Cheryl ShufflebothamExplore: Travel in ProvenceVillages Towns and Cities

Crestet a Vaucluse Village on the Route de Charm

Hilltop Crestet

Crestet can be described as what I like to call Burgunesque, a word I made up for places that remind me of the rural charm of Burgundy that I first fell in love with. This village is not in Burgundy but in the gorgeous Provençal countryside with a view of Mont Ventoux and the Dentelles de Montmirail.

This hilltop village in the Vaucluse oozes with charm its winding streets, vaulted passageways, cobblestone steps, flower boxes, and stone archways lure you in to have a wander.

…Continue reading here for the beautiful Cobblestone and Vineyard photos from Crestet. This is one of many villages in the Vaucluse that you should plan to visit.

Vaucluse Villages to Visit

Brantes

Brantes Village Vaucluse

Discover why Brantes is hard to beat and it’s local beer microbrewery La Géante de Provence. To call this village perched feels like an understatement, the hamlet appears to cling to the side of a mountainside. The town is tiny, with a population of less than one hundred permanent residents. It is also charming, the stone buildings climb the side of the hill. Walk the cobblestone streets and enjoy the views of Mont Ventoux and the Vaucluse.

Sablet

Sablet Village vista

Sablet is a relatively small village with only 1300 inhabitants, by the last count. Situated at the base of the striking peaks of the Dentelles de Montmirail, between the Seguret and Gigondas, Sablet is in the heart of Rhône Valley wine country. The town was established by the bishops of Avignon, in the 12th century. It’s the bell tower of the St. Nazaire church that marks the highest point of Sablet rather than castle ruins such as in Seguret. The bell tower can be seen from far away, lighted at night, it is like a beacon to villagers heading home. It is a pretty village, with plenty of services. Discover Sablet.

Séguret

Seguret village views

Michel’s top pick is Séguret, he (and many others) claim that it is the most beautiful village of France. Séguret in Provençal means security, probably given to the village due to its geographic situation. Its dominant position allowed the villagers to observe movement in the Rhône Valley, without forgetting the château at the top.

Vaison la Romaine

Vaison la Romaine castle

According to Mathieu Schillinger,  at L’Arbre à Vins (a local’s wine bar) describes Vaison la Romaine as a village is lacking nothing, unlike other towns in the region there is a year-round vibe. There are plenty of cultural events to choose from, including outdoor concerts (summer), movies and theatre. Besides a clear attachment to wine, Mathieu highly recommends the countryside near Vaison for cycling and hiking – a buffet of pastoral views with the amazing Dentelles de Montmirail and Mont Ventoux as backdrops and for hill training. His favourite perched villages include Brantes, Crestet and Séguret.

On a warm July evening, the setting sun kisses the Rhone Valley grapevines good-night as dancers perform in a 7000-seat Roman theatre. No, you are not dreaming. For 22 years, the Vaison Danses festival brings together international dancers to perform for audiences in the Vaucluse. This year the program has a new artistic director, Pierre-François Heuclin, who is an artist in his own right. A dancer since 10-years of age, Heuclin performed as a ballet dancer in Metz and subsequently worked in operational and advisory capacities for the Paris Opera (starting in 1996). Vaison Danses One of Many Reasons to Visit Charming Vaison La Romaine.

Vaison is a moderate-sized town in a gorgeous region, surrounded by Mont Ventoux and the hills of the Dentelles de Montmirail. There are three parts of town, an extensive Roman site, a medieval village on the hillside and a 19th-century “modern” section. If you approach the Vaison area from Avignon, you pass the villages of Sablet and Séguret, framed by the Dentelles. This view never fails to charm me.

Vaison has more of a “country” feel than many other cities in Provence. Located in Haute Provence, separated from the rest of Provence geographically Vaison has retained its ancient charms. There are many quiet, preserved hilltop villages with cobblestone streets and old stone houses, and no large building complexes or industrial parks in the area. Continue reading: Vaison la Romaine a Local’s Tips for Your Visit.

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Cheryl Shufflebotham

Cheryl Shufflebotham

Although, Cheryl and her husband live in upstate New York, she tells us that she is always yearning, planning, maneuvering to make her way back to France.

Cheryl's love for France started almost eleven years ago with "a once in a lifetime" ten-year anniversary trip. These wannabe expats have been back every year since that trip!

Cheryl's first French love is the region of Burgundy, but then a few years ago, she discovered Provence. Now she admits that she is torn between Burgundy and Provence. It sounds like Provence has her spellbound, "I can’t quite put a finger on what it is about Provence, but its intoxication keeps luring me back for more."

Cheryl started her blog Cobblestone and Vineyards to explore the simple charms of France, those small details that capture the heart.

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