Wanderlust – Exploring Les Alpilles in Provence

roman chapel in ProvenceOur Wanderlust Wednesday series is one of my favourite features of the week, as we get to explore new areas of France from the comfort of our homes, whilst mentally adding them onto our wanderlust lists. Today we are off to explore Les Alpilles in Provence with the help of luxury wedding and event planners based in South of France, Lavender & Rose.   But first if you have missed out on any of the wanderlust series during the busy summer season, they don’t forget to check up here.

Exploring Les Alpilles in Provence

The Alpilles is an area of national park in Provence spanning between Arles and Saint-Remy-de-Provence to the South West and North West respectively, along to Orgon in the North East and the outskirts of Salon de Provence to the South East. Nestled between the Rhône and Durance rivers with the Camargue to the West and the Luberon to the East, the Alpilles is also the name of the mountain range that runs approximately 20 kilometers through the national park.

Les Alpilles in Provence M&JImage by M&J Photography


Featured in Van Gogh’s “Olive Trees” painting, the low limestone mountains covered with olive and almond trees, shrubs and vines are characteristic of the area. An improbable mix of arid and fertile, providing a stunning backdrop especially at sunset when the light is softly diffused behind the low level mountains.

Provence landscape Alexander JamesImage by Alexander James


Chapel Saint Sixte

Located just outside the village Eygalières, the Chappelle Saint-Sixte is a roman chapel dating back to the 12th century. Framed by cypress trees, the Chappelle Saint-Sixte is considered by many to be one of the symbols of Provence along with other famous sites such as the Abbaye Notre-Dame de Sénanque.

roman chapel in ProvenceChapel Saint Sixteview from Chappelle Saint-Sixte Images by M&J Photography


Eygalières is one of many picturesque villages in the Alpilles. Take a stroll around the historic part after a rosé-fuelled lunch at the superb local restaurant Sous les Micocouliers.

must see places in ProvenceEygalières in Provence village in Alpilles ProvenceImages by M&J Photography

Mas de la Rose

A lovely boutique hotel & restaurant located between Eygalières and Orgon. The chef creates seasonal menus and uses as much produce from his vegetable patch as possible.

boutique hotel in ProvenceMas de la Rose Mas de la Rose wedding venue hotel Mas de la Roseseasonal food in Provencefood in Provencerestaurant Mas da la Rose Images by M&J Photography

Sycamore Trees

The road leading to Saint-Remy-de-Provence is one of the most magical in the area. For several kilometers, sycamore trees line each side of the road forming a natural arch, letting just enough glowing Provence light through. May to September the trees are at their most luscious, the bare winter branches certainly don’t have the same effect!

Sycamore Trees Image by Alexander James


Author of “French Essence: Ambience, Beauty and Style in Provence”, “My French Life” and lifestyle blog vickiarcher.com,  Vicki Archer is one of many people to have fallen in love with the ever so chic town Saint-Remy-de-Provence. Her beautiful townhouse “Le Petit Bijou” has been restored using antique delights from the region and is available for vacation rental. Her property Mas de Berard where she spends most of her summers is a dream come true.

vicki archer home, My French life

Image by Colin Poole for Vicki ArcherMas de BerardHoliday rental in ProvenceImage by Carla Coulson for Vicki Archer

Château d’Estoublon

Owned by the Breitling family, the Château d’Estoublon is one of the most famous vineyards in A.O.C Baux de Provence wine country. As well as its reputed wine, the estate produces excellent olive oil. Certain “crus” are packaged in giant perfume bottles. The Château has recently undergone a total renovation of the façade and luxury accommodation is in the process of being constructed ready for summer 2017.

Château d’EstoublonImage by Rory Wylie

Château d’Estoublon Image by Alexander James

wedding vineyard ProvenceImage by Alexander James

Baux de Provence

Classed as one of the most beautiful villages of France, the Baux de Provence is carved into a limestone mountain and has spectacular panoramic views over the surrounding countryside. Believed to date back to 6000 BC, today, the Baux de Provence is a national heritage site and the Château at the heart of the village has been reconstructed to resemble its medieval period.

Baux de ProvenceImage by C. Recoura

Carrières de Lumières

Located in a disused stone quarry at the foot of the Baux de Provence, the Carrières de Lumières is a futuristic exhibition space showcasing visual art in the form of light projection shows. The themes of the shows change on a regular basis but are all centered around fine art. The romantic painters Michel-Ange, De Vinci and Raphael are currently being showcased and the new Chagall visual art exhibition begins in March.

Set to music, the fine art light shows as well as the permanent nature themed spectacle are incredibly moving, really an experience for all of the senses. Brad and Angelina visited the Carrières de Lumières several years ago when they were looking for a property in Provence and fell in love with the concept so much that they looked into creating their own modern art gallery in a similar stone quarry space.

Luxury Hotels

For keen golfers and those in search of a luxury hotel in a relaxed environment, the Domaine des Manville offers exceptional golf, a spa, gastronomic restaurant, five star service and both hotel and luxury villa style accommodation.

Domaine des Manville

Domaine des Manville in ProvenceImages by Alexander James

At the Hameau des Baux boutique concept hotel, rustic is combined with modern in beautiful harmony. The rooms located in a former chapel and pigeon loft are particularly charming.

Hameau des Baux

Image by Feather and Stone

boutique hotel in Provence

Image by Marianne Taylor

Hameau des Baux

Image by Marianne Taylorluxury wedding hotel in ProvenceImages by Marianne Taylor

Oustau de Baumanière is an excellent Relaix et Chateaux hotel located at the heart of the national park, featuring the Michelin star Oustau restaurant and the more relaxed Cabro d’Or.

Alpilles Villages

Although less glamorous than some of the Luberon villages such as Gordes and Bonnieux, the numerous villages and towns in the Alpilles area of Provence are full of authentic charm and really feel lived in. Maussane-les-Alpilles, Fontvieille, Mouriès as well as the Baux de Provence and Eygalières are all well worth a visit. Try one of the numerous restaurants in the Maussane-les-Alpilles village square and don’t miss the top class Bistro du Paradou as well as the Aux Ateliers Chez Franck & Flo for summer outdoor dining.

Villages in ProvenceVillages in South of FranceAlpilles Villages ProvenceImage by Alexander James

Find out more about luxury planners Lavender & Rose here and view Lavender & Rose weddings here.

Snapshot of Exploring Les Alpilles

Exploring Les Alpilles in Provence

To explore other areas of France, see our other
Wanderlust Wednesday features here

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