4th stage: Bern - Villars-sur-Ollon
It all gets going in western Switzerland. The fourth stage will begin at Münsterplatz in Bern and after a loop through the old town will head further west: ‘It will move into the mountains for the first time.’ The peloton will ride past Fribourg; then the riders will encounter their first real challenge at the Col des Mosses, before heading into Chablais. The final 11 km climb to Villars-sur-Ollon will suit a proven climber.
Start in Bern
After Zurich (45) and Lugano (27), Bern is Switzerland’s third most popular stage point for traditional cycling tours, having served as the departure or arrival point for 23 tour stages. The Swiss capital was a stopover for last year’s Tour de France and will be hosting a stopover for the next Tour de Suisse.
With its medieval Old Town and Zytglogge (Clock Tower), Bern clearly deserves its place among the UNESCO World Heritage sites. Six kilometers of arcades make Bern the country’s largest open-air shopping center. Thanks to the city’s Museum of Fine Arts, the impressive architecture of Zentrum Paul Klee, the Einstein House and the newly renovated City Theater, Bern is known well beyond its borders for its wealth of culture. Summer after summer, the crystal clear waters of the Aare River welcome thousands of swimmers.
The Bern Grand-Prix draws some 35,000 runners to the starting line in May of every year. And on the day before the arrival of the Tour de Suisse, one of Europe’s largest women’s races will also be taking place in Bern, with other 15,000 participants. Bern is also host to some major sporting events in winter. The Bern Ice Skating Club (SC Bern) has the highest average spectators per game outside of the USA’s National Hockey League.
Finish in Villars-sur-Ollon
The resorts of Villars is located in the heart of the Vaud Alps on a natural balcony with southern exposure at an altitude of 1300 meters.
The resorts offer sports, relaxation and cultural activities for families and visitors of all ages, far from pollution and noise. Every holiday awaits you in an idyllic setting with a breathtaking panorama extending from Lake Geneva to Mont-Blanc.
The Villars-Gryon resort area has carefully protected its village ambience, despite strong tourism development, thanks largely to building codes and policies intended to maintain architectural unity. Old ancestral chalets sit alongside recent constructions in wood, all of which preserves a harmony that blends perfectly into the natural setting. The presence of numerous protected zones also allows nature to remain intact. Guests therefore find a typical mountain atmosphere that lends itself to relaxation and renewal with a superb view.
The international schools in Villars and Gryon enjoy an excellent reputation, which dates back a hundred years to the beginning of the 20th century. This has made the resort a privileged hub for quality education for countless students from many cultures. From the 37 schools that existed prior to the second World War, five top class, French and English medium schools remain, hosting more than 700 students annually from 3 to 18 years old, who either live in boarding schools or visit temporarily for various courses (summer camps).