|Perched village of Gordes|
We’re off for a very leisurely 2 month stroll through Provence and the South of France. That’s what people do when they retire. They don’t hurry or run, they stroll. We’re plan to take our time and leisurely enjoy the glorious sights and smells of Provence, stopping often by the side of the road to enjoy the fields of sunflowers and lavender that grow in that region. And of course live the good life.
The truth be told, we already live the good life. The only difference is that we’ll be living the good life à la française. We’ve rented an old stone Mas (a French country house) a few kilometers north of Saint-Rémy de Provence. Saint-Rémy de Provence is located in the heart of the Alpilles region of Provence where we stayed on our last visit.
We’ll shop in the outdoor markets of small villages & enjoy the charm of the typical Provencal way of life. We’ll stroll along the boulevards under the shade of century-old plane trees, wander around narrow little streets, discover squares with fountains, and of course dine outside at many of their cafes and restaurants and sip wine and eat fabulous Provencal cooking based on locally produced products.
We plan to rise early each morning and walk with the locals to the village’s boulangerie for a fresh baguette and carry it home under our arm.
Perhaps later in the day visit the pretty lady in the patisserie to pick up a couple of flaky pastries or a tart (tart citron is my favorite) for the evening.
We’ll hum Starry, Starry Night as we walk in the steps of Van Gogh where he painted some of his most famous masterpieces in the plein air of Saint-Rémy & Arles.
While in Arles we’ll enjoy the Romans ruins of the ancient city & see where bull fights are held.
Seems the Romans were all over Provence. On our last visit we drove to the Pont de Gard, a Roman monument built halfway through the 1st century AD. The long aqueduct supplied the city of Nimes with water.
We’ve planned day trips from Saint-Rémy and will visit other villages such as Isle Sur la Sorgue, where the river Sorgue surrounds the city and walk along canals that run between the ancient narrow streets. Sunday is flea market day in Isle Sur la Sorgue and crowds come from all around looking for vintage items and treasures. Hmm, I should start my list now...
Perhaps we’ll visit the medieval village of Fontaine de Vaucluse again as one of our day trips and have a leisurely lunch overlooking the beautiful clear blue river that gushes by.
There are many perched villages in Provence. One of our favorites is the beautiful old village of Gordes, situated high in the southern edge of the Plateau de Vaucluse with its stone buildings built tight against the base of cliffs. Photo of Gordes shown in the beginning of the post.
Larger side trips include a visit north to Normandy see the beaches and also from Nice we plan to drive over to northern Italy and Modena in particular. Modena is famous for it's balsamic vinegar of course and it's also opera singer Luciano Pavarotti's home. But there's another reason to visit Modena. It also happens to be the home of Erzo Ferrari and the Ferrari factory. I'm sure we'll see plenty of shiny cars to ogle.
|Promenade des Anglais, Nice|
And of course throughout the trip we'll eat and sip wine until our hearts and bellies are content.
And visit a winery or two or three.
For those of you who follow My Carolina Kitchen on Facebook, you can catch me there as I will try to post some pictures from Provence from time to time while we’re away. Click here to follow on Facebook.
So we leave you with an à bientôt (see you soon) and lots of promises for many fun-filled posts about Provence when we return near the end of June. Take care everyone and we hope you have a lovely spring.
I will return early to mid July with posts about our trip and new recipes after we get settled in for the summer in the mountains.
See you then.
Sam & Meakin