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Roussillon

Tourism, holidays & weekends guide in the Vaucluse

Roussillon - Tourism, holidays & weekends guide in the Vaucluse
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Overlooking the Luberon Valley and surrounded by stunning scenery, the village of Roussillon is a Vaucluse village with a difference. Perched amid old ochre quarries, it stands out due to its colours, so characteristic of the area. Yellow, orange and red adorn the façades of the houses in this Provençal community full of authentic charm.

Explore the attractions of Roussillon as you stroll around the pretty squares and wander the winding streets, lined with colourful houses and cute shops, and leading to the highest point in the village. Once you reach the top, make the most of the splendid view over the Vaucluse mountains and Mount Ventoux from the orientation table! Then enjoy a stroll or a drink on pretty Place de la Mairie, a square surrounded by 18th-century houses, before stocking up on fresh local produce at the small market held every Thursday morning on Place du Pasquié. On your walk you will also see old buildings such as the belfry, a vestige of the fortified enclosure that was remodelled in the 19th century, and the Church of St. Michael, a 12th-century Romanesque building whose façade and baptismal fonts date from the 17th century. The old wall-walk offers a beautiful view of the needles in the Valley of Fairies (Val des Fées).

After exploring the village, be sure to pay a visit to the ecomuseum of Ochre - Ôkhra. Based in a former ochre factory, this unique place devoted to the world of ochre in the Luberon can be discovered on a guided tour, or at your own pace following the trail with commentary. There are discovery workshops for all the family along with art exhibitions.

Also not to be missed is the ochre trail ("sentier des ocres"), a walk through an old open-pit ochre quarry. With information signs along the way explaining how the site was formed and used, this specially created circuit allows you to discover the place's exceptional heritage and colourful landscapes!

Additional information
Roussillon

Roussillon is a town of Vaucluse, in Provence-Alpes-Cote d'Azur, 25 km northeast of Cavaillon.

The town became in the second half of the twentieth century the second most visited village in the Luberon, after Gordes, particularly because of its singular charm that gives it the ocher color of its houses.

In the Middle Ages Roussillon is however still a stronghold with a small castle and church of which depends on the Abbey of Villeneuve-lès-Avignon. But soon the Ancien Régime, through the operation of quarries and the installation of plant, ocher Roussillon becomes the first wealth of the territory. The ferric rock in shades ranging from yellow to red notably allows to dye fabrics and the industry employs more than one thousand workers until after the First War.

The beauty of the old quarries now converted into walking areas, the picturesque market town and the greenery of the surrounding countryside (or wooded hills covered with vines) then allow tourism to develop.

Throughout the year and especially in summer, thousands of visitors enjoy every day to walk the streets of the town that has joined the circle of the most beautiful villages in France and contemplate the spectacular landscape formed by quarrying... Pearl of the Luberon, this small massif that connects the Rhone valley to Provençal Alps, Roussillon (about 1300 inhabitants) is simply a wonderful "unavoidable".

Things to see and do

Before the village, when you get the southeast in the town, site on the site of old quarries which offers a landscape worthy of a western, is obviously a first step that is required (a large car park being built at close, then we can win the village itself).

For visitors, a "ocher trail" was designed dotted with educational signs that explain the origin of the rock, its operations, erosion has also played a role in shaping the paths and reliefs, besides the flora successful in this extraordinary setting, to flourish. Two courses are offered (long of 30 or 60 minutes) integrating the most remarkable points ("needles", "Giant"). Warning: it is now forbidden to collect every bit of rock!

A conservatory of ochres and pigments located in an old factory can complete the visit, with exhibitions, workshops and conferences dedicated to the manufacture of ocher, geology, techniques used by painters, weavers and other artisans using this amazing raw material. Open daily except January. Entrance: 1.50 and 2.50 euros, 7.50 euros with the entrance to the conservatory. Information at +33 4 90 05 66 69.

Then direction the village, slightly raised, through which a main street leading to the top. It consists of houses with colorful facades dating mainly from the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, and where many shops and galleries are located, trade development has not affected the beauty and picturesque places.

Throughout this walk are thus successively see the place du Pasquier who acts successively instead of grazing, fairground, school yard and parking now and then instead of Abbé Avon where the oven baker was carved into a rock.

Raised at the old gate of the fortified medieval walls, the belfry rebuilt in the nineteenth century became the annex church steeple. On the left, it is possible to reach the old rampart walk (from where one enjoys fine views over the village and the surrounding countryside). See then, instead of the Forge, which was in the tenth century the first castle courtyard.

Nearby, the Saint-Michel medieval foundation was heavily reworked especially for security purposes, the building next to a cliff... Note the facade of the seventeenth century, the choir eighteenth, and within, the paintings, a statue of St. Michael the wooden baptismal font framed by a stone canopy. Very close to the edge of the cliff (though the site is secure) a viewpoint is located to enjoy the wonderful panorama that encompasses the Luberon mountains.

The eighteenth century houses in the town hall square, the fountain of cattle instead of the Post and below the village, the Naiad fountain further complements this route. Obviously, besides the food shops can be plenty of time to make steps: craft shops, galleries...

In summer, guided tours of the village are proposed. Departure from the place du Pasquier. Information at +33 4 90 05 60 25.

Other walks or hikes are proposed including woodland (pines, oaks), small peaks, heritage features and the vineyards of the municipal area, large 30 km². Several sectors are also known for their ecological wealth. Maps and information +33 4 90 05 60 25 or +33 4 90 74 03 18.

It may be relevant also to contact the Luberon Regional Nature Park that program regularly exhibitions, conferences, themed walks and activities. Information at +33 4 90 04 42 00.

Finally, note that play a tennis match is possible in the town. Join the local club at +33 4 90 05 65 46.

Places of interest

Information points
Performance halls

Events and festivities

Photos

The village and Mont Ventoux in the background
The village and Mont Ventoux in the background
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The village of Roussillon
The village of Roussillon
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A village street under the snow (rare fact)
A village street under the snow (rare fact)
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Blue shutters
Blue shutters
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Alley
Alley
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Descent to the ocher quarries
Descent to the ocher quarries
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Art Gallery
Art Gallery
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A street of Roussillon
A street of Roussillon
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Garage door in Roussillon
Garage door in Roussillon
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A village vault
A village vault
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Another vault
Another vault
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A door in Roussillon
A door in Roussillon
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A stone wall
A stone wall
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Virginia creeper at Roussillon
Virginia creeper at Roussillon
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Small alley
Small alley
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Village of Roussillon
Village of Roussillon
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Landscape of Roussillon
Landscape of Roussillon
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Ocher Trail
Ocher Trail
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Roussillon village seen from the sky
Roussillon village seen from the sky
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Village of Roussillon
Village of Roussillon
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The ochres of Roussillon
The ochres of Roussillon
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On the ocher trail
On the ocher trail
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Roussillon
Roussillon
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Roussillon
Roussillon
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Village square
Village square
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Door from above
Door from above
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Facades of the village
Facades of the village
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Alley
Alley
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Ocher quarries
Ocher quarries
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Ocher quarries
Ocher quarries
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Red penitents
Red penitents
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Red penitents or sentinels
Red penitents or sentinels
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Entrance to an underground quarry
Entrance to an underground quarry
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The village of Roussillon (© Decrig)
The village of Roussillon (© Decrig)
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The village (© Jean Espirat)
The village (© Jean Espirat)
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Old door of the upper village (© Jean Espirat)
Old door of the upper village (© Jean Espirat)
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Village square (© Jean Espirat)
Village square (© Jean Espirat)
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An alley (© Jean Espirat)
An alley (© Jean Espirat)
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An alley (© Jean Espirat)
An alley (© Jean Espirat)
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Alley (© Jean Espirat)
Alley (© Jean Espirat)
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Another alley (© Jean Espirat)
Another alley (© Jean Espirat)
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Access staircase to the ocher quarries (© Jean Espirat)
Access staircase to the ocher quarries (© Jean Espirat)
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Ocher mound (© Jean Espirat)
Ocher mound (© Jean Espirat)
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The flamboyant mount (© Jean Espirat)
The flamboyant mount (© Jean Espirat)
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The ochres (© Jean Espirat)
The ochres (© Jean Espirat)
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Color palette (© Jean Espirat)
Color palette (© Jean Espirat)
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The red penitents (© Jean Espirat)
The red penitents (© Jean Espirat)
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Assembly of red penitents (© Jean Espirat)
Assembly of red penitents (© Jean Espirat)
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Red mounds, in the forest (© Jean Espirat)
Red mounds, in the forest (© Jean Espirat)
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The ocher trail...
The ocher trail...
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The painter of Roussillon
The painter of Roussillon
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Visits, leisure and activities nearby

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Campsites

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