The Béarn Pyrenees Region
The cols in the Pyrenees all have that little something special that differentiate them from other climbs and make them legendary in their own unique way.
Grand depart and finish venue, Pau is delighted to open its doors to you as the gateway to the Pyrenees and access point for the cols of the region.
Renowned climbs such as La Pierre St-Martin, Marie-Blanque, Aubisque and Tourmalet will ring a bell with most cycling enthusiasts, but there are many lesser known climbs like the Ichère and Lescun which are equally as memorable.
Professional triathlete and cyclist Camille Deligny (two time finisher of the Haute Route Pyrenees) chose to live in this cycling friendly region as a perfect base for her training. The city of Pau is always delighted to welcome events like the Tour, but also all the cycling enthusiasts taking part in the Haute Route Pyrenees.
The Haute Route will take place in Pau and in the Béarn Pyrenees region until 2020, and we will do everything with the Haute Route team to prepare a few surprises, memories and unique experiences for the years to come.
We hope you all get to fully enjoy the unique experience of the Haute Route Pyrenees in the Béarn region, and that you will share your experiences when you get home, becoming in the process an ambassador for this beautiful region and its unique cols.
It is no surprise that the Haute Route is coming to Pau because it is a must if you are planning to ride the mythical Pyrenean cols.
Pau is also a sport, nature and wildlife destination of choice due to its geographical and climatic advantages, its facilities and its English heritage going back to the 19th century.
In Pau and its surroundings, thrill-seekers or walkers can either indulge in rafting or kayaking in the white water stadium or play golf on the green, the oldest in Europe. Then there are the walks by the River Gave in our urban natural park, in the forest of Bastard or in the many public parks and gardens of the city.
In addition to these outdoor sports, our city hosts big events and welcomes elite athletes during their training who come to enjoy not just the facilities in Pau but the etiquette of the southwest, friendliness and good food.
Apart from Tony Estanguet, born and bred in Pau and a triple Olympic gold medallist in canoeing, the French centre of excellence is located here and many international teams train here. The French national basketball team spends every summer at the House of Sports to prepare for international competitions.
The historical and modern Grand Prix de Pau – a strong element of our heritage – takes over the city in May. This is not to forget the horses that are honoured each Autumn with the Étoiles de Pau, a three-day Event and one of six annual CCI four-star events in the world. Then there is the rugby, a huge sport in our region.
Since 2013, the city of Pau has engaged in the transformation of the Protective Zone of Heritage and Urban Landscape (ZPPAUP), part of an Enhanced Area of Architecture and Heritage (AVAP), to ensure compatibility between the interests of conservation and sustainable development.
Labelled City of Art and History since 2012 by the French Ministry of Culture and Communication, the city is also engaged in a process of adding value throughout the year with many events revealing Pau’s richness and diversity.