Tour de France 2010: Stage 14 preview
Date: Sunday, July 18 2010
From/to: Revel to Ax 3 Domaines
Type: High mountains
Start town: Revel
The "Bio Vallée Lauragais" cluster is an integral part of the green economy that can be found in the Pays Lauragais area, a zone with a high farming and agri-food potential in the Midi-Pyrénées region, the leading organic region in France.
"Bio Vallée Lauragais" was created in order to bring together various partners and cultivate innovative methods for developing businesses. This project is a response to the new requirements of "ethical consumers" of natural and organic products. With significant experience in the agri-food sector, Revel possesses the necessary economic structures to support businesses that wish to set up here.
Drawing on the expertise of committed farmers and breeders, small and medium sized firms can ensure they develop whilst promoting the quality and biodiversity of the land. "Bio Vallée Lauragais" aims to pool initiatives and driving forces to work towards sustainable development that combines authenticity and innovation. Revel, a town on a human scale, offers a living environment in keeping with its convictions.
Finish town: Ax 3 Domaines
If Ax 3 Domaines, which includes the Bonascre, Saquet and Campels skiing areas, has become the resort which is all the rage in the Pyrenees, it is due to the charm of its slopes snaking through the fir trees, the beauty of its mountain landscapes but also thanks to the constant development of the site which invests in order to modernise its ski-lifts, encourage snow cover, redesign the ski runs and optimise "skiability".
700 metres lower, less than ten kilometres away, lies Ax les Thermes. A stroll through its streets dating back to the Middle Ages reveals the Bassin des Ladres pool, the spas and spa tourism centre. In the area surrounding the town, there is a wealth of tourist attractions: the Orlu mountains and wildlife reserve, significant heritage dating back to the Middle Ages (Romanesque art, relics of the Cathar era), the local features related to spa therapy (spa tourism, the casino) and high altitude farming (farm produce).
In addition to this, the town is not far from the border with Andorra, making the valleys around Ax a tourist centre that is typical of the Pyrenean character.
Tour de France 2010: Cycling Weekly's coverage index