Did you ever dream of cycling with the best cyclists in the World? Come to Menton for some days of cycling and you are likely to make your dreams come true.Menton is a perfect starting point for some of the Côte d’Azur most popular and spectacular routes: Col de la Madone, Col de Turini, small roads through French and Italian villages, coast rides to the classic cycling path in San Remo, wild mountain roads towards Breil-sur-Roya – perhaps even challenge Col de Tende by MTB or a cross-bike? Or make loups into the Mercantour national park?
The options are many for the bold and brave cyclists – while you can chill in the evenings at the many beach side restaurants or stroll in the old town of Menton.
Col de la Madone is a famous climb in the backcountry of Menton. There are a few ways to climb it from Menton, yet all ways pass the pretty village St-Agnes that is hidden in the mountains behind Menton. As soon as you start the approximately 15 km steady climb, it does not take long before the ocean seems far and you feel climbing to the clouds.
The climb is often used for training rides by professional riders who reside in Monaco. You can climb it once or 10 times as Richie Porte and Cameron Wurf recently did as an Everesting challenge (In a single ride, participants have to repeat a single climb enough times to reach the equivalent height of Mt. Everest).
Another way to break the cycling tracks from Menton is to pass the first hills in the backcountry and enter the lowland via Castillon. Have a coffee break and fill up the water bottle in the tranquil town Sospel – before discovering Col de Braus or climb further up to Col de Turini. You can also choose the East bound roads and discover some of the routes in to Italy.
Col de Braus
Col de Braus is less known by visitors to the Côte d’Azur, but very used by local cyclists as one of the most beautiful climbs of the region. It has a characteristic hairpin profile that help break the climb to the 1.000 m top into shorter doable sections.
At the top of Col de Braus, you are reminded of the cycling legends of France. René Vietto, who origined from the Côte d’Azur and was climbing away from everyone else on a bike during the 1930s and 1940s, is pictured on a memorial stone dedicated to him and his contributions to cycling in France.
If you are a fan of MTB-ing there is a lot of spectacular trails in this area! You can for example cross into Italy via Col de Tente which has gravel road on the top.
For the cruisers there are an easier way into the Italian famous cycling roads. All you have to do is to cross the border in Menton and follow the road through Ventigmiglia and further on. You can easily reach the famous cycling path in San Remo where the former train rails have been transformed into a long flat cycling path along the blue sea.
We wish you happy cycling!