Featured Tour - Provence Villages of The Luberon
This month we are looking at one of our most popular tours, the Villages of The Luberon. It's one of our oldest tours, and we've refined it over the years so now it is, dare we say it, the perfect introduction to this dramatic region.
The Luberon is a massif in central Provence, sitting between the Mediterranean plain and the foothills of the Alps. It has a remarkable quality of light which attracted artists like Van Gogh and Cezanne, and richly colourful landscapes of lavender, sunflowers, vines and ochre rocks. Set amongst all this fabulous scenery are the villages! Peter Mayle discovered the charms of the area when he settled here and it inspired him to write A Year in Provence which became an international best seller. Menerbes, where Mayle made his home, is one of the beautiful villages we visit, perched on a hill with wonderful views all around.
Another perched village, Gordes, is a jewel of the Luberon- you may recognise it from the Russell Crowe and Marion Cotillard movie A Good Year. We also ride through Lacoste, home of the Marquis de Sade, and Lormarin, where Albert Camus lived and was is buried in the local cemetery. Bedoin is a great cycling centre, basecamp for the celebrated 'Giant of Provence', Mont Ventoux (of which more below).
While riding the quiet roads of the Luberon, you will often be pedalling through vineyards. The local grapes are Syrah (Shiraz) and Grenache, and they make a great hearty, fruity red that is as good for quaffing with cheese as it is accompanying a meal. You will also see plenty of goats, and goats cheese often appears on restaurant menus - along with fish from the nearby Mediterranean, local game like rabbit and wild boar, truffles from the scrub oak forests, and of course, the signature dish of Provence, ratatouille, made with local peppers, courgettes, aubergines and tomatoes, and plenty of golden olive oil from the region's oil mills.
Our ride takes us through the best of this gorgeous landscape, culminating for those who want to, to tackle Mont Ventoux itself. For those who want an easier route, you're not missing out because the alternate route takes in the breathtakingly spectacular Gorges of the River Nesque. Both groups meet up for lunch in Bedoin! The terrain is quite hilly, but easily achievable for regular cyclists - if you have any doubts e-bikes are also available for the ride, which is a fantastic option if you are couple/group of mixed ability.
As the Luberon is a featured tour, we are running a promotion during the months of February and March - contact us by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone on +44 1923 894305 to discuss what special offers we can tempt you with!