As soon as we arrived in the South of France, we started looking for fields of lavender and sunflower. Unfortunately, it was too late in the season and the sunflowers were dry and dead and the lavender had been harvested. I looked at my boyfriend and we sighed. If only we could ever go back again to the South of France to see the lavender bloom and the sunflower fields… Flash forward a few years and off we went this summer. We jumped on a plane to Nice, rented a little car and drove to the hearth of the Luberon region in France to find the lavender and sunflowers. But we also found a few different colours of the Provence. I present to you: white, red, purple and yellow!
Read more: Day trip from Nice, Train of Wonders
White in the Provence
As we left the rental’s parking garage, we had to type something into our navigation to get us on route. I flipped open my Lonely Planet Guidebook of the Provence and we settled for the lovely village of Gordes. Named as one of the most picturesque villages of France, this must be our winner! As soon as we manoeuvred our car along the winding roads around the town, we recognised why the French call Gordes this way. Set atop a cliff, overlooking the valleys, this little hamlet is a true French beauty. The chalk white houses formed a stark contrast on this bright sunny day at the end of July.
We parked the car and walked to a lookout point with the best views of Gordes. It looked like the houses were stacked on top of each other, one started where the other ended, all with white walls and green gardens.
Ochre Red in the Provence
After a full day of driving around in the Luberon, trying to find the purple lavender fields, we decided to head to our hotel, take a dip in the pool and relax a bit. As soon as we drove up to the town of Roussillon, we knew we would not get any relaxation time soon. This city is made out of deep red ochre clay, forming a stark contrast with the almost blue trees nesting at the base of the village.
The people of Roussillon built their houses with the red iron oxidised clay and there is even a path meandering through the old ochre mine. As it was too hot and we really wanted some pool time, we skipped the trail but it looks so impressive me might go back one day. Check for more info on the Ocre Trails.
Do you want to stay in the heart of the Luberon? Then check out my hotel in Roussillon.
Purple in the Provence
It took us almost a whole day to find some lavender fields still in bloom but as we headed into the mountains towards Sault, we finally found the fields of flowering lavender. What a sight! Nothing but lanes of purple, violet and lilac coloured lavender! This was what we came for and it was spectacular.
The bees were buzzing around the plants, the air was thick of heat and lavender scent and nothing but purple fields until the horizon. The perfect scenery for a glass of wine.
On the second day of our trip, we headed further north to find more fields of these lovely flowers. As we were quite high in elevation, we managed to find some patches of lavender that had not been harvested yet. We drove north of Sault to Aurel where we had a lovely view of the village and the lavender fields surround it.
Yellow in the Provence
But with 2 days of driving, we still didn’t see any sunflower fields. As a little kid, going on a family holiday to France means driving alongside endless fields of sunflowers. But on this trip we hadn’t seen any yet. The receptionist of our hotel explained that the farmers get subsidised from the EU to grow wheat therefor growing sunflowers is not lucrative enough. Story of my life. I was happy to see the purple of the Provence so I tried to ignore the disappointment of not seeing the bright yellow sunflowers in the Provence.
Can you imagine my surprise as we turned a corner at the end of our weekend and saw nothing but yellow fields in front of us. As two kids hyped on sugar, we jolted from the car and ran towards the sunflower fields. We must have looked like complete idiots but who cares?!
Amazing colours of the Provence, France
Although our weekend was quick and super short, we managed to drive nearly 750 km in the Provence. Mainly in the Luberon area to find the different colours of the Provence and she did not disappoint. We saw the amazing white, red, purple and yellow that are so iconic of the Provence. Mission accomplished!
Have you ever seen the lavender bloom? Where was it? And what is the favourite colours of the Provence for you? Share it in the comment section below!
The images used in this post were made by either myself or my boyfriend. This post contains affiliate links. If you decide to purchase anything through my link I will earn a small commission at no extra cost for you.