Mont Ventoux is the highest mountain in Provence at 1909m/6263ft. Ventoux is known as the ‘Bald Mountain’ due to the bare white limestone surface of its peak which resembles snow. Visible from a distance it provides a stunning sight.
Named the ‘windy’ mountain from the Occitan ventor or ventour for windy because the winds can be extremely strong on the top. They often reach 320km per hour (200 mph) and blow, at admittedly more moderate speeds, most days of the year.
Geologically Ventoux is an Alp, although separated from the main body of the range. The poet Petrarch was one of the first since Classical times to climb to the top. However, nowadays its fame comes from its use as a major climb of the Tour de France Cycle Race. Indeed it was on the climb to the top that the British rider Tommy Simpson lost his life and a memorial to him can be seen on the approach to the summit.