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Make a holiday cottage in Valensole your home away from home

If you want accommodation in Provence that’s full of traditional character, you could browse HomeAway’s list of holiday homes in Valensole. Rentals here tend to be restored stone buildings with wooden shutters and generous gardens featuring private pools. Interiors at cottages in Valensole are at once rustic and contemporary, with original features retained, but coupled with amenities like dishwashers and Internet access. The village is in the Regional Natural Park of Verdon, not far from the majestic Verdon Gorge. Valensole cottages are set in a fertile region bordered by two rivers and celebrated for its olive oil and lavender.

Things to do

-Local heritage. Valensole is a sleepy and picturesque medieval stone village, where you’ll find stone houses painted pastel shades and convivial shaded squares with cafes. There are plenty of interesting little sights to see, including historic washhouses, sundials, fountains and a handful of churches. The main church is Saint-Denis, dating to the 1000s, but with later additions, like the large Gothic choir from the 1300s.

-Countryside. Valensole is set on the eponymous plateau, just over 500 metres above sea level. It’s an area well known for its fertility, and covered mostly by farmland where almonds, fruit, wheat and lavender are grown. If you get out for a walk in June or July you’ll see the lavender fields in full bloom, for one of Provence’s most evocative scenes.

-Verdon Gorge. This canyon is regarded as one of Europe’s most spectacular and is well worth the trip. It makes up about 25 kilometres of the Verdon River, and in places reaches depths of 700 metres. There are all kinds of ways to experience this awe-inspiring terrain – you can kayak or raft the river’s turquoise waters or pick from a host of scenic walking trails and lookouts. Climbers meanwhile can choose from some 1500 routes.

-Food and drink. In an area known for rich agriculture, Valensole has a strong reputation for its truffles and olive oil. One attraction for foodies is Les Grade Marges Olive Mill and farm. You can come here to see how olive oil is made and how lavender is distilled. There are vast orchards, lavender fields and olive groves here, as well as a shop selling olive oil, lavender oil, honey, vinegar, almonds and pralines, all produced by the farm.

-Lake of Sante-Croix. This man-made lake is the third largest inland body of water in France and was formed in the early-70s. The setting is lovely, with craggy hills all around and pine forest that reaches down to the water’s edge. In the summer it’s a fantastic place to come for swim, with beaches at intervals around the perimeter. Electric and wind-powered vessels are also permitted on the water here.

Weather in Valensole

Valensole is found in an especially sunny spot, getting more than 300 days of sunshine every year. If you come to a Valensole holiday rental in summer then hot weather is on the cards. July and August see temperatures climb to 30 degrees during the day. May, June and September are also mostly bright and warm. As Valensole is in a sheltered area, winters are relatively dry, with temperatures that range from just above zero at night to ten degrees by day. Autumn and spring weather is damper and milder.

Travel to Valensole

Most UK holidaymakers at self-catering cottages in Valensole will get to their accommodation via Marseille Provence Airport (MRS). Although it’s around 100 kilometres from the commune, the journey by car isn’t taxing because the A51 - Autoroute du Val de Durance will get you most of the way. You can then get off at exit 18 for Manosque and join the D3. In all the drive to the commune shouldn’t take much more than an hour. The town of Manosque has an SNCF station, with links to cities like Marseille, Aix-en-Provence and Briançon.

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Recent Reviews

Excellent in every way

5 of 5
We loved staying at Les Lavandes. The apartment is on the ground floor of a renovated old house and is superbly equipped with modern furniture. There is a small fenced private garden, but shared access to a much bigger area which includes a delightful private pool (shared with the guests staying at the other gite in the house).The views are extensive over vineyards and olive trees. The boulangerie, alimentation and boucherie are in the village only a five minute walk (uphill). There's easy access to Manosque, the Verdon Gorge, the Luberon and picturesque villages. The owners are very helpful and generous - with some nice gifts on arrival - but do not bother guests at all. I fully recommend Les Lavandes for a relaxing holiday.
  • Review Submitted: Jul 04, 2017
  • Date of Stay: Jun 2017

Amazing house and very nice and helpful owner

5 of 5
We are very happy with this Villa. Roland, the owner, is very nice and helpful. We arrived on a bank holiday in France which meant that all stores were closed and we couldn't buy any food for our dinner the first day. He offered us some fresh egg from his hens and home made apricot jam. The house is very clean and cozy. We enjoyed the pool every single day as well as the hidro massage bath :). It is situated in the middle of the country side which gives you so much peace. Laying by the pool listening to the nature is the best highlight of our trip. Highly recommended.
  • Review Submitted: Jun 08, 2017
  • Date of Stay: May 2017