Long overdue (we think), the Women’s Tour de France is back and its reincarnation will debut at the Tour Eiffel in Paris and take place over 9 days from July 24-August 1, 2022. From the first stage that finishes on the Champs-Élysées to the final that climbs to La Super Planche des Belles Filles, it will be a race that will compete in excitement with the Men’s Tour.

The 2022 women’s course includes four flat stages, two mountain stages and two stages that are suitable for the attackers. The longest stage, the fifth, is 175 kilometers long. Symbolically, the competitors will climb the Ballon d’Alsace, the first pass to be climbed by the Tour de France in 1905. As with the men, four jerseys (yellow, green, white and spheres) are contested. In addition to spectacular riding and up close race viewing, we know for many this is also an opportunity to experience France and we have many events planned including wine tasting in the Champagne region, and gastronomic delights in Alsace. We stay in charming and luxurious accommodation (see the Accommodations tab) and dine at the region’s best restaurants.

We have very limited space in 2022 so if you are thinking of joining, don’t delay.

Only Great Explorations:

  • Small groups, extraordinary guides, and authentic experiences.
  • A ride you will never forget, ahead of the pros
  • Less time in vans means more time riding
  • Order off the menu at restaurants you won’t find in guidebooks.
  • We design and operate our own trips so there are only good surprises.
  • We will see 6 stages on this trip!

On our Tour with the Pros trips, we generally try to provide options to cycle 60 km, 80 km or 100+ km on each cycling day. Although anyone of moderate cycling level may enjoy this tour, it is ideally suited to those with intermediate to advanced fitness levels. By this we mean you should be able to cycle 60 km at a minimum with some hills. If you have any questions about this trip, please consult our Travel Advisors.

Location

Paris

Paris, France

Day 1

Épernay

Épernay, France

Day 2+3

Strasbourg

Strasbourg, France

Day 4

Ribeauvillé

Ribeauvillé, France

Day 5+6

Colmar

Colmar, France

Day 7+8+9

What’s Included in the Cost of Your Trip?

INCLUDED IN REGULAR TRIP

Services of one or more experienced Great Explorations guides
Support vehicle
8 nights lodging
All breakfasts, 2 lunches, 6 dinners
Wine reception on first and final nights
Entrance fees for selected historical sites and museums
Detailed map and GPS routes
All baggage transportation during the tour
Detailed Trip Planner with tips and general info about travelling in France
All tips in hotels, restaurants etc.

Not Included

Bike rental
Discretionary tips for guides

Particulars

EVENT DATES

2022

July 24-August 1

TRIP SIZE

8 - 16 participants

TOTAL DAYS

9 days / 8 nights

ARRIVE / DEPART

Paris / Lepuix

ACTIVITY LEVEL

Intermediate/Challenging (your choice)
80-100+ km daily (different options)
Van supported

TERRAIN

Variety from rolling to mountainous

COST

Land Cost:
US $3,950 pp until December 31, 2021
US $4,450 pp after January 1, 2022

Single Supplement:
US $1,250

Bike Rental:
US $280

Racing bikes: Cannondale Supersix 5 carbon bikes with compact doubles & shimano 105; Synapse triples.
Hybrid bikes: Cannondale Quick Speed 1 and 2 also available.

FAQ:

We can imagine that it might be overwhelming to try to determine who to travel with for your Tour de France experience. Don’t let anyone pressure you into a quick decision- take the time to do some research. Here are some questions you might ask any tour operator you are considering traveling with:

Ask how much experience running trips in Europe and in particular at the Tour de France.
We have been operating trips at the Tour for over 15 years. Robbin McKinney, founder and owner of Great Explorations has been planning and guiding trips in Europe and around the world for 35 years. It's not our first rodeo.

Ask how many people will be on the trip you are booking.
We feel an ideal number of guests is 16 and we ensure there are 3 guides for this number of clients. Most of the other companies take 24-26 participants which may compromise your trip.

Ask whether the support vehicles used are vans or buses.
If the company is using a bus, you have to factor in waiting for a bus and 48 people. We use 9 psgr vans that can navigate the roads and crowds of France.

Ask how much time you will be shuttling in vans.
This may have the single greatest impact on how enjoyable your trip is. We plan our itineraries to minimize transfers- ask how long you will be in the van each day.

Ask how much experience the guides on your trip will have.
Ask for their bios; if the tour operator doesn’t know or won’t provide, this may be a red flag. We know already who will be leading our Tour trips already.

Why do some companies charge $6,000 and up for a 7 day trip and how do we compare 'apples to apples'?
When comparing prices, consider the number of days and nights, standard of hotels, guide to guest ratio, meals included and other events that may be included including how many stages you will see. At Great Explorations, we strive to create an experience that is unique and special and we charge a price that allows us to include things that we know will make the trip a once in a lifetime experience but at the same time provide value.

Please note: Final itinerary is subject to revision; any changes made are done so in an attempt to provide the best possible trip given route conditions and available services. Due to the nature of our business and exchange rates, prices are subject to change. All prices quoted are U.S. dollars but we accept payment in Canadian dollars also. Due to cancellations and waiting lists, trip availability fluctuates daily. If you have any questions or would like to confirm space on this trip before making your reservation, please contact us at info@great-explorations.com or by telephone at 1.800.242.1825.

1

Day 1 (July 24)

Stage 1: Tour Eiffel – PARIS TOUR EIFFEL to CHAMPS-ÉLYSÉES: 82km
Live Viewing

Arrive to Paris. The opening stage of the women’s race is set to begin from the Eiffel Tower and finish on the Champs-Élysées. After watching, we will enjoy the first of many superb meals at a restaurant close to our hotel.

2

Day 2 (July 25)

Stage 2: MEAUX to PROVINS: 135km
Live Viewing

From Paris, we will take a train 35 minutes to the town of Meaux and ride the course ahead of the pro peleton, stopping to watch at a suitable location. After the finish, we will transfer to Epernay, the crown jewel of the Champagne region. We will settle into our luxurious hotel located right in the center of this charming village.

3

Day 3 (July 26)

Stage 3: REIMS to ÉPERNAY: 133km
Live Viewing

This is a hilly stage for the riders and an afternoon finish is expected in Epernay. With our privileged position we can ride from our hotel an enjoyable route and then relax in town to watch the exciting finish and festivities.

4

Day 4 (July 27)

Stage 4: TROYES to BAR-SUR-AUBE: 126km

As the peleton travels east to Troyes and rides south to Bar-Sur-Aube, we will enjoy another ride in the Champagne region and some wine tasting before transferring late afternoon to Strasbourg by TGV train (1h35). The NY Times describes Strasbourg as follows: “a fetching Franco-Teutonic core of cobbled traffic-free lanes, canals, half-timbered houses and spires where you can fill both your belly (with copious rustic Alsatian dishes) and your brain (with impressive art museums). Toss in the seat of the European Parliament, a lively bar scene and some winningly repurposed historical buildings — now elegant hotels and gastronomic havens — and you have an international city with year-round appeal.” Museum lovers will appreciate the 18th century Palais Rohan and or the Musee d’Art Moderne et Contemporain.
This is a free night for dinner with options for Michelin-starred restaurants or casual bistros.

5

Day 5 (July 28)

Stage 5 – BAR-LE-DUC to SAINT-DIÉ-DES-VOSGES: 175km
Live Viewing

This is the longest stage of the women’s race and with a flat finish is expected to be contested by the sprinters amongst the 24 teams. We will cycle a beautiful route from Strasbourg to the charming village of Ribeauvillé and then transfer to the stage finish at Saint-Die-des -Vosges to watch the finish (just 40km away). Back in Ribeauvillé, we will enjoy a dinner at a favourite restaurant.

6

Day 6 (July 29)

Stage 6: SAINT-DIÉ-DES-VOSGES to ROSHEIM: 128km
Live Viewing

Having stayed in Ribeauvillé, we are in the ideal position to ride and watch this stage which is a hilly one finishing in Rosheim. The riding in this part of Alsace is spectacular with lots of options including an add-on option across the Rhine into Germany. We will find time to tour and taste at Bott Frères, a family winery described by Francine Prose in the NY Times: “The winemaking machinery – vats and bottles, dials and tubes – is not only ingenious but beautiful, even fantastic, like the equipment one might find it a grown-up version of Willie Wonka’s chocolate factory.”

7

Day 7 (July 30)

Stage 7: SÉLESTAT to LE MARKSTEIN: 127km
Live Viewing

With the stage start in Selestat (just 15km away), we are again in an ideal location to watch and participate in the festivities before we cycle to Colmar. Haut Koenigsburg is an option should you wish to climb up – this imposing castle boasts views over the surrounding countryside. Arrive to Colmar, known for its old world charms and recently, a museum renaissance. Unterlinden is leading Colmar’s transformation into France’s latest destination for modern art and architecture, thanks to a three-year, 44 million-euro renovation and expansion by Swiss architecture firm Herzog & de Meuron.

8

Day 8 (July 31)

Stage 8: LURE to LA SUPER PLANCHE DES BELLES FILLES: 123km

Waking up in Colmar, we cycle south along the wine route as far as Thann, joining the stage route as it climbs towards the finish. With this the final stage of the women’s race, it will no doubt be a thrill to see these athletes climb up the Parc des Ballons des Vosges, which was the first official mountain climb of the Tour in 1905. Back in Colmar, we will celebrate with a festive dinner. Bon appetite.

9

Day 9 (Aug 1)

Departure Day

After breakfast, transfer to Colmar train station by 9am for onward travel.

Important Note: This is a preliminary itinerary which will be updated as further route information becomes public. Any changes made will be done with the goal of making the trip the best that we can given available hotels, services etc.

Paris Hotel (our secret!), Paris

We have stayed at this 4* hotel over the years and it is a superbly located hotel, a short walk from the finish line of the final stage. In previous years, this has been the hotel that the Pro teams stay at so the atmosphere, with team buses, families and friends of riders (and us) is electric. We can’t promise, but here’s hoping. Either way, it’s a fabulous hotel to stay at in Paris!


Hotel Jean Moët, Epernay

Set in an stately 18th-century mansion, this 4-star upscale hotel is a 5-minute walk from the Épernay train station. Guest rooms feature hardwood floors & flat-screen tvs. There is a spa with indoor pool and a sauna and champagne bar.


Hannong Hotel, Strasbourg

The 4-star hotel artfully combines designer touches with a blend of styles, including a majestic wooden staircase with broad landings, guest rooms with original parquet floors renovated in contemporary style, a “1930s” lounge and intimate, modern terraces.


Hotel & Spa Ribeauvillé, Ribeauvillé

Fully renovated in 2021, this boutique hotel is now a fabulous hotel to stay at with amenities that include quipped with an indoor heated swimming pool with jacuzzi and a spa (sauna, hammam, relaxation area).


Hotel Le Colombier, Colmar

The 4-star Hotel Le Colombier is located in the historic centre of Colmar, in the ‘Little Venice’ district. This takes its name from the orientation of the houses that are located directly on the River “Lauch”. The style is contemporary and upscale.