Les Baux, Montmajour, Arles
Arles Travel Blog› entry 5 of 13 › view all entries
Un des plus beaux villages de France, that's how Les Baux de Provence strikes its breast. Without doubt, this is an exceptional place. Perched on a rocky spur, the citadel overlooks some staggeringly beautiful countryside dominated by vinyards and rocky mountains. This is the heart of the Chaine des Alpilles. The old village is entered at the Maison du Roy, which houses the tourist board. Next to it is a very colourful candy shop. Two streets lead to the entrance of the castle and the Place Saint Vincent with the church and the Penitent's Chapel. The best view you get, is behind Rue de l'Orme near Le Prince Noir B&B.
In Arles I stayed at one of the nicest Ibis hotels in France. (Rue Gérard Gadiot). It has a great swimming pool in a garden and a cosy bar. See my review. But Arles is Van Gogh. In 15 months he stayed here, he produced over 300 paintings. The most famous is Café du Soir. The original bar in the Place du Forum has been renovated to look as in the painting. A monument dedicated to Vincent, his head on a stone, stands in the Jardin d'Eté. Not to be missed in Arles are Les Arènes, the amphiteatre. It was the largest of the Roman buildings in Gaul. Today it is used for bullfights. At the other side of Place Bornier is the Roman Théatre Antique. Don't forget to visit the cloisters of St.-Trophime.