Climbing Mont Ventoux - on two wheels or two feet?

Down in the south of France, Mt Ventoux has long been a popular choice for cyclists, hikers and anyone up for an adventure. Culminating at 1912m of altitude, there’s a myriad of adventures to be found on its slopes with breathtaking views a given. This jewel in the crown of Provence has got you covered, by road, gravel or mountain bike, or even on foot if you’d rather!

Mont Ventoux by gravel bike

Leave the road behind!

Climbing Mont Ventoux by gravel bike is a unique way to really see the Giant of Provence. Unlike the classic road ascents, the trails enable you to explore the path less travelled, crossing wild and varied landscapes en route.

From the pine forests of the lower slopes to the rocky terrain as you approach the summit, each and every km reveals a new facet of this iconic peak. The gravel paths around the summit offer a technical and physical challenge for any cyclist up for adventure. But don't panic, you’ll find wide and friendly trails too - there’s something for everyone!

GravelUp is a travel company that specialises in gravel bike trips, in fact that’s all we do! So we are best placed to take you on a three day gravel adventure from Sault to the heart of Provence, where we’ll get right off the beaten track onto some of the local’s favourite trails, which we’ll follow all the way to the summit of Ventoux!

👉 Check out all our trips to Ventoux HERE

👉 Or do you fancy riding somewhere else? Download our Trip Directory

Mont Ventoux by road bike

Which way to climb this iconic mountain?

Climbing Mt ventoux is a right of passage for road cyclists across the world, and with good reason. Theres 3 roads that lead to the summit, which will you choose?!

  • From Bedoin
    The most famous of the three, this road climbs up the south facing slopes of Ventoux for 21.8km, climbing 1617m in the process. It’s also the most infamous and most challenging (thanks to some notorious steep ramps) and often features in the Tour de France. For 16kms the roads winds its way through oak and pine forests, before the lunar landscape and panoramic views of the summit take over.

  • From Malaucene
    Equally as challenging, climbing the north facing slope also has plenty of changing gradients

    to deal with over the course of the 21.5km to the summit, averaging out at between 7-8%.

  • From Sault
    the longest of the climbs at 26km but with friendlier gradients, climbing the east facing slope from Sault takes you through lavender fields followed by beautiful pine forests. Often seen as the easiest of the three, this road is a little quieter than the others.

The Cingles of Ventoux - the ultimate challenge!

For those on the hunt for the even more of a challenge, the Cingles de Ventoux is tacking all three climbs in one day, making for a ride of 137km with almost 4400m+ of climbing.

Mont Ventoux on foot

Ventoux is also a paradise for hikers thanks to the variety of paths you’ll find in rich and diverse environment. Here’s a few hiking ideas around Ventoux for you:

Mont Ventoux from Chalet Reynard - a 10km hike that will take you to the summit without too much climbing by starting at the famous Chalet Reynard. Warning - good footwear is essential as the paths to the summit are incredibly rocky!

Mont Ventoux from Bedoin - for more experienced walkers, this 15km one way hike climbs right to the summit via exposed cliffbands, dense forests and alpines meadows. A challenging route that’s well worth the effort for the views across Provence.

Mont Ventoux via the Grands Pins and the Henry Fabre trail - a beautiful 16km loop of the summit starting from the ski resort of Mont Serein and do-able all year round (with snowshoes in winter!). Once you’ve climbed to the summit, you’ll descend the north face on the GR4 national trail to find the Henry Fabre interactive trail. A great way to explore all the facades of Ventoux in one go!

If you ‘d like to find out more about our other destinations you can check out our Trip Directory here.


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