About 9km north of Apt and 10km northeast of Roussillon, St-Saturnin-lès-Apt (population 2479) is refreshingly ungentrified and just beyond the tourist radar. Shops (not boutiques), cafes and bakeries line its cobbled streets. It has marvellous views of the surrounding Vaucluse plateau – climb to the ruins atop the village for knockout views.
Les Baux de Provence
Clinging precariously to an ancient limestone baou (Provençal for ‘rocky spur’), this fortified hilltop village is one of the most visited in France (best as a day trip). It’s easy to understand why: narrow cobbled streets wend car-free past ancient houses, up to a splendid ruined castle.
Visible for miles around, Mont Ventoux (1912m), nicknamed le géant de Provence (Provence’s giant), stands like a sentinel over northern Provence. From its summit, accessible by road between May and October (the white glimmering stuff you see in summer is lauzes, broken white stones, not snow), vistas extend to the Alps and, on a clear day, the Camargue.