Provenceis found in the South of France and is arguably the most sun drenched part of the country. Home to many a summer holiday, theProvenceregion is hugely popular with the super rich tourists, as well as everyday visitors who come for the sun, beaches and the unique food and culture served up by the area. The entire region just does things you wouldn’t expect, and it’s for that reason that people keep on coming back.
It’s location sees it fill the gap between the outrageousMonte Carloand the casino scene and the less outrageous but very artistic Marseille further along the coast.
Playing host to film festivals, cattle herding, white water rafting and some of the finest art in the world you should expect the unexpected when you come toProvence.
Getting toProvenceis very easy, and getting around equally so. The best way is usually to hire a car, just because you’re not constrained by bus timetables and you can do as you please, when you please.
You can fly from theUKwith several budget airlines to the five different airports in the region, and any one ofAvignon, Nice,Nimes,Toulonand Marseille will serve you well for both flights and being able to pre book and pick up your hire car. Only Marseille and Nice airport are actually in the region, but prices tend to be higher to these two, especially at peak times of year.
As with pretty much any town inFrance, you can also get the TGV fromParis, or at certain times of year straight fromLondontoAvignonin five hours.
What to do when you hire a car in Provence
Palais des Papes
Another UNESCO world heritage site inFrance, the Palais des Papes is the proud owner of the title largest gothic palace in the world, and was built inAvignonwhen Pope Clemont V abandonedRomeand settled here. With 3 meter thick walls for protection and some stunning defensive walls, watchtowers and rooms you can walk around parts of the Palace and imagine what it would have been like with all the Popes belongings.
Another example of Provences rich historical past, the stunning Roman theatre is so well preserved it’s still used today for projection events and plays. Built over 2000 years ago the theatre has been ruined a little as construction workers have taken the top layers away to build other buildings but you can still enjoy what’s left of this stunning theatre.
Trundling around the town ofAvignonis a 40 minute train ride to give you an opportunity to see the town first hand. With so many things to see and so many sights of historical interest it’s great to just sit back and enjoy the views. Kids love it too.
Parc Balneaire du Prado
The main beach in Marseille, and some 1km long, the beach is very popular with locals and tourists who use it to go swimming off and was actually created from the sand excavated when they built the Metro in Marseille.