Welcome to the capital of the Alpilles and one of the oldest cities in France! About twenty kilometers from Avignon, Saint-Rémy is an elegant little town, an attractive center for artists and personalities, which seduces for its art of living. It's a safe bet that the charm of this typical southern city will not leave you indifferent. It is also the ideal starting point for visiting Provence.
What makes this town special?
At the heart of the Alpilles Regional Natural Park, Saint-Rémy, first called Glanum, was created in 500 BC. It was Hellenized and then became a Roman city. Destroyed during the barbarian invasions, then rebuilt, it experienced considerable growth in the Middle Ages, was surrounded by ramparts, then, during the Renaissance, acquired private mansions. In the 19th century, the city attracted many artists, the most famous being undoubtedly Vincent Van Gogh who stayed there in 1889-1890. Fascinated by light and landscapes, he painted 150 canvases there.
As soon as you enter Saint-Rémy, the charm kicks in: strolling along the shady boulevards, in the heart of the historic center, on the squares adorned with fountains is truly enchanting! The city is full of mansions, convents, chapels, pretty shops and art galleries, but also restaurants and cafes whose terraces are an invitation to relax.
In summer, Saint-Rémy offers two markets on the Place de la République and in part of the town centre, which have themselves become a very popular tourist destination. The Wednesday morning market offers a whole range of Provençal products, while the Saturday market is mainly food. These lively and colorful markets are typical examples of Provençal life. A feast for the eyes and taste buds !
Finally, in summer, the city organizes a number of events such as, in July, the Jazz under the stars festival, the Antiques of Glanum, a major opera festival or the Organa Festival, which brings together the greatest organists worldwide. Notice to amateurs! And in August, a feria, not to be missed!
Places not to be missed on holiday in Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, France
The archaeological site of Glanum and the Roman monuments of the Ancients will delight history buffs and are a must! Located to the south of the city in the direction of Les Baux-de-Provence, they testify to the civilizations that have succeeded one another. You can visit, among other things, the large thermal baths, the long residential avenue, the temple and the natural spring of a Gallo-Roman city from 30 BC, a triumphal arch and a mausoleum.
Back in town, the Hôtel de Sade invites you to admire the collections of the archaeological site of Glanum.
We often come to Saint-Rémy for Vincent Van Gogh, in order to familiarize ourselves with a short and intense period of the painter's life. If so, a visit to the Saint-Pierre-de-Mausole monastery is a must. This houses a psychiatric asylum known today as the “Maison de Santé Saint-Paul” where the artist stayed shortly before his death and painted numerous canvases. From the monastery, a pedestrian circuit, illustrated with 21 panels with reproductions of paintings by Van Gogh will take you through his universe to the Estrine museum. In this veritable gem of 18th century Provençal architecture, a multimedia educational space has been created devoted to the life and work of Van Gogh. The museum also has a collection dedicated to painting and graphic arts from the 20th and 21st centuries.
Places to Visit on Vacation from Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, France
You are in the heart of the Alpilles, a real paradise for walkers and nature lovers. There are therefore very beautiful hikes around the olive groves and the vineyards. A walk to Lake Peïroou allows you to contemplate the sublime landscapes of Provence.
Literature lovers will not miss the Frédéric-Mistral museum, in Maillane, a few kilometers from Saint-Rémy. This famous poet of the Provençal language, who was also a lexicographer and Nobel Prize winner for literature in 1904, had this house built in 1876, the year of his marriage, and lived there until his death. Workspace and place of literary meetings, the house has been an important place for the protection and dissemination of Provençal. Frédéric Mistral leaves behind the famous 19th century French-Occitan dictionary Lou Tresor d óu Felibrige (the Treasure of Félibrige) . The place also offers a photo library-video library and workshops for children that address various themes related to cultural practices and the work of the poet.
Don't miss Les Baux-de-Provence, with its medieval castle, its view of the Camargue, and its unmissable Carrières de Lumières, a unique multimedia show in the world! It would be a shame not to take the opportunity to visit Avignon and its Palace of the Popes, but also Arles and its ancient remains, Fontvieille and its mill, Eygalières, Maussane and Mouriès.
Other Local Villages nearby Display all
At the foot of the Alpilles chain and a few kilometers from Baux-de-Provence, Maussane is a pleasant village which stretches out in a valley in the middle of olive groves. Center of olive production, it has some historical curiosities and offers visitors typical Provence activities.
Nestled in the heart of the protected natural park of the Alpilles, this charming village has retained its authenticity. From the top of this perch, a breathtaking panorama of olive groves, green valleys and vineyards awaits you. Eygalières also has magnificent private residences that can be rented for a summer.
Just 20 kilometers from Avignon, L'Isle-sur-la-Sorgue is a charming riverside village. This charming city, which is nicknamed the "Comtadine Venice", leaves no one indifferent. Renowned for its antiques, it is a paradise for bargain hunters. Thanks to its markets, it also attracts all gourmets!
Ménerbes is one of the most beautiful villages in France. Built on top of a hill, the village offers a breathtaking view of the Luberon. Inhabited since prehistoric times, this charming town has a rich historical past and has been very well preserved. There reigns here an incomparable sweetness of life! Reason why Ménerbes has attracted many artists!
In the heart of the Vaucluse mountains, Gordes is a perched Provençal village, ranked among the most beautiful in France, whose charm immediately affects the visitor. Entirely built in dry stone, it shines with a thousand lights under the morning sun and offers a breathtaking view of the Luberon forests.
Between Cavaillon and Apt, Goult enjoys an almost perfect location, perched on a hill in the Luberon Regional Natural Park. A haven of peace for lovers of old stones and nature, close to many points of tourist interest.
The old fortified village is located at the top of the valley of Lourmarin and dominated by an old church. This perched Provençal village is the ideal place to discover the region by bike or on foot and benefits from an exceptional panorama which extends from the Petit Luberon to the Monts du Vaucluse and as far as Mont Ventoux.
Lourmarin is one of the most beautiful villages in France. Nestled in the heart of lush vineyards, flowering almond trees and fragrant olive groves, it has cafés and restaurants with lively terraces as well as pleasant Provençal shops. Its historical heritage is worth the detour.