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A Roller Coaster Ride in Roya-Bévéra

The itinerary starts from Sospel, outstanding for its square and the church of Saint-Michel. The route follows the Col de Brouis and then leads down to Breil-sur-Roya, where a wide range of country activities is available: canoeing, rafting, canyoning, trail biking, hiking…
After a slightly even road which drops through the Gorges de la Roya, and a section in Italy in the village of Olivetta San Michele, you will return to Sospel via the pretty Col du Vescavo.
The final loop includes the ascent to Col Saint Jean, followed by a gentle climb to Col de Castillon, and then the descent to Sospel.
The suggested departure point is the car park located behind Place des Platanes. 



The Pont Vieux
The Pont Vieux was the only toll bridge in the Alpes-Maritimes in the Middle Ages, used for transporting salt. All travellers were required to show right of passage to cross the Bévéra to the left bank. Dating back to the 13th century, all that remains of the original structure is the lower section of the central tower. Unique in the department, today it is home to a variety of exhibitions.
Trompe-l’oeil façades
Hugging the banks of the Bévéra, the trompe-l’oeil façades serve as reminders of the Counts of Savoy and wealthy owners who once inhabited 19th century Sospel, and their preoccupation with drawing attention to their abodes using optical illusions of shutters, windows, cornices and balusters in bright, luminous colours.
The church of Sancta Maria in Albis
This church is built on the site of the ancient Roman church dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary, patron saint of the village. Work began in 1663 and was completed 36 years later, with the building blending seamlessly into the urbanist ensemble of the Place Brancion square, whose archways and colourful painted façades are characteristic of Ligurian influence in the 17th and 18th centuries. Listed as a historic monument, its size, trompe-l’oeil embellishment and the rich decoration on its organ make this church one of the most remarkable along the Route du Baroque of the Roya-Bévéra valleys.
Olivetta San Michele
This cross-border itinerary takes you on a journey to Italy and Olivetta San Michele. This small commune in the province of Imperia is the result of unification between Olivetta, perched high above the Bévéra, and San Michele which lies along the road leading to the Col de Tende. This commune is the only commune in the Ligurian region to be part of the Occitan-speaking minority.
The Col de Castillon
Located approximately 6 km away from Sospel, this pass rises up 706 m above sea level. Prepare for 339 m of ascent/descent with 5.2% average gradient.
The pass connects the Menton coast and the Bévéra valley, overlooking a village of the same name that is home to many craftsmen, designers and artists, with spectacular views over the sea. The pass is part of the iconic Route des Grandes Alpes that crosses the alpine massif to the Mediterranean.

Departure point: Car park located behind the Place des Platanes in Sospel
Bike type:
Road bikes
+ 16 years
63 kilometres
4 hours  



From Nice, take the A8 motorway towards Menton until Exit 59 Menton, take the RD 2566 towards Castillon/Sospel until you reach the village. 


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Comité Régional du Tourisme Côte d'azur France