A huge playground of world-class, natural, summit-to-sea singletrack awaits you here at the Southern extreme of the French Alps. This is Trans-Provence country, this is limitless year-round MTB adventure, this is Sospel.
From 100% free trail information to great value luxurious accommodation, Ride Sospel is designed to help you put together the perfect DIY mountain biking trip in our part of the world.
Sospel’s huge natural trail network is a goldmine, but a complex one… no stress! Make the most of your stay and guide yourself (with the seamless integration of Cool Bus trail shuttles) through all of the best stuff in the area using our carefully devised system of 11 trailheads and over 30 generally-descending “Enduro” itineraries, covering a total of over 25000 vertical metres of descent.
Comprehensive information for each of the ride itineraries is made available in the following FREE, downloadable bundle:
- PDF of the overview map;
- Detailed individual navigation maps (profiles, stats and descriptions);
- GPX file for each itinerary.
To receive a download link for all of our trail information please enter your details below.
The 30+ ride itineraries that we have devised are designed to be used with shuttles. Not because we’re against pedalling, but because we want you to get a lot of riding done. No matter how fit you are, there’s no getting away from the fact that pedalling up big mountains consumes vast parts of a day. Also, don’t forget that most of our itineraries contain at least a small amount of uphill somewhere within the ride itself and many of the descents are physical so there’s not much chance of “feeling lazy”. Shuttle assistance simply enables you to make the most of your stay and ride as many trails as possible in and around Sospel.
We strongly recommend local provider Cool Bus, for both airport transfers and trailhead shuttles. Not only are they one of the most respected operations in the transfer business, they’re also the only company to have a dedicated set-up in Sospel. They also know the road and trail network here like the back of their hand and even helped build some of the tracks you’ll ride.
Be sure to contact Bryan (email@example.com) to discuss your trail shuttle and of course airport transfer requirements well in advance of your trip.
If you want to stay in Sospel and relax, eat and sleep in the best MTB-specific accommodation in the Maritime Alps, then look no further.
Villa Casoni opened in September 2017 and is the result of a mission to satisfy a specific requirement: decent, mountain biker friendly accommodation in Trans-Provence country, something which was previously very difficult to find.
The building was fully renovated in 2017 and features everything that a group of riders might require for a comfortable, hassle-free DIY mountain biking trip in the Southern French Alps.
- 4 spacious bedrooms (sleeps 7-8 comfortably);
- 2 modern bathrooms (2 showers and 1 bath);
- huge open-plan kitchen / dining / living area;
- big terrace with panoramic view & large table for outdoor dining;
- 10m swimming pool;
- massive closed garage for secure bike storage;
- bike workshop & cleaning facilities.
If you’d like to book a stay at Villa Casoni…
Don’t have an AirBnB account? Email us: firstname.lastname@example.org
To book your shuttles, contact Cool Bus.
Sospel is a small medieval town, nestled in the far South-East corner of France, just one mountain ridge inland from the Mediterranean Sea. We love the town and surrounding area primarily for the mountain biking, but there is plenty more to see and do.
SIGHTSEEING & OTHER ACTIVITIES
The town itself originated as an overnight stop on the ancient royal road from Nice to Turin and is steeped in history. Site seers won’t be short of things to look at, including the Cathédrale St-Michel – the largest cathedral in the Maritime Alps – which was gifted to the town in gratitude to it’s loyalty to the banished pope in Avignon. Hidden in the hills adjoining the town, are also some vast 20th century Maginot Line fortifications, which serve as a reminder of the conflicts that were played out in this part of the world.
Non mountain bikers who are keen to explore beyond the town can easily get out into nature and enjoy the aforementioned trail network on foot. A popular hike, which you can enjoy year-round, is the route along the Sentier Botanique to Italy for coffee or lunch. In Summer, as well as the extensive hiking possibilities, there are also outfits offering canyoning, rafting and rock climbing in and around Sospel.
EATING & DRINKING
There are several hard-to-miss cafés in the middle of Sospel, perfect for an after-ride coffee or beer. If you’re heading out for an evening meal, our primary recommendations are La Faíssa and 2G. It’s worth noting that most things in Sospel are closed on Monday evenings, one exception being l’Estabi pizza takeaway.
Further afield, we recommend a quick lunch and coffee at “Da Marisa” café on the Italian side of the trail map (Zone B) and if you end up on the coast in Menton, the old town is worth a look for some genuine Italian eateries (Menton was part of Italy until after WWII).
Sospel is tucked into the far bottom-right corner of France, just one valley back from the Côte d’Azur and a stone’s throw from the Italian Riviera. That puts us not far from other MTB hotspots such as Molini, San Remo, and Finale Ligure so if you have your own transport, you can squeeze multiple locations into your trip.
If you’re planning to fly here, then Nice (NCE) is your closest airport, and a Cool Bus transfer from there to Sospel takes 1 hour.
There is also a picturesque rail link which you can use for direct access to Nice city centre. This isn’t particularly handy for the airport but a good option for those -perhaps non-mountain bikers- wanting a change of scenery for the day.