2023 Tour de France Guide
Welcome to our guide for the 2023 Tour de France. Here we take you through all the essentials for this great spectacle to get you prepared. As in previous years, we include a summary of each of the stages in an easy-to-read table, the team listing, some history of past winners of the event, plus lots more.
The route details for the 2023 Tour de France were announced on 27 October 2022. We have added all the information we have at present about the 2023 Tour de France. As more information is released we will add it to the page to keep you up to date on everything you need to know about the event.
A Cycling holiday in France
If you are planning your own cycling holiday to watch the Tour de France be sure to check out the rest of our website. We have a wealth of information about cycling in France to help you plan your own holiday. Our Visiting France page is a great place to start. We also offer a travel advisory service where you can leave the hard work to us or simply spend some time having a chat about what you want to do.
The 2023 Tour de France by numbers
Start date: Saturday 1 July 2023
Start location: Bilbao
Number of stages: 21
Total distance: 3 404 km / 2 127 miles
Finish date: 23 July 2023
Finish location: Paris
Longest stage: Stage 2 at 209 km / 131 miles
Shortest stage: Stage 21 at 115 km / 72 miles (excludes time trial stages)
Greatest elevation gain:
Time trial stages: Stage 22
Flat stages: 6
Hilly stages: 6
Mountain stages: 8
Rest days: 2 (Monday 10 July and Monday 17 July)
Summit finishes: 4
Highest road: 2 304 meters / 7 672 feet (Col de la Loze)
Categorized climbs: (HC, Cat 1 and Cat 2)
Number of teams: 22
Number of riders: 176
Total prize money: €2.3M
Winner prize money: €500K
Tour de France 2023 teams
The full list of teams for the 2023 Tour de France has been announced and the list below includes all the teams for this years race.
|Astana Qazaqstan Team||Kazakstan||Wilier|
|EF Education-EasyPost||United States||Cannondale|
|Groupama – FDJ||France||Lapierre|
|INEOS Grenadiers||Great Britain||Pinarello|
|Intermarch Circus Wanty||Belgium||Cube|
|Israel Premier Tech||Israel||Factor|
|Team Arkea Samsic||France||Bianchi|
|Team Jayco Alula||Australia||Giant|
|Trek Segafredo||United States||Trek|
|UAE Team Emirates||United Arab Emirates||Colnago|
|Uno X Pro Cycling Team||Norway||Dare|
Overview of the 2023 Tour de France
The Tour de France turns 120 in 2023 and heads to the Basque Country in Spain to start the 110th edition of this great race. Mountains are a key theme with the race visiting all 5 of France’s mountain ranges over the 21 stages, it will definitely be a race for the climbers. The second last stage will definitely test weary legs with no less than 5 categorized climbs to conquer before the traditional finish in Paris the following day. Perhaps the race will be decided in this last grueling mountain stage, we will have to wait and see.
Flat Stages for the Sprinters
There are 6 flat stages in this edition of the Tour de France. It will be a tough race for the sprinters as they will have to get up and over all the mountains within the allowed time in order to contest the sprint stages. There is talk of a return by Mark Cavendish to see if he can beat the record of 34 stage wins he currently holds jointly with Eddie Merkx.
Individual Time Trials
This year’s race only includes 22km of time trialing on stage 16 in the Haute Savoir region. While it may only be short there are two climbs to get up and over keeping with the theme of mountains for this year’s event.
The overarching theme of the 2023 Tour de France is definitely mountains and it will be a race for the pure climbers. The race hits the Pyrenees on stages 5 and 6 so we will definitely get a look early on as to who is climbing well and who is not. Col du Tourmalet will feature once again this year before the riders drop down and head to the valley before the final climb and first summit finish at Cauteret-Cambasque.
After a couple of gentler stages, the riders will once again hit the mountains on stage 9 in the Massif Central. The stage finishes on the legendary Puy de Dôme which has not been used since 1988. This is the second summit finish for the race. Puy de Dôme has seen some epic battles play out in the history of the race. Most notably in 1964, when Raymond Poulidor and Jacques Anquetil went head to head up the mountain on stage 20. Anquetil held a 56-second lead, and the yellow jersey, going into the stage and Poulidor had planned to attack him on the climb. The two were neck and neck from the bottom before Poulidor finally broke loose with 500m to go. While Poulidor won the stage he did not manage to gain the 56 seconds required, falling short by a mere 14 seconds.
The race returns to the mountains on Bastille Day, Frances national day, with the third summit finish on the Grand Colombier in the Jura on stage 13. This marks the start of a grueling 5 stages in the mountains. Thankfully the riders have the second rest day in the middle of this block to get some rest before the final week. The riders move to the French Alps on stage 14 where they will tackle the highest climb in this year’s race, the Col de la Loze at 2,304m on stage 17, the final stage in the Alps.
Riders get the chance for some easier days on stages 18 and 19 before tackling stage 20 in the Vosges mountains. There are bound to be many tired legs and it will be interesting to see how this all plays out. Will the stage decide the final winner? How will the sprinters fare? Only time will tell.
For more information on the 2023 Tour route on the official Tour de France, site click here.
2023 Tour de France route, stage by stage
In the table below we have included a summary of each stage to help keep you up to date with when and where each stage is. As more information about each stage becomes available we will add it so check back. If you would like some more information about all the categorized climbs of the 2023 Tour de France then head over to our other page which just focuses on that aspect.
How to watch the 2023 Tour de France
There are two ways of watching the Tour de France. Firstly you can head to France and watch the action live by the side of the road or secondly, watch the race on one of the many TV stations or online streaming services on offer. If you are planning to be in France you can choose one of the many tour companies that are offering trips to the 2023 Tour de France or choose to do your own thing.
2023 Tour de France Tour Companies
There are plenty of cycle tour companies that offer trips to watch the Tour de France if you would like someone to take care of everything for you. The Tour de France officially endorses seven different tour companies, three premium companies, and three official operators. These companies are given access to areas that are off-limits to the general public including the start area, hospitality, and finish areas. You will have the opportunity to ride on the course where the general public will not and meet the riders before the start of the stage. These companies have access to the accommodation through the organizers which means you will not have as far to drive at the start and end of the days as well as parking in restricted areas.
There are also plenty of other tour companies that offer holidays to follow the Tour de France. While these companies are unlikely to have the same access levels as the official tour companies you will still enjoy everything the Tour de France has to offer.
We have compiled a list of both the official Tour de France tour operators and the non-official operators. You can click on the name of the company to head to their website and see what is on offer. Whether you want a holiday just watching the race with no riding or lots of riding every day you will find a trip that is right for you.
Official tour companies of the 2023 Tour de France
The Tour de France partners with some tour companies each year to offer a range of options to come and see the race. The affiliated companies are classed as either premium or official. Both groups are able to access areas that general tour companies and the general public are unable to. Premium companies are able to access VIP areas in addition to the areas that the official companies can access.
The companies listed below are the official premium operators of the Tour de France:
Tompson bike tours – offering 4 different trips covering different sections of the race. From 6 to 10 days in duration.
Custom Getaways – offering 10 different options between 1 and 7 days in length. Options cover different stages of the race.
Sports Tours International – choose from 15 different options ranging from a single stage to 7 days. Tour de France official operators
The companies listed below are the official operators of the Tour de France:
Discover France – choose from 12 options ranging from single stages to 6 days. Options for start or finish line access or a VIP helicopter flight
mummu cycling – offering 7 different trips for 2023 ranging from 3 to 8 days in length. Some trips are hosted by ex-pro Stuart O’Grady.
Trek Travel – offering 5 different 2023 trips ranging from 1 to 10 days. Tour prices include the hire of a premium Trek bike. Non-official operators
The companies listed below all offer trips to watch the Tour de France but are not official partners of the race.
Bike Style Tours – 2023 tours not released
Escape Adventures – 2023 tours not released
Ride Holidays New Zealand – 2023 not released
Ride International Tours – offering a 10-day trip covering the final 10 days of the 2023 Tour de France.
Velo Tours – for 2023 choose from a Pyrenees or French Alps tour, both are 10 days in length.
Watching the Tour de France live
For any cycling fan, cheering the riders at the side of the road at the Tour de France is something we highly recommend. It is true that you stand at the side of the road for hours only to watch the riders flash past in a matter of minutes, but it is so much more than that. The mountain stages are generally the most popular and it is not unheard of to have hundreds of thousands of spectators line the road as it twists and turns up the steep gradients. We have an article dedicated to watching the Tour de France in person to get you up to speed.
Watching the Tour de France on TV
If you are traveling or not quite sure how to watch the Tour de France on TV we have got you covered. Head over to our How to Watch the 2023 Tour de France to see who is broadcasting it in your country.
Tour de France basics
If you are a newcomer to the Tour de France and cycle races in general you may not be aware of many of the terms used while you watching the race. To help we have put together some information so you better understand everything that is going on.
The Tour de France jerseys
There are four different competitions within the Tour de France the overall winner (yellow jersey), best sprinter (green jersey), best mountain climber (polka dot jersey), and the best youngest rider (white jersey). It is possible for a rider to win more than one jersey in a single race. In the 2022 edition of the race, Jonas Vingegaard won the Yellow and Polka Dot jerseys while Mark Cavendish won Green Jersey and Tadej Pogacar won the White jersey. We will explain each of these in turn below.
1. Yellow Jersey – this is the jersey everyone wants to win and is the overall winner of the Tour de France. The yellow jersey is awarded to the rider with the shortest overall time when all the stage times are added up. Riders can also be awarded bonus seconds for finishing in the top 3 of a stage where they are awarded 10, 6, or 4 seconds bonus for finishing 1st, 2nd, or 3rd.
2. Green jersey – this jersey is won based on an accumulation of points awarded to riders through intermediate sprint points during the stage and at the finish line. The first 15 riders are awarded points which vary based on the type of stage. For example, on a flat stage, the first over the line is awarded 50 points while on a mountain stage only 20 points are awarded for first place. This jersey rewards rider consistency and is awarded to a rider who can sprint well but also gain intermediate points.
3. Polka Dot jersey – this jersey is awarded based on the accumulation of points awarded at the top of climbs. The harder the climb the more points are on offer for the win. This jersey is suited to those riders who are good climbers.
4. White jersey – only riders under the age of 26 are eligible for this jersey and it is awarded to the rider with the shortest overall time in this category.
The A-Z of French cycling terms
While watching the Tour de France you will quite often see French language terms used either by commentators or on the screen. We have put together a list of some of the more common French cycling terms with their English translation so you know what they mean.
Arrière du Peloton – the rear of the main group of riders
Arrivée – Stage finish
Bonification – Bonus seconds
Chrono – time trial
Classement – classification or rank
Départ – Stage start
Director Sportif – the team director who sits in the following car and manages their riders
Domestique – these riders work for the team leaders and make sure they are looked after
Étape – stage
Étape de plaine – flat stage
Étape de accidentées – hilly stage
Étape de montagne – mountain stage
Flamme rouge – the red flag that designates 1km left to the finish
Grand Départ – First stage start
Grimpeur – a rider who is considered a natural climber
Hors catégorie – the hardest of mountain climbs, “beyond categorisation”.
Lantern rouge – the person in last position in the race
Maillot Jaune – Yellow Jersey
Maillot Vert – Green Jersey
Maillot Blanc À pois rouges – Polka dot jersey
Maillot Blanc – White Jersey
Massif – a mountain range
Musette – the bag that riders are handed at feed zones
Palmarés – a rider’s career achievements
Pavé – cobbled streets and roads. Made famous by the Paris Roubaix cycling race
Peloton – the main bunch of riders
Puncheur – riders who are good a rolling terrain and short steep hill climbs
Rouleur – a rider who is great on the flatter roads but not so good once it gets steeper
Soigneur – team helpers who look after the riders both during and after the race
Tete de la course – head of the race
A little bit of Tour de France History
The Tour de France first ran in 1903 and apart from a break during WW1 and WW2 has run every year since. 2023 is the 110th edition of the race. Over the years there have been some great records created and we list some of them below.
Most number of Tour de France wins – 5 Jacques Anquetil, Eddy Merckx, Bernard Hinault, and Miguel Indurain.
Most times in the yellow jersey – 111 Eddy Merckx
The greatest number of stage wins – 34 Eddy Merckx and Mark Cavendish
The greatest number of stages won in a single tour – 8 Charles Péllssier
The greatest number of podiums – 8 Raymond Poulidor
Most Tour de Frances ridden – 18 Sylvain Chavanel
Most Green Jerseys – 7 Peter Sagan
Most Polka Dot Jerseys – 7 Richard Virenque
Most White Jerseys – 3 Jan Ullrich and Andy Schleck