FROM VERCORS TO VERDON GORGE ALONG THE ROUTE DE GRAND ALPS
This motorcycle tour follows the Route des Grandes Alpes, the mythical route that crosses all the spectacular French Alps starting from Thonon-les-Bains, located on Lake Geneva, and after crossing the legendary Alpine passes finally will reach the French Riviera. This route passes near two of the most scenic areas of France that Motorcycle Rides has of course included in this trip:
- Vercors Regional Nature Park is the region of an imposing mountain range in the Prealps of the Dauphiné characterized by narrow canyons dug in the rock by the waters of the rivers, and crossed by winding roads with dizzying views of the underlying precipices.
- The Verdon Gorge, located in Provence, is the largest canyon in Europe, featuring high rocky walls overlooking the waters of the river below of emerald green color. The winding road that follows the crests of this canyon is considered one of the most beautiful routes in the world where to ride a motorbike!
The itinerary: From Vercors to Verdon Gorge along the Route de Grand Alps
From Thonon-les-Bains you will follow the Route des Grandes Alpes crossing Col des Gets (1170 m), the first pass on the Route des Grandes Alpes. Then, it will be the others' turn: Col de la Colombière (1613 m) with a magnificent view of the Aravis mountain range; Col des Aravis (1486 m) offering a stunning panoramic view over Mont Blanc; Passo dei Saisies (1486 m) in the heart of Haute-Savoie; Iseran Pass (2764 m) the highest and the most beautiful pass of this motorcycle route; Col du Télégraphe (1566 m) with amazing views over the Maurienne valley; Croix de Fer Pass (2068 m) featuring 6 breathtaking hairpins and Col du Glandon (1924 m).
The downhill road from Col du Glandon will lead you to Grenoble, the capital of the Alps famous for the many ski resorts, where you will enter the Vercors Regional Nature Park. The impressive Gorges De La Bourne will greet you at first, then you will cross the picturesque village of Pont en Royans with ancient houses overlooking the river below. Now, the main attraction of the Vercors is awaiting you: it is the amazing Cirque de Combe Laval, a challenging, hair-raising road running on the edge of endless stunning ravines offering breathtaking panoramas over the whole Regional Nature Park. It is a dream place where to ride a motorcycle!
The winding road that you will follow crossing Col de la Bataille (1313 m.), Col de Russet (1,254 m.) and Col de la Bataille (1313 m.) is just as exciting as Cirque de Combe Laval.
After leaving Vercors Regional Nature Park behind, you will get back to the Route des Grandes Alpes and will face some impressive series of high passes in the French Alps crossing Col du Lautaret (2058 m) in the beautiful French Haute Alps; Col du Galibier (2677 m) with spectacular views of the Alps; Col d'Izoard (2360 m) in the suggestive Parc Naturel Régional du Queyras; Col de Vars (2111 m) between Hautes Alpes and the Maritime Alps and Col de la Cayolle (2326 m) overlooking the magnificent Parc National du Mercantour.
The downhill road from Col de la Cayolle will take you to the fascinating Gorges de Daluis by a pleasant riding your motorbike. These gorges were dug by the Var river in the characteristic ruby red rocks of this area. For this feature they are also called the "Colorado of Nice", taking the name of the city in the French Riviera, capital of the Alpes-Maritimes department.
If the Gorges de Daluis have enchanted you, the Verdon Gorge that you will find a few dozen kilometers ahead will leave you speechless from their beauty of nature. We recommend following our Roadbook for motorcyclists in order not to miss any of these wonders you can discover in this amazing canyon.
Left behind Verdon Gorges, the tour will cross gentle hills surrounded by the scents of the pine trees in the Mediterranean scrub reaching finally Sant-Tropez. In this famous town located on the French Riviera, you will be impressed by the many superyachts moored in its cozy port or by the several Rolls-Royce parked around. But, do not be fooled by the appearance, just park your motorcycle for a while, and as soon as you will stroll a bit through the narrow streets in the historic hub you will realize that in this town you can breathe the true soul of Provence.