Provence offers a rich and diverse landscape, from endless lavender fields to bountiful vineyards, rocky hilltop villages and dazzling Côte D’Azur waters. With stunning port towns, major landmarks and rich countryside, Provence is a popular region of France that very much epitomizes the Mediterranean dream destination.
The region enjoys a delightful Mediterranean climate, with hot, dry summers, mild winters, and an infamous wind called Le Mistral which particularly affects the Var and Bouches-du-Rhône departments during winter and spring. This southeastern province of France stretches from the Italian border on the east, to the Rhône River on the west. Marseille is the capital of Provence, the Cote D’Azur is situated to the east, hugging the Italian border and Avignon sits on the west side of Provence.
Avignon, the historical capital of the Vaucluse region, has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site due to its medieval architecture and Roman ruins. Palais des Papes dominating the Avignon cityscape, is today one of the most important medieval gothic sites in Europe. The abandoned Pont d’Avignon, dating back to the 12th century, is equally as mesmerizing. Today, Avignon annually hosts many significant art and theatre festivals.
When to go
Summer in Provence is a wonderful season. If you visit slightly early, in March and April, you might not get beach weather, but you will find the temperatures ideal for cultural sightseeing and exploring the region. From the end of June to August is when the lavender fields burst into deep blues and purples - definitely worth the putting up with the warmer weather. Besides, you might want to head south to the beaches on the Riviera while you're in the area.
What to do
- Tour Avignon's massive medieval fortress and papal palace, Palais des Papes
- Visit the Carrières de Lumières art gallery
- See the Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild
- Swim, boat or canoe on Lac de Sainte-Croix
- Take a trip to the French Riviera