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Where to stay in Harrogate during the Tour de France 2014

There is likely to be high demand for places to stay in Harrogate during the Tour de France, particularly on Friday 4th and Saturday 5th July 2014, the nights before the two Yorkshire stages. It is thought that 300,000 people will watch the first two stages within Harrogate district, and many of them will stay in the area.

The main options are hotels, B&Bs, self-catering, or campsites.

Where to stay in Harrogate during the Tour de France: hotels

Crown Hotel, Harrogate

There are quite a few hotels in Harrogate. At the luxury end of the market, Rudding Park Hotel will accommodate three of the teams during the Tour. They have also launched 'Ride le Route', which is a package including a two-night stay for people who wish to tackle the route of Stage 1 in advance of the Tour. It's available from March 2014.

Many of the hotels along the route of the Tour de France 2014 in the UK were already booked up in August 2013, according to a report in This is Money. They also found rates at some hotels three times higher during the weekend of the race than just before or after. 

At the start of February 2014, the Harrogate Advertiser found that most of the hotels in the town were sold out, and had waiting lists. They found three hotels with availability - the Nidd House (or did they mean Hall?) Hotel, the Cairn Hotel, and the Travelodge. The prices here were high, with the Travelodge asking £140, nearly three times the £50 rate for a Saturday in February 2014. (To be fair, July prices are probably higher than February prices anyway).

At the end of May 2014, the Boar's Head in Ripley (a few miles away from Harrogate, but in Harrogate Borough) still had four rooms available - £540 for a double/twin room for 3 nights.

Boar's Head, Ripley

According to the Advertiser, Ashville College sold its last room at the end of January 2014. Ashville College announced in November 2013 that it would be offering accommodation for the Tour de France in dormitories in its four boarding houses, as the school term finishes 4 days before the race. Guests at Ashville will be able to use the facilities, including free wifi, swimming pool, gym, and games rooms. They can park on site, and attend a Tour de France party on the evening of Friday 4th July 2014. The Ashville College accommodation is suitable for groups.

Where to stay in Harrogate during the Tour de France: B&Bs and self-catering

For self-catering, Harrogate Holidays have a number of properties on their books. 

There's also a possiblility of renting accommodation in private houses, through sites such as Airbnb.

Where to stay in Harrogate during the Tour de France: camping

Camping and caravanning are popular amongst cycling fans. There are permanent campsites on or near the route of the Tour, and there will be pop-up campsites, of the type forseen by Harrogate council.

Where to camp in Harrogate during the Tour de France: Harewood House campsite

Harewood House, just a few miles from Harrogate, is organising the Yorkshire Festival of Cycling, with camping in Harewood grounds over the weekend 4th-6th July 2014.

Where to camp in Harrogate during the Tour de France: Great Yorkshire Showground campsite

Great Yorkshire Showground caravan site

The Great Yorkshire Showground has obtained planning permission for a caravan and camp site, in time for the Tour de France (and continuing afterwards, on the basis that Harrogate wishes to be a major events town, and so needs all types of accommodation for visitors). See this report in the Harrogate Advertiser.

Where to camp in Harrogate during the Tour de France: Harrogate rugby club

Harrogate rugby club is offering camping at its ground for the Tour de France, from 27th June to 10th July 2014. Mobile homes, camper vans, and tents are welcome. According to the Harrogate Advertiser, they had 500 bookings by the end of January 2014, making them £7,500. They will have showers, washing facilities, food for sale, a bar, big screens, and entertainment. The rugby club is making the Tour de France part of two weeks of celebrations, before they move to a new ground. See the pitches and prices.

Harrogate RUFC told HedgehogCycling, 'Bookings are gathering pace, with more enquiries every day. We have guests booked from all over the UK, and a few from New Zealand.'

Their events include a game of two halves between Harrogate RUFC and Harrogate Town FC (tag rugby then football) on 29th June, a live concert on Friday 4th July, and a music festival on 12th & 13th July. The price of the events is included for campers, with entrance on the gate for non-campers at £12 per event.

Where to camp in Harrogate during the Tour de France: Nidderdale Bikefest

View of Hampsthwaite from Clint

The Nidderdale Bikefest is at Birstwith Strawberry Farm, 6 to 7 miles from Harrogate. (It's located just off Clint Bank, at Clint, near Hampsthwaite and Birstwith). There's camping from 3rd to 7th July 2014 in the farm's old strawberry fields (tents only, no caravans or motorhomes), for £20 per person per night, with a minimum 2-night stay. The Harrogate Advertiser article reports that at the end of January 2014, they had nearly 1,000 bookings, and there will be a bar and live bands, as well as the Haybale Diner campsite restaurant. There are the usual campsite shower facilities, and parking and a bike locking area.

Where to camp in Harrogate during the Tour de France: Spofforth Cricket Ground

Harland Way cycle route, Spofforth

Spofforth Cricket Club will open a temporary Tour de France campsite from Monday 30th June to Sunday 6th July 2014. Spofforth is 5 miles south east of Harrogate, and has two pubs and a village shop. The cricket ground is near the ruins of Spofforth Castle.

The price is £10 per pitch per night, plus £2.50 per person per night. Breakfast will be served at the clubhouse, which has free wifi, and the bar will be open from 12 noon to 11.30pm. Entertainment is planned for the evening of Friday 4th July 2014.

Where to camp in Harrogate during the Tour de France: National Trust land at Brimham Rocks

Tour de Cinema at Brimham Rocks

The National Trust is getting involved with the Tour de France, with pop-up campsites on four of its properties. 

Brimham Rocks is north west of Harrogate. It's not bang on the route of the race, but close enough to be able to go and watch both stages, and it's a stunning location. Minimum 2 nights, 4th & 5th July 2014, 3rd & 6th July optional.

As an example price, two nights camping for two people at Brimham Rocks is £75.

Where to camp in Harrogate during the Tour de France: Blubberhouses Cricket Ground

Blubberhouses is just a few miles west of Harrogate, on the route of Stage 2. The Advertiser says that Blubberhouses Cricket Club will allow 40 camping pitches and 60 cars. This is especially convenient for Stage 2, as the Tour will pass by just 100m from the ground.

Where to camp in Harrogate during the Tour de France: Kirkby Overblow

Kirkby Overblow will have a pop-up Tour de France campsite, on working farms. Kirkby Overblow is a lovely village, with two pubs which do excellent food (the Shoulder of Mutton and the Star & Garter). It's about 4km from Harewood, so it should be possible to catch Stage 1 near the start of the race there. The finish of Stage 1 in Harrogate is about 7km north of Kirkby Overblow, but you'd need to consider your arrangements carefully given the road closures planned for North Yorkshire on Saturday 5th July. We'd guess it'd be possible to get there with a combination of cycling and walking. 

There's a minimum 2-night stay. At the time of writing (March 2014), the price for a pitch on the nights of Friday 4th & Saturday 5th July is £89.