The Tour de France and the Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift on the move for cycling as a means of transport


Stage town for the 1st time
Prefecture of Puy-de-Dôme (63)
Population: 147,300 (Clermontois), 296,000 in the Clermont Auvergne Metropolis
Personalities: Vercingétorix, André and Édouard Michelin (industrialists), Alexandre Vialatte (writer), Valéry Giscard d'Estaing (President of the French Republic), Blaise Pascal, Henri Bergson, Michel Foucault (philosophy), Fernand Raynaud (comedian), Arletty (actress), Chantal Lauby (comedian and actress), Laure Adler (journalist and writer) Fanny Agostini (presenter), Claire Chazal (journalist, presenter), Gabriella Papadakis and Guillaume Cizeron (ice dancing), Jessy Tremoulière (rugby), Geoffroy Mathieu (French 200m backstroke swimming champion), Axelle Etienne (BMX), Raphaël Geminiani, Romain Bardet, Rémi Cavagna (cycling), Renaud Lavillenie (athletics, pole vaulting)
Specialities: fruit jellies, Le Lautrec chocolates, aligot, truffade auvergnate, potée auvergnate, tripoux, potato pâté, lard and lentils, apple pumps. Cheese: Saint Nectaire, Fourme d'Ambert, Bleu d'Auvergne, Cantal. Volvic water. Vineyards: Côtes d'Auvergne.
Sport: 150 sports associations and 30,000 members, including ASM Clermont-Auvergne (rugby), Clermont Foot 63, JA Vichy-Clermont Métropole Basket.
Events: All Star pole vaulting, Le Tour Auto, Clermont en Rose (running), Clermont Week-end Courses
Economy: Industry of the future and mobility alongside international companies (Michelin, Trelleborg, Aubert et Duval, etc.); Agri-food agriculture and the environment (Limagrain and the leading INRA centre in France outside Paris); Wellness, prevention, health and nutrition; Digital; Cultural and creative industries (Allegorithmic, Riot house production, Biscuit production, etc.)
Festivals: International Short Film Festival (January), Europavox festival (contemporary music, June), the Contre-plongées (summer cultural season: films, readings, street theatre, concerts and large-scale circus shows), Jazz en tête (October), le rendez-vous du carnet de voyage (November)
Labels: flower city (3 flowers), child-friendly city, I-Site, Clermont Auvergne French tech, 3rd most creative city in France (2018), Apicité, UNESCO learning city. Project to apply for the title of European Capital of Culture for 2028.
Websites / FB / Twitter / Insta:  www.clermont-ferrand.frwww.clermontmetropole.eu /

Place de la Victoire à Clermont-Ferrand © Hemis - Clermont Auvergne Tourisme
Hemis - Clermont Auvergne Tourisme © Vue aérienne de la ville de Clermont-Ferrand
Clermont Foot © Direction de la Communication - Ville de Clermont-Ferrand


In 2020, the men's Tour de France returned to Clermont-Ferrand after an absence of more than thirty years for a rest day and a stage to Lyon won by Soren Kragh Andersen. Two years later, the race returned to the capital of Auvergne at the same time as Puy de Dôme, two years after climbing Puy Mary. The last finish was in 1988, when Frenchman Thierry Marie won in town. The city of Michelin, long a privileged partner of the Tour, has most often served as a launching pad, notably for two time trials to the summit of the Puy de Dôme in 1959 (Federico Bahamontes) and 1983 (Angel Arroyo). The first winner of a stage in Clermont was a rider who is inextricably linked with the town, Raphaël Geminiani. The "Grand Fusil" (Big Gun), who was born here in 1925 and is still enjoying a peaceful retirement, won seven stages in the Tour and wore the Yellow Jersey for four days in 1958. Gallant and friendly in the race as in the city, 'Gem' was also an inspired sports director and one of the strongest personalities in the history of cycling. His successor is the promising Rémi Cavagna, the “Clermont TGV”, who won a stage in the Tour of Spain in 2019. Christian Prudhomme's driver on the Tour de France, Gilles Maignan, was crowned French time trial champion in 1999. Other local riders to have taken part in the Tour de France include Noël Lajoie (1950 and 1952), Jean-Claude Baud (1973) and Damien Monier (2010).

Thierry Marie sur l'étape Clermont-Ferrand/Chalon-sur-Saône, lors du Tour de France 1988 © Presse Sports/Deschamps
Village départ à Clermont-Ferrand sur le Tour de France 2020 © A.S.O./Jonathan Biche


Chaîne des Puys - Limagne fault The Puy de Dôme (1,465 m), a listed Grand Site of France, dominates the Puys chain and its line of 80 volcanoes. Accessible on foot or by cogwheel train, it offers a panorama from Limagne to the Sancy mountains. Since July 2018, the site has been listed as a Unesco World Heritage Site, as a "tectonic high spot", the first to be listed as a natural property in mainland France.  

Cathedral of Our Lady of the Assumption
Construction: 13th to 19th centuries.
Style: Gothic.
Characteristics: it stands on the central hillock of Clermont. It is the first and largest building entirely built of Volvic lava stone. Its construction began in the middle of the 13th century and was completed in the 19th century, under the direction of famous architect Viollet-le-Duc. He was responsible for the two 90-m high spires. The chevet is characteristic of the Île-de-France Gothic style. The cathedral contains a unique collection of wall paintings and stained-glass windows from different periods, including rare Romanesque windows.
Listed as: Historical Monument since 1862.  

Basilica of Notre-Dame-du-Port
Construction: 13th century.
Style: Romanesque.
Characteristics: Listed as a Unesco World Heritage Site as part of the Pilgrimage Route to Santiago de Compostela in France, the basilica is famous for its pyramidal chevet decorated with rosettes, its sculpted portal and more than 250 Romanesque capitals with remarkable decorations. An interpretation centre adjoining the basilica was opened in 2021.
Listed as: Historical Monument since 1840.  

Royat thermal baths
The spa town of Royat-Chamalières offers visitors and curists the inimitable charm of the spa towns of the Belle Époque. Specialising in the treatment of rheumatological and cardio-arterial diseases, the resort is a hot spot for health tourism. Built on the model of the Emperor Constantine's basilica, the thermal baths, listed as a historical monument, are remarkable for their façade, their painted vaults and their ornate floor. To be admired: the Roman remains and the Eugenie refreshment room, topped with an elaborate glass bell.  

La Comédie, Scène nationale
This new venue has housed the Comédie de Clermont-Ferrand since May 2020. The building was designed by Eduardo Souto de Moura, a world-renowned Portuguese architect and Pritzker Prize winner. It is built in the former bus station, a place much appreciated by the people of Clermont-Ferrand and one of the city's architectural symbols, listed as a historical monument. This 9,500 m² complex includes two performance halls, a cultural mediation centre and a brasserie. 

Mille formes, Europe's first art initiation centre for 0-6 year-old
The Centre of Initiation to Arts for the 0 to 6 old was designed by the city, in partnership with the Centre Pompidou, as a space for experimentation in which young children can come into contact with contemporary creation in all its forms. It is through gesture and interaction with a new environment that children can discover art as a family. It is located in rue Fontgiève.  

Philippe Marcombes Urban and Sports Park
Entirely renovated in 2021, it offers the people of Clermont-Ferrand a sports complex in the heart of the city and a new green lung, with nearly 30,000 m² dedicated to various sports activities and 9,000 m² of urban parkland: central field and athletics track approved for national competitions with a covered stand, free practice area, covered tennis courts, skatepark and bowl, fitness areas, 1 km running track and relaxation areas.

La Chaîne des Puys © Hemis - Clermont Auvergne Tourisme
La Cathédrale Notre-Dame de l'Assomption © Direction de la Communication - Ville de Clermont-Ferrand
La basilique Notre-Dame-du-Port © Direction de la Communication - Ville de Clermont-Ferrand
Le parc thermal de Royat © Clermont Auvergne Tourisme
La Comédie, Scène nationale © Direction de la Communication - Ville de Clermont-Ferrand


Fruit pastes
Clermont-Ferrand is not only the capital of tyres. It is also the bastion of fruit paste. During long journeys, candied fruit has been delighting holidaymakers since the end of the 19th century. These delicacies are made from fruit cooked with water and beet sugar from the Bourdon sugar factory, created in 1837 by the Duke of Morny, half-brother of Napoleon III. The invention of fruit paste dates back to the 10th century. It is from the 15th century onwards that it begins to be mentioned. They are made around Clermont and known as "Pâtes d'Auvergne". In accordance with the recipe registered in 1947 by the Auvergne Confectioners and Jam Makers Union,  Auvergne confectioners are obliged to use at least 67 pc fruit pulp to make their fruit pastes.

Les pâtes de fruits d'Auvergne fabriquées à Saulcet © Creative Commons 4.0/Patafisik

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