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Provence enjoys a Mediterranean climate, characterized by a dry and hot summer, low rainfall (less than 60 rainy days per year) and therefore a lot of sunshine. Mercury can reach 35°C in summer, although it is more likely to be around 30°C.


The villages of the Vaucluse region are often cooler in winter than near the coast, as they are exposed to the wind around them. April and October are the wettest months, and they experience heavy rainfall and showers that can last for a few days.


Conditions are at their best from late May to late June, when temperatures fluctuate around 26°C and the sun is plentiful. Plants, flowers and fruit trees flourish to their full potential, and roads are generally free of vacationers. September is pleasant and also enjoys a favourable climate; Swimming pools can be enjoyed until October. In contrast, July and August are the high tourist season. Europeans are on vacation this time of year, and it is becoming necessary to book accommodation well in advance. The coast is under attack, and it takes more time and patience to travel by car, the hinterland seems a better option for souls in search of peace and quiet.


The Mistral, this well-known wind, hits Provence all year round. It is a strong wind that can reach 100 km/h and blow for a whole day or even several days in a row.

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Food and Wine

The beauty of Provence is that you can go to any estate, you will always be warmly welcomed, no need to make an appointment or pay for your tasting. The atmosphere is always friendly and informal. 

That said, if you wish, The Luberon Concierge can organize a guided tour for you with the owner or cellar manager, who will be happy to reveal some of its trade secrets and share his anecdotes.

The Luberon has no less than 52 independent cellars, 10 cooperative cellars and a union of producers who produce quality wines in AOC and Vins de Pays. The three colours are represented in the region: 21% white wines, 53% rosé wines and 26% red wines.

White wines of the Luberon:
Refreshing for aperitifs with friends or with cheese at the end of a meal. The grape varieties that contribute to the elegant blend of Luberon white wines are white grenache, clairette blanche, vermentino, bourboulenc, roussanne, marsanne, ugni blanc and viognier. The aromatic diversity of the white wines is wide: the fruity ones range from peach to grapefruit tastes, and for complex blends, from toasted bread to honey.

Rosé wines of the Luberon:
The “pool wine”, the rosé, is the wine of conviviality par excellence.  Like the reds, the rosé wines of the Luberon AOC are mainly blended with syrah and black grenache, and a complement of mourvèdre and cinsault. With a beautiful freshness, their colour ranges from a very pale pink to a deep pink. The aromas range from fairly strong red berries, such as strawberry or redcurrant, to more exotic flavours.

Red wines of the Luberon:
Same blends for the red wines of the Luberon AOC as for the rosé wines. The reds are fruity, with aromas of red berries, and round on the palate. Some wines have peppery notes, but keep their characteristic freshness.

For those who cannot tolerate rosé in the evening, a proven solution is fresh red wine, a real marvel. But be careful to choose it carefully: it is best to seek advice from a professional before sticking your bottle of red in the fridge!

Over the years, the quality of red wines has improved, much to the delight of fine wine lovers.

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Shopping

Maison Empereur is a DIY and household goods store located in Marseille, a few hundred meters north of the Old Port. An institution, opened in 1827. And a paradise for all lovers of household items, DIY and vintage French objects!

It is the ideal place to stroll before reaching Marseilles airport. The Mucem (Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilizations) is not far away: It is best to park there, enter the museum and reach the café terrace on the first floor. Cross Fort Saint Jean and go down to the Old Port. Take the opportunity to try our favourite restaurant, Le Poulpe. The Emperor House is not far from there.

Enter this department store with its old-fashioned atmosphere, where time seems to have stopped… and wander around. The staff is there to advise you in all areas.

The aisles are narrow, customers often find themselves chatting to each other. It’s the kind of place where you end up buying things you didn’t know you needed. Don’t be surprised to leave with a metal meat grinder. Or maybe a cake tin in the shape of an Eiffel Tower?

Consider defining a rallying point, because the person you came here with will follow their own path. The store offers a selection of fabrics, Marseilles soaps, DIY, lighting and cooking  items, toys, knives, a museum and a tea room.

You can find all the classic French brands, and the selection of products is deliciously retro: you can easily imagine them having been used by your grandparents. Some objects are perplexing: it is sometimes difficult to guess their use.

Why not take the experience a step further and book their Airbnb apartment in the same building? Treat yourself to a timeless night, a candlelit bath, behind the blinds of this old, typically Marseilles-style building…

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Activities

The Tour de France will be passing near the Luberon on July 24 traveling from the Pont du Gard to Gap. For those interested in a visit to Orange and seeing the Roman Theatre, it might be an idea to arrive early and choose a good spot to watch the Tour go by.

Most cycle fanatics will choose a steep hill to prolong the joy of watching your cyclist heroes up close. Choose a flat part of the stage and the spectacle will be over in a matter of seconds.

This year that place will be in La Sentinelle with 10 kilometers to go before the finish in Gap. It’s a fun day out, take the kids and make the most of the trucks passing that throw out Haribo sweets and really useful Tour de France sponsorship key rings and hats.

La Sentinelle is around a 2 hour drive from the Luberon, with Vaison La Romaine only one hour away.

Will this be the year that Team Sky under the new name Team Ineos releases its stranglehold on cycling? Sir Jim Ratcliff has a personal fortune of £21 billion…maybe not!

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