If you’re looking for the best travel photography locations in Provence (South of France) to discover amazing lavender fields and charming villages, I believe that my little post can help you 🤩!.. Here is my choice of 10 iconic locations (out of many) in the Vaucluse, Drome, and Haute-Provence areas where lavender fields can be seen.
1- Valensole plateau, Haute-Provence
I must start that post with what is likely to be the most famous lavender field area worldwide: Valensole!. And in Valensole, the nicest (and busiest) area is near Lavandes Angelvin, a few miles west of the village…
You can however easily walk your way out of the busy touristic area (most stay near the road) for better perspectives of those gorgeous fields 😉.
Provence became the favorite Chinese tourist destination in France (ahead of Paris) driven by some TV shows and the Valensole plateau is on top of the list! So, to get some shooting of the most famous fields without tourists on the picture requires resilience and time 😱. Sometimes (rarely) however, tourists dressed up for selfies might look good on the image 😂 .
Keep walking around and exploring to get more cool perspectives on the fields and some lonely trees, even. Try back and white photography as well…
And if you’re a passionate photographer or landscape lover, don’t hesitate to come back to that area at different times of the day, to enjoy different light and colors…
If you’re looking for a sunrise photography tip, one of the nicest spots in my view is a small house near Mas Saint-Andrieux and Pierre Blanche.
Arrive early to admire the twilight color changes, and potentially to secure a good tripod spot before other photographers and tourists show up in that well-known spot 😳.
For a different sunset perspective on the village, take the road of Riez, southeast from Valensole, and drive a few miles to another often-photographed spot.
Be patient enough (my second name 🤨) and wait for the village lights to lit up after sunset (yes, you can bring a beer 😉) …
That view of the village is actually quite nice as well with morning light …
Tired of Valensole lavenders (enough, I agree) ?. Try sunflowers blossom instead 🤪…
2- Sénanque Abbey, Vaucluse
Another iconic spot for lavender photography is the Abaye Notre dame de Sénanque near Gordes, which should be seen ideally early morning.
The field is however surrounded by high barriers and the abbey (at the time of my visit) was decorated with some scaffoldings so I was not fully lucky to get the “perfect image” yet 😢.
3- Gordes village, Vaucluse
Or course, one can’t go to Sénanque abbey without stopping first to admire the amazing and iconic village of Gordes at sunrise!
if you pass nearby later in the day (afternoon), you’ll enjoy again the view of that wonderful Provençal village perched above the Provence.
4– Roussillon village, Vaucluse
The Roussillon village is another must-see colorful and charming spot in Vaucluse…
The village itself is very colorful and a paradise for photographers!
It is however extremely busy in summer, as tourist comes to hike the iconic “Sentier des Ocres” (Ochre trail) at the foot of the famous Provençal village. The trail takes around an hour and is worth the effort (don’t do like me, avoid nid day in July however 😰).
5- Saignon village, Vaucluse
Between Roussillon and Rustrel (a bit more south), Saignon is another great spot for its lavender fields flowering below the beautiful Provençal village perched on a rock.
The fields around that area are absolutely stunning!
6– Simiane-la-Rotonde, Vaucluse
Simiane-la-Rotonde is another beautiful typical Provençal village perched above colorful lavender fields and flowers in Vaucluse.
It is better(for the light) to go there early morning and there are many photography opportunities around the village, including for capturing black and white images of that great place
7- Aurel, Drome
Aurel beautiful ancient Provencal village surrounded by lavender fields is situated in the Drome area, nearby to the Vaucluse region “border”, and is really worth a visit.
Drive downhill just north of the village to have a look at some gorgeous fields.
There is as well a nice view of Aurel village from a nice lavender field on the hill, a few miles south.
8– Ferrassières, Vaucluse
Ferrassières (just east of Aurel village) is another popular touristic area for its lavender fields and small stone cabins ruins
9- Sault, Vaucluse
The area of Sault is as well a popular tourist and photographic destination if you can still cope with more lavender fields 😌 …
The road toward Monieux (south) offers, in my view, the best photography opportunities
10- Rustrel and the Colorado Provençal, Vaucluse
Last but not least, I could not close that post without mentioning Rustrel. There are of course some nice lavender fields around there but the main attraction is the famous and beautiful Colorado Provençal.
Start early (at the opening) to enjoy the place without too many tourists especially on the lower trail.
Take the upper trail (around one hour max to go around) for aerial perspectives on that gorgeous ancient ocher quarry
I’m a big fan of Colorado and Utah in the US and that place can sometimes feel like it or like a mini (mini) Bryce Canyon National Park ….
So here is my top 10 selection if you’re looking for a Provence lavender fields exploration. The ideal time for full blossom varies every year but is normally between the end of June and early July. Check on the web or with somebody local what’s the situation if and when you decide to go.
Do not hesitate to reach out for GPS coordinates of some of the spots if needed 😊.