Lavender of Provence

Nothing quite prepares you for the beauty of Provence in summer. If the sunshine and blue skies over dramatic hills, glittering beaches and endearing little village houses do not convince you, a visit to a Provence lavender field will. Lavender blooms between June and August and harvesting begins in mid July. Early July is the most reliable time to see the lavender at its best but the exact time depends on which region you visit. The Plateau de Valensole, north of Antibes and the Plateau de Sault, north-east of Avignon, are the two main areas for lavender. High above the warmer coastline the Plateau de Valensole is the largest lavender area. Good places to explore the lavender and nearby Gorge du Verdon from include Moustiers Sainte Marie and Riez. Sault offers a good base to explore the Plateau de Sault from.

Lavender field near Bonnieux, Provence, France

There are many other pockets of lavender dotted across Provence to be enjoyed. The most photographed lies before l’Abbaye de Senanque, just to the north of Gordes. There are many others, including some small fields near Bonnieux and Apt, which can conveniently be enjoyed between visits to the nearby villages. The best way to visit the lavender areas is to hire a car and drive yourself as public transport is sparse.

L’Abbaye de Senanque, near Gordes, Provence, France

Provencal lavender is not only celebrated by visitors to the region, Lavender fetes showcasing lavender take place around the region in July and August. Products made from lavender include cut lavender, lavender oil, soap, honey, and scented sachets, and are widely available throughout Provence.

Lavender at Bonnieux market, Provence, France

The distinct scent and true colour of Provence are immediately apparent from the edge of a lavender field. Seeing the lavender is an essential part of any visit to Provence and one not to be missed.


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