Col de Turini - Special Stages

Col de Turini

If we talk about rallies, one cannot but think of the most famous stage of the world championship, one of the oldest rallies, the Montecarlo! And if we talk about Montecarlo, we can't help but think of what was and still is the most spectacular, the most famous event, the one that decreed who won or didn't win this stage of the world rally, the legendary Turini!

Altitude: 1.604m
Length: varies
Connects: Sospel (east), Lucerame (south), La Bollene-Vesubie (west)
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If there are places you absolutely have to go to at least once in your life, well, Turini is certainly among those, and there is no real why, because to be honest it could be a place like many others, yet Turini it's Turini.

Don't expect breathtaking views, with its altitude of just 1,604m it means that even at the top of the pass you'll still be surrounded by vegetation that takes away much visibility on the surrounding landscapes, and don't expect a Swiss pass-style road surface either, but what will surely remain in it is its layout.
An infinite succession of curves, narrow, wide, which open and which close, small straights, others longer, points with the road rather narrow, others with a wide carriageway, on this road you will find everything.

The pass can be reached by three roads. To the east you climb from Sospel, from the west the climb starts from La Bollene-Vesubie and the road from the south approximately starts from Lucerame. All these roads were the scene of the famous rally, traveled in all kinds of directions, with any combination, even if the most "popular" is from La Bollene-Vesubie to Sospel.

At the top of the pass there are various structures, including hotels, restaurants and bars, and within each of them there are dozens and hundreds of memories that have made this pass so famous in which every year, in January, the cars of the world rally they have passed, day and night, with sun and, much more often, with snow and ice.
In any period of the year you go to the Turini it is almost certain that you will not be the only ones. Finding sports cars of all kinds in the parking lots at the top of this pass is a constant.

The climb from La Bollene-Vesubie, the 11km long M70, is very tortuous and in some sections, particularly near the tunnels dug into the rock, rather narrow. Exposed to the west it remains quite bright. The road surface is not excellent but certainly not in bad condition.
La Bollene can be reached from the south along the M2665, a rather smooth but not particularly interesting road. From the north, on the other hand, it can be reached by coming from Saint-Martin-Vesubie, in turn coming from Colle della Lombarda, a certainly more interesting route.

The east side, going up from Sospel along the D2566, is perhaps the most characteristic. The route is 25km long, but it should be noted that in competitions the SS ends (or starts) at Moulinet, which is 12km from the pass. For us "tourists", however, the entire stretch is of interest, which has a very varied route and also here rather narrow in some points.
On this side, the road is in the shade for many stretches even in the hottest periods, which can cause stretches with damp asphalt, and in the coldest months also a lot of ice and snow. Surely these are the reasons that make the bottom more irregular than the other slopes, even if we never have holes, but it certainly isn't a bottom suitable for more rigid structures.
Sospel is quite close to the Italian border if you reach it from the east via the Col de Vescavo. An alternative from Italy is to descend from the north through the Tunnel del Tenda and then go along the Col de Brouis.
From the south, the D2566 takes you towards Menton while the D2204 will take you over another stupendous pass, the Col de Braus, to then take you towards Nice.

The third way that takes you to Col de Turini is the one towards the south, which roughly starts from Luceram. We say indicatively because there are various options: from Luceram you can go up along the D2566 up to Col Saint-Roch and then continue north up to Turini, or again from Luceram you can go up along the D21, which however has a slightly narrower, which will lead you to intersect the D2566 after Col Saint-Roch. Both of these options have a length of about 20km.
2 other alternatives are to reach Col Saint-Roch from the D15, which takes you from Contes to Turini in 35km, or to reach the D21 via the D54 which starts near the Col de Braus. Between the 2 hills there are 25km.
In any case, once you are on the D2566, apart from a short stretch near the Col Saint-Roch, the route will be quite fast. The road runs almost on the crest of the mountain up to Turini with even rather fast sectors. Here the road remains very exposed to the sun and the road surface, with the exception of a little gravel often present in these areas, is in good condition.

In our opinion

Undoubtedly the first piece of advice we can give you is to go there at least once! Especially if you love rallies you cannot miss a similar destination.
Which path to choose? Difficult, it depends on how much time you have available but we certainly advise you not to go just to go up to Turini but to include this destination in a more complex itinerary.
To do this, given the choice, the 2 sides that we recommend are certainly the one of Sospel and the one towards the south, but simply because in this way it is easier to create an itinerary that connects you to other passes in the area (which are also often the scene of rally of Montecarlo) such as for example the Col Saint-Roch, the Col de Braus and the Col de Bouis. The slope towards La Bollene is still an excellent route if you come from the north through the Colle della Lombarda.

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