Road-biking, mountain-biking or a simple bike trip around the Lake - cyclists love Talloires! The village now has its own bike-cafe, bASECAMP, where you can rent a range of bikes (all sorts, including electric). Their Anglo-French team also do repairs and can advise on local routes.
Le Ban de la Roche is 100% set up for cyclists, with its own fully-equipped bike workshop in the basement. The workshop has direct external lockable access. There is plenty of space to store bikes, plus a repair stand, track pump and a selection of tools, oil and lube that you are welcome to use.
We can even recommend an excellent local sports massage therapist, Charlotte Hasslacher, to help with any aches and pains!
Mark is a keen cyclist and is happy to advise on all aspects of biking in this area.
Talloires is a mecca for road bike enthusiasts, surrounded as it is by mountains, and within a day of a plethora of legendary climbs accessible direct from the house. Mark has listed some of his favourites, but there are plenty more! For Tour-de-Francophiles, the number in parentheses is how many times it has been included on the Tour.
Lake Annecy Loop (40km has been in an ITT stage a few times - winning times ~ 48 mins!): this is family-friendly as it’s mostly flat, and mostly bike path. However, there is a portion of a few km between Talloires and Doussard where a bike path has not yet been added, so you need to share with the main road, which is very busy in the summer.
Col de la Forclaz (2). This is a close, steep (final couple of km are 10 and 11%!) route: from Talloires simply go uphill til you get there, and takes 45-60 min to get up, depending on ability! Then either turn round and come back, or make a loop by continuing down to Le Villard and coming straight back to Talloires or, for a slightly longer loop, go round the lake first.
Col de Tamié (3):head to Faverges, then gently climb up past the beautiful Abbaye Notre Dame de Tamié before reaching the Col de Tamié. Descend quite steeply then head for Allondaz and back to the valley floor. There’s then a bike path via Ugine to Doussard, then head to Talloies
Col de Semnoz (3): this is beautiful but quite long - takes me a couple of hours to get to the top! I usually go from Talloires to Annecy, then gradually (18km) ride up to the top of Semnoz, then back down the other side via col de Lechaux to Saint Jorioz, then back to Talloires via the Doussard end of the lake.
Col de la Croix Fry (4): this is a beautiful climb, and uber-smooth road as it was resurfaced for when the Tour de France came past in 2018. From Talloires, go over the Col de Bluffy, then to Thones, and up to the Col de la Croix Fry, then descend down through the ski resort of La Clusaz, back to Thones then either return over the Col de Bluffy, or continue slightly further, then head to Menthon Saint Bernard, then back to Talloires. Near the top, make sure you stop at Lo Garajo: beautiful cheese and meat platters with fab wines to sample, and great coffee and teas.
Col de Marais: an approx 50km circuit with a couple of relatively gentle cols. From Talloires, head along the lake and on the bike path to Faverges, then head to Saint-Feréol and via Serreval to Col de Marais, then straight, fast descend to Thones, the via col de Bluffy back to Talloires
Cormet de Roselend (6): this is an all-dayer and quite high, so summer only. It’s a nice ride to Albertville, mostly on bike path, then a long climb via Beaufort to the Cormet de Roselend col. If you have time (and energy!), you can descend stunningly to Bourg-Saint-Maurice, then eventually back to Talloires...if you do all that in a day, well done!
And if you still have energy, you could look up the little known Col de l’Arpettaz (0), Col de la Colombiere (22), Col des Aravis (40) and Plateau des Glieres (1).
For more cycling tips in the area, try these resources:
- https://www.hautesavoiexperience.fr/decouvrir/circuits-a-velo#0: French only!
There are some excellent routes accessible from the house. Most tend to be steepish, so best when dry.
- Col de la Forclaz: from Talloires go up on the road to Col de la Forclaz. Enjoy the view then there are two variants:
- From the col (near Edelweiss restaurant) there is a path directly under a hang glider take off ramp. You’ll need to walk your bike for the first bit, then you can ride all the way down to Verthier, then back to Talloires along the lake
- Descend back down the road (towards Talloires), for around 200m. You’ll see a footpath sign maked “Talloires”, via a gap in the roadside barrier. You’ll need to walk your bike for the frist bit then you can ride. There are different routes to get to Talloires but most of it is possible via paths but be careful - some is steep! I usually finish via the path going close to the Cascade d’Angon (waterfall), which then let’s you join, satisfyingly, the road above the house.
- Semnoz: : the Semnoz is riddled with mountain bike tracks of all levels of ability. Either ride there or, in the summer there is a bus that leaves from Annecy, which is for mountain bikers. If take you to the top, and you can then choose your route down, then back to Talloires!
Talloires is only 40 minutes from the ski resort of La Clusaz, which has fabulous facilities for mountain-bikers in Summer.