Sénanque Abbey
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The Ultimate Provence Lavender Route

04/30/2021

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Summer is the lavender season in Provence! From the French Riviera to the foothills of the Alps, the Provence lavender fields start to turning purple, and it is a wonderful show to see and smell.

To get the most out of the lavender season in Provence, there are different Provence lavender routes, which help you get to see as many lavender fields as possible. This 5-day Provence lavender itinerary from Avignon is our favorite, and it will take you through some of the most beautiful Provence lavender fields and other iconic attractions in the Pays de Sault and Luberon (Vaucluse).

Be aware that the lavender season in Provence is not the same everywhere, and it depends on the altitude of the terrain and weather conditions during the previous months. For this Provence lavender tour, come in July to see the Provence lavender fields in full bloom. In some of these places, however, the lavender continues to bloom until early August.

For more information on the main areas, the type of lavender to see, and best tips, check out our quick guide to the lavender fields of Provence.

This Provence lavender route is one of the most beautiful road trips in France. Click here for the best road trips in France.

Provence Lavender Tour Overview

  • Start: Avignon
  • Finish: Avignon
  • Duration: 5 days
  • Suggested Route: Avignon – Sault – Roussillon – Avignon
  • Total distance: 183 km, 3.5 hours drive minimum
  • Regions covered: Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur
  • Best for: sightseeing, and natural sites.

Provence Lavender Route Map

Provence Lavender Tour Map Made with Google My Maps

Click here to view this Provence Lavender Tour Map on Google

5-Day Provence Lavender Itinerary

The starting point of this Provence lavender itinerary is Avignon. If this is your first time in Avignon, spend at least one day exploring this charming medieval city before hitting the road. If you need to hire a car, wait until the end of your stay in Avignon to pick up your rental car.

Click here to rent your car in Avignon

Day 1 | Avignon

Avignon - France

Avignon is one of the most beautiful French cities, with a rich medieval past. This charming historic city on the South Bank of the Rhône River was home to seven popes from 1309 to 1377. The Papal Palace, where they lived, is a jewel of civil gothic architecture and is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Enjoy one day in Avignon. Here everything is within walking distance, and you can easily explore the city while strolling through its small cobblestone lanes. Be sure to visit the Palace of the Popes and wander along the Pont d’Avignon (the famous bridge) or admire it from afar.

For your night in Avignon, book at the Hotel Cloitre Saint Louis Avignon. This hotel is located in a beautiful 16th-century building with original arches and vaulted ceilings surrounded by a beautiful garden and an outdoor swimming pool.

Click here to book your stay at Hotel Cloitre Saint Louis Avignon

Day 2 | Avignon Sault

Morning in Sénanque Abbey and Gordes

The first stop of this Provence lavender route is Coustellet to visit the beautiful Lavender Museum (276 Route de Gordes, Coustellet). This museum is a great introduction to the world of lavender in Provence, and it also has a good shop with excellent lavender-based products.

From Coustellet, take the D2 road to the Abbey of Sénanque, surrounded by one of Provence’s most iconic lavender fields. Here, the lavender fields are at an altitude of 350-700 m, mainly with lavandine.

Sénanque Abbey

The Abbey of Sénanque was built in the 12th century in Romanesque style, and it is possible to visit on a guided tour – but do respect the peace and privacy of the monks. Here, there’s also a shop to buy some lavender souvenirs.

After Sénanque, drive to Gordes, one of the picturesque hilltop villages of Provence, with the label Most Beautiful Villages in France.  Visit Gordes with its cobbled streets, pretty stone architecture, and little shops selling local products and all kinds of crafts. Gordes also has several places where you can have lunch.

In the afternoon, head to Sault, where you will spend two nights. In Sault, book a room for two nights at Hostellerie du Val de Sault, a property in the form of a small Provencal village surrounded by lavender fields. This beautiful place has an on-site restaurant, top facilities, and a swimming pool.

Click here to book your stay at Hostellerie du Val de Sault

Day 3 | Pays de Sault

Day three of this Provence Lavender itinerary is dedicated to visiting Sault and the surrounding villages. Pays de Sault is the capital of lavender in Provence. Less touristy than other Provence lavender fields, Pays de Sault is a good place to see the real Provençal lavender without the crowds.

Here, you will find a few boeries (traditional stone houses), and they look great in the middle of the lavender fields.

Morning in Sault

Sault is a charming Provencal village near the Mont Ventoux. Located at a higher altitude (800-900 m), summers are not as hot as in other places in Provence like Valensole.

Sault is one of the few places in Provence where you are 100 percent guaranteed to see lavender fields still in bloom in mid-August, whatever the weather. This lavender is never cut down before 15 August because that is the date of Sault’s annual Lavender Festival, during which a big competition is held to harvest the blooms using a sickle.

DID YOU KNOW? Sault also has a hippodrome, Déffends, which is the highest working one in France and holds horse races throughout the year. It also has a lavender field in the middle of the track!

Take the time to visit Sault. The lavender is present in every shop and all its forms. Sault also has several lavender-themed attractions, like the Arôma Plantes farm and distillery. The Sault market, on Wednesday morning, is also a colorful place to explore and buy a bouquet of lavender.

Hilltop Villages in the Pays de Sault

In the afternoon take the car to explore one or two of the hilltop villages around Sault: Ferrasières, Auriel, Brantes, or Monieux. Ferrassières hosts the first big lavender festival of the summer, on the first Sunday in July; Brantes is just in face of Mon Ventoux and it has an incredible view of it; the lavender fields with de village of Auriel in the background are wonderful.

From Sault, you can also drive up the mighty Mont Ventoux (1,909m) the ‘Giant of Provence’ for a stunning view and some fresh air, or take a tour through the Gorges de la Nesque.

Spend the night in Sault.

Day 4 | Sault Roussillon

Day four of this Provence lavender tour definitely has a red tone. Leave Pays de Sault to visit the Luberon, another very charming corner of the Vaucluse department.

Roussillon - Provence

Morning in Rustrel

Stop in Rustrel for a real change of scenery. Rustel belongs to the region around Roussillon famed for its dramatic, richly colored ochre landscapes. Here, you can walk in the Colorado Provençal a beautiful hike (1-2 hours) through cliffs and multicolored ocher rocks shaped by erosion but also by the work of men for centuries.

Afternoon in Roussillon

Hilltop Village of Roussillon - Provence

After Rustrel, drive to the village of Roussillon in Provence. On the way, you can stop at Apt, which boasts one of the largest and best street markets in the region (on Saturday mornings) and is renowned for its preserved fruits.

Roussillon is one of the most beautiful hilltop villages in the area. The village sits on top of cliffs of red and yellow clay, and the clay hills have been an important source of ochre pigment since the 18th century. 

After visiting the village, you can follow the Ochre Trail, a developed pathway through the ochre-colored hills of the former ochre mine.

Ochre Trail Roussillon

Roussillon is a small town, but it has wonderful places to spend the night. The B&B Bastida des Demoiselles is a good option, with an on-site restaurant and a beautiful garden with a swimming pool.

Click here to book your stay at Bastida des Demoiselles

Day 5 | Roussillon – Avignon

From Roussillon, drive back to Avignon, the last stop of this Provence lavender route. On the way, there are some pretty hilltop villages worth exploring: Lacoste, Menerbes, or Bonnieux. If you are not in a hurry, you can also decide to make a detour to Fontaine de Vaucluse for a drink or dinner in one of the places by the Sorge river.

So, what are you waiting for? Book this Provence Lavender tour today!

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