For a cyclist the area is quite simply as good as you could possibly imagine. We’re actually extremely lucky in Devon with the range of riding we have and the beauty of the scenery. I’d even stick my neck out and say that, especially considering we’ve got more miles of roads than the whole of Belgium, the county council do a pretty good job of keeping them in a reasonable state.
However, France has a reputation for road quality which is with good foundation. Whether it’s because the French pay more tax, or because the government pays nothing maintaining the toll motorway network (leaving more money for other roads), it’s rare that you’ll find a poorly-maintained road here. And once you get into the Diois (the area around Die) and Vercors region, the mix of terrain and road quality is an absolute joy.
One of the best aspects is that you can make up a ride from virtually pan-flat (the Drôme valley road goes on for about 40 miles in either direction) or ridiculously hilly, with literally dozens of 1000m+ cols within forty miles.
Photos below come from one of the classic rides from Die: up the 20km Col de Rousset, over a few more cols to the Col de la Bataille, and back to Die via the Col de Bacchus and the village of Blacons.