The Village of Goult is a Secret Luberon Gem
While most tourists visiting the Luberon head right for the spectacular villages of Gordes and Roussillon, there lies tucked away in a world all its own, the quiet, refined, and classy town of Goult.
Classy is the word to describe this quaint little village with its photogenic little square of plane trees. Read Cobblestones and Vineyards for Cheryl’s photo exposé of Goult’s charming village street scene and a few of her suggestions on places to eat. Please note her recommendation regarding reservations if you plan on dining in the village.
Why Visit Goult?
Despite its authentic charms, this village is not overrun by tourists. However, that is not to say that in peak season, it’s quiet, but Goult with single road access, the village is not one you can simply drive by. Goult is well worth a stop for a stroll and a bite to eat at one of the many restaurants.
Goult is small relative to neighbouring villages with a permanent population of barely over 1000 people. Whether by design or municipal decree, the village buildings remain relatively untouched on the exterior, although many have been restored and renovated. There are several parking lots in Goult, and the town is pedestrian-friendly.
Stroll past the main square, following the principal road towards the hilltop. Passing through an entry in the medieval ramparts, the 12th-century Château built by the Agoult family comes into view. The castle is privately owned.
Continue to the top of the village via one of several minor roadways that seem barely large enough for most cars. The Moulin de Jérusalem sits at the top of the hill. Once owned by Marquis de Donis, the mill operated until the 19th century. After his death and the ravages of World War II, the mill was in ruins until 1947. The National Geographic Institute acquired it to make it its Astronomy Teaching Centre before donating it to the commune of Goult in 1990. The windmill is restored and highly photographed.
Several hiking routes pass via this hilltop towards other Luberon villages. Follow the Roche-Redonne or Carredone path south from the Moulin, towards the Conservatoire des Terrasses de Cultures. It’s an easy 10-15 minute walk. This five-hectare plot runs down the hillside with terraces called “restanques” or “bancau” (in Provençal). Constructed for agricultural purposes, these terraces used the hill’s natural slope. Protected from the effects of the mistral winds and winter frosts the south-facing terraces captured runoff and allowed the cultivation of olives and almonds. Within the Terrasses de Cultures, are several dry-stone bouries that you can enter but watch for spiders.