Provence, a region in the southern part of France, borders the Mediterranean. It is a place of history and rich culture, where political conquests and artistic visions came to life. It is a preferred travel destination, and many Parisians escape to the south for their vacations
Provence was the first Roman province outside of what is now Italy, hence the name. In addition, the Roman Catholic Papacy was briefly moved to Avignon, Provence, in 1309.
Several Roman arenas, such as the ones in Nimes and Arles, and the aqueduct called the Pont du Gard serve as evidence of the Roman rule of the region. Some other traces of the empire include the Théâtre Antique in Arles and the Maison Carrée and the Tour Magne in Nimes.
When visiting the Pont du Gard in the summer, visitors are allowed to walk across the top. It is 160 feet high and 900 feet long. Don't look down!
Painters Paul Cézanne, Vincent van Gogh, Auguste Renoir, Henri Matisse and Pablo Picasso are among the many artists who have lived in Provence.
Seafood, including the seafood soup bouillabaisse, is popular in this Mediterranean region. Fish soups are often accompanied by another Provencal dish, aioli, a mayonnaise made from olive oil and crushed garlic and served with bread.
Geography and Climate
The Provence region includes the French Riviera--known in French as "Côte d'Azur," which literally means the "Azure Coast"--a reference to the sparkling azure blue water of the Mediterranean. Most of the time, the Provencal region enjoys the sunniest weather in all of France. The only time you can expect it to be cold is when the Mistral winds are blowing in the winter or spring.
Olga is freelance writer/pro-blogger, writing for various magazines and websites. She has been writing for 4-6 years, having interned at Boston Magazine, Churm Media and GGS Book Services. She graduated from Boston University cum laude in Magazine Journalism. She currently writes/edits for Encore Magazine, UniversityChic and several other websites.