Maussane, the jewel in the crown, is nestled amongst the southern slopes of the Alpilles Mountains, located in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur region, in les Vallée des Baux, and is a short distance from neighbouring villages Les Baux de Provence, St Remy de Provence, Eygaliéres, Arles and Mouries. As one of the most important olive oil producing areas in all of France, olive groves and mills, vineyards and undulating countryside set the backdrop to this charming French village.
Walk down the worn streets of history, taking in the 18th century church Église Sainte-Croix, historic epicentre Vieux-Maussane, stone houses, picturesque squares, and gastronomic restaurants, all which encapsulate the essence of Maussane.
On Thursday mornings, meander through the Provençal market held at Square Henri Giraud, and sample the delicious olive delicacies, the myriads of delectable French and local cheeses, the seasonal handpicked local fruits and vegetables, whilst relishing in the perfume of the local flora under the leaves of the plane trees.
With the unfolding seasons, the village transforms with its magic and new colours, moods and light emerge. With 300 days of sunshine a year, spend a sun laden afternoon drinking café au lait or a glass of local rosé with a charcuterie plate in one of the local brasseries. Be romanced by soft sounds of the four seasons fountain within the square Laugier de Monblan, converse and engage with the local community whilst watching the Provençal world go by.
The scenic road into Maussane takes you through the Alpilles mountains, winding and dipping through sheer rock face, stretching olive groves and vineyards to visit along the way, boasting delicious local grenache, syrah or rose wines. Its astounding beauty with vine leaves changing from butter yellow to fiery reds in the Autumn, and carpets of delicately sprouting flowers and blushing almond blossoms in the Spring tantalise your senses.
The enthusiastic cyclist, hiker and pleasure seeker can explore the trails and walks in the Alpilles mountains across all gradients. Le Petit Roman Horse Riding stables offer horse rides through the Alpilles, overlooking the vistas, valleys and villages below.
A short drive towards Les Baux de Provence, Domaine de Manville with its renowned golf course can satisfy any keen golfer. With fine dining and piano soirées, the restaurant and bar is one of our favourite places in winter to share a cheese and charcuterie apero, paired with a glass of Provençal wine by the log fire.
As the end of August approaches, and summer begins to fade, Maussane celebrates its heritage festival Les Temps Retrouvé. The village bustles with Provençal traditions of dress, craftsmanship and farming from a bygone era.
Regular Brocantes and Vide-Greniers offer local antique furniture, glassware, kitchenware, bric-à-brac, objects, paintings and clothing for the treasure trove bargain hunter.
If the olive trees knew the hands that planted them, their oil would become tears – Mahmoud Darwish
Slideshow image 3: Artist in Residence, Belinda Fox Alpilles Study, 2019
Image 1 & Image 4: Artist in Residence, Michelle Le Dain, 2018
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