Between mountains and sea
The region Provence Alps Cote d'Azur has a wonderful setting: the Mediterranean Sea borders its southern part and the Alps is its frontier with Italy at the north east. The area boasts a wide range of landscapes, it is made of mountainous areas, coastal reliefs, plains and marshlands. Provence has scenery and highlights to satisfy the most discerning visitor.
There is truly something for everyone to discover in Provence whether it is your first visit or you are one of the many visitors who return every year... Provence is one of the most visited regions of France.
The region includes six French 'Departments': Alpes-de-Haute-Provence, Alpes-Maritimes, Bouches-du-Rhone, Hautes-Alpes, Var and Vaucluse.
In the coastal region of the Alpes Maritimes you can visit such famous resorts as Cannes, Nice and Antibes. As well as these, our favourite towns on the coast here include Menton and Villefranche-sur-Mer, and the principality of Monaco is also very interesting to visit.
The most visited tourist destination in the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence are the Gorges du Verdon, a dramatic gorge usually explored from Castellane and near the southern border of the department, and the nearby Lac de Sainte-Croix.
Var, to the south of Provence, includes some beautiful coastline and renowned riviera resorts such as Saint-Tropez. Also along the coast, some of the most beautiful scenery can be found in the Port Cros National Park and the Iles of Porquerolle and d'Hyeres which are just off the Var coast.
The Vaucluse department in north-west Provence is one of our favourite departments in France, with a perfect combination of scenery and traditional villages, there is no coastline in this part of Provence!
The Bouches-du-Rhone department is to the south-west of Provence and has a wide diversity of landscapes from the protected marshy landscapes of the Camargue region, usually explored from the pleasant resort of Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer, to the dramatic coast east of Marseille which includes the white cliffs of the Calanques at Marseille near Cassis and the Route des Cretes to La Ciotat which follows the coast along the top of the highest sea cliffs in France.
The northern department of Provence is the Hautes-Alpes department, and is an area of great natural beauty with the Ecrins National park and the Natural Regional Park of Queyras together occupying a large area of the department.
Provence and its major attractions
- Stunning coastline from south-east of Marseille to Cassis where sheer white cliffs meet turquoise seas
- Avignon and its unique "Palace of the Popes"
- Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer and Camargue land with its wilderness unique in France
- Aix en Provence with its lovely squares and markets
- Old Port and the church Notre Dame de la Garde in Marseille
- Baux-de-Provence is an exceptional village in a lovely setting