#FromWhereWeRide Vol. 1: Geneva
Situated along the banks of Lac Leman, at the foot of the Alps, around the corner from the Jura mountain range, surrounded by vineyards and rolling countryside… Geneva is a cyclists paradise, and KATUSHA is fortunate enough to call it home. There are few cities boasting such a wide variety of landscapes on their doorstep. Whether you stay put in Switzerland, explore across the border in neighbouring France, keep to the flat lakeside roads or challenge yourself on the local cols… there is something for everyone!
This is our guide to a cyclists life in Geneva, as recommended by our local Community Manager and ride leader, Shawn Rath. Shawn leads weekly KATUSHA rides, every Wednesday and one Saturday per month. If you'd like to join, scroll down to find out how.
Coffee Stops / Ride Starts
Geneva has a plethora of coffee shops to choose from. Some are sit down, some are great for meet-ups, all serve delicious coffee.
Café Guidoline, Paquis – Often the start and finish location of our Wednesday evening KATUSHA Home Rides. Large outside terrace, ample inside seating and a great menu. A trendy, relaxed café experience, which turns into a lively bar in the evenings, in the heart of Geneva's Paquis district.
Qafe Guidoline, Paquis
La Fringale, Carouge – "La fringale" is the French way to say "the bonk" or "hitting the wall". Sacha - the owner - is a friendly face and a local Genevois with years of cycling experience. Stop in, have a poke bowl and chat... you won’t be disappointed.
Starting this season, we will be venturing out on our longer Saturday rides departing from this lovely local Carouge spot. A great terrace for people watching or stretching your legs after a long day in the saddle.
Horace, Rive/Jonction – The smell of fresh roasted coffee wafting through the air, while enjoying good conversation and route planning, Horace is perfect for everything.
Le Fix, Nations – Coffee shops don’t get much better than this, a little off the beaten path, offering outside seating, locally produced tasty heatly food and coffee that tastes delicious!
Oh Martine, Eaux-Vives – This is a great place to grab an espresso or lounge on a recovery day. The food is incredible, and the coffee is some of the best in Geneva.
La Frigale, Carouge
Post ride Drinks
For those of us who don’t want the fun to end, finish the ride here and enjoy a beer or two. They have plenty of outside space for you and your bike.
La Jonquille, Jonction - Located in the heart of Geneva along the Rhone, this tap house serves locally brewed beers. There is a light tapas menu and ample seating, perfect for a nice post ride beer, strava review and brag with your friends.
Belga, Plainpalais - Beer, Frites, and Cycling! What more could you ask for, this is great for a quick snack and drink post ride, with a terrace and inside seating there is no reason not to come here after a ride!
"Since moving to Europe, I have discovered that cycling and bike shops are king. So much so that there are bike shops every few blocks. Here is a list of shops that I trust for all of my cycling needs."
Rochat – A well curated bike shop for those of us who dream to ride like the pros! Stop by their shops either in old town or on Route du Malagnou for a coffee and a chat, service, or a new kit.
Rochat, Route de Malagnou
Bcyclet, Plan-Les-Ouates – If you are visiting Geneva or France and are on the hunt for a rental bike then look no further. Specializing in brands such as Scott, Colnago, Orbea, and Sarto they will get you out on the road and outfitted for success. With a beautiful modern shop filled with bikes and equipment you will be rolling in no time!
Ciclissimo – This group of shops in Geneva are great for all cyclists. The team is always approachable and knowledgeable. With locations in and around Geneva they are always ready to outfit you or offer a quick fix!
Bouticycle, Ferney – Not all of us ride on the Swiss side of the border and if you are looking for a great shop in France look no further. There service counter is great and product selection is the perfect mix for cyclists of all types!
Shawn and Davide of Bici Italians, inside Bcyclet
New to Geneva, new to cycling, tired of your “usual’ route, or looking for someone else’s take on riding in the area? Here is a short list of Shawn's go-to rides!
Genève Vineyards – Just outside Geneva you will find the famous “La Campagne Genevoise.” This is a favorite for cyclists of Genève. A rolling 50 km ride roundtrip takes you thru the forest, fields, and vineyards of Genève. 51km, D+ 873m
Download the GPX from Strava, here.
La Barillette – An iconic Geneva climb, as you leave the city you can spot the radar dome and towers of this iconic climb! With a main climb of 10.5 km, and 827m climbing w/avg grade of 8% this is not for the faint of heart. 85km, D+ 1550m
Download the GPX from Strava, here.
Le Salève – The mountain that towers over Geneva and commands its views, Le Salève is a ride not to be missed. There are 4 different climbs up, and once you have made it to the top you will be rewarded with views of the lac and Mt. Blanc in the distance! 43km, D+ 1340m
Try the route up via Monnetier, down Col de la Croisette. Download, the GPX from Strava, here.
Tour du Vuache – This ride is perfect for a fun Saturday morning! Ride out of Geneva and down the river valley and into the canyon. Suddenly the views open up to Annecy in the distance and the French Alps! Climb a little and you will be rewarded with a long decent and a beautiful view of Geneva and Switzerland! 80km D+ 900m
Download, the GPX from Strava, here.
Rhone River Valley Tour – This ride has a little bit of everything. Swiss and French countryside, Climbs, fast wide-open descents, scenery and lots of photo opportunities! 70km D+ 1125m
Download the GPX file from Strave, here.
There are many more routes here in Geneva, if you are curious join Shawn on a Katusha Home ride chat to him for some advice.
Local Clubs and Partners
KATUSHA Home – Did you know that Katusha Sports is a Geneva based company? This club celebrates the joys of riding in and around Geneva and growing our community! We meet once a week for our “after work” ride. This ride meets at 6:00 PM every Wednesday through October.
Ride lengths are usually around 50km and 2 - 2.5hrs. At least once a month Katusha hosts a longer ride with an average distance of 100km. Katusha Home will be partnering with Biciitalians this summer too. Look for our events on the KLUB, Facebook, Instagram, and Strava.
KATUSHA Home Ride, La Barillette
Biciitalians – This group of Italians are rolling around the greater Geneva area promoting cycling. You can’t miss them in their sharp looking blue and white kits. The men and the women who started this club are mostly Italian but are welcoming to all! Katusha Home and Biciitalians will be joining force this summer on group rides, check it out on social media.
RCS (Ruffaut Cycling System) If you are looking to take your riding to another level then look no further then RCS. The Ruffaut brothers have been working with cyclists for years, check out their group rides and travel trips. Or if you are looking for a training plan they also work with individuals. Sporting an attractive red and white kit they can’t be missed!
Did we miss something? If you have some extra suggestions about the local riding scene in Geneva, we'd love to hear them. Please let us know via the comments box below. Otherwise, we hope to see you out there!