Scottish soil played host to Stage 3 in 2012, but this year will again be centre stage as the 10th anniversary edition of the eight-day tour begins on September 15.
The opening stage will start from Peebles before heading south-west to finish with a one-lap circuit at Drumlanrig Castle, Dumfriesshire.
Key towns and villages along the 124-mile route will include Innerleithen, Selkirk, Hawick, Gretna, Annan and Dumfries. It will be the fifth time in the past six years that either the Borders or Dumfries and Galloway has played a role in the Tour. Drumlanrig Castle last featured in 2008 when the race departed from Glasgow Green.
As in previous years, it looks likely to be a route that will favour the sprinters; the former world champion Mark Cavendish won the Scottish stage in both 2011 and 2012.
The Tour will then leave from Carlisle to Kendal on Stage 2, travelling on through Merseyside, Stoke-on-Trent, Wales, Devon and Surrey before finishing with a 10-lap circuit in London on September 22. The finish will seem familiar to some among pro cycling's elite. In 2008, Sky's Norwegian Edvald Boasson Hagen, then with Team Columbia, took the top spot, pipping the Australian Matt Goss and South Africa's Daryl Impey, now both with Orica-GreenEDGE.
Last year's race attracted a crop of world-class talent including Cavendish, the Tour de France and Olympic champion Bradley Wiggins, the double Giro d'Italia winner Ivan Basso and the 2008 Olympic champion Samuel Sanchez.
Among the teams expected to take part in 2013 is the Scottish-German outfit, NetApp Endura, for whom Jonathan Tiernan-Locke claimed overall victory last year. Amateur riders will have the opportunity to tackle the route the previous day when the Tour Ride Scotland takes place.