When it comes to listing the most beautiful villages in France,be sure that GORDES will be in a good position. It must be said that this perched village among the Vaucluse Mountains has everything for it. A beautiful setting and a rich heritage and history. To get to Gordes, you will follow a winding road that languors among the stone walls and olive fields. Gordes suddenly stands at the turn of a bend, a blonde stone ship stranded at the top of a hill. Don’t miss the opportunity, during your HOLIDAY ON A CAMPSITE IN THE VAUCLUSE to visit this small town that is one of the must-sees of Provence.
Gordes, a terraced village
Gordes’ perched position has always been a defensive position since the Gallo-Roman era. However, it was in the Middle Ages (11th century) that it acquired a castle to protect the people of the surrounding area during periods of war or invasion. The latter was heavily redesigned in the Renaissance. However, it had the chance to survive, unlike the medieval church. Built in the 12th century, it became too small and was razed and rebuilt in the 18th century. This is the church of Saint Firmin that we can visit today. The castle, massive and decorated with round towers, can be visited both for its architecture and for its art exhibitions.
To get to the castle, you have to go up the narrow cobbled streets that climb up the hillside. In Provence these cobbled streets are called Calades . These calades are lined with beautiful Provencal houses whose colorful shutters contrast on the blond stone. As you walk, take the time to admire the beautiful views that open onto the Luberon.
Gordes, an underground city
When visiting Gordes, it would be easy to settle for the tip of the iceberg. And that would be pretty good! But the city hides, in its basement, real treasures. It is built on a gigantic underground network. For lack of space, people lived on the surface and the underground was dedicated to handicrafts. This underground Gordes, often buried under embankments, is unfortunately no longer visible. To get an idea of what the troglodytic Gordes looked like, you can visit the cellars of St. Firmin’s Palace. Beneath an elegant Renaissance palace, this troglodytic site immerses you in the hidden history of Gordes. During a visit to these cellars, you will discover how Gordes’ craft activity (oil mill, silos, bread oven, etc.) was organized in the basement of the village. This underground set is truly exceptional. It is organized on 7 levels, on a height of 20 meters! It is composed of about fifty cellars connected by corridors and stairs.
Be sure to dig to discover this hidden face of this perched village during your camping holiday in Gordes in Provence.
City of Art
Like other villages in Provence, Gordes has seduced artists. André Lhote, painter and writer, was the first to settle in Gordes in 1940. He set out to restore the village, which had fallen into oblivion following the rural exodus of the 19th century. Following him, many artists came to settle in Gordes. Among the most famous are Marc Chagall, Victor Vasarelly, Victor Spahn, Pol Mara or photographer Willy Ronis. Gordes’ artistic tradition has since been preserved. The city hosts exhibitions within the castle walls. The calades that wind up the hillside, you will also discover numerous workshops of painters or sculptors as well as art galleries.
To visit around Gordes
Outside the village, but on the commune of Gordes several sites are worth a visit. The Village des Bories is a typical hamlet of temporary housing in Mediterranean countries. These limestone accommodations complemented the permanent village during the period of seasonal agricultural work. Gordes is a fine example of this Provençal tradition. Theabbey of Senanque was born at the same time as the church of Gordes, in the 12th century. However, it has been perfectly preserved. In the middle of the lavender fields, this abbey is one of the three Cistercian “sisters” of Provence with the abbeys of Thoronet and Silvacane. The Glass Museum nestles in a 3-hectare park. Its 600 m² exhibition tells you the story of glass and stained glass. Three beautiful tours that will enhance your camping holiday in Gordes.
Our campsite near Gordes