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Provence

Panorama of Saint-Rémy-de-Provence in the South of France 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!

Explore this beautiful town located south of Avignon in just 48 hours! Read the entire story here…»

 

Panoramic view of the city center of Avignon The historic city center of Avignon

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!

In this article, we’ll show you how to make the most of your visit to the city in just 48 hours. Read the entire story here…»

 

Aerial picture of Aix-en-Provence Aix-en-Provence from above

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.

This article will take you around Aix-en-Provence in just 48 hours, and show you what the city has to offer! Read the entire story here…»

 

): Picture of Marseille’s Vieux-Port and the Notre Dame de la Garde The Vieux-Port of Marseille with the Notre Dame de la Garde in the background

As the 2nd largest city in France, Marseilles has more than a few attractions to offer! The city offers an exhilarating combination of the old and the new. Marseilles was founded over 2,600 years ago, which makes it the oldest city in France. This can be seen in the different architecture throughout the city: from the ancient Abbey of St. Victor to the Hôtel de Ville and Notre Dame de la Garde, Marseilles’ history is all around. Contrastingly, Marseilles is also very much a city of the new: it is known for its French hip hop and rap music, for example. The Mediterranean city boasts many cultural influences, and has become quite the melting pot. In 2013, Marseille will even be the European Capital of Culture! There’s no better time to visit Marseille, but where to begin?

To give you a little taste of what the city has to offer, we’ve assembled a guide to spending 48 hours in Marseilles! Read the entire story here…»

 

The Camargue, South of France The Camargue, South of France

Do you want to enjoy some of the most authentic pleasures of the South of France and none of the hassles? Then pack quickly and waste no time heading for one of the most well-preserved and enchanting places on earth: Camargue.  South of Arles and west of Marseille, this natural paradise will make you feel miles away from the relentless crowds and countless cultural events that characterize the more famous destinations in Provence and the French Riviera.

In Camargue, you will find experience a marshy plain, rice paddies, salt pans, wild white horses, black bulls and 400 different species of birds, including the pink flamingo, which is the honored symbol of the area. Officially declared a National Park over four decades ago, this proud region and its inhabitants fiercely defend the unique flora and fauna while still warmly welcoming adventurous visitors. Traditions are kept alive too as the annual Gypsy Pilgrimage, whose main ceremony will take place on May 24-25 this year, can attest. Read the entire story here…»

 

Aix-en-Provence Aix-en-Provence

Comics’ fans rejoice… and hurry to Aix-en-Provence where the Comics Fair is taking place during the months of March and April. More famous for its high-brow opera festival that takes place every summer, the urbane city of Aix does not mind letting its hair down in the spring for the “Rencontres du 9e Art” (Encounters of the 9th Art). Possibly driven by the free-spiritedness of the student population attending the prestigious local university, or simply by a deep-rooted appreciation of the popular comics, Aix has opened the doors of its museums, galleries, schools and libraries to the world of comic books and strips.

Whether you’re already a die-hard aficionado or just an open-minded learner, you just cannot miss such a golden opportunity to mingle with established and budding authors, corporate publishing houses and independent publishers, like-minded amateurs and curious novices. Read the entire story here…»

 

Sometimes there’s nothing more satisfying than combining hedonistic pleasures and environmental correctness, and that’s just what you can do if you decide to go to Marseille from March 12-17 and attend the 6th World Water Forum, organized by The World Water Council.

Marseille from the Sea Marseille from the Sea

A major undertaking that is as daunting as necessary, the World Water Forum has been mobilizing creativity, innovation, competence and know-how when it comes to water from 180 countries every three years since 1997. This is where all stakeholders work together on today’s local, regional and global issues to come up with a common set of goals for the future. Read the entire story here…»

 

Valentines Day Valentines Day

One of the most romantic civilizations in the world, you’d think that the French hold a special place in their hearts for Valentine’s Day.  And sure enough, even if the occasion does not bring about a spectacular explosion of pink knick knacks and cute teddy bears, the day is still celebrated with all kinds of festivities.

The scopes of the celebrations vary widely, but if you had to pick one this year, it would have to be the “Festival of the Kiss” (La Festo de Poutoun) in the lovely medieval town of Roquemaure, in Provence, also known as “The Capital of Lovers”, from February 10 through 12. During those three days, several events will take place such as a commemoration of the arrival of Saint Valentine’s mortal remains in 1868 with more than 800 costumed people, horse-drawn carriages and horsemen forming a parade that will go through a town immersed in the 19th century with its shops, post office, open air market, gazebo, merry-go-round and, of course, Lovers’ Fountain, meticulously decorated as they were back then. Read the entire story here…»

 

Equestrian Equestrian

The delightful medieval town of Avignon in Provence has a couple of undisputed reasons that can explain its World Heritage Site status: its beautifully preserved historic center surrounded by its no less historic ramparts, the stunning Palace of the Popes, still quietly dominating the area after eight centuries, and it broken bridge, the pont Saint-Bénézet, immortalized in the popular French children song “Sur le pont d’Avignon”. Its world-famous summer festival focusing on the performing arts has also put it on the international cultural map once and for all.

However, if you happen to be there in January 2012, do not miss the “Cheval Passion” event, an annual must for all horse lovers and those who wish to become better acquainted with this noble animal. From January 18 to 22, 2012 Avignon will become the European capital of the equestrian world with about 1,200 horses, 250 exhibitors and more than 100 000 visitors. You will be able to sample a wide variety of disciplines such as training, harnessing, acrobatics and horse-ball, which give the perfect opportunity for many different riders to get together and compare notes. You will be able to mingle with cowboys, republican guards, acrobats, whisperers, hikers, artists and competition winners while enjoying some magical shows at night fall. All in all, 90 hours of entertainment have been organized for a memorable experience! Read the entire story here…»

 

Every year the same challenge stubbornly comes up: Looking for a way to start the New Year that will be different from the previous year and a little more memorable too. Well, search no more because New York Habitat has just found the right combination of beauty and sunshine while getting back in shape in one fell swoop!

A walk along the Blue Coast of France A walk along the Blue Coast of France

Few places are as picturesque as the Blue Coast between Marseille and Carry-Le-Rouet, and this little paradise will be all yours from December 29, 2011 to January 1, 2012 if you decide to sign up for the 4-day hike organized by the Arcanson company, which will take care of all the arrangements. Between sky and sea, you will enjoy the famous calanques, typical fishing villages, all-round unique landscapes, a guided tour of Martigues, also known as “the little green Venice”, a side escapade to the Frioul Islands and, for the brave souls, an opportunity for a no doubt refreshing dip in the Mediterranean!

Before and after this memorable adventure, you can explore the rest of this fabulous area. Whether you like exciting urban centers like Marseille, with its ancient past and modern vibes, or prefer to bond with nature further up or down the coast or in the surrounding countryside, you will not have a dull moment. The climate is mild, the food is tasty and the scenery unforgettable, so do not wait another moment to start planning. Read the entire story here…»