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les baux, provence

Les Baux

Les Baux is a small village on the top a rock outcrop and surrounded by castle ruins. It lies in the Alpilles mountains and it has been listed as one of the most beautiful villages in France.

les baux, provenceThe picturesque small village welcomes every year millions of visitors and offers main important and breathtaking sites: first of all, the Castle ruins, on the top of the village; then, St. Vincent church, partly excavated in the rock, which contains several historical objects. You can also reach the lower town and visit some markets, or visit some specific museum, dedicated to ancient weapons and history.

In this village you can also have the opportunity to enjoy the so-called Carrières des Lumières, a permanent show where images are projected on the walls of galleries dug in the rock in order to plunge the spectator in a unique visual and musical universe.

avignon, provence in 5 days

Avignon

Avignon is a beautiful city manly famous for the Papacy which lasted from 1309 to 1377, when seven popes resided in the city.

avignon, provenceThe historic centre is part of the UNESCO World Heritage and the major sights are without a doubt the Papal Palace and the Saint-Bénézet Bridge. The first – in French, Palais des Papes – was the house of all the popes who lived in Avignon and shows the beauty and magnificence of Gothic architecture. It is composed by two buildings, the old and the new palace: they were the centre of the papal organization and power. Saint-Bénézet bridge lies on the Rhône: nowadays, you can only see four of the twenty-two arches that were built at the beginning, but the fascinating architecture is still intact.  Along with these two sights, you can visit the Avignon Cathedral, a Romanesque building listed as historical monument.

Yavignon, provence in 5 daysou can take a break at Place de l’Horloge, an elegant and typical square in the city centre, or in the Garden called Rocher des doms, a Neolithic site covered with a public garden.

Besides, the city of Avignon is also very famous for its art and theatre festival which is held in July in the Papal Palace, one of the oldest and greatest festivals in the world, and for wine and seasonal markets (along rue des teinturiers).

provence, valensole

Valensole and the Lavender

The lavender is probably the most known element of Provence: every year, lavender fields attract thousands of tourists from all over the world, for their colours, their fragrance and the amazing landscapes.

valensole, provence in 5 daysThe natural region called Plateau de Valensole is composed by small villages, local producers’ estates, small mountains and, above all, an infinite number of purple, yellow and green fields. This “lavender countryside” offers a unique landscape: there, you will feel free, relaxed and nature will help you to forget all the stress and the problems.

Lavender usually blossoms June to August  and can be used to create any kind of product: honey, essential oils, soaps, food and many others. In the area, you can also find many festivals and funfairs, along the way which links all the small villages through the lavender fields, such as Forcalquier, Castellane and Aiguines (in the latter, you can visit a beautiful chateau on the top of a hill).

VALENSOLE, provence in 5 daysBy foot, by bike or by car, there are several ways to enjoy the area and experience all  the different varieties of lavender: the rare and ancient lavender “des hauteurs”, that grows on the hills; the mixed “mosaïque” lavender, which grows next to vineyards and other plants; the well-known “site” lavender, which grown with cereals and plays a crucial role in rural landscapes.

Moving from this region towards Avignon, you will also have the chance to visit the famous Luberon villages: typical rural houses, ancient streets and seasonal markets will let you taste the real provençal flavour!