MOUSTIERS SAINTE MARIE and THE VERDON GORGES
The village of Moustiers Sainte Marie sits astride a rushing mountain stream that divides the two halves with a narrow rocky canyon. The view of this mini-gorge, with small waterfalls down inside and medieval houses above, is beautiful. The sound of the river, and the running fountains all over the village, give Moustiers the feeling of an Alpine village. The village has narrow medieval streets and vaulted passages.
The center piece of the village is the 12th-century Notre-Dame church, beautifully restored in 1928. It's topped by a four-level Lombard Romanesque (Italianate) bell tower, carved from golden-brown tuff.
In the village, you will find a lot of tiny litlle shops. A lot of them sell the local earthenware "faïence" which production was once the main activity of the village.
Another curiosity is the star, suspended high across the Rioul valley by a forged-iron chain. The golden star hangs above the Notre-Dame de Beauvoir chapel, with the chain fastened into solid rock on each side of the gorge. The chain and star project was done as a promise by Sir Blacas, a knight who returned from a long captivity during the crusades.
For the most courageaous, A walk up to the Notre-Dame de Beauvoir chapel will give you a fantastic view, from the red-tiled roofs of the village to the expanse of the Maire valley, the far hills and the Lac de Ste Croix.
This lake is located at the exit of the famous Verdon Gorges : the deepest gorges in Europe !
The name of the river comes from its turquoise / green color.
As we will folow the North Rim, we will make several stops so that you will be able to admire both the Gorges and the Sainte Croix lake.
8:30am Pick up at your hotel
View on the way on the spa town of Gréoux, the 12th century tower of St Martin de Brômes, and the renaissance castle of Allemagne-en-Provence
10:30 Take the scenic road by the Verdon canyon, offering astonishing views
12:30pm Lunch and visit of Moustiers Sainte Marie, the capital of ceramics, considered as one of the most beautiful villages of France
03:45 Drive back
05:30 Drop Off