Luberon

FRANCE | HILLY HEART OF PROVENCE! – SELF-GUIDED

Trip Style

Rolling Hills

Availability

March to October

Highlight

Beautiful villages, Regional natural park, Fragrant lavendar

Price from

725 EUR

 

Grade

The Luberon region of Provence is one of the finest examples of French countryside. Lean into a higher quality of life and a calming atmosphere in the stunning heart of Provence.

 

The Luberon region  is a vast area with an extraordinary variety of plants and animals to see. The architectural heritage of the area is picturesque, with five of the villages you’ll see listed among the “Most beautiful villages in France”. Beautiful rolling landscapes greet you in every direction.

 

The area is named after the main mountain range; a compact massif with an easy 1100m summit. The northern face is steep and rich in oaks, whereas the villages in southern Luberon overlook the tranquil course of the Durance river.

 

Sun-gilded drystone walls, ochre-washed homes, terraced fields and shady squares with gurgling fountains all contribute to the warm and gentle lifestyle which dominates here.

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Artists and craftspeople hone their talents in each village. Vineyards and cherry orchards dot the hillsides, and the plains are planted with gorgeous fruit, including one of the jewels in Vaucluse’s crown, the melon from Cavaillon.

Abundant flora and fauna are protected by the Luberon Regional National Park. One of the best conserved natural parks in France, it covers most of the territory here. The Ochre Trail in the Provencal Colorado in Rustrel are good ways to discover the geological phenomenon of the area. Ochre sands contrast with the deep blue of the sky, and the intense green of the vegetation adds to the beauty.

 

Plant and garden lovers will delight in the terraces at the Château de Lauris.

 

This trip is designed for people who want to experience the interesting and chilled-out French culture of Provence. You will discover the region differently through sun-drenched fields, fragrant lavender, rustic villages buzzing with cicadas. The hilly countryside is exceptional; rich in almonds and apricots, olives and grain.

 

There can be no doubt that this is Provence!

PACKAGE DETAILS

Day 1: Merindol

Your walking tour of Provence starts in Merindol.

The village is situated 18 km south-east of Luberon on the southern border of the Vaucluse and the Bouches du Rhône. It is 200 metres above sea-level, and boasts views across the vast plain of the Durance right to the gentle hills that hem in its southern limit.

Day 2: Merindol, circular walk to Gorge de Regalon (20km, 6h)

After leaving the historic centre of Merindol you enter Luberon’s “Lavender Country”: a mass of colours between the sun, the sky, the Lavender and the Provencal Colorado.

 

For your first day, you will walk through Gorge de Regalon in the Parc Régional du Luberon. The park is packed with unspoilt nature, impressive mountains, and wild forests. You will discover lovely old villages along winding roads, many with castles, forts, ruins, towers, and other geographical and historical sites.

 

If you’d rather take a shorter route today, look for the Cheval Blanc, La Roquette walk. It’s an easy 10km/3h 30 min stroll.

Day 3: Merindol to Lauris (18km, 6h)

To reach Lauris, you will walk along a small mountainous track, surrounded by nature. The landscapes and truly lovely and the atmosphere is peaceful.

 

You will pass through superb small villages surrounded by hills and plateaux, lit up by the French sunshine. The wind is lavender scented, adding to the relaxed feel of the place. It’s really worth experiencing!

Day 4: Lauris to Buoux (18km, 6h 30 min)

“One of the most beautiful villages in France”, Lauris sits atop a rocky ridge between the Durance and the Luberon Mountain. Perched on its cliff, Lauris offers an amazing view across the Durance valley, the Alpilles range and the Luberon.

 

Like the figurine on the prow of a ship, the centuries old château rises straight from the rock. It’s striking form is adorned by superb hanging gardens, pools, and charming lakes. A few kilometres further along, you will arrive in Lourmarin. This charming village is authentic Provence.

 

Outside the village is the stately 15th-century Chateau de Lourmarin. After visiting Lourmarin, climb the “Sommet de Gibes” and continue until Buoux.

Day 5: Buoux to Saignon (10km, 2h 30 min)

The small village of Buoux is situated among the rolling hills in the heart of the Parc Naturel Régional du Luberon. Due to its geographic situation, the village has played a naturally defensive role since prehistoric times. The Buoux Fort at the top of the rocky spur is a monument to this role in history.

During this stage you will walk along the irregular contours of the Aigue-Brun river. You may choose to explore some of the natural caves you will pass, and admire steep cliffs: a paradise for rock climbing enthusiasts!

Day 6: Saignon to Apt via Colorado Provencal (26km, 6h 30 min or 14 km, 3h 30 min)

Saignon has the most distinctive silhouette of any Luberon village, with its natural rock pillars jutting up between houses. It acts as a signpost high above the town of Apt, perhaps leading to the name Saignon, which comes from ‘signum’, Latin for ‘sign’.

 

When you leave this pretty village, take the time to gaze over at Montagne de Lure. On a clear day you may even catch a glimpse of the Alps and even Avignon: a wonderfully majestic view. In the middle of this stage, you will pass “Les Ochres Provencal”, a cluster of impressive fiery red and yellow-green cliffs.

Day 7: Apt

Apt is situated in the heart of the Luberon Nature Park, between the mountains of Vaucluse and Luberon. This pleasant city, so typical of Provence, is well reputed for its local products; it even boasts the classification of “site remarquable du gout” (a place of wonderful tastes).

 

Settle in, try some of the local wine, and relax after your French walking holiday.

 

We can arrange extra nights anywhere on the itinerary after your last walking day. We can also arrange a station or airport transfer. Please get in touch: info@onefootabroad.com for more info.

INCLUDED AND NOT

  • 6 nights in 2* hotels and guesthouses of character
  • 6 breakfasts
  • 4 dinners
  • Roadbook (Guidebook)
  • Luggage Transfer
  • 24/7 Customer Care
  • Flights/trains
  • Insurance
  • Drinks
  • Transfer from/to airport
  • Extra night stays
  • Upgrade Hotels: 3* or 4*

Access

Way in: Merindol

By train – Daily TGV from/to:
– Paris – Marseille (3.10 hrs)
– Paris -Avignon (2.40 hrs)

 

TER regional train
– Marseille – Salon-de-Provence ( 52 mns)
– Marseille – Avignon (34 mns)
– Marseille- Cavaillon (1.15 hrs)

 

By bus: Details on prices and time on the sncf website.
Avignon/Merindol (25 mins) download time schedule

 

By car – Motorway:
– Marseille/Merindol: 76 km (A7)
– Avignon/Merindol: 56 km (A7)
– Paris/Merindol: 749km (A7)

 

The best airport is Marseille Other possible airports: Paris Orly and Paris Charles De Gaulle.

By plane – Marseille Airport, 60 km south of Merindol’s downtown.
Daily direct flights:
Marseille – London (2 hrs) – Ryanair/Bristish Airways/Easyjet
Marseille – Dublin (3 hrs) – Aerlingus/Ryanair
Marseille – Edinburgh (3hrs) Ryanair
Marseille – Bristol (2hrs) Easyjet

 

By taxi:
View itineraries: ViaMichelin
See our options in Dates & Prices.

Way Out: Apt

Buses depart Mazan to Carpentras Terradou 4 times per day, and the journey takes 17 minutes. Schedules for buses are found on this website.

Trains depart Carpentras Terradou hourly and take approximately 40 minutes to arrive in Avignon TGV. Schedules can be found here.

Trains depart from Avignon TGV hourly and take approximately 20 minutes to arrive in Aix-en-Provence TGV. Schedules can be found here.

Buses from Lepilote depart from Aix-en-Provence TGV to Marseille Provence Airport approximately every 15 minutes. The journey to the airport from the station takes around 13 minutes. Schedules can be found here.

 

The closest international airport to Apt is Marseille Provence Airport. It is 95km from Apt. Walk from Apt to the town of Mazan (it takes about 15 minutes). You will then need to take the bus from Mazan to Carpentras Terradou.

Once in Carpentras Terradou, take the train to Avignon TGV. When you arrive at Avignon TG, you will need to take another train to Aix-en-Provence TGV. Finally, take the bus from Aix-en-Provence TGV to Marseille Provence Airport.

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