The small Provencal town ofLorguesis
situated about13 kmsfrom Draguignon, about an hour’s
drive from Cannes or a little less from StTropez. It is
situated in the Var, awine
producingregion of Provence
and is a pretty town with lots of history, ranging back to medieval times and
with some earlier Roman influences. Basically it is an old fortifiedtown, with a great
number of old buildings, with vaulted tiny streets and arch ways all joined
together but often painted different colours, most with the typical Provencal
shutters painted in pastel colors. The Church of St Martin dominates the
central part of the town and is one of the largest in the war.Lorgueshas over 20 historicalmoments, most of
which can be seen if youtake thewell
markedwalking tour set up by the
walk takes you through leafy squares and streets, mostly sun dappled and
protected by the huge Plane trees that predominate. Many of the buildings
date from as far back as the 12th century,
with the clock tower and bell of the 12th century being well worth a
look. There is theFountainof
nutswith its distinctive dolphin statues
and plaquescommemorating events
inLorgueshistory going back to the 13th century
and also showing theLorguescoat
of arms, a dog and a lion denoting strength and fidelity.
There are a couple of notable
sundials in the town, one of which is opposite the huge St Martin church so is
subsequently in shade for much of the time, a slight design fault there then!.
There isalsosome history of the
nights Templars being active in thetownfor those interested
in such events.
The Tour De France came throughLorguesin 2009 and cycling
and walking remain very popular pastimesfor the local
and tourists. The surrounding countryside which is typical Provence, is
stunning and from the mountains behind the town it is possible to see down to
the sea. There is also tennis and a swimming pool for those that do not have
access to Private Villa facilities.
from the famous rose wines of the area, olive trees make up a good part of the
landscape and oliveoilhas been produced in the area since
Roman times, so a great many old olive trees can be seen. Some of these
are thousands of years old, and you can sometimes see them for sale in garden
centres, but the cost is staggering, you can pay over 3000 euros for aspecimenof over 1000 years old.
St Tropez is easily reachable as a day trip, as is Cannes,
but beware traffic at peak times. It is probably best to have access to a
car whilststayingin the area as public transport is not
verywell developedin this comparativelysparsely populated area. It is
alsoadvisableto look to rent a villa in the area,
as the hotels are not always up to theinternational
standardswanted by the modern
tourists. Although many can be charming, the ability to sink into ones
private swimming pool after along
day exploring or at the beach is somethingworthpaying for. There are a number
of companies locally that specialise in rentals, best to find an English speakingagency otherwise, unless your french
isreallygood you can runintotroublewiththerentalcontract.
Getting toLorguesisreasonablysimple, it issignpostedfrom theA8motorway which runs
along the coast. Thenearestairport is Nice
International airport which serves a number of UK airports including all 4 in
London, Liverpool, East Midlands, Bristol and Manchester canalsobe reached daily, and
there are also regular flights to New York, Montreal, evenMoscow and Dubai.
We have a new charming property situated in the small village of Maubec in the Luberon, close to the many delightful hill villages and activities which this
area offers. There is a small food shop in Maubec, and more in nearby
Coustellet. The villages of Oppède-le-Vieux, Gordes, Ménerbes and Bonnieux are
all within a 15 minute drive.
Although a village house, it is hidden from
view behind a stone wall, and accessed by electric security gates. Within the
walled garden is a swimming pool (9 x 5m, heated on request) with pool house,
and beyond this a lovely covered terrace from where the views to the Luberon
mountain range can be enjoyed.
The building is divided into two parts the
main part comprising the living area, tastefully decorated with antique
furniture, and equipped with satellite television, and two bedrooms. The second
part houses the other three bedrooms and a typical provençal living room,
opening to a covered terrace. There is air conditioning in the bedrooms, and the
property also has internet access.
For more information click here or have a look on our website - www.cdvillas.com
In theBouchesde Rhone (the mouth
of the Rhone) is the medieval Provencal village ofBourbon. It is a typically
pretty and ancient village for which Provence in the south of France is noted. The
architecture ranges back to Roman times with many medieval additions making the
tiny streets, arch ways and various nooks and crannies a very attractive prospect
for the exploring tourist.Like many villages in the area, it has fortifications
from long ago. Bourbon has a fortified castle which dominates the village, with
a very interesting guards hut called Le Gardette, beside
the PorteLoriolas you enter the
There is a 14th century statue of
St Christopher, the patron saint of travellers. Further along on Rue Barri,
there is the remains of an 11th century with its keep and defence towers, but
sadly that is all that remains. The church of St Anne dates from 1626 and the
chapel of St Marcellinhas Roman antecedents
and is the place where the annual bottle procession starts each June 1st.
is a really nice traditional festival which happens each June 1st in the
village. All the locals bring a bottle of their best wine and meet at 7pm then
follow the priest to the chapel for it to be blessed by the priest, then they
all open the bottles and drink some of the wine. I say some, because it is
expected that you re-cork it when you have finished, with the idea that you
save the rest for the next procession next year, but I don't think this degree
of denial would suit the normal British tourist! It is supposed to ward
off stomach ache, fevers and other illnesses and it is said that the
congregation then return to the village and are uplifted and jolly, but I
suspect that means they may be drinking more of the wine than the priest would
condone! It is a nice tradition though.
There is walking, horse riding
and a number of summer events, the festival of StEloibeing the most
significant, which takes place on the 4th Sunday in August each year.There is
also a market each Monday where you can buy locally made ceramics, olive oil
products and the local rose, for which Provence is justly renowned. then in the
last weekend of September there is a bullfighting festival.This is not a
spectacle that is revered by most Brits, but it is a long-held tradition of the
area, and the locals enjoy it, so who are we to interfere with anage
to the area is tricky unless you have access to a car. Public transport hardly
exists and taxis are scare.The nearest airport is Marseilles which has flights
to a number of destinations including the UK and much of Europe, but if you
want an intercontinental flight you would need to travel to Nice International
Airport some 2 hours away.
Twenty five miles east
of Avignon, betweenCarpentrasandCavillionin
deepest Provence is the must see town of Isle
Provenc al villages are almost
without exception pretty places steeped in history going as far back as Roman
times and sometimes further and Isle De la Sorgueis no exception. The locals call it an island city, but
island town is nearer the mark, nestling
in the plains ofComtatVenaissinat the foot of the plains ofVaucluse,
It is quite a large entity by Provencal standards and is busy all year around.
The several canals that
run through the village are what really define its island character. There are
a number of quiet and small streets running through the village, many with small rivers or
streams running through them, it is a delightful place to walk around with almost every where
that soothing sound of running water to calm the senses. There are a number ofmoss
coveredwheels which hark back to an earlier time when the power of the
river was used in the local industries which were the creating of silk and the
manufacture of paper from the verdant forests of the area. This is now no
longer the case.
Isle De LaSourgewas once a famous cray fishing
centre, with a reputed 35,000 crayfish caught each day at its height, but now
adays the tourist is king and the shops tend to have local produce, especially
olive oil and the local rose wine in abundance, although some crayfish can be
found for sale.
Art galleries now abound
in the village including the famous Maison HotelDonadeldeCampredonbuilt
inthe 18th century, now converted into a museum showing such great
artists as Miro,Mauguinand
Dufy and a display area dedicated toRenéChar. Isle
De LaSorgueis also a renowned centre for antiques with a reputed 300 shops or
dealers located in the town.
The highlight of the antiques season is both
the Easter break and 15th August when antiques fairs are held with up to 500
dealers descending on the town.But back to the history,
the Collegiate Church of Notre Dame desAngeshas an exceptionally fine Baroque interior and the old pharmacy
has an interesting collection of Moustierfaience,
whatever that is, I asked some locals but none could explain it, but as it is
displayed in a pharmacy it must have some medical application.
Many other pretty
village abound in the area,Cavillionis worth a visit as isCarpentras, in fact there are dozens of relatively unknown places to explore
in the area.
Getting to the area
requires a car. Public transport is not verywell
developedand it would otherwise be very difficult to visit the other
villages in the area. The nearest airport isMarseilleswhich
has some international flights and is about 70kmsdistant.
A little further away is Nice International Airport, which has flights to many
UK airports including all 4 London airports, and offers flights daily to New
York and Montreal, plus you can fly direct to Moscow and Dubai as well as most
provincial French towns and Paris.
This recently converted mas is located in the centre of the very pretty
village of Maussane, which lies in the heart of Les Alpilles and a close
drive to both St Remy-de-Provence and Arles. This very attractive
property, is just a few short steps from the wonderful sun drenched
village square with shops, bars, a wonderful weekly market and some very
fine restaurants, all very close at hand. The house lies behind a quiet
and secluded courtyard and has a pretty, partly lawned garden, an
enclosed 8 x 3m alarmed step pool with decking surround and independent