The sweet shift of summer towards autumn….

Bizarrely we sense and feel the changing seasons more in Provence than we do in Devon. Back in Exeter the proximity to the sea seems to soften the edges of summer as it shifts into autumn and likewise, autumn into winter. That’s not the case here and today it was almost as if someone had…

Chasing the dawn on Mont Ventoux

A few years ago, if Andy had suggested watching the sunrise from the summit of Mont Ventoux, I would have worked out how long it would take us to drive there, set an alarm and enjoyed the drive across and up the mountain. But that was a few years ago and things change. So a…

Market Day in Banon

Sometimes the best laid plans have to be cast aside and that was the case last Tuesday. After taking the dog for an early-morning walk and getting everything ready for a cycle out to Roussillon for breakfast, we started to get the bikes out, only to hear the rumble of thunder coming from the valley…

Bee-Friendly Provence & a French Lesson in an Organic Garden

When you think of flowers in Provence your mind tends to think about fields ablaze with poppies or the purple flashes of the lavender fields and the vibrant markets are home to stalls piled high with locally-produced fruit and veg or selling honey, created by bees that visit all these flowers……. So often we have…

A visit to Sault on Market Day

The pretty town of Sault sits on a rocky outcrop to the South East of Mont Ventoux and is at the heart of local lavender production. It sits above the valley that takes its name and the shaded Promenade opposite the Tourist Office on the road towards Aurel offers incredible views across the Southern flank…

Purple Provence – Where to see Lavender in the Vaucluse.

It’s this time of year that Provence turns purple when the Lavender fields start to explode with colour and the air fills with scent as the flowerheads gently brush against each other in the breeze. The air above them seems to shimmer with the colour and the constant buzz of bees and insects is a…

The incredible gardens at Valsaintes Abbey

I have always loved gardens, although I have to admit to not being a great gardener myself. A summer garden with deep herbaceous borders, filled with the scent and colour of roses is always a delight and we have some delightful ones around us in the UK, such as this one at Coombe Trenchard just…

Poppies & Cherries – Provence has turned red.

Having arrived back in Provence a few of days ago I’ve been really surprised at how much things have changed in the last 5 weeks. First, and probably the biggest surprise, is that everything is looking incredibly lush and green. This a such a stark contrast to the bleached colours and dry fields and verges…

On the trail of a WW2 Wellington Bomber

Back in the Summer we spent some time exploring the pretty village of Simiane-La-Rotonde, a few miles away from us in the neighbouring Department of Alpes de Haute Provence. Whilst we were there we noticed the names of 5 English Airmen had been added to the local War Memorial and set out to find out…