When I think of the south of France, I think of blue skies, open roads and pretty little villages. Our eight day road trip through the south of France felt like too short. I could spend months there without getting bored exploring all the different villages, each unique in their own way.
If you are planning a trip through the south of France then you must visit the villages below. I assure you that they will blow your socks off. The best way to visit a village is by meandering the alleyways away from the centre to get a glimpse into the French life.
This village derives its name from the brown-orange colour of its soil. The houses and buildings are of a similar colour which gives the impression that you are perpetually seeing a sunset.
Rousillon is very popular with visitors and that is reflected in the village with a few shops geared for tourists but all in all this is a pretty authentic village with beautiful scenery.
The owner of the B&B we stayed told us about this village and advised us not to miss it.
I was so glad that I took him on his advice. This village is simply beautiful, with the slow pace of life, narrow alleyways with houses and small shops. There was a market on the day we were there and if there is ever one thing you should do in Provence, it is visit on days when the local market is on. Not only does it make for very good souvenir shopping but the atmosphere is all that I had assumed of villages in France.
If you happen to catch the local market, make sure to try some of the delicacies. I had some of the best madeleines while browsing the stalls.
Moustiers Sainte Marie
We stumbled onto Moustiers Sainte Marie and it was the highlight of our road trip in Provence. We arrived in the afternoon and spent a few hours wandering through the village, browsing the little shops, talking to locals and admiring the beautiful scenery.
Moustiers Sainte Marie is in my opinion a must on any road trip through Provence. It is on the path to the Gorges du Verdon, so it makes a wonderful pit stop.
Perched on a hill, the village of Gordes seems to come straight out of a medieval dream, with it’s castle and churches.
If you are going to Gordes, make sure to check out the “Senanque Abbey” for one of the most beautiful lavender fields that I have ever seen.
Every child in France (and in Mauritius) has grown up listening to the famous song “sur le Pont d’Avignon” which translates to the on the bridge of Avignon. This song meant that I had been dreaming of going to Avignon for nearly two decades so it was a dream come true to stroll in Avignon and yes even on the famous bridge.
Avignon is a must on a road trip through Provence with the nearby vineyards, the gorgeous scenery, the Palace of the popes and of course the UNESCO listed Bridge (Pont Avignon).
With its river running down the village, L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue has been given the moniker of Venice of Provence and to be perfectly honest, it truly does deserve the name.
This is such a beautiful village with its quaint riverside café and the weekly Sunday market. I could happily retire in this village.
Contrary to all of these villages, Eze is not part of Provence but rather part of the French riviera. I just had to mention it because it is so pretty.
Perched on a hill Eze overlooks the Ligurian sea and is a sight to behold. The pace in Eze is quite tranquil and mellow that you cannot help but relax, especially with the scenery and the views.
I had an amazing time on my road trip through the south of France and I am sure you will too, especially if you put any of these villages on your itinerary.
What are your favourite villages in France?