We believe that autumn in Provence is one of the world’s best kept secrets. At the beginning of September the crowds slowly dissipate and with the days shortening you can literally feel the region take a long awaited breath. The days remain warm and sunny, yet the evenings and mornings bring a delightful and welcome nip to the air which enables you to go out for walks again. We think hiking is a most wonderful way to explore a region, to see places most tourists never see, and to personally experience the unique beauty of the countryside.
Round-trip walk Malemort-Mazan
There is an extensive and accessible network of walking paths and trails all over Provence, linking villages that are often just a few kilometres apart, like the one we did for instance. From our homebase Malemort (not for long anymore but I’ll tell you about that later on in this blog) to Mazan is only 4,5km walking distance which adds up to a round-trip of 9km. Not bad for one of our very first ‘longer’ autumn walks after a hot summer! Below you find some pictures taken along the way. You can click on each image to see enlarged. It is SO worth it! 🙂
Slow Autumn Travel
As we look back on this magical walk, we realize that one reason we connect so much with this area is because we get to know it intimately on foot. Experiencing an area on foot, in slow motion, really is the ultimate “slow travel.” One would never ever catch a picture as below while walking amongst the vines and catching that rising church tower of Mazan with the beautiful Dentelles de Montmirail in the background. I find it to be almost too pretty for words… ♥
Eating en route
You don’t have to be a “serious” walker to enjoy hiking in Provence. We truly encourage all visitors to experience this area on foot. There are trails for people of all abilities, including many hikes which are very suitable for families with younger children. Step away from the other tourists for a few hours, for once forget those colorful markets, leave the beautiful villages behind. Enjoy a picnic or some freshly picked grapes on a rock instead of a three-course lunch in a restaurant. Spend a morning or afternoon in the countryside and you’ll experience another dimension of Provence. Our dog Diesel simply loves grapes and eats them all the time during our walks, and so do we. Drinks AND food in one go!
Arrival in Mazan
The countryside is absolutely beautiful with incredible, often unexpected variety. Walking paths take you through farms, vineyards, orchards and woods, past beautifully-restored homes and simple farm dwellings. Then up into the village, where you see yet another variety of tons of beautiful houses, terraces, shutters, old shops etc. Also here you can click on the pictures below and you will understand even better what I mean…♥
‘Boire un petit verre’
I know, we are terrible but we always look very much forward to the ‘after-walk-drink’! For my husband a ‘Leffe blonde’ will do and for me a glass of rosé. Even now in autumn I keep ordering rosé…unlimited rays of sunshine make me do that I guess!
Mazan has a few lovely café’s and bistro’s but during fall and wintertime we prefer ‘Café du Siècle’.
Because the sun is out on their terrace all afternoon! Not pleasant in summertime but as from September on…lovely! The interior is also very cosy for colder or rainy days and they have a great menu at a very affordable price. And last but certainly not least…VERY friendly personnel. We always feel very much @ home! As the French say ‘beau petit coin’ (great little place). Oh yes, the local newspaper ‘La Provence’ is always available too…reminds me of my own five minutes of fame last August! 🙂