Frequently Asked Questions
This is where you should answer the most common questions prospective customers might have. It’s a good idea to cover things like your return policy, product warranty info, shipping and returns, etc. Check out the examples below.
What is included in the price?
You will have a comfy single bed in a large room with en-suite facilities. You won’t share a room with a stranger. Towels, shower gel and shampoo are provided. This means you could travel with hand luggage as you don’t need to bring any liquids.
Breakfast is generous portions, croissants, pain au raisin, bread, toast, cereals, fruit juice, tea, coffee, fresh fruit ( eg bananas, satsumas, kiwi), yoghurts. We also serve porridge and or eggs on request.
Dinner is served in the dining room around 19:30 and is a hearty 2 or 3 course evening meal with wine and or beer and coffee/tea chocolates. We are not allowed to offer a choice of meal options so within limits everyone will have the same meal. We can and do cater for peoples dietary requirements based around that days menu.
Post ride afternoon tea/coffee and home made cake. Bottled water for filling your water bottles.
You will have free use of all of the communal areas, gardens, patio, bike shed and tools. You may also use the washing machine and drying room for kit refreshing.
What is not included?
Flights are not included and cannot be booked via Vélo Le Closier.
Airport transfers, bike hire, guided rides, vehicle supported rides, alcoholic or canned beverages before evening meals and lunches are also not included. However, all or any of these can be provided or arranged by Vélo Le Closier at additional cost.
What time can we arrive, and can we have a late checkout?
Our normal policy is that arrivals are from 16:00 and checkout by 11.00. This allows for preparation of the house for incoming guests. However, in reality, your check in and checkout times will depend upon your flight and transfer times. If we can accommodate an early check in or a late checkout we will try and do this without any additional cost.
Do you have any routes I can download?
There are a number of routes that are available here.
Can you recommend a daily riding itinerary?
We can certainly provide you with a suggested itinerary. If you contact us and give us some idea of your requirements we will send you a some suggestions. Some of the most famous Tour de France climbs are rideable from our door. We can also show you some of the most amazingly quiet roads and fantastic routes that are equally as satisfying as the well known climbs.
Will there be a guide taking us out on rides?
The short answer is ordinarily No. However, maybe Reg or Sue will join you on at least one of your rides or take you on a local recovery ride. If you would like a full day guided ride(s), contact us with your requirements and we will discuss the options and cost.
On longer rides is there vehicle support available?
This is perhaps the most popular request. We often provide vehicle supported rides, especially on longer tougher days. The vehicle can take, water, food, additional clothing and spares. It is also possible for the group to be dropped off at a distant location and then vehicle support back to Vélo Le Closier. In addition, the adventure is photographed and these are emailed to you on your return. The price for a vehicle supported ride depends upon the number of people and distance.
Vehicle supported rides are very popular for longer tougher days out. We will accompany you with a vehicle which takes bike spares, water/drinks and your spare clothing and also we take photographs of your day which are provided to you all for use in social media etc to send to your friends that couldn’t make it and make them jealous. Having the support vehicle gives riders peace of mind that they have a team car back up. It allows options for riders to do all of the ride or just sections and is a great way to have an inclusive tough day for all of the groups varying abilities. A vehicle supported ride is around €40 per person. Subject to group size we will hire a minibus and therefore cancellation due to weather may mean that you are still charged.
How many people in each room?
That will depend upon your group size. We have three quadruple rooms and one double room. We guarantee if you have a group size of 8 or more and at the time of your booking there are no other bookings you will be the exclusive guests at Vélo Le Closier during your stay.
Can I have a single room?
Subject to the size of your group it is possible and there may be a surcharge.
Can you provide for specific dietary requirements?
Sue was a state registered dietitian in the UK. It is important to inform us if the dietary requirement is a medical requirement or choice. As almost all of the meals including sauces etc are prepared from scratch which means we are confident of the ingredients used and can often provide the same meal with a simple ingredient change.
Do I need medical insurance?
We strongly suggest that you have good medical insurance which also covers you for repatriation in the event of a significant injury.
Are the Pyrénéan climbs like those in Mallorca?
If you have been to Mallorca you will have experienced climbs which are much longer than those in the UK. The Pyrénéan climbs are generally longer and steeper than Mallorca. The climbs average around 7.5% with sections of 12-15% and can be as long as 20kms. The best way to approach them is with respect.
Are there any flat rides?
The beauty of our location is that if you go south you generally go into the long mountain climbs. However, if you go north you will be able to find some lovely rolling countryside and whilst not flat they are certainly easier.
Do you offer Post ride Massages?
We have a local contact who is excellent for your post-ride massage needs. We can arrange these for you to have at Vélo Le Closier.
What are the nearest Airports?
The nearest international airport is Toulouse which is about 1hr 15 mins away from Vélo Le Closier. You will easily be able to find direct flights to Toulouse from London Heathrow, London Stansted, Luton, Bristol, Manchester & Edinburgh.
The nearest local airport is Lourdes (Tarbes) which is about 35 mins away from Vélo Le Closier. The only connection to the UK is London Stansted.
How do get from the airport to Vélo Le Closier?
There are a number of options. If your group size is less than 8 and you all arrive at the same time, Vélo Le Closier could come and collect you and your luggage and also take you back. The price for this is € 70 per person.
If your group size is greater than 8, Vélo Le Closier will have to provide you with a cost. The reason for this is it would require at least 2 vehicles.
You could obviously hire a car, which can be a relatively inexpensive option and also gives you some freedom when you are here.
The are also taxis available at the airports, but that may be an expensive option.
What happens if it rains?
The weather here can be wet, we are in a mountainous region. We certainly recommend that you bring a waterproof with you at all times of the year. If the weather is too awful to ride and you decide not to ride we have a pool table, Netflix, board games, jigsaw puzzles and a small library of cycling and other books. We also have a Wattbike for those who are unable to relax.
Sometimes the weather across the boarder in Spain is dry and subject to the group size we could transport a group into Spain at extra cost (we haven’t had to do this yet).
Lunches at Vélo Le Closier are not ordinarily provided as normally you would be out riding. If the weather stops play a simple lunch is available at extra cost. There are also options to eat at local restaurants or the tabac/bar in the village.
What gearing ratios would you suggest?
The climbs in the Pyrénées can be significantly longer and steeper than those in Mallorca for example. Most that come here have at least a 30 tooth cassette on the rear and we recommend a 32. All of our hire bikes have a compact chainset with a 32 cassette.
My bike is very expensive is the bike shed secure?
The bike shed is as secure as we can make it. Whilst we cannot guarantee absolute security we feel confident that the bikes are safe – indeed this is where we keep our own fleet of bicycles. Any bikes stored in the bike shed are at your own risk and are not covered on Vélo Le Closier’s insurance.
Is there a bike repair shop locally?
Our bike shed has a decent supply of tools to carry out minor repairs and adjustments we have replacement break and gear cables and some Ultegra brake blocks, inner tubes and tyres. However if something more significant requires repair there are a number of options. There is a very good repair department within the local branch of Intersport which is about 3 miles away and they also carry a decent stock of spares. A little further afield in Tarbes about 35 mins away there is a Trek store which stocks electronic shifting cables etc.
What clothing should I bring what is the weather like?
Obviously that would depend upon the time of year. Early season May, June you will certainly need a waterproof and long bib tights. The weather can change quickly especially in the mountains and whilst very hot on the climb it can be very cold on the descent.
In July, August we would also recommend bringing a waterproof and a windproof/Gillet. Ordinarily these are the hottest months and generally short sleeved jerseys and shorts are the norm as well as sun tan cream.
September and October are probably the best cycling weather months. The weather is more settled and although warm not excessively hot like August can be. Early October is around 20 degrees and generally great for cycling albeit the nights are starting to draw in.
Even in November and December the weather is much kinder than the UK for example and be a great time to pop out here for a wonderful weekend.
What is the largest group you can accommodate?
We are a registered Chambre d’hote which means legally we can only accommodate a maximum of 15 people. However we have arrangements with other Chambre d’hotes and it is possible to handle larger groups using other accommodation providers. If your group is larger than 15 contact us and we discuss your options.
What hire bikes do you have and how many?
Vélo Le Closier owns a fleet of 6 hire bikes. They are a mix of Cérvelo and Scott bikes. We have one 48 cm, one 51 cm, two 54 cm, one 56 cm and one 58 cm. We are able subject to availability to obtain another 10 bikes.
What is the Café culture in the Pyrénées?
Whilst there are cafés in many villages they are not as abundant as those in the UK. In addition food is generally only served between 12:00 and 13:30. Any itinerary we provide would be planned to have you arriving at a village café in time for lunch. As mentioned above lunches are not included and you will need to take lunch money with you, we do suggest money and not credit/credit cards as there are still outlets locally that only take cash.
Can I wash my kit whilst we stay at Vélo Le Closier.
You may use the washing machine to wash your kit, we suggest if possible that you do this as a group in order to be efficient use of water, electric etc. There is a drying room where you can hang your kit to dry as most kit should not be tumble dried.
Is there wifi available at Vélo Le Closier?
Yes of course, you need to post your rides and pictures to your friends when you return from a hard days ride.
What training or fitness level do I need to be?
The fitter you are the more enjoyable the rides and also you will be able to ride each day back to back. Some of the longer climbs are as mentally tough as they are physically, 50% in the head and 50% in the legs. It must be stated that if you have not ridden world tour climbs before the best approach is one of respect. The long climbs can take over 2 hours to conquer and average 7.5%
Furthermore it is best to ease your way into the longer tougher climbs after a few days than try and conquer a few of the biggies on your first day. Don’t forget that you are here to enjoy yourself and not totally fatigue yourself on day one.