For many, Provence is the capital of luxury travel. At the south-eastern point of France, with borders along the Mediterranean Sea and Northern Italy, this beautiful region is famous for the glamorous lifestyle of its many guests. Home to the Côte d’Azur, or French Riviera, the luxurious resorts of Saint-Tropez, Cannes and Monaco both delight and amaze in equal measure, while the crisp blue sea is the perfect location for anyone looking to unwind on their break.
However, away from the high life of the region’s gleaming resorts, Provence is full of stunning natural beauty, much of it untouched or cared for in the traditional French style. If you’re looking for a different kind of holiday in Provence, check out these natural wonders that you could discover during your next stay at our luxury holiday villas South of France.
Referred to as The Giant of Provence, Mont Ventoux is an imposing mountain just north of Avignon. Over 6,000 feet high, it is the highest mountain of the region and is considered separate to the nearby Alps due to its height in comparison to neighbouring peaks. At its base, the area is known for its fertile farming lands, with vineyards and orchards scattered around the towns and villages surrounding it.
Mont Ventoux has a road leading to its peak, making it an excellent location for some scenic views across Provence. Alternatively, the mountain is known by cyclists around the world as one of the hardest climbs there is, making it perfect for active people seeking a true challenge!
The Ochre Trail
Located in Roussillon, east of Avignon, Le Sentier des Ocres is a walking path that takes you through some of the most fascinating natural lands in the whole of Provence. Sometimes referred to as the Provence Colorado, these paths take you through remarkable red and yellow pigmented cliffs where ochre, a natural clay, was once mined. These guided walks are accessible for people with various capabilities and help to explain the history of the region, while the views of the bright cliffs are worth the trip alone!
Located west of Nice and Cannes, the Verdon Natural Park is a sprawling landscape covering over 170,000 hectares. There is a selection of villages within its grounds, while the 1,000 kilometres of pathway means that there is plenty to discover.
One of the most famous sights in this region is the Verdon Gorge, seen as one of France’s best natural wonders. The canyon stretches for around 25 kilometres alongside the Verdon River, famous for its dazzling colour from which it takes its name. The bright green-blue water is stunning from every angle, whether you’re viewing it from the height of the gorges or paddling down its stream.
As you’ve already discovered, Provence is a region full of astounding colours, from the orange of the Ochre Trail to the blue of Verdon. However, for many, the region is synonymous with the soft purple of lavender, which means that a trip to Valensole is an absolute must! The commune of Valensole is located on the western border of the Verdon Natural Park and is renowned for its lavender production, the crops painting fields in their unique hue during their peak times of June and July.
The rolling fields are mostly open, meaning that you can stroll through these vibrant patches and enjoy the feast for the senses that Valensole is. There is also a range of other crops widely grown in the area, such as sunflowers, which only adds to the region’s splendour.
These are just some of the natural wonders you can discover in Provence, a region of France full of beautiful locations and serene landscapes. If you’re looking for more ideas for your holiday itinerary, take a look at our recent blog on the top places to visit in the South of France.
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