Provence boasts some of the most picturesque villages in France, if not all of Europe. From cozy stone houses with terracotta rooftops to astounding castle ruins atop rocky outcrops, the South of France has it all. Often outshone by the famous cities in the area, these lesser-known villages make amazing holiday destinations for every visitor. Whether you’re looking for a tranquil village among fields of lavender for a relaxing holiday, or a seaside village with beautiful beaches and amazing seafood restaurants, you’ll find them in Provence!
In this article, we’ve compiled a list of our favorite villages in the area that all have something special to offer. Without further ado, here are our top 10 villages to visit in Provence:
The striking ochre deposits near Roussillon in Provence
To start off with a quintessential Provence town, try Roussillon, a community which epitomizes of provincial life. The town is located east of Avignon on a hilltop, providing the most beautiful views of the surrounding National Park du Luberon. The town only has about 1,300 inhabitants, but it is very popular among tourists for the ochre deposits, or ‘sentier des ocres’ that surround the village. Though the ochre is no longer mined, it is possible to visit a former mine and walk through the ochre-infused landscape. It’s easy to see why the area is referred to as the ‘French Colorado’! The town itself is basically one big homage to the ochre that surrounds it, as the houses all have hues ranging from yellow to orange to red. The best time of day to visit this picturesque village is right before sunset, as you’ll get to see the houses change between the most brilliant of colors in the last sunlight of the day. Read the entire story here…»
The picturesque town Saint-Rémy-de-Provence in the South of France
Saint-Rémy-de-Provence is the quintessential Provencal town: it is filled with narrow winding streets and sun-filled squares, and surrounded by fields of sunflowers and the Apilles mountain range. The town was immortalized by Van Gogh in his famous painting The Starry Night, painted during his stay in Saint Rémy. Nowadays, you can see what inspired the celebrated post-impressionist painter by walking down the streets of the historic city center!
Avignon is a great center of culture and art located in the Provence, South of France. It’s often called the “City of Popes”, because Avignon was the seat of papal power for over 70 years in the 14th Century. It’s been centuries since the Popes returned to Rome, but you can still see their influence in the beautiful architecture and art that you can find in Avignon to this day. The grand Palais des Papes is an ever-present example of the influence of the Popes in the city. Avignon is also one of the few cities left in France that still has its original medieval ramparts that encircle the city center. Inside the historic city you’ll find a vibrant cultural life, which reaches its climax in July when Avignon plays host to one of the biggest performing arts festivals in Europe. During the rest of the year, the Mediterranean climate, sunny squares filled with café terraces and amazing southern French cuisine make Avignon a city to remember!
The Promenade des Anglais and Mediterranean Sea in Nice
Nice is one of the most beautiful cities of the French Riviera. Located roughly between Cannes and the Italian border, Nice lies right beside the Mediterranean Sea. The city was named after Nike, the Greek goddess of victory, by the Greeks who founded the city around 350 BC. Today, Nice is considered to be the most popular city in France among tourists after Paris. It’s not difficult to see why: from its sun-filled avenues and lovely climate to its famous Promenade des Anglais and amazing location right on the Mediterranean coast, Nice makes a fantastic holiday destination!
In this article we’ll show you around Nice in just 48 hours to give you a sense of what holidaying in one of France’s most famous resorts looks like! Read the entire story here…»
Aix-en-Provence is one of France’s most beautiful cities. Located in the South of France just 30 kilometers (19 miles) north of Marseille, the city is known for its gorgeous architecture as well as its vibrant culture. Aix-en-Provence’s large student population (the city has 3 different universities) explains its abundance of cafes, bars and clubs in the city center. When it comes to culture, Aix-en-Provence has a lot to offer, as it was the hometown of famous painter Cézanne.
In this first video tour of the South of France, we’ll explore the thriving city of Montpellier! Montpellier is located on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea, just 200 kilometers (125 miles) northeast of the border of Spain.
The city is well known as a summer holiday destination, but Montpellier is also very attractive to visit off-season as well. Because of the mild climate it never gets too cold, and every year a winter holiday market is held in the city. Culturally there’s also a lot to see and do in the city, from museums to beautiful architecture. When it comes to shopping Montpellier definitely has a lot to offer, as the city boasts many boutique stores and big department stores. Lastly, Montpellier is also a student city, so the nightlife is very diverse. In this article we’ll expand on the Montpellier video tour and show you what Montpellier has to offer during the milder days of the year!
The Villefranche-sur-Mer beaches near Nice in the South of France
With the summer just around the corner, we thought it was about time to start writing about beaches! And it just so happens that the Mediterranean coast contains some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. Since we offer apartments for rent all around the South of France, we’ve come to know the area well. That’s why we chose to create a list of our 10 favorite beaches in the South of France, categorized by different areas: the French Riviera, Provence, the Montpellier region and even the Southern Alps.
Of course there are so many great beaches in these regions that it’s impossible to list all of them here, but we still hope this list can be of some use if you choose to visit the beautiful South of France! Read the entire story here…»
Saint-Tropez in France calls to mind glitter and glamour, celebrities, yachts, white sandy beaches, exclusive clubs and beautiful art all at the same time. The wondrous little town is located in the South of France along the Mediterranean coast roughly between Marseille and Nice. In the summer months, Saint-Tropez is flooded by jet setters from all over the world who come to enjoy a luxurious holiday. The tourists increase the town’s population by about 10 times in summer. When you want to be in the middle of it all, and dance the night away surrounded by celebrities in one of St. Tropez’s famous clubs, the summer months are the time to visit. However, if you prefer a little peace and quiet and would like to discover the Saint-Tropez that has attracted so many famous painters over the years, then make sure to visit the town off-season. Whether you choose to come in summer or in the other seasons, Saint-Tropez is a town you simply cannot miss when you visit Southern France!
In this article, we’ll take you on a two-day tour of Saint-Tropez, so you can get an idea of what 48 hours in one of the most famous towns of the French Riviera looks like. Welcome to Saint-Tropez! Read the entire story here…»
Please note that this article is giving an overview of the visas and other travel information to enter the United States of America and Europe, as of February 2013. New York Habitat advises you to contact your consulate or any other official government office before you travel outside of your country of citizenship in order to get the latest updated information.
Remember to pack your passport when travelling to another country
When you’re planning a trip to another county, the first thing you should look into is the entry requirements of that particular country. Often when you’re travelling to a country near you, the entry requirements are fairly easy to comply with. For example, if you’re a EU citizen travelling to another country in Europe, you often don’t even need to bring along a passport, as a valid ID will do. However, when you want to visit a country on another continent, the rules may not be so simple.
Because we offer apartments in New York City, London and France here at New York Habitat, we often receive questions about entry requirements and visas for the United States and Europe. That’s why we decided to post this article about the documents you need to travel to New York City, London or France. We hope to clear things up for you so when you go on a holiday to another country in the future you’ll know exactly what papers to bring! Read the entire story here…»
The South of France is often associated with summer holidays. While a beach holiday in Southern France can of course be fantastic, areas such as Provence tend to be very crowded in the summer months.
In wintertime, Provence is visited by way less tourists and has an entirely different kind of charm. The climate in Provence stays mild in the winter, so you can still explore the South of France at your leisure. It also doesn’t hurt that the prices usually go down considerably offseason. In this article, we’ll give you an impression of a winter holiday in Provence, and provide you with some insider tips on the best time to go shopping, where to stay in the wintertime, what to eat in Provence, and more! Read the entire story here…»
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