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Discovering a Provençal Vineyard and its Entourage

January 4, 2017

As you wander through the small winding streams, following the narrow paths lined with pine trees and stonewalls, the air heady with the scents of thyme and rosemary magically combining under the Provençal sun, you can bask in the knowledge that these are the very same views which so inspired fabled authors such as Alphonse Daudet or Frédéric Mistral… “terroir2048-1024x780-copyp11_a38-un-mas-provencal-en-pierre-copyp11_a39-un-mas-provencal-en-pierre-copybanon_lavande-copyOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Ahead of me, a lovely, sparklingly lit, pine wood plunges down to the bottom of the hill. The nearest mountains press their grand silhouettes against the sky…. There is hardly a sound to be heard; a fading fife, a curlew calling amongst the lavender, and a tinkle of mules’ bells from somewhere along the track… sap01_tcf00869_p-copyh-copyolivier-et-lavande-france-22216943_xxl-andreacf-123rf1-copymoustiers_ste_marie_provence_france-copyfrance-provence-vineyard-copyfrance_les_baux_from_west_2007-copy

Much of the mountain range is pearly rock or covered with a lovely cote of scrubs and wild berry species of all kind. The Provençal light really brings this beautiful landscape to life. The lower slopes of the mountain were planted by locals with olive and almond trees alongside, Kermes oaks and forest pines.6693c-copy moustiers_ste_marie_provence_france-copy

One wonders whether he or she misses the dark, crowded and stuffy Banllieux of Paris and the quick answer is ‘No’! “I could actually be no happier than I am, here in my windmill.” Alphonse Daud. silver-horse-winery-wedding-37-copy

The commune is traversed by numerous streams which are called ‘Gaudres’. A Gaudre or ‘small stream’ refers to a river that often dried in summer and with low flow the rest of the year. ukraine_zakarpatye_falls_river_mountain_stones_stream_60933_3840x2400mountain_river_trees_wood_green_white_stream_15250_1600x1200-copyp17_a99-fontaines-et-patios-copy

The mountains next to ‘Les-Baux-de-Provence’ were immortalized in art by Vincent van Gogh, who painted many images of the surrounding mountain range and landscapes during his time in Saint-Rémy-de-Provence on the north side of the mountains. les_alpilles_1-copy


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