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Villages of Gordes

Built on the foothills of the Monts of Vaucluse, facing the Luberon, Gordes is one of the most well-known hilltop villages in the region, and one of the most beautiful in France. Its houses and buildings of white stone root themselves into the sharp cliff of the mountain, its labyrthinth of "calades" (narrow cobblestone streets) do not leave the visitor indifferent to its charms.Many artists have stayed in the village of Gordes and have contributed to its fame. Some, such as André Lhote, Marc Chagall, Victor Vasarely and Pol Mara came to stay. Gordes is the seat of many cultural events in summer with its museums, a festival, concerts and numerous exhibitions.

Gordes ('most beautiful villages of Provence') is 38 km east of Avignon, in the Luberon district of Provence-Alpes-Cote d'Azur
Gordes is a beautiful traditional Provencal 'village on a rock' with narrow cobbled streets that wind ever higher through the tall, ancient houses to the church and castle at the top, with views across the Luberon mountains and region. It is often said to be the most photogenic of the Provencal villages - no mean accolade, given the competition. And it is the most visited of all the villages in the region.
ancient street in Gordes

An important part of the attraction of Gordes is the view of the village when it is seen from across the valley. From here you can appreciate the whole village running in terraces down the slope of the hill, with carefully planted Italian Poplar trees and plants breaking the whiteness of the village. This (on a sunny day) is one of the great views of France!

The village itself, while very attractive, almost fails to live up to the high expectations that this view has prepared you for. But it is still highly recommended! Many of the houses, in the white stone of the region, are now pristinely restored, with fine period doorways and windows, and interspersed with luxury shops and restaurants (especially around the village square). The highlight of Gordes is...Gordes itself. It is a simply lovely, traditional Provencal hilltop village, and has a myriad of narrow and cobbled streets that wind their way ever upwards to the church, castle and fine views that await you at the top.

The castle, also now lovingly restored, was rebuilt in 1525. As well as some fine features, including a grand renaissance staircase and ornate fireplace, it also houses a museum of art exhibits - a trend set by artist owner Victor Vaserely who rented the castle for a long period during the 20th century.

As with all of these stunningly attractive Provencal perched villages, visiting Gordes outside high season is preferable.
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