Discover the three main types of landscape in our beautiful region
The Mediterranean seaside : the French Riviera
The Côte d'Azur,the famous French Riviera which stretches from Hyères to Menton is set up to receive a large and rather affluent tourist clientele. The cities and coastline abound with first class hotels, in restaurants, chic boutiques,private beaches and luxury houses. Main cities are Nice, Cannes, Saint Tropez...
But the coast is also Camargue and its keepers, and the great ports of Marseille, Toulon and Nice, all three, gateways to Africa since ancient times.
The heart of Provence is in the hills that bind the sea to the alps. These are the sloping vineyards; the cultivated lands and the colorful scenery that charmed Cezanne (Aix en Provence), Van Gogh (Arles), Chagall ou Giono... In Provence or the Midi the local people have a soft singing accent which evokes their whole relaxed lifestyle. They have no greater pleasure after a hard days work than to enjoy a delicious and hardy meal shared with friends...This is the picturesque Provence of Pagnol, Raimu, and Fernandel.
Ski resorts an hour from the sea? ... Yes, it is possible! The Alpes d'Azur rise above Nice up to an altitude of 4,000m ... Clean air, large protected areas ...
It is still Provence with the Alpes de Haute Provence and the Hautes Alpes. You will ski there in the winter in the sun and in the summer you will go on an adventure on horseback, on foot or by bike.
The more adventurous can practice aerial sports (ULM, paragliding), white water sports (rafting, canyoning) or climbing. Winter sports rub shoulders with white water sports. These wild mountains, animated by their small hamlets and villages with a rich past, are home to a very rich and varied flora and fauna.
Since 2018, the region is now officially named “Région Sud Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur” (shorten in “Région Sud”) but its previous name “Provence Alpes Côte d'Azur” “PACA”) is still very much used. It is one of the 13 administrative regions of France, and contains 6 "departements" :
Alpes de Haute Provence (04)
Hautes Alpes (05)
Alpes Maritimes (06)
Bouches du Rhône (13)
In the summer, musicians from all over the world come to Provence and play from festival to festival. ere one can find 900km. of beaches, inlets and marinas, 27,000km2 of snowy peaks, forests and pine groves all awash in sunlight (about 3000 hours per year) !
Provence is is both picturesque villages in the hills and busy metropolises possessing international airports (Nice and Marseille). Provence is of course olive groves and lavender; but there are also the famous vineyards of Côtes du Rhône, Côtes de Provence and Bandol everything growing to the hum of the cicadas !