Beginning on July 1st, the 109th edition of the Tour de France kicks off in Copenhagen for 2022, and millions are expected to flock to the biggest cycling event in the world. With racers taking on 6 flat, 7 hilly and 6 mountain stages along with 5 summit finishes, we’re feeling tired just thinking about it. If you (like us) would prefer to watch the action from the sidelines, heading back to your holiday home for a dip in the pool or an afternoon cocktail, then you’ve come to the right place. Here are our top picks for Tour de France luxury villas and chateaux along the route.
Day 4: Dunkirk to Calais
Destination: Chateau Belle Vie
Built in the 1880s, this staggering chateau was built by a wealthy family looking to entertain in style – are you ready to do the same? Sleeping a large group of up to 26 guests across 12 bedrooms, it also boasts a grand dining room for your royal feast. Easily accessible from the UK via ferry, this chateau is primed for seeing cyclists off in Dunkirk. Then, travel to Calais to meet them at the end of day 4.
Don’t miss the chance to also visit the Opal Coast beaches, local markets and nearby village – it resembles something straight out of a fairytale.
Day 7: Binche to Longwy
Destination: Chateau Alois
An hour from Belgium’s start site of Binche sits Chateau Alois. Ready to hold 35 eager Tour de France fanatics, this charming home comes with its very own Finnish sauna – perfect for enjoying after your early start. Just a two-minute drive away, you’ll find a Michelin-starred restaurant. Prefer to stay home? Choose the open-fire dining room and live out any medieval fantasies from the comfort of this home away from home.
Day 8: Dole to Lausanne
Destination: Maison du Doubs
Equipped with all the tech gadgets that mini cyclists may need to stay entertained, Maison du Doubs is located around 40 minutes from Dole – the day 8 kick-off site. Located in a peaceful village that boasts just 80 inhabitants, this home provides the perfect respite for your family after an exciting morning.
If you’re looking to get active yourself, canoes and kayaks are available for rental on the River Doubs, while various walking and cycling routes are also easily accessible no matter your age. Then, explore the various popular restaurants nearby, take a class at the local cookery school, or hire a private chef to cater your stay; whichever you choose, you’re sure to eat well on this leg of the tour.
Day 15: Rodez to Carcassonne
Destination: Mas De Beauce
Step back in time to a period before the Tour de France even begun at 14th century villa Mas De Beauce. Donkeys will be among your friends at this beautiful stone-walled Midi-Pyrénées residence, while a nearby farmer’s market continues the idyllic feel – you’ll find fresh herbs, spices, baskets and pottery here along with ample local produce.
Well-positioned with numerous walking and cycling options down the quiet country lanes, it’s also just 40 minutes from day 15’s Rodez starting point. Stick around until day 19 and end destination Cahors is around 90 minutes away by car.
Day 19: Castelnau-Magnoac to Cahors
Destination: Maison Malbec
This beautifully renovated Maison is owned by the former president of one of jewellery’s most famous brands. During your stay, take a tour of his private winery – and try some of this home’s namesake Malbec wine. When you’re not tied up in tastings, playing at the poker table or relaxing on a river cruise, venture to day 19’s finish site in nearby Cahors.
If you’re a party of foodies, a visit to the Cahors market on Wednesday and Saturday mornings is a must. Sample local cheese, truffles and even foie gras before wandering the historic town. Check out our guide for the best food festivals in France and extend your stay further.
Day 21: Paris La Défense Arena to Paris (Champs-Élysées)
Destination: Chateau Royal
A home worthy of race winners, Chateau Royal is the ultimate option for large groups of up to 30. Elegantly designed in the 19th century, it’s located 35km outside of Paris, allowing you to track the final Tour de France day from start to finish.
Coming with its very own butler, concierge and housekeeping service plus daily breakfast, this staggering chateau allows you to experience something few get the chance to do: living like royalty. It’s surrounded by breathtaking forest views and private parklands, boasting an entirely renovated interior that still pays respect to heritage design – just take the reception room, boasting a grand fireplace along with a Sonos sound system.
So there you have it: our top Tour de France luxury villas and chateaux. Explore the full range of villas in France and be sure to read our France travel guide before you go. It covers everything you’ll need to know about the country, exploring regions, essential phrases, where to eat and things to do – you really can’t go wrong.