The area around the Mont Ventoux is located in Provence. It's amongst Europe's most popular holiday destinations in Europe, and with good reason. From early spring to late autumn the weather is good here. The food and wine are of perfect quality. There are plenty of activities, including of course cycling. Rustic villages, markets, beautiful cities such as Orange and Avignon. Fantastic nature. There are plenty of accommodations in every price range. And of course: the Ventoux. A mountain that is on the bucket list of every cyclist.
Around the Mont Ventoux, one can find numerous large and small villages. The three most famous of course are the starting points of the three sides of the The Bald Mountain. First of all Bédoin, south of the mountain. Of the three villages, the largest, and the most lively. But also Malaucène, on the west side, is an excellent base. Finally, there is Sault on the southeast side. This cozy village is known as the lavender capital of the world. The village is also a stone's throw from the beautiful Gorges de la Nesques. All three are excellent starting points to explore the area by bike.
The Provençal cuisine is world famous. It is characterized by the use of the well-known Provençal herbs. The local cuisine is famous for its stews with lamb. Sweet tooths should definitely go to Sault to taste flan (pudding cake). You can also try lavender ice cream in Sault. In the morning on a terrace the locals like to drink an cold Pastiche with ice. But the most famous are of course the wines. You can not drive a mile you see vines and a corresponding winery. Tasting is possible almost anywhere at the château. Lovers of white, red and rosé will find what they are looking for, although the rosé enjoys the most worldwide fame.
There are few regions more versatile than the area around the Mont Ventoux. You'll find flat sections, shorter climbs, longer climbs and of course the Mont Ventoux. Riding tours is dead easy and can hardly go wrong. Usually it is wonderfully quiet and roads are in good condition. Terraces are plentiful and a fountain to fill your water bottles can be found in every village. In short: this is a perfect region for training. The weather's something to think about. In July and August the weather's usually very good, but it can very hot (35 C is no exception). Departing early is the way to go. The Ventoux usually opens somewhere in May, but this varies from year to year.
This region breathes cycling. Whether in Bédoin, Malaucène or Sault, you won't actually find any hotels where cyclists are not welcome. Things like a bike shed and cleaning are are standard. In addition to hotels, there are of course numerous campsites. Keep in mind that this region is very popular, especially in the high season. If you want to go between the months of July and August, then booking is a must, even if you are camping.
If you think this region has nothing to offer but Mont Ventoux then you are wrong. Those who like to climb will find plenty of shorter and medium-length slopes. How about the Col de Perty, Col de Macuègne, Col de l'Homme Mort and the Col d'Ey? Or the beautiful and not too difficult diptych Col de la Suzette - Col de la Chaine, near Malaucène? Do you prefer long and not too difficult? Then there are no less than two world-class gorges: the Gorges de la Nesques and the Gorges d'Aulan.
On Komoot you will find a wonderful collection of routes. This region has so much to offer, it would be a shame to limit yourself to the Bald Mountain. Having said that, if you like a solid challenge, then a Cinglé du Mont Ventoux should not be missed: 3 times up, from each side 1x. Over 120 km and 4000 meters of climbing - just imagine. The collection contains something for everyone. Flat, hilly or high mountains. It's all possible.
Renting a bike is of course very easy in this region. Most rentals can be found in Bédoin and Malaucène, but also in Sault you can rent a bike. You can find in the major rental companies next to road bikes also MTBs, e-bikes, and sometimes even children's racing bikes and hybrids. Reservations are wise in the high season. Prices start at around 20€ per day for a middle-class road bike.
The MTB is an excellent choice to explore this region! Trails and routes at every level. Did you know that there are even several MTB routes on the Mont Ventoux? There are also countless options outside of that. Look for it on this website. On Komoot you'll find also numerous useful collections, such as this one and this one.
There is so much to do besides cycling around Mont Ventoux. Some examples
The Gorges de la Nesque is considered one of the most beautiful gorges in Europe. Good news: there's a road through it that you can ride along beautifully. Even more good news: the road hardly goes up (profile). You don't necessarily have to do this trip by bike. It can also very well by car, and in the gorge are several hiking trails. It is so beautiful and so photogenic that it will be unforgettable anyway. If you haven't done the Gorges de la Nesque when you're in this region, then you've really missed something.
The Provence is known for its local markets. Every village has its own market day. Visiting a market is an experience in itself. You'll find everything from meat, fish, cheese, seafood to textiles, Provencal tablecloths, ceramics, of course, but also hats, hammocks and sunglasses. Whether you go alone, with your cycling buddies or with your family, a market day is always fun. Of course with a terrace to end or just to warm up.
Vaison-la-Romaine is famous for two reasons: the beautiful Roman excavations and as the start or finish place of the Tour de France. The town is located about 10 kilometers from Mont Ventoux and is highly recommended for a day trip. After Rome you will find here the largest Roman excavation in Europe. Besides the excavations you will find beautiful squares (with of course terraces) and shopping streets. You can have a lovely stroll and relax. Also lovers of large French supermarkets will find what they are looking for in Vaison. If you go in the high season then it is advisable to arrive as early as possible, because parking space is limited.