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A view of the beautiful hilltop village of Gordes in Provence.

  TOP 10: 
  MUST SEE VILLAGES 

03/05/2018 08.52am, by Danni

Provence's rich history, architecture and life leads to no lack of beautiful must-see places to visit.

Provence is a region that stuns travelers with its breathtaking scenery, mouthwatering cuisine, and small-town charm. The area has always been a well-known spot for the rich and famous to holiday for a quieter and slower pace of life than in the glitzy and bright lights of St. Tropez or Nice.

Cassis

In reality Cassis is no longer a hidden gem as many travel here to experience the world renowned Calanques and the beautiful turquoise sea during the summer. This is the perfect spot to hire a boat or go on a tour of the coves and cliffs along the coast. And make sure to sample the local specialty, bouillabaisse, before you leave!

Avignon

Avignon is probably best known for its song famous bridge, pope's palace (yes the seat of the catholic church was moved here for some 70 years) and its amazing array of food and wine.

The old town centre is packed full of amazing architecture, museums, restaurants and cafes, however, the spectacular and imposing structure of the Palais des Papes, takes center stage. This amazing structure shows the wealth and influence that the church had of the town. Nearby is the well-known Pont D’Avignon.

For a sampling of the region’s flavors, taste your way through the Les Halles market, enjoy a drink on one of the sprawling patios, and peruse Avignon’s many shops.

Gordes

This village is often known as one of the most beautiful villages in France, it is a charming mix of quaint Provençal village and posh resort town. With high end boutiques as well as a lovely market during the week with local produce and clothes on sale.

From its perched position the views from this village are particularly stunning. In order to find the best views make sure to lose yourselves a bit in the maze of little alleyways and streets!

Another beautiful sight not to miss is that of the Abbaye de Sénanque, which is just outside the city, where monks still live and produce local honey and liqueurs. This beautiful Abbaye is picture perfect with its lavender fields sprawling in front and perfect for an injection of history during your trip.

Saint-Rémy-de-Provence

Saint-Rémy-de-Provence is seen as the heart of the Alpilles region of Provence, it has many boutiques with local produce, décor and gifts to take back home. It was favoured by many artists, most notably Vincent Van Gogh who spent a year here and produced many works including Starry Night.

Only a few minutes stroll from the centre are the ruins of the Celtic-Roman city of Glanum with its intact triumphal arch dating back to the first century B.C. And if you have a little more time then try to visit the lovely historical village of Les-Baux-de-Provence, only 10 minutes away!

Roussillon

The village of Roussillon has a unique colour palette unlike any other village in Provence, the vibrant colours of the houses come from the natural ochres found in the hills surrounding the village. So it is very likely to see houses in pink, orange, red and many other shades!

Walk through the canyon of natural ochres and admire this unique village from one of the many tiny sidewalk cafes. It is also perfectly situated in the Luberon region so that you can visit many of the surrounding perched villages.

Le Barroux

Le Barroux is one of the villages on this list that is the furthest away from the well-trodden tourist trails. This small village near the Mont Ventoux is seemingly one giant looping street, with impossibly narrow alleyways with gorgeous pops of colour in the shutters and doors.

The Château du Barroux, from the 12th century, sits on the top of a hill with the town circling its base, before giving way to sweeping vineyards and olive groves on all sides.

Vaison-la-Romaine

Vaison-la-Romaine is a charming mix of the old and new, with steep streets, local boutiques and historical sites. On one side you have the modern Vaison-la-Romaine and on the other side of the river, over the Pont Romain, you’ll find the older, original Roman settlements and the bulk of the town packed with al fresco cafes and shops selling the region’s lavender and olive-based products.

Ménerbes

Ménerbes has had its fare share of fame over the years with many celebrities of different time periods settling here, from one of Picasso's models to high profile businessmen and actors alike. Peter Mayle's writing has brought a lot of buzz surrounding not only Ménerbes but many of the villages in the Luberon region of Provence.

It is one of the most beautiful villages in France and it isn't hard to see why, with its cobblestone streets, typical provençal houses and stunning views!

Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer

This beautiful seaside town is a welcome relief from the heat in Provence, here you can take a dip in the seas to cool off quickly.

With a plethora of ice cream shops and restaurants, Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer is perfect for the foodie in all of us. Its unique seaside huts are stunning and there are many walks and horseback rides through the Camargue area surrounding this town.

Make sure to go flamingo spotting and admire the natural beauty that is the Camargue national park!

Uzès

Secreted away in the Gard department west of the Rhone River, Uzès is a hidden-in-plain-sight gem with as much authenticity as you’ll find anywhere in the dozens of small towns scattered over the Provence region.

The town seems to have gained the reputation of a hip hamlet, with many unusual and unique boutiques and houses throughout the town centre. It is a stunning place to visit and fortunately one that the throngs of tourist seem to have yet to discover!

Make sure not to miss the Saturday market as it is one of the best in Provence.

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