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My husband and I just returned from a lovely trip to Provence.   I had heard that seeing the lavender was something you must do in your lifetime, so we had added it to our “Living in Geneva Bucket List”.

The lavender was breath-taking!   But it was a little bit hard to find.  Here are my tips if you plan to check it out:

#1 – They say the season is late July / July.   I do hear that they start to harvest at the end of July and early August.   We went July 13-15 and it was perfect.

#2 – Book a hotel way in advance.  There is a lot of tourism in Provence in the summer, with the Avignon festival and of course, lavender tour buses.    There wasn’t much choice 30 days out.

#3 – If lavender is your primary goal, pick a town near Sault or Valensole*, two of the best-known lavender towns.    It isn’t so easy just to drive by it, like I assumed originally.   We stayed in Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, which was adorable, but it was 2 hours from Sault.   Having a central location would have been better….although I had very patient husband who drove out of our way to see it in the end!

#4 – The 943 road near Sault was the best spot.  There are fields both North and South of Sault on this little road.   There were fields and fields of lavender.

A field we saw on D943, this was just 10- 15 minutes south of Sault.

#5 – Sault is also a good lunch spot since you can see fields from the terraces.   Although, Sault itself didn’t have as much character as other Provencal towns.

Overhead view from Sault

#6 – The Abbaye de Sénanque near Gordes provided some beautiful photo opportunities.  Our GPS didn’t pick it up, but if you approach Gordes, you can’t miss the signs.

Gorgeous abbey

#7 – Valdition is a winery in the les Alpilles area that had one lavender field.  If you are south in Saint Rémy or Arles, it could be worth making a wine-tasting appointment to see their gorgeous gardens and their lovely field.

Walking in the fields near Valdition estate winery. Lavender + wine = a super time.

#8 – don’t get snake bit.   I read after the fact that vipers can hide in the shade of the lavender.  Just be safe!

#9 – Aren’t a soap / perfume person?  Purchase some lavender essential oil – it has great medicinal properties for healing, and also can be used for relaxation and easing headaches!

#10 – Read up on the festivals happening.  We were there for Bastille Day which was fun.   Many small villages have festivals centered around lavender.

*We did not personally see Valensole, so can’t guarantee the types of lavender fields….but our research said this was the “lavender capital”.