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Vuelta a España
King of the Mountains Challenge


 
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THE TOP 50 COLS
... you have to ride:


Duration
8 days / 7 nights

2016 Trip dates
August 28 › September 4

Start location
Bilbao Airport

Ending location
Toulouse Airport

Accommodations
5 nights in 4-star
2 nights in 3-star

Rental Bikes Available
Click here for more details

Price per person (USD)
$3,895 (double occupancy)
Single supplement: $600

Non-riders
$3,695 (double occupancy)
Single supplement: $600

book this trip!

Climb the quintessential "puertos", witness 3 critical mountain stages including the summit finish on the Col d'Aubisque in France, ride the course, and meet the pros and celebrities in the most accessible of all the Grand Tours.

Join us for the key week of the 2016 Vuelta a España! Hugely popular with avid cyclists, our King of the Mountains Challenge combines prime race viewing with a full schedule of challenging Spanish and French routes. 

We'll be at the Summit Finishes on Lagos de Covadonga and the Peña Cabarga to witness the race action on these grueling climbs. We'll also enjoy the finish of the Queen Stage on the Col d'Aubisque.

The Rider's Trip:
Our trip is not just about watching the Vuelta. We also have a full program of challenging daily rides that will give you the opportunity to ride many of the legendary climbs in Cantabria, Asturias and in the French Pyrenees!

Climb the Tourmalet and the Aubisque - the 2 most famous climbs in the Pyrenees, and Lagos de Covadonga - possibly the most spectacular climb in Europe with it's incredible views of the Atlantic Ocean and the Picos de Europa mountain range.

Click here to view the complete list of famous climbs on this trip.

In true Thomson style we'll do a substantial bit of riding during the trip - 766km (476 miles) with 17,837m (58,520 ft) of elevation gain over the 7 days.

Ready to reach new heights? Take the King of the Mountains Challenge and discover why no one does the Vuelta like Thomson!

Trip Highlights

  • Witness the critical stages of the final week of the VUELTA:
    • Stage 10 - Lagos de Covadonga SUMMIT FINISH
    • Stage 11 - Peña Cabarga SUMMIT FINISH
    • Stage 14 - Col d'Aubisque SUMMIT FINISH
  • Ride key segments of the Vuelta a España route just hours before the peloton
  • Climb the Tourmalet and the Aubisque - 2 of the most famous climbs in the Pyrenees
  • Spectacular ride on Day 3 through the Picos de Europa Mountain Range
  • 2 days of riding in the French Pyrenees

Non-Riders: Join our Spectator Trip!

If you have a partner or child, who does not ride, but would like to join you on this trip....we have a fantastic opportunity for them to come along and join in our Spectator Trip.

Our Spectator Trip specifically caters to non-riders and offers many organized activities for them to enjoy the energy of La Vuelta a España without riding a bike. Your non-rider partner/child will be able to stay in the same hotel with you, but have the option of taking part in the many special off-the-bike activities we have planned. The Spectator trip includes VIP viewings, VIP access to the riders, teams and celebrities, special visits, cultural activities and more.

For full details of our Spectator Trip - click here

Meet the PROS - Movistar Team

In addition to countless photo and autograph opportunities with Vuelta a Espana celebrities and riders, this year we have a special treat. MOVISTAR TEAM has invited us to follow the team throughout the trip. See the inner workings of the MOVISTAR TEAM and meet top contenders: the phenomenal Colombian climber, Nairo Quintana, and the sensational all-round Spaniard, Alexandro Valverde.

Enjoy privileged access to the stars of the Movistar Team!

The Thomson Rides

Day Route Summary Hotel Location
Ride Distance
Elevation Gain
1

Cangas de Onis › Collada de MoandiSan Martin de Bada › Cangas de Onis

Cangas
4-star
55km
34 miles
1,163m
3,816 ft
2

Cangas de Onis › Collado de ZardonAlto del TornoAlto del MazucoLagos de Covadonga

LIVE RACE VIEWING - Stage 10
Summit Finish - Lagos de Covadonga

Lagos de Covadonga › Cangas de Onis

Cangas
4-star
132km
82 miles

2,969m
9,741 ft

3

Cangas de Onis › Puerto del Ponton Puerto de PanderuedasPuerto de Pandetrave Puerto de San Glorio › La Hermida

La Hermida
4-star
135km
84 miles
3,395m
11,138 ft
4

La Hermida › Collado de HozCollado de OzalbaCollado de CarmonaPeña Cabarga

LIVE RACE VIEWING - Stage 11
Summit Finish - Peña Cabarga

Van Transfer to Solares after the race

Solares
4-star
117km
73 miles
2,641m
8,665 ft
5

Solares › Puerto de Alisas Puerto de la Sia Puerto de Lunada › Solares

Solares
4-star
104km
65 miles
2,602m
8,537 ft
6

AM: Transfer to Lourdes
PM: Lourdes › Ste Marie de Campan › Col du Tourmalet › Lourdes

Lourdes
3-star

103km
64 miles
2,383m
7,818 ft
7

Lourdes › Col d’Aubisque

LIVE RACE VIEWING - Stage 14
Summit Finish - Col d'Aubisque

Col d’Aubisque › Col de Soulor › Lourdes

Lourdes
3-star
120km
75 miles

2,684m
8,806 ft

8

END OF TRIP: Transfer to Toulouse Airport

 

TOTAL:

766km
476 miles

17,837m
58,520 ft


Climb these Famous Spanish "puertos" & French "cols"...

Climb many of the legendary puertos of the Vuelta a España! Here's the list of the major puertos included in our itinerary - as well as a few famous French "cols"!

Click on the icon to view the elevation profile of each climb.

Climb
Elev. Gain
Average
Grade
Length
Profile
Col du Tourmalet
1268m - 4160ft
7.4%
17.2km - 10.7 miles
Lagos de Covadonga
1056m - 3465ft
7.4%
14.2km - 8.8 miles
Col d'Aubisque
1190m - 3904ft
7.2%
16.6km - 10.3 miles
Puerto de la Sia
1084m - 3556ft
5.2%
21km - 13 miles
Peña Cabarga
561m - 1841ft
9.4%
6km - 3.7 miles
Puerto del Ponton
1242m - 4075ft
2.7%
45.7km - 28.4 miles
Puerto de Pandetrave
635m - 2083ft
6.4%
10km - 6.2 miles
Collada de Moandi
416m - 1365ft
7.7%
5.4km - 3.4 miles
Alto del Torno
652m - 2139ft
4.6%
14.1km - 8.8 miles
Puerto de Alisas
614m - 2014ft
4.9%
12.6km - 7.8 miles
Collado de Hoz
557m - 1827ft
5.2%
10.7km - 6.6 miles
Alto El Mazuco
443m - 1453ft
6.2%
7.2km - 4.5 miles
Puerto de Lunada
532m - 1745ft
5.3%
10km - 6.2 miles
Collado de Carmona
452m - 1483ft
4.2%
10.8km - 6.7 miles
Collado de Ozalba
348m - 1142ft
5.3%
6.6km - 4.1 miles
Puerto de San Glorio
389m - 1276ft
4.3%
9km - 5.6 miles
Puerto de Panderuedas
208m - 682ft
4.8%
4.3km - 2.7 miles
Col de Soulor
114m - 374ft
4.4%
2.6km - 1.6 miles


Our Race-Viewing Hospitality Areas

Enjoy your afternoon on the mountainside in the comfort and safety of our Race-Viewing Hospitality Areas:

  • Prime viewing spots - strategically placed viewing locations close to the summits of the climbs
  • Large marquis tents
  • Catered lunch and refrigerator stocked with cool drinks. Hot drinks in case of cold weather!
  • LIVE Satellite TV race coverage in English: This is a Thomson specialty. No other Tour operator has pulled off this feat on the mountain!

Get close to the action on the key climbs!

The Top Support

Quite simply, we provide the best support in the industry - guaranteed!

  • Staff to client ratio of 1:4
  • The best staff in the industry - check out our testimonial page...!!!
  • Small Ride-groups - we split the overall group into ride-groups of approximately 10 riders. This allows us to have riders of similar ability within the same ride-group and provides a far superior cycling experience with full support but less waiting
  • 1 TBT experienced ride leader and 1 SAG van per ride-group
  • Experienced Mechanic
  • Top-of-the-line Bianchi Rental bikes

What's Included

  • 8 days / 7 nights fully accompanied trip
  • All accommodations
  • Free access to our Race-Viewing Hospitality Areas on Stages 10, 11 & 14
  • All breakfasts
  • All but 2 dinners
  • 4 lunches
  • Pick-up at Bilbao Airport
  • Drop-off at Toulouse Airport
  • All ground transportation
  • All luggage transfer
  • Services of our expert guides
  • Experienced mechanic
  • Support vehicles
  • Thomson Bike Tours maps, cue sheets and elevation profiles

What's Not Included

  • Airfare
  • Travel and personal insurance
  • Additional hotel expenses i.e. phone charges, mini-bar, gratuities

Bike Rental

The Bianchi Infinito CV is available for rent on all our trips. Click here for full details of our rental bike program.