The towns and villages of Luberon, Provence
The region of luberon is divided into North and south by the range of mountains of the Luberon National Park. North Luberon, also known as the Golden Triangle is busier with tourism than the more rustic and tranquil south. The 2 areas are linked by the stuningly scenic canyon of the 'Petit Luberon' mountain range and compares to travelling from Provencal lavender fields to Provencal vineyards, via Colorado!
South Luberon - our neighbouring villages
Our neighbouring medieval village has rustic charm and a real taste of Provence. There are some great bars and restaurants around the focal point of the town, the huge stone basin. The daytime and evening markets, historical churches and castles are surrounded by 200 year old plane trees which give lovely shade while enjoying an aperitif or food from the market.
The castle of Ansouis sits at the top of this beautiful village and has been painstakingly restored following many conflicts between Catholics and Protestants over the years. The views over local vineyards and meadows are stunning and the labyrinth of narrow steep streets are a pleasure to wander, as well as the gardens of the castle itself.
Considered to be the most picturesque of the south Luberon towns and villages and the most popular with tourists. The castle is surrounded by poppy fields and the narrow cobbled streets are filled with excellent restaurants, bars and shops. The market is stacked with lovely local produce, arts & crafts, and is listed in many guides as one of the most beautiful towns in France
Lying just outside of Cucuron in the foothills of the Luberon massif and surrounded by wild countryside, the old town overlooks all the towns and villages of South Luberon. The village was used for scenes in the French films Jean de Florette and Manon des Sources as the setting and stone buildings captures the real essence of Provence
The castle and terraced gardens overlook the river Durance and vineyards to the south. The town offers tradtional Provence bistros and shopping and local vineyards have organised tastings and tours. The town was formed in Roman times and then inhabited by the Counts of Provence, with the grand facades and fountains give the town an imposing and historic feel
The Golden Triangle of Luberon
This hilltop village overlooks the whole of the Golden circle and has great views across the huge valley and National Park. The village was built in Roman times and sits at the northern end of the canyon linking South and North Luberon. The Lavender fields and cedar forest below contrast greatly with Mont Ventoux dominating the landsape in the distance.
This is the site of the largest Karst Spring in France and the fifth largest in the world. The Spring uplifts 700 million tonnes of water per year from underground and the spectacle can be viewed in the cave a short walk from the town. You can enjoy one of the many bars and restaurants for lunch alongside the crystak clear waters flowing past
This is a very popular town for it's views, situated on the hilltop and cliffs of the Monts de Vaucluse and overlooking the whole Luberon valley. The narrow cobbled streets and numerous cafes were popular with many french artists. Must sees include the 10th century Chateau, Pol Mara museum, Cellars of the St Firmin Palace and church and many other chapels.
The village has been restored over many years and has immaculately kept stone and ochre buildings linked by narrow arched streets and vaulted passageways. The ruins of the ramparts and the old mill at the top of the village overlook the whole valley. Goult epitomises the vision of a typical picturesque, traditional Provence village.
The Sorgue river splits to form this pictureque Island town, famous for it's riverside restaurants, antique shops and antique markets. The crystal clear waters split into many little waterways throughout the town making it a lovely place to stroll and take in the many art galleries, exhibitions, craft shops, bio delicatessens and street food.
The stone buildings and narrow warren of cobbled street climb steeply to the famous 14th century castle at the top of the village. The 11th century chateau was previously owned by the Marquis du sade and later renovated by Pierre Cardin along with many other buildings in the village. Famous painters, sculptors and poets have based themselves here for inspiration.
Another stone village built atop a hill crest and described by Nostradamus as a big ship drifting on a sea of vineyards and orchards. The village was made even more famous as the setting of the book 'A Year in Provence'. The pace of life is slow and is spent by the locals in the numerous cafes and bistros overooking the valley to the north, while playing cards & boules
The town, which is classed as one of the most beautiful villages in france is built on the Ochre path of red and orange cliffs which contrast spectacularly with the greens and blues of the surrounding orchards, vineyards and Lavender fields. There are numerous little streets and squares hosting art galleries, exhibitions, craft workshops and historical buildings
The beaches and coastline
Just an hour from the village:
Cassis - take a tour to the coastal inlet Les Calaques
Ensues La Redonne - An area shut off from cars (except local transport) - A beautiful coastal cliff walk dropping down into villages
Bandol - Famed for its vines, a very quaint fishing village
Les Baux de Provence
The historic site of the stone fortress sitting in the rocky hills of the Alpilles, has fantastic views over Arles and the Camargue. There are 22 historic monuments, shops, restaurants and galleries and is one the the best days trips in the whole of Provence
Aix en Provence
Formerly the capital of Provence and still the cultural capital, the town was home to many famous artists including Cezanne. The elegance of the Cours Mirabeau with the shady plane trees and the numerous backstreets offers a number of bars, restaurants and shops
Monday: Cadenet, Cavallon, Lauris
Tuesday: Cucuron, Pertuis, Gordes, Lacoste, La Tour d'algues, Lourmarin (evening market)
Wednesday: Uzes, Aix en Provence, Arles, St Remy de Provence, Merindol
Thursday: Goult, Menerbes, Peretuis, Lauris, Isle sur la Sorgue, La Motte d'Aigues
Friday: Lourmarin, Aix en Provence, Cassis, Cucuron
Saturday: Uzes, Isle sur ls Sorgue, Maubec, Aix en Provence, Arles
Sunday: Antiques in Isle sur la Sorgue, Ansouis, Aix en Provence
Sports & activities
Hiking and walking
GR 92 - just behind the house. A fantastic walk up to the summit or a more gentle walk in the National Park above the village
L'Abbaye Sénaque - A stunning chateau surrounded by lavender fields
There are just too many to mention as we are in a National Park. We have walking maps and books for you to use at the house.
Road biking - Hybrid bikes - mountain bikes
This is a renowned area for cycling around vineyards and lavender fields. We can advise on great biking routes, away from any busy roads with magnificent views and great drink and lunch stops. We can arrange bike hire and If you need transport for bags, bikes or people, we can arrange taxi services for you
Poterie Fusion Cabrières-d'Aigues
Atelier Ephémère, Ansouis
Atelier de couleurs - The spirit of furniture painting in Provence - Ménerbes
Wine tasting and Vineyards to visit -There are so many to visit but these are just a few :
Having been restored in 2013, this is a magical place to have lunch surrounded by artworks and then visit the vinification cellar and wine tasting shop. You are also able to book into an oenology course.
A glorious 18th century chateau. The chateau is privately owned and has recently been restored by Annemarie and Daniel Bagnis and their daughters. They have turned the vineyards into Organic vines and mature their wine with 2 different processes, new and old oak barrels and very unusually in terra cotta barrels. It was originally owned by Englishman William Chase. Today 60% of the estate is Syrah and Grenache for red wine and unusual for Luberon, Cabernet Sauvignon.
Chateau La Verrerie
The Glass Castle. A stunning chateau with delicious Rosé wines taste and then buy from their boutique and bring home to our terrace.
Golf in Provence
Golf International de Pont Royal
Golf de Luberon
Golf de Saumane
Golf de Sainte-Baume
Golf de Servanes
Golf des Baux de provence
Golf de Barbentane
Golf Chateau L'Arc
Golf club de Miramax
Domaine de Fontenille - Lauris Village
Things to do with young children
Kayakking on the Sorgue river
Grimmland junior amusement park
Grottes de Thouzon - caves
Accrobranche - Go Ape
Castles of Provence
Aqualand theme park
Magic land theme park
What to do if you want to discover history?
Château des Fouzes Uzés - where the Poles first cracked the Enigma code in world war II
Lavender: La maison Franc 1884 Lourmarin
Bread Museum: Chateau Canorgue Bonnieux
Where to go if you want to eat in amazing restaurants?
This is France and this is Provence. There are just too many options to list here, but rest assured that every village has an abundance of options from simple bio locally grown foods to michelin fine dining. Many restaurants sign up the Agribio association promising all produce is bought locally from farms and markets.
Traditional foods to try:
Truffles from November to January
Strawberries (la fraise gariguette)
Oysters and Mussels (Collected during the night and sold at the Cucuron market on a Tuesday)