains in everyone's memory as the place where Bernard Hinault won the 1980 road world championship, it has appeared twice since on the Tour de France: in 2016 during an individual time trial between Sallanches and Megève won by Chris Froome and in 2021 during the Cluses-Tignes stage, and Pierre Latour was leading at the summit. It was on the same road, ridden downwards, that Romain Bardet attacked with team-mate Mikaël Chérel to break away from the group of favourites in the finale of the stage he won in Saint-Gervais in the 2016 Tour de France. His victory also allowed him to move up from 5th to 2nd place overall, the best result of his career. The Domancy climb was also part of the final stage of the 2020 Critérium du Dauphiné, which saw Sepp Kuss win and Dani Martinez take the leader's jersey from Primoz Roglic. 

The Alps offer much more than just skiing opportunities. With picturesque villages, sprawling greenery and waterfronts - this area of France is an appealing destination all year round. On the border with Switzerland, towns like Annemasse also provide the perfect base for exploring Lake Geneva.
Of course, there's plenty for those arriving in search of snow - after all, this is home to the famous Mont Blanc. Popular ski resorts include Morzine and Courchevel, where you'll find an array of winter sports as well as charming Alpine chalets and plenty of apres-ski.
Meanwhile, the colourful towns between the peaks come to life when spring flowers bloom in window boxes and sunlight reflects off the water of lakes and canals. Take a boat trip, swim or try paddleboarding. You'll even find beautiful beaches dotted around the shorelines.

Top places to visit in the French Alps:

1. Annemasse
2. Morzine
3. Courchevel
4. Annecy
5. Yvoire

Provided by

Follow us

Receive exclusive news about the Tour