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Alpe d'Huez, or L'Alpe d'Huez, is a ski resort in the French Alps. It is located in the commune of Huez in the Rhône-Alpes region in the east of the country. The ski resort varies in altitude from about 1,860 metres to 3,330 metres above sea level. The name Alpe d'Huez might even be more popular though because of its appearance in the biggest cycling event in the world, the annual Tour de France in July. The peak is also used as the finish of La Marmotte, a one-day, 175-kilometre-long ride with 5,000 metres of climbing!
The Dutch organized Alpe d'HuZes (website in Dutch) is a race against cancer! It is held since a few years and the goal is for competitors to go up the Alpe d'Huez six times in one day (zes means six in Dutch)! All to raise sufficient funds for the Dutch cancer organisation, for research to stop this disease as much as possible or at least make it a chronical disease instead of a potential killing one.
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Alpe d'Huez has been one of the most famous places in the Tour de France since over 30 years, basically almost every year since 1976, although the famous Fausto Coppi won the stage in 1952 already! Other famous riders were Lance Armstrong, the late Marco Pantani and the Colombian climber Luis Herrera. But it has been called the Dutch mountain as well, and not for nothing: 8 out of the first 14 stages were won by a Dutchman, including Peter Winnen (2x), Joop Zoetemelk (2x), Hennie Kuiper (2x), Steven Rooks and Gert-Jan Theunisse. The last one was Carlos Sastre in 2008, winning the Tour as well. If you want to visit the mountain during a Tour stage, be sure to arrive early. And by that it is not meant early in the morning, but days before to secure a great sport, preferably at one of the 21 hairpins, all named after stage winners. The climb is 13.8 km at an average 7.9 per cent, starting near Le Bourg-d'Oisans and finishing at about 1,850 metres above sea level. In 2011, stage 19 which will be held on Friday 19 July, will have a finish once again on the mountain.
The best way to reach Le Bourg-d'Oisans is by car, taking the D526 from the south, or the D1091 from the east or northwest.
See also International Telephone Calls
La Poste in France is also referred to as the PTT (short for postes, télégraphes et téléphones). The mailboxes are painted bright yellow and often there is a slot for local city mail and another slot for "outside mail". Normally there is a queue in the post office, but most of the post offices have the self service machine installed which is quite easy to operate. Nowadays many of the tabac and even some of the souvenir shops also sell postage stamps. Normally an overseas postcard costs almost as much as sending a letter.
Post offices are generally open from 8:00am to 7:00pm Monday through Friday, and 8:00am to noon on Saturdays. Apart from the basic job of mailing letters, most of the post offices do some banking activities also and some even have photocopy machines and cyber cafes for internet access.
as well as Herr Bert (6%)
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