The Rough Guide to Provence & Cote d Azur (Travel Guide eBook)
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345 pages

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The Rough Guide to Provence & the Côte d'Azur  

Make the most of your time on Earth with the ultimate travel guides.
World-renowned 'tell it like it is' travel guide.

Discover Provence & the Côte d'Azur with this comprehensive and entertaining travel guide, packed with practical information and honest and independent recommendations by our experts. Whether you plan to stroll the same peaceful streets as Van Gogh once did in Arles, take a boat trip to the Calanques, take in the towering Roman aqueduct of Pont du Gard or wander down the maze-like alleyways in Simiane-la-Rotonde village, The Rough Guide to Provence & the Côte d'Azur will help you discover the best places to explore, eat, drink, shop and sleep along the way.

Features of this travel guide to Provence & the Côte d'Azur:
- Detailed regional coverage: provides practical information for every kind of trip, from off-the-beaten-track adventures to chilled-out breaks in popular tourist areas
- Honest and independent reviews: written with Rough Guides' trademark blend of humour, honesty and expertise, our writers will help you make the most from your trip to Provence & the Côte d'Azur
- Meticulous mapping: practical full-colour maps, with clearly numbered, colour-coded keys. Find your way around Avignon, Nice and many more locations without needing to get online
- Fabulous full-colour photography: features inspirational colour photography, including the colourful Vieux Port in Marseille and perched mountainside village of Peillon
- Time-saving itineraries: carefully planned routes will help inspire and inform your on-the-road experiences
- Things not to miss: Rough Guides' rundown of Nice, Marseille and Monaco's best sights and top experiences
- Travel tips and info: packed with essential pre-departure information including getting around, accommodation, food and drink, health, the media, festivals, sports and outdoor activities, culture and etiquette, shopping and more
- Background information: comprehensive 'Contexts' chapter provides fascinating insights into Provence & the Côte d'Azur, with coverage of history, religion and books, plus a handy language section and glossary
- Covers: Marseille and around; Arles and the Camargue; Avignon and the Vaucluse; Aix-en-Provence, the Durance and the Luberon; the Haut Var and Haute Provence; Toulon and the southern Var; Cannes and the western Riviera; Nice and the eastern Riviera

You may also be interested in: The Rough Guide to France, The Rough Guide to Brittany & Normandy and Rough Guides Phrasebook French

About Rough Guides: Rough Guides have been inspiring travellers for over 35 years, with over 30 million copies sold globally. Synonymous with practical travel tips, quality writing and a trustworthy 'tell it like it is' ethos, the Rough Guides list includes more than 260 travel guides to 120+ destinations, gift-books and phrasebooks.



Publié par
Date de parution 01 janvier 2020
Nombre de lectures 5
EAN13 9781789196566
Langue English
Poids de l'ouvrage 16 Mo

Informations légales : prix de location à la page 0,0034€. Cette information est donnée uniquement à titre indicatif conformément à la législation en vigueur.


Hemis/AWL Images
Where to go
When to go
Author picks
Things not to miss
Tailor-made trips
Getting there
Getting around
Food and drink
The media
Sports and outdoor activities
Travel essentials
1 Marseille and around
2 Arles and the Camargue
3 Avignon and the Vaucluse
4 Aix-en-Provence, the Durance and the Luberon
5 The Haut Var and Haute Provence
6 Toulon and the southern Var
7 Cannes and the western Riviera
8 Nice and the eastern Riviera
Glossary of French terms
Glossary of architectural terms
Introduction to
Provence & the Côte d’Azur
Seductive, sweet-scented and steeped in history, the neighbouring regions of Provence and the Côte d’Azur epitomize all that’s irresistible about southern France. Each makes a fabulous destination in its own right; take a trip to both, and you can enjoy the very best France has to offer. Provence, stretching east from the River Rhône as it flows south towards the Camargue and the sea, was one of Rome’s wealthiest provinces, and still abounds in extraordinary ancient relics, as well as vibrant and romantic cities like Avignon and Arles and countless alluring towns and hill villages. Named for its dazzling azure waters, the Côte d’Azur – also colloquially known as the French Riviera – consists of the fabled coast that runs from Marseille to the frontier with Italy, studded with glamorous and glitzy resorts.
France’s eastern Mediterranean shoreline consists of an ever-changing series of geometric bays that give way to chaotic outcrops of glimmering rock and deep, narrow inlets, like miniature fjords – the calanques . Immediately behind it, the coastal hinterland is made up of range after range of steep, forested hills, while the wild, high plateaux of central Provence are cut by the deepest gorge in all Europe – the Grand Canyon du Verdon. Higher still climb the snow-peaked lower Alps and their foothills, which in the east descend right to the sea, and to the west extend almost to the Rhône. All these would count for nothing, however, were it not for the magical Mediterranean light. At its best in spring and autumn, it is both soft and brightly theatrical, as if some expert had rigged the lighting for each landscape for maximum colour and definition with minimum glare.
Food and wine are the other great pleasures of Provence. Local-grown produce – olives and garlic, asparagus and courgettes, grapes and strawberries, cèpe and morille mushrooms, almonds and sweet chestnuts – forms an integral part of the region’s simple, healthy cuisine, while Provençal wines range from the dry, light rosés of the Côtes de Provence and Bandol to the deep and delicate reds of the Côtes du Rhône and Châteauneuf-du-Pape.
Where to go
This is a large region, and a diverse one, where contrasting landscapes encompass the rural fields and villages of inland Provence, the remote mountainous regions of the Alpes-Maritimes in the east and north, and the high-rise developments and autoroutes of the Riviera in the south. The epicentre of the Riviera, Nice – a vibrant and intriguing blend of Italianate influence, faded belle époque splendour and first-class art – makes a perfect base, with delicious food, affordable accommodation and lively nightlife. North of the city, densely wooded Alpine foothills are home to a series of exquisite villages perchés (medieval hilltop villages, such as Saorge ), while to the east, the lower Corniche links the picturesque seafront towns of Villefranche , St-Jean-Cap-Ferrat and Beaulieu ; the higher roads offer some of the most spectacular coastal driving in Europe, en route to the perched village of Èze and the tiny principality of Monaco . The Riviera’s western half claims its best beaches – at jazzy Juan-les-Pins and at Cannes , a swanky centre of designer shopping and film.
The Riviera also boasts heavyweight cultural attractions, with highlights including the Picasso museum in Antibes , Renoir’s house at Cagnes-sur-Mer and the superb Fondation Maeght and Fernand Léger museums in the gorgeous perched villages of St-Paul-de-Vence and Biot respectively. The world’s perfume capital, Grasse , and the ancient town of Vence , home to a wonderful chapel that stands as Matisse’s final masterpiece, both shelter in the hills behind the busy coastal resorts, while for a real escape from the bustle of the coast, the tranquil Îles de Lérins lie just a few kilometres offshore from Cannes.


Since the late nineteenth century, Provence and the Côte d’Azur have been home and inspiration to some of the greatest names of modern art – Van Gogh , Cézanne , Renoir , Matisse and Picasso among them. The brilliant southern light was one of the most influential factors in their work here; Matisse remarked that, had he carried on painting in the north, “there would have been cloudiness, greys, colours shading off into the distance…” Instead, during his time in Nice he produced some of his most famous, colourful works, such as Le Rideau égyptien (Interior with Egyptian Curtains) and Icare (Icarus). It was in Provence too, in Arles and St-Rémy, that Van Gogh fully developed his trademark style of bright, contrasting colours. His landscapes of olive trees, cypresses and harvest scenes, such as La Sieste (The Siesta) and Champ de Blé et Cyprès (Wheat Field with Cypresses), all pay tribute to the intensity of the Provençal sun . The painters in turn had a major impact on the region. Hand-in-hand with the writers and socialites who flocked to the Côte d’Azur during the interwar years, their artistic, and touristic, legacy helped to shape the Provence that exists today.
West of the ancient Massif of the Esterel , beyond the Roman towns of Fréjus and St-Raphaël , loom the dark wooded hills of the Massif des Maures . Here, the coast is home to the fabled hot spots of Ste-Maxime and St-Tropez , still a byword for glamour and excess more than sixty years after Brigitte Bardot put it on the jetsetters’ map. In dramatic contrast, the Corniche des Maures stretches to the west, its low-key resorts interspersed with blissfully unspoiled strips of Mediterranean coastline. Beyond lies the original Côte d’Azur resort of Hyères with its elegant villas, fascinating old town, and offshore Îles d’Hyères , popular with nature lovers, naturists and divers.
Further west, past the great natural harbour of Toulon and the superb wine country of the Bandol AOP, lies the buzzing metropolis of Marseille . The region’s largest city, this tough port has shucked off its once sleazy reputation to become a lively, cosmopolitan and likeable destination. On its eastern edge lie the calanques , a series of beautiful rocky coves protected as a national park. In their midst you will find the picture-postcard village of Cassis , linked to the working port of La Ciotat to the east by the spectacular Corniche des Crêtes . North of Marseille the elegant city of Aix boasts handsome stone houses, café-lined boulevards and some of the finest markets in Provence. Cézanne lived and painted here, taking his inspiration from the countryside around the nearby Montagne Ste-Victoire .
Beyond Aix, the Lower Rhône Valley is home to some of the most ancient cities in Provence. Both romantic Arles and tiny Orange still boast spectacular Roman structures, while Avignon , city of the popes and for centuries one of the great artistic centres of France, remains focused around its immaculately preserved medieval core. A short way west, officially outside Provence but an integral part of its Roman heritage, the extraordinary aqueduct known as the Pont du Gard stands proud after two thousand years. The stately Rhône itself runs past the vineyards of Châteauneuf-du-Pape and the impressive fortifications of Villeneuve-lès- Avignon , before meeting the sea at the lagoon-studded marshlands of the Camargue , with its rich wildlife including bulls, horses and flamingos.

The Luberon region, inland from Marseille, is a fertile rural hinterland whose delightful old villages are now dominated by second-homeowners. Nearby lie the great medieval monasteries of Silvacane and Sénanque . Beyond the plateau de Vaucluse, mighty Mont Ventoux dominates the horizon; a legendary challenge on the Tour de France, it attracts amateur cyclists in their thousands each summer. Immediately west, celebrated wine-producing villages nestle amid the jagged pinnacles of the Dentelles de Montmirail .
East of the Luberon, in the Provençal heartland, an archetypal landscape of lavender fields dotted with old stone villages stretches north towards the dramatic Grand Canyon du Verdon . Beyond the canyon, narrow clues , or gorges, open onto a secret landscape perfect for adventurous activities of all kinds, with the fortified towns of Entrevaux and Colmars defining the former frontier between France and Savoy. A third fortress town, Sisteron , on the Durance, marks the gateway to the mountains and the Alps proper, where the fine old town of Barcelonette provides skiing in winter and kayaking and hiking in the summer. Stretching south from here towar

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