Stages of the Tour de France in the Charente-Maritime
For the first time ever during peace-time, the legendary Tour de France will not take place in the month of July. The announcement to postpone the race was made in April, and it is to help contain the spread of the coronavirus. With the race now starting on Saturday August 29th, most of the stages will take place during September 2020. And from the 7th to the 10th of September there are several stages of Le Tour de France in the Charente-Maritime.
Le Tour 2020
That’s right. Stages 10, 11 and 12 are less than 90 minutes drive from Bel-Air Gites. If you are avid followers of the Tour de France, then you probably already know the route. If not, then here are the details for the stages that are the closest to Bel-Air.
Stage 10 – 8th September
Île d’Oléron, Le Château-d’Oléron to Île de Ré, Saint-Martin-de-Ré
Stage 11 – 9th September
Châtelaillon Plage to Poitiers
Stage 12 – 10th September
Chauvigny to Sarran Corrèze
Just in these three stages the teams will cover a total of 554 kilometres. Stage 12 is actually the longest stage of the Tour, taking the riders through the Vienne and Haute-Vienne areas. It tires us out just thinking about it.
They arrive in the Charente-Maritime on Monday 7th September, but that’s an official rest day. I wonder what they will do on their day off in France’s second most popular tourist destination.
They are in the perfect place for taking in the culture and the breath-taking beauty of the French Atlantic Coast. Perhaps a boat trip or helicopter ride over Fort Boyard, taking in the old port at La Rochelle. Or maybe an invigorating walk along the long, sandy beaches before they stroll round the Aquarium at La Rochelle. For those preferring to take in the more historical sites we would suggest a visit to the Roman amphitheatre at Saintes, or the citadel of Saint Martin de Ré.
If they weren’t following such strict diets and exercise regimes we’re fairly certain that they would find something delicious to eat and drink in this fabulous region. They will be cycling through some of the areas finest vineyards, so maybe cognac would be their tipple. However, if they have been doing their research then they would be more tempted to try the local Pineau des Charentes.
Food-wise there are so many wonderful Charentais specialities they will be spoilt for choice. Oysters, éclade (smoked mussels with pine needles), chaudrée (fish soup), or galette charentaise. What would you recommend?
The Tour is the ideal opportunity for spectators and supporters to admire the diversity and the beauty of French landscapes. From craggy coastal regions and charming coastlines. To soaring mountains, lush farms and picturesque towns and villages.Happening Now In France
After all those hours cycling perhaps a round of golf at one of the top 5 golf courses in the Charente would help them relax. Some of our guests at Bel-Air Gites recommend Golf de Royan. It’s an 18-hole course amidst forests of pine trees and natural sand dunes, with a view of the lighthouse. What could be better than that for taking your mind off the Tour for a few hours?
And whilst we are on the topic of relaxation and taking your mind off things…
Booking your family holiday
They don’t call it the Sunny Charente for nothing. In August and September, when the Tour de France is taking place the weather here is usually in the mid to high 20’s. So if you’re not chasing Le Tour why not come and relax by the pool at Bel-Air Gites? Or check out some of the other great family attractions close by. There is so much to see and do here you will want your holiday to last forever.