Like many other French regions, the Provence was one Roman territory. Its name comes from the Latin word for a province. Its history has seen changes of power, the most recent being the Vatican and the Duke of Anjou. It eventually became psrt of the region Provence-Alps-Côte d'Azur.
Provence is, without a doubt, famous worldwide for its sunny mountain plateaus filled with the scent of the lavender fields. The Route Napoleon (N85) passes Castellane, Digne and Gap and is one of the most popular scenic drives. Popular rivers are the Durance and the Verdon, which passes through one of the most impressive gorges - the Grand Canyon du Verdon. It differs from the American gorge of the same name because of its greenness and pleasant climate. In addition, the drive to lake Ste. Croix is very impressive.
The north western area of Provence is called Vaucluse, which originates from Latin and means closed valley. It is also home to Mont Ventoux which, at 1909m high, can be seen from faraway. The best way to the windy summit is to approach from the south. The route up by bike is only recommended for professional cyclists, others will need a car.
Facts about Provence
The lavender fields in the Provence turn purple in the summer and the sweet scent fills the air. Apart from roses, mimosa and jasmine, lavender is the most popular plant in the perfume industry that has the city of Grasse at its centre. Over 60% of all French natural aromas are produced here and roadside stalls can be found on every bend. The oil produced from lavender flowers is also an important ingredient for some medicines. In all, it is a very versatile plant, even the tales about a lavender love potion could be true...
Provence in short
Size: 31,500 km2
Currency and language: Euro, French
July August Average temperature 28 28 Hours of sun 11 10
Distances: Castellane - Grenoble (N85): 224km Avignon - Digne-les-Bains: 197km Marseille (airport) - Castellane (Gorges du Verdon): 181km
Recommended (low cost) airport: Nîmes, Nice, Avignon.
The pope's palace on the banks of the Rhône dates back to the times when Avignon was the pope's residence and is an impressive building. The famous bridge from the children's song "sur le pont d'Avignon..." is next to it. Along the Route Napoleon (N85) there are stalls where you can buy small bottles of perfume. Visit Die, Digne or Forcalquier. A visit to the Grand Canyon du Verdon and the red-coloured Luberon mountains are well worthwhile.
All taxes are subject to change until the fare is paid in full.