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If I were a friend, Provence would be one of those who, despite not having seen her for a while, welcomes you cheerfully, cheerfully and calmly, a quality that only great hosts can boast. She is used to the trajín, but he who does not bother and even becomes pleasant.See 10 photos
The ten most beautiful villages of Provence
When you leave it behind, it is also one of those that says goodbye with a smile, and you, somewhat affected, you get dumbfounded looking at it from the distance thinking about seeing it again …
The ocher of Roussillon. © Getty Images
15.00- We arrive in the Provence region from the Marseille airport . It must be said that the best way to get around here is to rent a car, everything is close but there are so many corners that it is necessary not to miss any.
In Provence there are two things that you cannot ignore: if you go between June and August, lavender fields are essential and, throughout the year, the Roussillon ocher colors . We start with the last.
This geological virtuosity is a true wonder of orange, ocher, yellow and reddish colors. The beauty of these deposits is the result of the combination of work between man and nature.
To admire it you can opt for different visits, the first is in the town of Roussillon, where you can walk through its quarries, also in its old town where all its facades are a rainbow of ocher difficult to forget.
If you want to know more you can go to the old ocher treatment factory in Okhra (Conservatoire et Pigments Appliqués); or, the ocher mines, Mines de Bruoux, in Gargas .
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17.00- In June, July and early August, its biggest claim is the extensive lavender fields . An authentic purple show that you can discover in the Vaucluse region, one of the main producers of lavender. By the way, the majority is used to make essential oils and is grown from 600 meters of altitude on the slopes of Mont Ventoux .
There are many lavender farms, but the recommendation is to approach Sault, the town of lavender and, from there, make the visit that you want. For example, in its ecological distillery you can visit the fields, learn how to make soap; Or you can visit the Jardin des Lavanda by Catherine Liardet where you grow a variety.
Lavender in the Vaucluse region. © Getty Images
20.00h - Although more and more restaurants adapt to all kinds of schedules, in Provence you will have dinner soon so you have to get down to work. As we are in Roussillon we choose La Treille, a small restaurant in the heart of the town where local cuisine is a reward after a long day.
The night takes a special grace in its outdoor garden and ends at La Maison des Ocres, a small hotel in the village, recently restored, and in which to continue to appreciate the ocher colors of Roussillon. It has an excellent pool and breakfast, so you just have to enjoy them.
10.00- The day in Provence spreads, but to spread even more, you have to wake up early, well asleep and calmly, because here you do not live otherwise. We go to the land of vineyards, which also know a lot about this in the region.
The main strain of the Rhone Valley is Garnacha, which arrived from Spain in the fifteenth century, and finds in southern France the ideal conditions for cultivation.
There are different activities related to the vineyard but we choose to visit the Aureto winery in Goult, with magnificent views of the entire Luberon natural park. Its 36 hectares, 28 of which are vineyards, surround Coquille Village, a family estate from the 11th century.
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15.00- Since 2017, the production of wine in Aureto is completely sustainable, as well as the treatment of the waters they use. A tasting with a small lunch is one of the most wonderful things you can do in Provence, follow the instructions of the meter Aurélie Julien and you will not fail. Without a doubt, adding some cheese to the tasting makes the experience unforgettable for the palate.
If what you need is to relax even more, you can make a small getaway to one of the best spa in Provence, Coquillade Village, a five star hotel in Gargas . It is a luxurious 1, 500m2 spa with indoor pool, Turkish baths, steam baths and rest room in its gardens. You don't have to stay at the hotel to enjoy it.
L'Isle-sur-la-Sorgue. © Getty Images
16.00- The next stop on this route is L'Isle sur la Sorgue, undoubtedly one of the most picturesque and beautiful places in Provence. This city traced by the arms of the Sorgue River is like a small Venice where water is the main source of wealth.
From the eighteenth century until now, it has been the one that has boosted the local industry of the city, especially silk, textiles, oils, dairy … It is nice to walk through its cobbled streets with its low houses with colorful windows and small Craft shops. In fact, L'Isle sur la Sorgue is the third most important European city in antique dealers, behind Paris and London, as it has more than 300 antique dealers right now.
Logically, it is full of galleries and stores for relic seekers, in addition to its well-known markets almost every day of the week.
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18.00- We visited one of its main novelties, the new Brun museum by Vian Tiran. This manufacture of noble fibers is one of the symbols of L'Isle sur la Sorgue, with 200 years of history, and a tradition for the know-how that has passed from generation to generation.
Pierre and Jean Louis Brun, father and son, are responsible for this important museum in the city, in which they present all the work they do with the raw materials that they later turn into tasty household blankets, carpets, scarves, etc. . The importance of their work is that they themselves look for fibers all over the world, helping to conserve some of the rarest species on the planet.
So they work with virgin wool from the Arles and the Alps, also from Australia, New Zealand; Merino wool in Argentina, South Africa, etc. In addition to wool, they also work with natural mohair, alpaca, cashmere from Iran and Mongolia, yak …
17.00- This city is full of art! The Villa Datris Foundation is an indispensable stop in L'Isle sur la Sorgue if you like contemporary art . The building that keeps it is the typical Provencal of the nineteenth century so it is worth visiting, as well as its quiet garden inside.
Le Domaine de Palerme. © Domaine de Palerme.
10.00- There is little left to leave Provence but there is still the best. The first stop of the day, and perhaps the favorite of the whole trip, is at Le Domaine de Palerme, a beautiful bed and breakfast in L'Isle sur la Sorgue.
Here the Nobel Prize for Literature, Albert Camus, lived for some time during the 50s, and it is not surprising that he chose this house with more than 200 years of history, since it is an authentic oasis of peace .
Karin and Eric restored it in 2013 and, right now, it is also a hotel, a place for events, weddings, ect. Its magnificent pool is ideal to stop the world for a couple of days, the garden with a hanging hammock, a wonder to enjoy reading, and its terrace is perfect for enjoying an outdoor picnic . Did you know that in Provence the picnic is an art? We order a basket at Pastisserie Jouvaud, which consists of two puff pastry tarts, one with vegetables and one with candied fruit.
The city of the Popes, Avignon. © Getty Images
13.00- The next stop is in the city of the Popes, Avignon . In the 16th century the history of the Vaucluse region, Provence-Côte d'Azur-Alps, takes an unexpected turn as the papal court is installed here. Seven popes will reign for a century, revolutionizing the physiognomy of the city.
Avigno is concentrated mainly inside the walls, where the majestic Palace of the Popes is located, a fortress with the vestiges of a 12th century bridge over the Rhone . The bridge is split in half, but the picture in the distance is less attractive. By the way, a group classified as World Heritage by UNESCO, which highlights the importance of Avignon in the Christian era.
Who would say in 1300, when its construction began, that today it would host the most important Festival in the city ? The month of July is one of the most idle for Avignon as jazz concerts, classical music, theater are held …
It is worth taking a walk around the Palace of the Popes and touring its historic center, which is completely pedestrianized. And reach the gardens behind and contemplate the views of the river, the Rocher des Doms park and its gardens.
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15.00- One of the most beautiful streets of Avignon is Rue de la Bonneterie with small concept stores, modern vintage shops and restaurants on the river. An unforgettable ride!
Another way to get to know the city is to approach Les Halles, the market and lung of life of Avignon . It is curious how much can be learned from a region in a market.
Sit down to eat at Cuisine Cent'Halles, opened in 2017 by American chef Jon Chiri, his hand in the kitchen is a must. Another option for wine enthusiasts is Le Carré du Palais, which in addition to a restaurant is a winery and wine school. It is very nice to see dusk on its terrace overlooking the Palace of the Popes.
If you want to stay one more night and continue to know more corners of Provence, the recommendation is Avignon Grand Hotel at the foot of the city walls.
The Palace of the Popes of Avignon. © Getty ImagesSee 10 photos
The ten most beautiful villages of Provence