VéloGuide – Top Ten

Top ten tips for people coming to a VéloVacations Provence Camp:

1 – Bring your own seat

If you are renting a bike from us bring your own seat.  “My hoo ha hurts,” I heard one female client say to another.  I can adjust angle, height, fore and aft but nothing is like your own saddle.

2 – Provence is hilly

There are multiple mountain ranges around Malaucene.  A 100k ride can feel much longer.  Any ride that goes over the Ventoux feels really long.  Going up the Ventoux in anything under 2 hours is going to be very hard for you.

3 – Yes, you can drink the tap water 

4 – No, you cannot get a coffee to go

The French would think you are from Mars if you ask and there is no cup to put it in.

5 – Portions and drinks are small

Just live with the fact that your 1664 is going to come in a 25cl bottle.  Don’t order two at once.  Just drink your beer slowly.

6 – Say hello, please, and thank you

Learning to say these things in French is not difficult.  Use them when you enter and exit a shop.  If you don’t you will be thought to be rude, a thief, or both.

7 – Chamois

No need to each breakfast in chamois.  Or do anything else but cycling, for that matter, in chamois.  Chamois is your friend on the bike but your enemy off.

8 – Do not pass someone on the right

Should not have to explain this one.

9 – Do not stop in the middle of the street

You might be on vacation but the white-van-man driver is not and will run you down. Pull off the road and take your picture of the lovely chateau.

10 – Prepare to be photographed

When climbing the Ventoux there are photographers near the top who will snap your pic then hand you a little slip of paper with their website where you can go and find yourself in full climbing glory.  Normally they are within 3k of the summit and set up a sign or roadside banners to alert you of their presence.  Wipe the snot off your face, zip up that jersey, compose yourself so you can get a PRO picture like this.

Do not do this…

Or this…

Ok, one more —

11 – Tip your guides

We have taken care of you, your bikes, and your rides.  A little something for the effort is greatly appreciated.


I have worked as a cycling guide in France for the past 10 years for VéloSport Vacations.  We lead clients through France watching the Tour de France, riding in Provence, or climbing the Alpes and Pyrenees.  Each trip I learn something.  This summer I’ll be based in Malaucene at the foot of Mt. Ventoux.



3 Responses to “VéloGuide – Top Ten”

  1. Mike says:

    What type of bars are you running? The ones in the pick seem to have a nice flat top with a more traditional bend.

  2. john says:

    Zipp Service Course SL. Short shallow bend, 42cm, nice round shape.

  3. Fun Run Robbie says:

    When is Veloguide going to come to Scotland? , a place where hills feel like mountains.

    I do hope both the 2 Johns enjoy their european cycling time.



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