The perfect point-to-point cycling adventure.
The gold-standard Rapha Randonnée that takes riders through one of the world’s most famous and majestic mountain ranges, and from the Atlantic Ocean to the Mediterranean Sea. The route straddles the border of France and Spain, mixing cultures and cuisines with spectacular riding. Among a cast of stellar climbs, the Col du Tourmalet, together with the Aspin, Aubisque and Peyresourde, offers riders a direct road to the heart of cycling's legends.
Let us challenge and inspire you, and fuel your passion for cycling. Using our vast experience of road riding and our love of the history of the sport, we have created Rapha Randonnées: point-to-point itineraries in cycling’s classic territories, and in select destinations across the world. Take on mythical climbs in the Alps, Pyrenees and Dolomites, or cycle the road less travelled through the beautiful landscapes of Japan, California or Corsica. Whichever you choose, you will experience the same levels of service and support. Rapha Travel team cars and experienced guides will be on hand with local knowledge, a morale-boosting chat or a full bidon every pedal-stroke of the way. And, at the end of the day, you’ll simply hand your bike over to our mechanics, who will return them in top condition the next morning. In the evenings all you have to do is enjoy your appointment with our pro-level soigneur, sample the regional wines and cuisine, and relax in our carefully chosen accommodation.
Flights, bike hire and travel insurance are not included
Single occupancy as standard
Randonnées are a real challenge, often climbing the same cols used in the biggest races in the world. But because they’re fully supported, they can be enjoyed by everyone from veteran riders with years of experience to relative newcomers who have put in the training and committed themselves to achieving something special.
|Arrival Day Biarritz Quick spin|
|Day 1 Biarritz - Oloron-Ste-Marie||127 KM||3,100 M|
|Day 2 Oloron-Ste-Marie - Saint-Savin||115 KM||2,700 M|
|Day 3 Saint-Savin - Bagnères-De-Luchon||109 KM||3,340 M|
|Day 4 Luchon - St-Girons||127 KM||3,120 M|
|Day 5 St-Girons - Gincla||168 KM||3,300 M|
|Day 6 Gincla - Collioure||142 KM||2,050 M|
|Day 7 Collioure|
See full itinerary
Flights into Biarritz airport or get a train to Biarritz train station where you will be met by a member of Rapha Travel.
On our first day of riding, we leave Biarritz along the Route Impériale des Cimes (the Imperial Summit Route) into the undulating foothills of the French Basque country. The unique and vibrant local culture will be quite apparent in our resting place for the night, Oloron-Ste-Marie, a beautiful town with distinctly Romanesque architecture at the junction of two rivers.
Col des Plombières (343m), Col d’Osquich (500m)
Today’s ride tackles some famous Tour roads, with the steepest gradients reserved for the first climb, Marie Blanque, which takes us above 1,000m for the first time. After the long, picturesque climb to the Aubisque we arrive at the Cirque du Litor, one of the greatest roads in Europe. Our dinner tonight in Saint-Savin will be memorable.
Col de Marie Blanque (1,035m), Col d’ Aubisque (1,709m)
A giant and memorable day in the mountains, the three main climbs were included in the first Tour de France Pyrenean stage in 1910. First up, the mighty Tourmalet, then the green Peyresourde and the gentler, pretty Aspin. It’s where Tour legends are made.
Col du Tourmalet (2,115m), Col d’Aspin (1,489m), Col de Peyresourde (1,569m)
Tired legs and more difficult climbing on the way make day four a challenge, but heading briefly into Spain will keep things interesting, and we will pay homage at the memorial to young Fabio Casartelli, who was killed on the Portet d’Aspet in the 1995 Tour. The Chateau Beauregard, where we finish the day, is a delight.
Château de Beauregard
Col du Portillon (1,320m), Col de Portet d’Aspet (1,069m)
A stunning parcours rolling past the famous talc quarry at Trimouns, which provides 8% of the world’s talcum powder. It’s an impressive sight, somehow ominous and sublime. The Pailhères, another Tour de France favourite, will be the second highest point of the week, behind the Tourmalet.
Hostellerie du Grand Duc
Col de Port (1,249m), Port de Pailhères (2,001m)
The final stage says adieu to the high mountains as the azure Mediterranean appears on the horizon. The fishing town of Collioure, a favourite subject for Picasso and Matisse, is the perfect place to reflect on an incredible journey.
Hotel Casa Pairal
Col d'Aussières (1020m), Col de Palomère (1036m)
Transfer from the hotel to Perpignan airport or train station
The team.. James, Nico, Vicki and Livio just blew my mind and exceeded my expectations. They were sooo patient even at my lowest energy point when I perhaps wasn't at my finest the team was always there for me!
— Randonnee Dolomites, July 2016
So, you could say the odds were against me having one of the most rewarding and inspirational experiences of my life - yet that is exactly what the Randonnée proved to be.
— Rider, Randonée Corsica 2016
We have a fleet of top-specification hire bikes available for rent on our European departures. They cost £50 per day. We ask that guests requiring a bike tell us as far as is possible in advance, so we can guarantee the right size is available, and also to send us your fit measurements, so our mechanics can set up the bike for you ready for the start of your trip. If you’re renting a bike you need to remember to bring your helmet, pedals and saddle to your trip start.
All our trips are physically demanding, but some are harder than others. Randonnées and Cent Cols Challenges are among the toughest, and Retreats are among the most relaxing. Our guides, soigneurs and mechanics will support every rider to go beyond their usual level of riding. Each individual trip is rated for difficulty, and each trip type page gives rough guidelines on who the trip is for, to help you decide if it’s right for you.
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Telephone: +44 (0) 207 482 9175
Hours: 9.30am-6.00pm (BST)
Hours: 8.30am-5.30pm (PDT)
Telephone: +44 (0) 207 482 9175
Hours: 9.30am-6.00pm (BST)