Here's a list of other related guides that you may wish to discover.Provence
Grand Mimosa Parade. Expect to see an explosion of yellow if you’re visiting Bormes-les-Mimosas in February – well, even more than you’d usually see. Every year, this pretty medieval village with its sea-facing harbor and small beaches organizes a tremendous floral procession using around twelve tonnes of yellow sprigs and 80,000 flowers to parade through its winding streets. With a different theme ever year, there’s always something new for spectators, and with an accompanying brass band and flower battle at the end, the atmosphere is thrilling. So, why mimosas? As the name suggests, the village is surrounded by the bright yellow buds, and is also on the ‘Route du Mimosa,’ which sees an annual inter-village celebration of this humble little flower. The romantic sounding 'les Mimosas' was only added to the town’s name in 1968 – an acknowledgement of what a big part the shrub plays in the life of the village. Set on a steep hill, take a wander around – there’s plenty to see, from boutique shops, pretty houses decorated in flowers, piazzas and the surrounding forested Maures Mountains.
During June and July each year, the cultural hotspot Aix-en-Provence holds one of Europe's best opera and classical music festivals, the Aix-en-Provence International Festival of Lyric Art. Concerts and other performances are held in several theatres throughout the town, and in the historic Courtyard of the Archbishop’s Palace.
Avignon Theatre Festival Every July, Theatre, Dance and Music acts gather to perform on the Palace’s open air stage in front of thousands of people, and the result is really quite majestic. There’s also an Avingon Off Festival – a fringe festival with avant-garde plays, street acts and folk performances.
Recontres d’Arles Seeing life through a lens is exactly what you’ll be doing if you visit Arles photography exhibition in July. Founded in 1970, this yearly event has become one of the most important events in the photography calendar, which over the years has seen the likes of Ansel Adams, Andre Kertesz and Nan Goldin on its programme. With over 60 exhibitions taking place at various venues around this lovely Provencal city, including 12th-century chapels, notable museums and ancient sites, it's an inspiring event. Boasting an international following, Recontres d'Arles has gained worldwide acknowledgement, and shows material never seen before. This is a must-do for any lovers of photography. Festival Veraison (middle age reenactments)
Les Suds d’Arles Roman monuments, an incredible amphitheatre, charming squares and narrow streets make Arles, the largest city in France, the perfect place to hold a music festival. Every summer for a week, this Provencal town sees music concerts take place all over the city as part of Les Suds d’Arles. Whether it’s in the fantastically-preserved amphitheatre, the Court of the Archdiocese or the Cour de l'Archevêché, you’re in for a treat. Proceedings start at 10am in the morning, with daytime concerts free and the evening concerts to be paid for. And to add to the festival atmosphere, dance and music courses take place alongside the Nuits des Forges where live music and video creations are designed for the festival.
Chateauneuf-du-Pape medieval festival Step back in time in one of Provence’s most celebrated wine villages, with a charming medieval festival. Every year on the first weekend of August The Feast of the Veraison takes place in Chateauneuf-du-Pape to honour the first harvest of the grapes - veraison meaning ripening. As the grapes turn from green to purple, locals and actors take to the streets dressed in their medieval finery. Street-performers, jugglers, magicians and minstrels provide constant entertainment alongside knights’ tournaments, pitched battles and even arts and crafts. It’s a sight to behold for the whole family. And then there’s the wine of course, which should be savoured, along with crusty bread, shallots and garlic olive oil. For those really wanting to soak up the atmosphere, there’s a special evening at the beginning of the festival, including a guided tour, a dinner and of course, wine-tasting.
Lavender Celebration- Sault Think of Provence and glorious images of lavender fields may well spring to mind. It’s an iconic scene, and one you will find in abundance around the little village of Sault. Perched along a ridge, the fortified village is blessed with wonderful ancient buildings, the remains of a huge castle, and many open squares lined with cafes, from which to enjoy Provencal village life. Then there’s the wide verdant valley it overlooks, where, in the summer, the lavender fields burst into bloom. Surrounded by mountains, it’s quite a sight. And what better way to celebrate this momentous occasion than with a day dedicated to the calming purple plant. So, on the 15th August, Sault is heavily-scented as a competition of 19th-century lavender-cutting with traditional scythes takes place, unique products and authentic dishes made with lavender are made and sold (lavender ice-cream anyone?), and there’s even a parade. Children are encouraged to join in too, with games and pony rides organised to keep them happy. Lavender has long been used in cosmetics and soaps, but visit Sault in August and taste it in honey, on meats and in sorbets for a truly unique taste. And don’t forget your camera, the view of Sault is mesmerising…
Green Olives Festival, Mouries ‘The olive tree is surely the richest gift of heaven,’ or so thought Thomas Jefferson. If that’s the case, you may well want to head into Mouries in September for a little slice of this heaven. Taking place on the leafy main street of this Provencal village, you’ll get to sample the local olives to your heart’s content, including the famous Salonenque. Local producers bring a number of other traditional products to market for variety and accompaniments – think macaroons and cheeses. The people of Mouries are extremely proud of their association with olives, and use traditional methods, cold and unfiltered, giving it that unique taste. And how do they celebrate the harvest? With a festival, of course. Apart from local producers tempting you with their olives and other produce, there’s a traditional olive-breaking contest on the Saturday afternoon and a Provencal parade on the Sunday morning, adding to the jovial atmosphere this festival brings. You may also experience the bull ‘cocarde’ where a bull decorated with rosettes around its horns enters a ring, while young men dressed in white try to remove them. This little village certainly knows how to throw a celebration!
The Bandol Wine festival - a wine festival with a twist. Not only does it take place in December, but most of the wines are ‘work-in-progress.’ Yet, this is one of the most celebrated wine festivals on the calendar. In the lovely port town of Bandol, this unique event sees dedicated winemakers really get into the spirit of things by dressing up and serving wines straight from the barrel. Though many of these wines won’t be ready until spring, it’s a great indication of how they might turn out. Here wine lovers will come to taste the legendary Bandol wine, learn about the Mourvèdre grape and understand just what it is that makes their deep reds so distinctive. Grab your wine glass at the entrance and make your way around the stands soaking up the atmosphere! If you want the opportunity to taste a finished bottle, head over to the Maison des Vins opposite the casino.