FISE Montpellier 2023: A World Celebration of Extreme Sports The International Festival of Extreme Sports (FISE) is one of the world’s most epic action sports events. Contestants from around the globe compete in skateboard, BMX Freestyle, skateboarding street, mountain bike, wakeboard and inline skate, BMX flatland, parkour and break dance. The annual festival takes place […]FISE Montpellier 2023 Montpellier, France Montpellier France
The International Festival of Extreme Sports (FISE) is one of the world’s most epic action sports events. Contestants from around the globe compete in skateboard, BMX Freestyle, skateboarding street, mountain bike, wakeboard and inline skate, BMX flatland, parkour and break dance. The annual festival takes place in Montpellier, France where over 600,000 spectators gather to appreciate some of the best athletes in the world of action sports.
FISE sets itself apart from other action sports events through one simple method: Free admission for all. It’s the second biggest free sports event in France after Tour de France. Thousands will assemble on the river banks for an outrageous display of tricks and freestyles on water and land courses.
‘Witness the impossible take place over a variety of extreme sport competitions during a five-day span that will leave you utterly stunned.’
There is quite a bit going on at FISE, don’t underestimate how much rad stuff they have at the venue. What can only be described as the Disneyland of action sports events, FISE Montpellier is next level! As soon as you get to Rives Du Lez, you can hear the commentators and fans going wild. The first day, you don’t know where to begin; you feel like a kid in a candy store.
Spectators and tourists will be happy to know that the FISE offers free admission to anyone willing to attend. The river-side environment offers the public a truly unique viewing experience.
Stake out a seat in the stands for the roller skating and biking competitions before heading over to the river bank for an epic water sport showing. It is the perfect location for summer and fall events that the entire family can enjoy!
The weather in the south of France is mild usually at this time of the year. Prepare yourself for a sunny day. Wear comfortable shoes for walking through the crowds, the area is larger than you think. Most visitors are wearing skate clothes.
Pack your sunglasses and some sunscreen as well as a water bottle to stay hydrated during the day. A good camera is handy to capture the action.
One of the massive draws is that FISE Montpellier is a free event. That’s right! The whole of Montpellier, every action sports nut in France, traveling competitors and anyone else with a sense of a good time would be heading to Montpellier over the Ascension Day Weekend.
Tot Tip: Make sure you register online to get your FREE pass for FISE and come early to avoid the queues.
FISE Montpellier takes place from May 17-21, 2023. Every day is action-packed from morning till evening.
What would appear to be the main attraction is the mega BMX Freestyle Park. The guys at FISE have 25+ years of experience putting this annual event together and this year didn’t disappoint.
The Freestyle Park is sick and getting to witness some of the best BMX riders in the world tackle it was all time at the world qualifying event.
You’d think that having this freestyle park set up was enough but oh no; if you walk further down you are greeted by the Street Park; where they have both Skateboarding Street and BMX Street.
Next up is the BMX Flatland area where they have the UCI BMX Flatland World Cup. Some insane skills and balance were showcased from these guys and the crowd was going mental up on the hill overlooking the whole comp.
Carrying along the river past the Flatland and breakdancing area is the Scooter and Roller Freestyle Park; another rad purpose-built park for the scooter and rolling blading enthusiasts out there.
Going in the opposite direction, there is this awesome little mini ramp. There was always someone turning up on the mini ramp for the whole 5 days of the event.
Beside the river is the FISE Parkour World Cup course. Don’t be skeptical about this aspect of the event you will be convinced otherwise after seeing the guys and girls flipping over this thing at mack ten.
Two joining half pipes create an epic Spine Ramp with banging tunes coming out of the Radar concert stage. Some of the best French rap and hip-hop artists hit the stage with BMX, skate, scooter and inline riders going off on the Spine Ramp, much to the spectator’s delight.
Break Dancing World Series
The first WDSF Breaking For Gold World series event took place in 2022. Watch the best BBoys and BGirls from around the world fire up the stage. Guaranteed to draw in a crowd and be a highlight of the event.
Wear comfortable shoes: There will be a lot of walking through the crowds at the event so we recommend flat and comfortable shoes.
Take clothes that can get dirty: With the sunny weather in Montpellier the grass hills at the river can get dusty during the day, especially with 600,000 visitors.
Bring some water: With the event running throughout the day, it’s a good idea to bring water to avoid dehydration.
The event was originally conceived in 1997 by college student Herve Andre-Benoit. The first-ever FISE featured 100 riders and a crowd of 35,000 during a three-day span in Palavas Les-Flots. After quickly gaining international attention, the festival moved to Montpellier’s River Lez where public seating on the water now offers an inspiring front-row experience.
Other event locations expanded to Dubai, Tunisia and Budapest. In 2007 the tour was organized under the name of FISE Xperience, which represents France’s best athletes throughout a five-city tour. By 2014, the action sports event transitioned into the world tour now known as the FISE World Series.
Walking around the city discovering the old town and street art scene is cool. Jump on a tour and head up the Porte du Peyrou one morning before the start of the comp. The Porte du Peyrou is Montpellier’s version of the iconic Arc de Triomphe in Paris and the city’s most famous landmark.
The Arc is also the entrance to the Royal Palace of the Peyrou and offers incredible views over the whole of Montpellier from the top. If you are in the area on a Sunday, you can also find a local flea market in the Place du Peyrou. If you take your family to Montpellier we can promise, they will have an amazing time exploring the city.
Montpellier has a wide selection of wine bars, restaurants, cafes and more, located throughout the old quarters and squares around town.
Exploring the city we stumbled across Jardin du Lez, a wicked little mini ramp and pump track on the river with a beer garden and heaps of fast food trucks flogging delicious street food. This is such a sick little spot to soak up the afternoon sun. You can even play a bit of Pétanque if you want to hang with the locals.
There are a number of direct flights from Paris, Madrid, Amsterdam and from London. The Airport is then only a 15-minute drive into the town. You can also take a direct airport shuttle, which departs every hour and costs 1.60 euros.
The city is located only 2 hours west of Marseille and 3.5 hours from Barcelona and Nice. Montpellier offers ample parking options with combined public transport services. There are a number of indoor and outdoor parking lots, with direct access to tramway lines 1, 2 and 4, as well as a range of local buses.
The main train station Montpellier-Saint Roch TGV, located right in the city centre. There are direct trains to Montpellier from Paris, Barcelona and Brussels.
The easiest and fastest way to get to Rives Du Lez is by the city tram, which runs every couple of minutes. Fares are only 1.60 euros for a one-way ticket but try and bring exact change as the ticket machines do not give you any.
Avoid taxis if you can. They are expensive. You can also jump in an Uber, as there are plenty around zipping people back and forth to the entrance of the venue.
Montpellier offers dozens of housing options that include hotels, hostels and bed and breakfasts. To make your planning as easy as possible, take a look at the map here.
La Conciergerie Martinkey’s is in the city center with a beautiful terrace overlooking Montpellier. It’s a great spot to relax with a drink after a day on the river. Citadines Antigone Montpellier is also central and a modern hotel offering apartments with a small kitchen if you prefer to eat in sometimes.
Getting around Montpellier is fairly simple. The Montpellier Mediterranee Airport (MPL) is the closest landing point to the event which includes shuttle buses and tram stops for passengers without a car.
The relatively small city has several convenient transportation options including cars, taxis, buses and trams. The Montpellier Tramway is a great way to get around town, considering it contains the biggest tram network in practically all of Europe. Although it is considered a walking city, some of the stations even include bike rentals for added convenience.
FISE Montpellier 2022 will take place on May 17-21, 2023.
Plan ahead: Book your perfect trip with our France travel guide and destination information. Does France require a visa? Check the visa requirements before you get caught up during your travel.
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Spend money wisely: Take public transport and dine in from time to time are common saving tips during traveling. How to spend money wisely in France? Make use of technology. There’s an app for everything.
The best and most unique action sports and adventure events in France
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