Tag Archives: Provence

Impressions of Provence

Avignon France

Tucked into southeastern France along the Mediterranean Sea, Provence is every bit as dreamy as paintings and postcard images suggest with sun-dappled vineyards, olive groves, and pastel-hued architecture.

The “problem” with Provence is that there is more to see and do in the region than we could possibly tackle in the week we had allotted. For our first trip to the area, we decided to go classic. We based in Saint-Rémy, a town in western Provence in the shadow of the Apilles mountain range. Along with meandering drives through the countryside, including an impromptu stop at a hilltop village, we whiled away the languid days visiting the well-known cities of Arles, Aix-en-Provence, and Avignon.

Every one of these places deserves at least a couple of days, or maybe even a week or more, all on their own. But there are only so many hours in a day and only so many days in a year, even for perpetual travelers like us. So we ended up seeing them in a series of hit and run day trips. And while we can’t say we did any of these places justice, we saw enough of each to know that we need to return again to finish what we started.

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Home for a Week: Saint-Rémy-de-Provence

Saint Remy Provence Kitty

A resident greets us in Saint-Rémy, Provence

After forty fast-paced days touring Spain, we arrived in Provence looking forward to a relaxing, week-long stay in an apartment in Saint-Rémy. We rolled into town in a rental car, dutifully turning when the GPS instructed. On the right hand side of the street we quickly spotted the building where we would be staying. Then, on the left, we looked for the plentiful parking spaces we were told were there—except that the five spots were entirely full, as they would be every day while we were there.

We had no choice but to keep going forward along the one-way street, directly into the town’s tiny, twisting medieval section. With memories of harrowing drives in Spanish hill towns still front of mind, Brian deftly dodged pedestrians and navigated tight turns. I was clutching the passenger side door, hoping to make it back to a main street without mishap, which we eventually did. After that nerve-racking introduction to Saint-Rémy, we promptly parked the car and used it only for day trips around the area. 

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