French sportives also called as cyclosportives or Gran Fondos are quite competitive with themed rides covering a wide range of terrains and routes. These cycling events are quite big with participants and riders ranging from beginners and experienced, competitive and recreational, all riding together.

While some sportives are of multi-days, others are of short distance and are not timed, which is suitable for the first-time riders. If you are heading to France, here's our complete list sportives you can do in Europe:

Mallorca 312:

Mallorca is famous for its warm weather, smooth roads, and having the potential of being the cycle-able place around the year. It's also the favorite destination for cyclist hoping to escape from the winter weather. 

The main sportive is about 312 km, having a total of 5,000 m climb; the riders will pass from some of the finest routes including Puig Major, Col de Femenia and the MA-10. For those who don't want to participate in the main event, there are other 167km and 225km courses.  Moreover, the ride starts from the Playa de Muro, which is a resort situated on the island's northeast coast.  

Etape Du Tour: 

It's one of the most popular sportive in the world with more than 15,000 riders. Riding the stage of the Tour. Book your Etape Du Tour 2020 sportive in advance to ride at this route.  

Liege Bastogne Liege, Belgium: 

The Liege Bastogne Liege is a track combining both the cyclosportive and pro race.  Hosting around 7000 participants, it's a day-long classic race often occur in Belgium. The race occurs every year in late April in the Ardennes, Belgium. 

Because of the overall distance and the demanding course, it's the most arduous one-day cycling event. You can choose to ride between three distances (70km, 147 km, 266km) and have to climb to the most iconic Cote de La Redoute.

Maratona Dles Dolomites: 

Set in eye-catching dolomite, the Maratons deals are one of the most popular sportives that attracts many cyclists. While the overall distance may not be high, the high altitude covers the overall distance. 

The route will pass 4 climbs of the Sella Ronda and then hit the slopes of Passo Giau. On the sportive day, you'll witness people wearing traditional outfits, enjoying local music, and cheering the riders with every climb. Just keep your rider ready and your Strava high and get set to paddle.

Tour Of Flanders: 

This tour will take you to the world's most famous cobbles of Oudenaarde, Belgium. It's a more professional race that occurs a day before the pros depart Antwerp. The Tour of Flanders is a huge celebration of sport from the most passionate cycling loving regions. It's a mix of two routes with one having brutal cobbled sector and another with steep cobbled climbs.

La Marmotte: 

It's a one day, cyclosportive that occur in France and is named after the large ground squirrel that is popular for inhabit the slopes. Unlike other French routes, the route of La Marmotte sportive is fixed and is considered to be the hardest and most challenging.  

Paris Roubaix, France:

Roubaix is called as the hell of the north; it's the most unique race, where people hope for terrible conditions and bad weather for cyclists. Find yourself lucky if you get a chance to ride over the old farm tracks and country lanes. Starting from the north of Paris and finishing at the Roubaix, it's the oldest race and the classics of European countries. However, punctures and other mechanical issues are common, so be prepared.

Finding a Sportive:

If you are a novice, here's how to choose the right sportive:

Pick The Location Where You Want To Go: The choice goes from the Alps to mountains, Pyrenees and coasts, so decide where you want to ride. Also, planning the route and deciding the accommodation are important factors to consider.
Time You Are Visiting: Cyclists often prefer a hot temperature.
How Long You Want the Ride to Be:  Think of duration and distance as some events are of one day while others are of multiday.

If you are looking for the best cycling challenge, have a look at the above popular routes of Europe and book your sportive.