Cycling to Paris is an awesome experience with, arguably, one of the most iconic finishes at the Eiffel Tower. Whilst the norm is to start from London, why not go that step further and join us, as we start from the famous Blackpool Tower, all in aid of the Blackpool Carers Centre…a truly inspirational ride that will take you through some magnificent scenic towns, making your heart burst with pride as you cycle this epic challenge for this amazing cause! The Blackpool Carers Centre provides a range of services to support and enhance the lives of unpaid carers of all ages throughout Blackpool and The Fylde Coast. They provide vital emotional and practical support for Adult Carers, Young Adult Carers (aged 16-25) and Young Carers from the age of 5!
Starting from Blackpool Tower, covering just over 450 miles, this 5 day route takes us through some glorious undulating countryside on route to the ferry from Portsmouth to Caen. Once ‘French side’, we cycle along quiet country lanes, through traditional market towns with views of the rolling green hills of Northern France. Get ready for a fantastic ride – the tarmac in France is superb, and cycling is the nation’s favourite sport, so don’t be surprised if the locals cheer you on!
Whether you are a regular cyclist or simply a novice, as long as you are willing to train hard, then this event is perfect for you.
The pièce de résistance is ultimately the spectacular view of the 324 metre Eiffel Tower, marking the rides overwhelming finish and certainly evoking a huge sense of achievement, not to mention those unforgettable memories. The days in the saddle are long but upon reaching Paris and celebrating our achievements in this fabulous capital, the saddle soreness soon wears off!
Dates and Prices
Date of Event
23-28 September 2019
6 Days (5 cycling)
Day 1 – Blackpool Tower to Stoke on Trent
Approximate cycling distance 166km (103 miles)
Your challenge begins with an early start, after registration, as you head south along the Fylde coast towards Lytham. We then continue east through Lea, before cycling southbound through some beautiful tranquil villages and country lanes. Taking on the best the Cheshire lanes have to offer, we continue south as we pedal through Tatton Park and alongside the intriguing Jodrell Bank. It’s a long cycling day through some of the most stunning countryside but upon reaching your hotel for the evening, in Stoke on Trent, you will feel great with what you have achieved and ready for a well earned rest!
Day 2 – Stoke on Trent to Woodstock
Approximate cycling distance 174km (108 miles)
After a hearty breakfast we head south towards Litchfield, passing quaint english villages along the way with plenty of stops scheduled throughout the day, to refuel and keep those energy levels to the optimum peak. Cycling through Drayton Basset, we continue south to the east of Birmingham and on towards Bishop’s Itchington, savouring the sights of stunning castles, tranquil countryside and fabulous architecture along the way. We continue our journey south towards Oxfordshire, where we will finish in the beautiful town of Woodstock, home to the Blenheim Palace. Here, we will take rest for the night but not before a hearty meal!
Day 3 – Woodstock to Portsmouth
Approximate cycling distance 156km (97 miles)
After a good nights rest and refuelling with breakfast, our epic journey continues. You will feel the effects of the previous two long days in the saddle when you first set off but you will be amazed just how quickly your body adjusts, as it becomes acquainted with task you’ve committed upon it! Continuing south we cycle with camaraderie and spirit through the lovely towns of Wallingford, Basingstoke and Winchester before arriving at our final destination for the day at Portsmouth. At this point, we embark the overnight ferry to Caen. You will be accommodated in comfortable ensuite cabins and will have lots of opportunity to relax and refuel.
Day 4 – Caen to Evreux
Approximate cycling distance 134km (83 miles)
After breakfast, we disembark the ferry in France near the town of Caen, remembering to ride on the right hand side of the road! We pedal our way along the coast to the east before heading south east through the stunning French countryside and rolling landscapes of Northern France. After a delicious Chapeau lunch we take on a few more miles, finishing with a beautiful ride into Evreux, capital city of the Eure in Normandy, best known for its two important monuments – the cathedral and the episcopal palace. This is our home for the evening to relax and recuperate.
Day 5 – Evreux to Eiffel Tower, Paris
Approximate cycling distance 108km (67 miles)
We leave the hotel on our final day of cycling, riding through the exquisite landscape that surrounds Evreux. We continue on our way riding through quiet quaint villages before reaching the outskirts of Paris where we will start to spot familiar sights and infamous landmarks of the Eiffel Tower and Arc de Triomphe. As we cycle through the sometimes crowded Parisian streets, with car horns sounding our arrival, we pedal up the Champs Elysees and on to our grand finish at the Eiffel Tower…a truly fitting end to a challenging journey!
Day 6 – Departure Day
After a leisurely breakfast, the event comes to an end. Your bikes will be safely transported back to the UK leaving you hassle free to continue with your onward arrangements, whether homeward bound or enjoying the romantic delights that Paris has to offer.
Chapeau Events reserves the right to change the route or itinerary for safety reasons should local conditions dictate.
• Full bike transport from route finish in Paris back to Blackpool– if required
• All accommodation
• All meals starting from lunch on day one to breakfast on day six
• Complete transport of luggage between hotels during the ride
• Full trip support including mechanics, first aid, drivers and full route support
• Water stops
• Celebration meal in Paris at the end of your ride.
• Personal transport to route start in Blackpool and from route finish in Paris
• A bicycle
• Personal travel insurance
• Drinks, personal items or entry to any optional tourist sites you may wish to visit.
• Remember to allow extra for drinks, snacks, souvenirs and other personal expenses.
• We strongly recommend you carry a credit card in case of personal emergency.
What can I expect from your accommodation?
Accommodation is in 3-4* hotels with the exception of day 3 as stated in the itinerary above. All accommodation is chosen for their proximity to our route. The hotels we choose are of a good standard with en-suite facilities, offering exceptional value for money; standards however may vary between accommodation. The price of this trip is based on two people sharing a room. If you are travelling on your own don’t worry, we will pair you up with somebody in a similar position. You can also opt for a single room, but this will incur a supplementary charge (£225 for 5 nights).
What food is included and does it cater for all diets?
Breakfast, lunch, and evening meal will be provided as part of the event package, starting with lunch on day 1 and finishing with breakfast on day 6. Evening meals and breakfasts will be provided at the hotels, apart from the evening of day 3 where due to timings and logistics this will be taken on the ferry. Lunches are provided by Chapeau Catering and are a generous buffet-style (hot and cold) with plenty of energy food to keep you going! In addition, we will provide refreshments at each cycle checkpoint of which there will be 2 each day, in addition to lunch of course and consisting of water, juices and high-energy snacks – 1 in the morning and 1 in the afternoon. Chapeau can cater for all special dietary requirements provided you let us know well in advance of the trip.
What’s unique about Chapeau…why should I choose you?
Our events are tailored to you…our team have physically driven and assessed every mile of the route to ensure the safest and best possible route for your challenge, so rest assured you are in the safest hands. All our routes are specifically tailored with you in mind.
How fit do I need to be?
This event is completely achievable for all levels of experience, whether you are a novice, intermediate or experienced cyclist, as long as you are committed to putting in the relevant training needed. Chapeau rates this event a difficulty level 6 out of 8, which we class as challenging. Your confidence, fitness and technical ability is crucial to enjoy this ride. You will be in the saddle for upward of 100 miles a day for 5 consecutive days, so you should ensure, as a minimum that you are comfortable riding a minimum of 80 miles in a day and have achieved this regularly before you leave for the trip.. The profile on some days will be undulating with occasional climbs, so you will need to include some hilly rides in your training, especially if you are not used to hilly terrain. Please contact us anytime if you would have any questions regarding training tips. We design our challenges so that everyone can go at their own pace; this is not a race. For further information regarding how we rate our challenges click here
Who will be there to support me during the event?
Your trip will be led by experienced Chapeau Events crew. Our crew are selected for their experience in cycling events around the world, their friendliness and approachability, sense of humour and ability to safely and effectively deal with any situation that arises. Our crew leaders are also trained in expedition first-aid. You are in very safe hands with the Chapeau Events crew.
The number of crew and support vehicles looking after you will depend on the final size of your group, but the team will be looking after every aspect of your trip whether that’s transporting your luggage, ensuring your route is well-marked, sorting out any mechanical problems or giving you a lift in our back vehicle – our “Love bus”. At Chapeau Events we pride ourselves on our high crew: cyclist ratio and believe it leads to greater trip enjoyment as well as excellent trip safety.
Will I be safe?
Your safety, and that of the rest of the group, is our highest priority. Our trips are designed and planned with safety in mind. Your crew will be equipped with emergency mobile phones, first-aid kits and other safety apparatus where necessary. They always have access to our 24-hour emergency back-up in the UK. Our leaders are responsible for safety on the trip, and will make any changes to the itinerary they deem necessary should local conditions dictate. Pre-trip administration – such as compulsory medical questionnaires and travel insurance – is all done with your safety in mind.
What happens to my luggage each day?
Our support vehicles are with the group all of the time. All luggage and spares will be carried in them as we travel to each destination. On reaching our hotels, at the end of each day, you will hand over your bike for safe overnight keeping and collect your luggage. Each morning, you will hand over your luggage and collect your bike. Obviously space is limited and hard-sided luggage is not suitable, so it is essential that your kit is packed in a soft sailing bag, rucksack or expedition kitbag, weighing up to 15kg max.
What insurance will I require?
It is a requirement of entry that you have adequate insurance to cover your participation on the event. We will require a copy of valid insurance before travel. We also recommend that you apply for a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC), as the NHS will cover most medical care when travelling in Europe. You can apply for an EHIC at your local post office or online.
Is travel, to start of route in Blackpool and from end of route in Paris, included?
No…you are responsible for your own travel arrangements to the start of the event in Blackpool and return travel from Paris back to UK. Chapeau will, however ensure your bike is safely transported from the event finish back to the UK if required, allowing you the freedom for additional time in Paris.
Chapeau events will of course provide advice on best travel options and further accommodation requirements should you require.
Will I receive further information?
Yes…a full detailed information pack will be issued following registration and before you set off for your event. In addition, pre-event support is always available, simply email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with your questions.