Kittel (29) snatched his 10th Tour stage win in the streets of Liège, where the sun had returned after a long stretch in the rain. The peloton entered eastern Belgium coming from Düsseldorf in this 203.5 km stage.
Kittel, of the Belgian Quick-Step team, rolled out a royal sprint in the flat final stretch to beat the French champion Arnaud Démare and Germany's Andre Greipel. Britain's Mark Cavendish, looking to break Eddy Merckx's all-time record of 35 stage wins, came fourth.
Froome involved in a mass crash
Geraint Thomas of the Sky team held on to the Yellow, while his team mate and big favourite Chris Froome managed to finish in the pack despite being involved in a mass crash earlier on.
Froome's clothes and several layers of skin were torn and he had change bikes, but his team mates brought him back to the peloton. There was time to do so, since the crash happened some 30 km from the finish.
The third stage will depart from Verviers tomorrow morning. The Tour will leave Belgium again, with the stage finishing in Longwy, France.