I happened to spend a couple of days on the French Riviera while I was on a training, thus I couldn’t miss a chance to go to Provence region to see lavender fields in blossom. It has been my dream for some time and I wasn’t disappointed! I combined my visit with the Verdon Gorge, I didn’t realize they were so close to Valensole. Nevertheless, you cannot improvise and just go at any time and expecting to see perfectly purple lavender field. The lavender season is relatively short so keep reading my tips below.
Lavender fields in Valensole
Whenever I think about Provence, I imagine endless fields of all the different kinds of plants and flowers. Did you know that the L’occitane-en-Provence products are manufactured in Manosque? The region of Alpes-de-Haute-Provence and especially Valensole Plateau is where you can encounter the most beautiful lavender fields.
WHEN IS THE BEST TIME TO SEE FLOWERING LAVENDER FIELDS ?
In Valensole region, lavender flowering begins mid-June and lasts until mid-August. My pictures were taken on the 17th of June. The lavender was not in its peak of blooming as the green parts could be seen. To my opinion, the best time to see the purple lavender fields are two first weeks of July. Due to the fact that the weather conditions are the determining factor for lavender harvest, do not hesitate to inquire the tourist offices before your trip as it may vary from one year to another.
WHERE TO TAKE THE BEST PICTURES?
Once we arrived in the area, we stopped at the first lavender field we saw. I was overexcited and didn’t want to miss any spot. The scent of lavender that fills the air is so pleasant that I could continuously drive the car with my head out. My best pictures are from D6 “Route de Manosque” road, precisely in the area that is the property of “Lavandes Angelvin” distillery and boutique.
If you have more time in the region you can visit this website for more information about other lavender routes. There is also an interactive map showing the flowering period by geographical area.
If you do not have a car and happen to stay in Avignon, Nice or Aix-en-Provence, you can opt for a half-day or full-day tour to see lavender fields with a return transport from one of the mentioned cities. I drop you the links below for direct booking:
Except for lavender fields, there are other nice spots to visit in the region. Situated at the entrance of the natural parc of Verdon, Moustieres-Sainte-Marie is a charming village surrounded by the rocky mountains. It is considered one of the most beautiful villages of France. There is a hike of 262 steps that lead to Notre Dame de Beauvoir church which is worth the views of the town. Also, do not miss tasting the authentic lavender ice cream 🙂
The Verdon Gorge or Gorges du Verdon in French is a canyon formed by the Verdon river with amazing turquoise water. It’s the most beautiful canyon ever seen! The turquoise colour is associated with glacial sources and the minerals of rock flour suspended in the water.
ACTIVITIES TO DO IN VERDON GORGE
If you have limited time discovering the canyon, then head straight to the lake Sainte-Croix and take a paddle boat or canoe to navigate through the canyon up to the waterfall.
One of the most scenic roads is “route des Crêtes” that allows you to contemplate the canyon from above. The village of Palud-sur-Verdon is the starting point and it links various panoramic viewpoints on altitude.
Starting from Quinson village, the lower gorges offer peaceful walks but also some hikes for the most sportive ones. It was one of the most beautiful walking trails we have taken! I already want to go back to spend some more time discovering the region 🙂
If you have more time on the French Riviera, then take a look at this article with 7 charming towns to discover on the French Riviera.
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