Pays d'Arles IS Provence!

Maison provençale - Tarascon

Maison provençale - Tarascon

Lionel Roux - Canopée - Pays d'Arles -
The history of Provence Pays d'Arles is closely linked to that of Provence and its founding fathers, including Frédéric Mistral, Folco de Baroncelli and Léo Lelée. Here, the residents are the keepers of unique Provençal traditions. This is not folklore, this is real. In high season, but also in winter, away from prying eyes, amongst ourselves, we beat to the rhythm of the horse-drawn carriages, the courses camarguaises, the Provençal language and the costumes and Provençal imagery conveyed by our region's great painters and writers. These traditions often stop at the boundaries of Pays d'Arles. You can immerse yourself in the heart of Provence in the villages of PROVENCE PAYS d'ARLES, which are open to visitors from all over the world.

PROVENCE PAYS D’ARLES is Provence! The most beautiful stories from its past were written here! Its figureheads lived here! Its symbolic landscapes are most beautifully represented here! Its traditions shine with unrivalled intensity! Its colourful, delicious and joyous cuisine is prepared every day thanks to its exceptional soil!

The history of Provence Pays d'Arles is closely linked to that of Rhone Provence and its founding fathers, including Frédéric Mistral, Folco de Baroncelli and Léo Lelée. Here, the residents are the keepers of unique Provençal traditions. This is not folklore, this is real. In high season, but also in winter, away from prying eyes, amongst ourselves, we beat to the rhythm of the horse-drawn carriages, the courses camarguaises, the Provençal language and the costumes and Provençal imagery conveyed by our region's great painters and writers. These traditions often stop at the boundaries of Pays d'Arles. You can immerse yourself in the heart of Provence in the villages of Provence Pays d'Arles, which are open to visitors from all over the world.

The region has been populated since the dawn of time and in Antiquity was at the heart of Roman Gaul, at the intersection of the Via Domitiana (which led towards Spain), the Via Agrippa (which went from Arles to Lyon) and the Via Aurelia (which led to Rome via the coast). It still has an exceptional Roman heritage, which is classified as a UNESCO World Heritage for Humanity Site.

As you travel through this region, you are also walking in the footsteps of the First Christians of Gaul and the lords and sovereigns who make up the history of Provence. Over time, this political influence has become a cultural influence. Provence Pays d'Arles is the cradle of Provençal culture. The region was the birthplace of Frédéric Mistral, who won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1904 and was a great defender of the Provençal language. The great poet devoted his life and work to keeping the language, costumes and identity of Provence alive. Traditions have a particular vibrancy here, bringing the inhabitants together in a wonderful atmosphere. The breeding of Camargue bulls and all the resulting traditions cement this region, where every town and village has its own arena.

You can discover a unique and original culture by sharing the enthusiasm for the courses camarguaises and the carreto ramado of Saint-Eloi, the early rice, the Provence Christmas, the pilgrimages, the Arles, Madeleine and Tarasque festivals and all the other traditional events which mark the seasons. The unique settings for this culture are the most symbolic landscapes of Provence.  Provence Pays d'Arles: when we think of this region, it is the landscapes of Provence which come immediately to mind. The same brilliant light bathes this region. It has inspired the painters and photographers who have made a major contribution to its reputation. Van Gogh, the most famous of these, painted more than 350 major works here during his stay in Arles and Saint-Rémy de Provence.

In Camargue you can look for pink flamingos and Camargue horses and bulls in the lakes, marshlands, saline scrub and reed beds. You can have your fill of open spaces and fresh air on the vast unspoilt beaches of the delta. In the Alpilles, you can find sweet-smelling hills, valleys which wind between the limestone massifs, fields of cleverly aligned olive trees, welcoming pine trees and the rocky outcrop of Les Baux-de-Provence.

Provence Pays d'Arles is also home to Provençal villages in the heart of the Alpilles, the Val de Provence and La Crau which have conserved their charm and authenticity. You can stroll for hours between lively squares, narrow lanes, secret porches, pleasant terraces and welcoming shops. If you are lucky, you will find a Provençal market, where local artisans and producers display their colourful stalls.

Provence Pays d'Arles also has the flavours of Provence, intense flavours which draw their subtlety from a sun-drenched soil nourished by the abundant waters of the Rhône and the Durance. Val de Provence produces an abundance of fruit and vegetables which are sent all over the country every day.

The Alpilles has four AOP: olive oil from the Vallée des Baux, cracked green olives from the Vallée des Baux, treated black olives from the Vallée des Baux and wines from the Vallée des Baux. La Crau has been pasture land since Antiquity and allows the breeding of the Merinos d'Arles sheep and the remarkable La Crau lamb. Camargue gives us the PGI Camargue rice, the Camargue bull's meat AOP with its incomparable taste and nutritive qualities, not forgetting seafood. These exceptional products are enhanced by the talents of the great chefs and artisans who live here. They draw the inspiration for their gourmet creations from this area, whether they prefer constant innovation or the diligent interpretation of the great classics of Provençal cuisine, such as aïoli, Provençal stuffed vegetables, ratatouille and aubergine riste and gardiane de taureaux (bulls' meat stew).

The history, the culture, the traditions, the landscapes, the villages and the flavours... all Provençal art de vivre is concentrated here. The heart of Provence undeniably beats in Provence Pays d'Arles!