23 June 2017 by Jessica Boston
Our Top 10 things to do in Provence
If you are lucky enough to be holidaying in Provence you can look forward to sunny weather, beautiful natural sites, history, culture and the glamour of the Cote d’Azur!
Here are our top ten ideas for things to do and see on your adventures in the South of France.
1. Carrieres de Lumières
This stunning art installation projects Chagall modernist paintings in a beautiful light show on the limestone walls of the caves and quarry at Les Baux de Provence. It’s an amazing spectacle that’s had rave reviews and not to be missed – a unique experience that’s fun for children, art-lovers and sceptics alike. Take a jumper as the cool caves can be a bit chilly even on hot summer days.
2. Gorges du Verdon
Voted the most beautiful natural gorge in Europe, this is the perfect place for hiking, climbing, canoeing or kayaking. The incredible views over the azure blue waters below are also great for keen photographers.
3. A choice of amazing Roman sites
To find out more read our in depth article about The Romans in Provence
4. Majestic Marseille
Visit the vibrant city of Marseille to eat Bouillabaisse and soak up the atmosphere exploring the port. You can get panoramic views over the city and the Mediterranean Sea beyond when you climb up to the Basilique Notre Dame de la Garde (if you don’t fancy the trek there is a tourist train from the Vieux Port).
5. The Carmargue Natural Park
This wonderful Carmargue Natural Park nature reserve is home to white horses, black bulls and pink flamingos all living wild in an unspoilt habitat that you can explore hiking, on horseback, or with a safari style jeep trek.
See our article for more ideas on spending A Day in the Carmargue
6. Villa & Jardins Ephrussi de Rothschild
Garden lovers will enjoy a visit to this early 20th Century villa set on the hillside overlooking Nice.
The gardens are designed by in a series of ‘rooms’ featuring different themes and species of plants. Discover the cactus garden, Japanese garden, Provencal garden, rose garden and many more. There is a magical atmosphere with a fountain and classical music display and the heady scents of the many flowers and herbs adding to your experience.
The property is also open to the public and was created in the style of a luxurious cruise ship, a perfect fit with the impressive sea views!
7. Go to the beach
It goes without saying that Provence has some wonderful beaches to visit. From glamorous resorts like St Tropez, Cannes and St-Jean-Cap-Ferrat to the huge unspoilt sands near Montpellier and Marseille there are plenty of options for sun-worshippers, water sports enthusiasts and sandcastle builders!
8. Take a wine tour
Provence has been making wine for over 2600 years! It’s famous for its rosé wines but you can also find good whites and reds produced here too.
Book a wine experience in Avignon, Nice, Marseille or the famous Chateauneuf-du-Pape or ask your gite owner for a local recommendation and take a tour of some vineyards before tasting the wines and getting a chance to buy your favourites.
9. Visit the markets
There are plenty of wonderful markets to explore in Provence selling everything from antiques and brocante to flowers, local arts and crafts and, of course, food! If you are self-catering local markets are a gastronomic adventure you won’t want to miss! L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue, Nice, Avignon, Cannes and Antibes all have regular markets that come highly recommended.
10. Ride the Telepherique de Mont Faron
This cable car ride into the hills above Toulon is a fun excursion for all the family. The views are superb and there is a restaurant at the top where you can enjoy a crepe before making your descent.