Just south of Arles, Provence's rolling landscapes yield to the flat, marshy wilds of the Camargue, famous for teeming birdlife – roughly 500 species, from grey herons and little egrets to avocets and oystercatchers, as well as the candy-pink flamingo, which enjoys the mild winters of these expansive wetlands.
Stes-Maries de la Mer
This remote seaside outpost has a rough-and-tumble holidaymaker feel, with whitewashed buildings crowding dusty streets. During its Roma pilgrimages, street-cooked pans of paella fuel chaotic crowds of carnivalesque guitarists, dancers and mounted cowboys. Tickets for bullfights and courses Camarguaises are sold at the sea-front village arena.