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The Most Beautiful Villages to Stay in Provence

The Most Beautiful Villages to Stay in Provence

most beautiful villages to stay in Provence

Provence, located in southeastern France and kissing both the Italian border and the Mediterranean Sea, is a region celebrated for its breathtaking landscapes, mesmerizing light, and vibrant colors. From the Southern Alps and Camargue plains to the Côte d’Azur, rolling vineyards, olive groves, pine forests, and lavender fields, Provence is one of the most alluring places in the world. It’s hardly surprising that this region became a muse for legendary artists like Vincent Van Gogh, Paul Cézanne, and Pablo Picasso, who found a home and inspiration in Provence’s beauty.

With summer approaching, perhaps you’re envisioning a getaway to this picturesque corner of the world. The famed cities of Avignon, Arles, Aix-en-Provence, and Marseille offer rich cultural experiences and are well worth a visit. But if you’re looking to experience the charm of Provence, beyond the usual tourist spots, there are many villages full of beauty and peaceful life.

Being French, I’m delighted to share with you, through today’s post, a curated selection of the most beautiful villages and charming towns in Provence. Each one, whether a serene hilltop hamlet or a lively coastal town, presents a unique opportunity to immerse yourself in the tranquil beauty and serene lifestyle that has captivated artists for centuries and continues to enchant all who visit. Bon voyage!


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1. Bormes-les-Mimosas

best villages to stay in provence france bormes-les-mimosas
Photo: Raissa Lara Lütolf.

Located between Hyères and Saint-Tropez, the village of Bormes-les-Mimosas is one of the most beautiful villages on the southern French coast of the Mediterranean. It’s a true village of Provence, typical and authentic, with its old houses with pink and ocher tiles facing the Mediterranean and its narrow medieval streets and charming squares that are beautifully paved. There, you can visit the old village on the hill and two of its emblematic seaside districts: la Faviere and Cabasson. The village has a beautiful view of the sea and the Golden Islands: Porquerolles and the Île du Levant.

Where to stay in Bormes-les-Mimosas

2. Cassis

best villages in provence france cassis
Photo: Léo Nguyen.

Cassis is a small Mediterranean fishing port that features pastel-colored buildings, sidewalk cafes, and restaurants. Overlooked by a centuries-old château, Cassis is well known for its Calanques, which are narrow inlets framed by steep limestone cliffs. They are among the most beautiful beaches on the French Riviera. I’ll recommend the Calanque de Port-Miou, where sailboats and pleasure boats anchor and where it’s possible to swim from the small beach nestling at the bottom of the rocky inlet. Cassis is definitely the perfect place to spend a few days!

Where to stay in Cassis

3. Èze

best villages in provence france eze
Photo: Ivan Zakharenko.

Èze, located on the French Riviera between Nice and Monaco, is one of the most beautiful medieval villages on the French Riviera. Located on a hilltop of a high cliff about 1,400 feet above sea level, the village is famous for its spectacular view, impressive architecture, and stunning geographical location. It has one long, narrow beach called simply “Plage d’Eze” or Eze beach, which you can reach by taking Nietzsche’s footpath or “le chemin de Nietzsche.” It was during his climb up this path from the seashore to the village of Eze that the German philosopher Nietzsche composed the third part of his work Ainsi parlait Zarathoustra (Thus Spoke Zarathustra).

Where to stay in Èze

4. Gordes

best villages in provence france gordes
Photo: mk. s.

With its winding streets, cobblestone paths, and stunning views, Gordes is one of the most beautiful hilltop villages in Provence. Located on a rocky promontory in the heart of the Vaucluse mountains, the Provençal village offers a spectacular view of the Luberon mountain facing it. Its castle and the abbey of Sénanque are its cultural heritage, and you will fall in love with its olive oils, wines, and other regional products.

Where to stay in Gordes

5. Les Baux-de-Provence

best villages in provence france les baux-de-provence
Photo: Jaakko Kemppainen.

Les Baux-de-Provence is located in the Alpilles mountains atop a rocky outcrop that is crowned with a ruined castle overlooking the plains to the south. With its small streets, charming little squares, shaded terraces, fountains, and craft shops, it’s definitely a must if you visit Provence. Its cultural heritage is exceptionally rich, with twenty-two architectural treasures classified as “Historic Monuments.” Don’t miss to visit the Château des Baux-de-Provence, built in the 11th century for the Lords of Baux, one of the most powerful families of lower Provence in medieval times.

Where to stay in Les Baux-de-Provence

6. Moustiers-Sainte-Marie

best villages in provence france moustiers-sainte-marie
Photo: Raissa Lara Lütolf.

Moustiers-Sainte-Marie, or simply Moustiers, has been classified among the most beautiful villages in France since 1981. The village in Provence is famous for having preserved some of its ancestral know-how whose earthenware or faïence. The star suspended above the village is the symbol of this place steeped in history, where legends are numerous, while time seems to be suspended there. During your visit, do not miss the beautiful lake of Sainte-Croix with its stunning turquoise waters and the Verdon Natural Regional Park.

Where to stay in Moustiers-Sainte-Marie

7. Ramatuelle

best villages in provence france ramatuelle
Photo: Jeffrey Blum.

Ramatuelle is a medieval and picturesque village that stands on Les Moulins de Paillas, near Saint-Tropez, Sainte-Maxime, and Gassin. The village’s architecture is typical of Mediterranean villages revealing porches, stairs, passages, squares, narrow streets paved with flowers, a church, and its bell tower. Ramatuelle is a quiet and peaceful village that contrasts with the very trendy beach of Pampelonne, which built the fame of Saint-Tropez when the who’s who of cinema, fashion, and music of the fifties and sixties fell in love with it. During your visit, don’t miss the Tahiti Beach, the Club 55 —which started as a canteen for the team shooting the film with Brigitte Bardot And God Created Woman— and the Epi Plage designed by Jean Castel and Albert Debarge in 1960.

Where to stay in Ramatuelle

8. Roussillon

best villages in provence france roussillon
Photo: Nicolas Savignat.

Roussillon, located within the borders of the Natural Regional Park of Luberon, is one of the best villages to stay in Provence. Located in the heart of one of the biggest ochre deposits in the world, this Provençal village is famous for its magnificent red cliffs and ochre quarries. Like an artist’s pallet, the red, yellow, and brown shades of the earth form a striking contrast with the lush green pine trees and the vivid blue of the Provencal sky.

Where to stay in Roussillon

9. Saint-Paul-de-Vence

best villages in provence france saint-paul-de-vence
Photo: Aleks Marinkovic.

Saint-Paul-de-Vence is one of the oldest medieval towns on the French Riviera. The city walls were built in 1538 by Francis I Valois, King of France, and some of the buildings of historic St-Paul date back to the 16th and 17th centuries. The village is well known for its modern and contemporary art museums and galleries, such as the Fondation Maeght, and for the 17th-century Saint Charles-Saint Claude chapel. Also, some famous artists once lived in or frequented the village, including Marc Chagall, Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, and Jean-Michel Folon.

Where to stay in Saint-Paul-de-Vence

10. Saint-Rémy-de-Provence

best villages to stay in provence france saint-rémy-de-provence
Photo: Patrick Boucher.

Located in the northern part of the Alpilles, Saint-Rémy-de-Provence is one of the best villages to stay in Provence. Far from the crowds of the Cote d’Azur, here, you will appreciate the unhurried pace of life. With its Jean Jaures place, Hôtels Particuliers, and ornate houses from the 17th and 18th centuries, the beauty of the village has inspired many artists, writers, and painters. The most famous is Vincent van Gogh who produced more than 150 paintings of the countryside surrounding Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, among which his famous masterpiece “The Starry Night”.

Where to stay in Saint-Rémy-de-Provence

Et voilà! I hope this list of the best villages in Provence helps you plan your trip to the South of France. If you have questions, just ask in the comments. Merci!

View Comments (2)
    • Bonjour Trish, thank you for your question! I would recommend renting a car to access these villages. It’s the most convenient way to explore them at your own pace and enjoy the beautiful scenery along the way! xo

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