Stepping into the town of Moustiers-sainte-marie is like stepping into a dream!
Moustiers-sainte-marie is a little town (by little, I mean a population of just more than 700 people) in Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur region. It sits atop the hill overlooking the gorgeous Gorges du Verdon national park (you can read about the Gorges on my previous blog post!) and is about 2 hours by car from Nice and that’s part of the deal : you need to rent a car to go here, otherwise it will be very hard, if not impossible to go around.
I have done my bits of research, but it could not prepare me of what we were about to see : a quaint, pretty village with colorful houses. When you looked up, there was the monastery Nôtre Dame de Beauvoir and a grand aqueduct, what a pair!
If you see the little white dot on the right side of the picture, it wasn’t my lens fooling you or anything, rather it’s a star held by two chains that are bound to rocks on both side and it is rumoured to be a legend. The star is anything but small, with over 1 metre in length and 135 metres of chains.
To find a parking spot was as hard as finding a soulmate : it’s damn hard. When we were finally done with it, we checked in at our hotel, cooled down with the help of a fan (no air con here!) and explored the town. Of course a nutella crepe was a mandatory daily snack, so we stopped by the nearest creperie. Tres bien! My sister and I asked for some water only to be told to have a glass and I got puzzled. Turned out, the lady asked us to fill it at the nearest water fountain. Yes, it came straight from the source! My brother-in-law was skeptic at first and analysed the glass of water from every angle, but 5 minutes later we bottomed up again and again.
If you’ve read my Gorges du Verdon post, then you’d know that we arrived long after the lavender has been cut. However, there are always many small shops selling lavender-related goodies ; soap, essential oil, perfume, you name it. The stores basically smelled like heaven. Oh my, it might take an army to get myself out of the store!
You know, there are cities or towns where it gets so touristy that the people don’t actually live there, because they would rather rent out their rooms and live somewhere else during the summer. It doesn’t feel that way about Moustiers-sainte-marie. With small alleys, breezy evening and friends sitting on the porch with a bottle of wine engaged in passionate conversation, it just feels like home.
Until next time,