Friday, July 24, 2015

Provence Day 2: Lavender and Ochre

Mission completed. Lavender fields: check :)
Our main goal of a trip to Provence was to see the lavender blooming.  In the end, this is the main attraction there. So our first tourists' steps headed to Abbaye Notre-Dame de Senanque. The view you see above appears in most of the postcards sent from here. No wonder... :) Although we were a bit late to see the lavender in full bloom it was still pretty. We also made a walk in the abbey but to be honest - without the violet frame it would have been a bit boring.

We made a stop in Gordes where I discovered my utter love to lavender ice cream. I ate at least two boules of them every day throughout the whole visit. Even now, when I think of them, I start drooling and wish I was there again.

Our next destination was Village des Bories -  beehive-shaped stone huts that date back to the Bronze Age (and have been restored some time ago). A short 30-minute walk around the settlements and we're off to the next place - Lavender Museum.

Ok, so there was a lot of lavender that day. But what not many know, Provence's treasure is also its ochre industry. Ochre is a pigment used in all sorts of products. Starting from rubber, ending with cosmetics. To be honest, I never heard of it earlier so I didn't know what to expect but when we visited ochre trails I was simply stunned. The three ochre-connected places we visited were the most interesting to me from the whole trip. First on: Rousillon.

It's worth mentioning that these photos were not retouched. The landscape was simply like out of this world. The soil was red. Like... red red red. Check out this (untouched) photo:

Can you see the colour of the soil? Amazing! We made an hour walk around the Sentier des Ochre and then we headed to Rousillon which was ... wait for it ... red too :) Truly amazing place - worth paying a visit.

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