Enchanting Provence: Lavender Fields and Heritage Sites a June Tour
Mother Nature determines the exact timing of when the lavender fields bloom in Provence each year. However, there is a certain magic with visiting the region before the crowds arrive for summer. Typically, June is a lovely month to travel in the South of France before it gets too hot and the heritage sites are busy. Please keep reading this article to discover this curated, small-group tour that promises to reveal the best of the region.
Emily Durand owns Your Private Provence, and her specialty is developing itineraries for small-group tours of the region. Over twenty years ago, Emily moved to Provence and began exploring the well-trodden places and discovering the hidden gems. At the time of writing, the UNESCO Heritage Sites and Lavender Tour has five (5) spots left. Designed to introduce Provence’s historical past, the group will visit renowned sites for cultural heritage and stunning architecture.
With Emily at the helm and as your driver, the itinerary covers three different regions: the Alpilles, Luberon, and Vaucluse. Along the way are lavender fields, markets, artisans, cultural venues, delicious Provencal cuisine and local wine.
Sights to See
Arriving in Avignon, France, by fast train (TGV) is an experience. Emily will meet the group at the train station, and from here, the group will visit the famous Papal city, marvel at the enormous Palais des Papes (add link) and enjoy the first tastes of Provence over lunch. After lunch, it’s a short drive to the B&B in Saint Remy de Provence, where a pool and quiet garden await.
Saddle up for day two with a visit to Provence’s “Wild West” – the Camargue. This marshland is where the Rhône River empties into the Mediterranean Sea, defining Provence’s ranching country, complete with black bulls, white horses, and talented cowhands. Here, the two branches of the Rhône River join the sea to form the largest Mediterranean delta after the Nile. The Camargue is also a birder’s paradise with over 340 species; one of the most recognized is the pink flamingo. Created in 1986, the natural wetland preserve is 100,000 hectares.
On day three, Roman-era engineering and construction skills will amaze you with a visit to the Pont du Gard. The Pont du Gard was part of a 50 km (31 mile) aqueduct constructed by the Romans in the middle of the 1st century. This massive engineering project brought fresh water from the Eure Spring near Uzès to the Roman city of Nîmes, where it supplied running water to fountains, baths, and private homes. Although the massive Pont du Gard is an impressive section of this aqueduct system, the entire project required a precision that is hard to imagine in an era before modern technology. Pro tip: Watch the short film in the visitor’s centre.
Explore St Remy on market day (Wednesdays) and discover some spots where Vincent Van Gogh painted while staying at Saint Paul de Mausole in the Alpilles.
Pack your bags, as it’s time to move locations and explore the perched villages of Luberon Valley and the wine and lavender fields of Vaucluse.
While lavender grows best at higher elevations and blooms from late June through mid-August, the purple flowers are mesmerizing but popular, so finding a secluded spot is not evident. This is why Your Private Provence tours stand out.
Spotting a flowering lavender field for the first time is magical. The plants stretch toward the horizon like small purple streams. Once you step outside, you are overwhelmed by the heavenly fragrance. It’s little wonder that there are so many images of these stunning, natural backdrops.
The fragrance of blooming lavender fields is magical. Your eyes follow perfect rows of plants shaped like hedgehogs stretching to the Provencal horizon. This aromatic purple beauty attracts thousands of tourists and locals, hoping to time their visit for the peak of the flowering cycle. However, Mother Nature is in charge. The precise timing of flowering changes annually, depending on the weather. Typically, some fields bloom by late June, and the harvest is mostly complete by mid-August. Read more about lavender essentials here.
Who is Emily?
Emily Durand, the founder of Your Private Provence, has spent over two decades in the South of France. Originally from the west coast of America, Emily lives in Provence with her family. During the quieter times of the year, it’s her objective to explore the out-of-the-way places and roads less travelled for clients who want to experience Provence at its best. Founded in 2013, Your Private Provence is a travel company offering tours in Provence that focus on lifestyle and well-being. Fully bilingual and well acquainted with the region, Emily arranges single-day tours or complete itineraries.
Has a trip to Provence been on your travel bucket list for a while? Or you may be returning for more. Just imagine lavender fields, cobalt blue skies, and a glass of Provencal wine. Don’t wait any longer. This trip promises to be enchanting.
June 16 – 23, 2024
7 nights / 8 days
Limited to 7 guests (5 spots remaining)
4,300€ EUROS per person based on double occupancy
900€ EUROS supplement for single occupancy
*Prices converted to USD two months before the tour date.
Image credits: All photos in this article were provided by and published with the permission of Your Private Provence.