The First Equipe
We produced our first fully supported cycling tour in Provence back in the summer of 2015. A small group of friends and soon to be friends, trusted us to give them an unforgettable adventure. This first journey was 2 years in the making. Living in New York City at the time, we made our way over to this magical place as often as possible, to scout the climbs, plan the logistics and most importantly, test the wine. All the while, dreaming about sharing Provence with the rest of the world. Our first Team of Andrew, Ian, Wilis, Sean, Cindy and Mark set off for a week to experience the food, cycling, scenery and light that only Provence can offer.
Mark and Andrew, co-hosted the mid-July trip and put together an itinerary that captured their favorite parts of Southern France. With the help of Mark’s father in law, we rented a private house in the remote village of Puyvert to base ourselves. Strategically nestled in the foothills of the Luberon mountain range, the location gave us easy access to Mont Ventoux to the north, the beaches of the Cote d’Azur to the south, the Alpine stages of the Tour de France to the east, and the mystical landscape of Les Alpilles to the west. Seas of lavender, grapes and cherries in between.
The theme of the trip was exploration. The routes were curated to showcase not only the iconic Cols and scenic roads of the region, but also uncover a hidden network of local gems that typically are passed by. To keep the Team fueled, we exploited the ripe in-season produce of the area and made short work of fresh pastries and breads from the nearby village bakery. Each dinner showcased a different side of Provence as well, from home prepared family recipes, Michelin star bistros and Mediterranean cafes, all served with local wines we would sample from one of the countless vineyards.
A personal highlight was to see the Depart of the Queen stage of the Tour de France in Gap. Here, we got to rub shoulders with our cycling Hero’s as they prepared to take on the races most demanding Alpine stage.
Getting this first Team to Provence was the most rewarding journey we have ever undertaken. We look forward to hosting more tours and sharing stories where ever the bike takes us.
Check out our route itinerary below and download the .gpx file to get started on your own Provence adventure! Have some other great routes? Share below in the comments.