For the second straight year, the Tour de France will begin in June, not July and will again begin with a full stage, not a prologue. Although details of the opening few stages of each year’s Tour de France are revealed well before the official presentation, the opening of the 100th edition in Corsica as well as the first two stages in mainland France for 2013 were known much earlier than in previous years.
Tour de France, Stage 1
Porto-Vecchio to Bastia, 200 kilometers (124 miles)
The start of the 100th edition of the Tour de France will begin in Porto-Vecchio. The peloton will head to the south of the island to the outskirts of Bonifacio and after passing through Porto-Vecchio again, it will progress north on the east coast road which leads to Bastia.
The opening stage will be flat and largely without technical challenges. Nearing the finish, the peloton will pass near the Roman remains of Mariana. The finish line will be marked on the lagoon road, along the Lake Biguglia Nature Reserve.
As the starting of the Grand Depart, Porto-Vecchio, will be the launch of three stages in Corsica, the only metropolitan department of France the Tour de France hasn’t visited.
Bastia, the finish of stage 1 and start of stage 2, is located in the northeast of the island of Corsica at the base of Cap Corse. It’s the island’s second-largest city and, like many regions of France, is known for its wines.