The Luberon is a Provençal painting where the palette holds intense saturated colours. Red in Roussillon with its Colorado, lavender as far as the eye can see, golden-hued stone that built the most beautiful villages in France. On board for a brief glimpse of what lies in store…
They cling to the hill and dominate the world … Go to meet them, and discover, just 40 minutes from Avignon, the detour of authentic streets, breathtaking views and unforgettable sunsets!
Sénanque Abbey, a haven of peace
Cistercian monks took 60 years to build Notre-Dame de Sénanque, in 1148. Sénanque was the fourth Cistercian abbey founded in Provence. It nestles in a narrow valley that is 1 km long and just 300 meters wide. The choice of its location is closely linked to the stream that flows through the valley, the Sénancole, a word that comes from the Latin – Sana Aqua – (healthy water) and which also gave its name to the abbey. Sénanque Abbey was at its height in the 13th and 14th centuries, and slowly waned in the 16th century, until its final decline at the time of the French Revolution.
Its history was tumultuous, and in 1921 it was ranked as a Historical Monument. In 1926 a small community of monks re-established the Abbey’s religious vocation, and since that time has thrived there. They grow lavender, olives, keep bees and give tours of the Abbey. There is also a monastic shop and accommodations, which help the monks meet their needs.
Welcome to the Provençal Colorado, land of a thousand colours
Red, orange, yellow, mauve and brown. The pigments in the Provençal Colorado are warm and deep. In this part of Vaucluse, just a few kilometres from the town of Apt, the ochre industry shaped the landscapes imparting harmonious beauty. Cliffs, box canyons, wind-eroded earth pillars and hillsides all show the result of ochre mining in the 18th century. The ochre quarries were gradually abandoned over time, and today form part of a vast stretch of countryside where hiking paths take you through stunning beauty. Four kilometres of former quarries and breath-taking views await you amidst geology reminiscent of the greatest Westerns!