Luz Ardiden (Viscos)

Start Town Altitude Elevation Gain Length Gradient Difficulty Rating
Camping Hautes (D921) 1,720m 1,080m 14.5 km 7.5% 978 ****

Luz Ardiden (Viscos)   Profile

Click on the profile to view in full screen (🔍)

Climb Description

Luz Ardiden is one of the most famous climbs in the Tour de France and also one of the most beautiful. Some of the greatest names in recent cycling history have raced away to victory on its distinctive final kilometres - home to the finest switchbacks in professional cycling.

However, the climb from Viscos is relatively unknown compared with the main ascent from Luz Saint Sauveur. This back road is slightly harder than the main road, thanks to a challenging first 2km - and the final 4km are the same as the main ascent. This side has never been used in the Tour de France, but has been used in the Route de Sud professional race, turning Luz Ardiden into a pass.

Luz Ardiden (Viscos) Green Mountain Scenery

Much of the climb is in trees, but it emerges from them in the final 4km

The climb from Viscos is similar in terms of scenery to the main ascent, and shares the stunning hairpins of the final kilometres, and it makes a nice alternative once you have done Luz Ardiden from the classic side.

Luz Ardiden is usually open throughout the year to allow access to the ski resort. It is cold in winter though and short term closures are fairly common, so we recommend only doing the climb from late May to October.

Luz Ardiden (Viscos) - Pyrenees

This route shares the upper hairpins with the more famous side of the climb

Roads & Traffic

The road surface is in good condition throughout, although it is narrow and you have to take care if you plan to descend this way.

Once you leave the main valley road, there is very little traffic throughout the climb.

Alternative Routes

The classic side of Luz Ardiden begins from the edge of Luz Saint Sauveur.

Nearby Climbs

Cirque de Gavarnie

Cirque Troumouse

Col du Tourmalet


Col d'Aubisque


Pont d'Espagne

Cycling Holidays

Luz Ardiden, climbed from the main side, is a highlight of our Best of the Pyrenees cycling holiday, and it is a route extension option on our Pyrenees Coast to Coast tour.

Check out the information below for details of this and some of the other tours that we run in high mountains.

Port de Pailheres Cycling
French FlagFrance

Guided Cycling Holiday
Length: 9 Days
Level: Difficulty Hard
Price: €1,980 EUR
*Bike Hire Included

French FlagFrance

Guided Cycling Holiday
Length: 8 Days
Level: Difficulty Challenging-Hard
Price: €1,630 EUR
*Bike Hire Included

Lagos de Covadonga
Spanish FlagSpain

Self-Guided Cycling Holiday
Length: 8 Days
Level: Difficulty Challenging-Hard
Price: from €1,490 EUR