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Climb to the Ruins of Fort Buoux in the Luberon

By Ashley Tinker:

Visit the Fort Buoux Ruins

Fort Buoux, in the Luberon, is an ancient site that is definitely worth a visit. Lesser known than some of the main attractions of the Luberon, you’ll find yourself on a winding road, at this time of year (fall/winter) in the fog, that feels a little like the middle of nowhere. But this site was inhabited by pre-neanderthals, then Celtic peoples and the persecuted Vaudois from Piemonte. The site hasn’t been inhabited for about 300 years. The layers of history are fascinating even though all you can see now are remnants. 

…Continue reading here for Ashley’s Curious Provence post (and beautiful photos) of their visit to the Aiguebrun (or Aigue Brun) River Valley.

A Long Human History

Fort Buoux is only 10 kilometres from the centre of Apt, but the clock turns back to another era at this remote fortress. Beneath an enormous cliff overhang  (one of the largest in the Luberon) traces of human life have been carbon dated to prehistorical times. The original settlement on the plateau was a Celtic-Ligurian oppidum, the materials of which were then used in the 13th century to build a fortified hamlet high on this plateau. Persecuted Vaudois sheltered at Fort Buoux after villages were razed in 1545 (read more here).

The fortress and its village were built in several phases. You will find a series of ramparts, cisterns for water collection and storage, a church, a grave site, public buildings and the remains of other buildings. It’s about not a long walk (about 15-minutes) from the parking lot to the top of the outcrop, but there is a steeper section near the top.

Visitor Information Fort de Buoux

Le Fort de Buoux (website in French)
84480 Buoux
Tel: +33 (0)4 90 74 25 75

You need to buy a ticket to visit the Fort.

Ruins Fort Buoux Luberon Site Map

Hours of Operation:
Fort Buoux is open all year 10h – 17h
Closed Tuesdays

However, given the Fort’s location, it is dangerous to visit on rainy, snowy or windy days. The Fort is typically closed on those days so it is best to call ahead.

During summer months when there is a risk of forest fires the Fort may be closed as well. The phone number for the foresty service in the Luberon +33 (0)4 28 31 77 11.

Decent footwear is highly recommended as the cliff is rocky.

Stay and Eat

At the end of the road in the Aiguebrun Valley (not far from the Fort), you will find the Auberge de Seguins. The hotel, dormitory and campsite are open from March 1 – November 15th.

There is also a large restaurant and shaded terrace where you can enjoy hearty Provencal meals (note: it’s best to hike to the Fort first). Call ahead to book your table at this popular restaurant. Telephone: +33 (0)4 90 74 16 37.

      

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Ashley Tinker

Ashley Tinker

Ashley was born and raised in Montréal, Canada. She has always been drawn to the history, way of life and beauty of Europe. Her feelings for Europe were reconfirmed while studying art in Florence, Italy. Ashley says that stone buildings, colourful shutters and terra cotta tile rooftops fill her dreams and now her days.

Ashley moved to Provence in 2014 with her partner Robin (he also shares her Francophile passions). They are in search of the French joie de vivre, which they find at every turn in the local markets and natural beauty of Provence. This couple are indulging in local olives and wine as the Provencal sunshine changes craggy rocks into things of beauty.

You can see all of Ashley's blog posts on Curious Provence.

Take a look at Ashley's beautiful fine art photography on her Photographer in Provence website.

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