Provence's Lavender Fields Are An Instragrammers Dream And A Visit Costs Just £100
Keen influencers, and even just regular people with an eye for the perfect Instagram picture, are always after picturesque locations for holidays.
"Instagrammability" has become as much a factor in choosing our holiday destinations as cost, weather, and local activities, which is why the famous lavender fields in France's Provence region are quickly rivalling the likes of the Amalfi Coast and the beaches of Bali. And not only will you get the chance to build that sweet Instagram engagement (!), the location is surrounded by cultural gems, traditional food markets and stunning landscapes.
Chances are, even if you've never been to Provence, you've seen its lavender fields.
Each summer, the region of Provence in southeastern France is transformed into rolling hills of dusky purple, when the lavender blooms. It's the perfect chance for a natural, colourful shot - and a visit is remarkably affordable.
It'll cost you less than £100 to travel to Provence with Ryanair (from London). A word of warning, however: if you're planning on visiting, be careful not to be a bad tourist. That means no trampling the flowers, no selfie sticks in people's faces, and no disturbing the wildlife. The recent Super Bloom in Southern California saw an unprecedented amount of visitors thanks to Instagram, forcing the town to charge for entry and limit tourists. With all that in mind, here's how you can visit.
With that in mind, here's how you can visit:
Where are the lavender fields?
The main lavender fields of Provence are centred on, and to the north, of the Luberon and Valensole plateau regions to the north of Aix-en-Provence and Marseille, and to the east of Avignon, with the flowering season in the lowlands being generally from mid June to early July, though it can vary slightly from year to year depending on rainfall and temperature.
Higher up on the plateau, around the town of Sault for example, the colder weather means the blooming season is slightly later, i.e. roughly speaking from early July to early August.
When should I go?
The lavender blooms from mid June to early July, but we recommend you go in late June/early July to beat the school holiday crowds.
How do I get there?
You can catch a flight for under £100 to Marseille with Ryanair, and from there an hour and a half in the car (or take a tour) to the beautiful Valensole Plateau, 800 square kilometres of beautiful, endless lavender fields. There are others, but that's a great - and massive - start.
What else do I do when I'm there?
Tons! Marseille is a port city on the coast, so if you stay there, there's always going to be something going on. The towns around the Valensole Plateau have lavender festivals and museums, but you might need to go later in the summer to get those. Whatever your plan, be sure to book any accommodation or tours early - it's going to get busy!
What if I can't make it?
Fret not! There are other lavender fields, even in the UK, that might prove a more reasonable alternative in a pinch. This Time Out guide to lavender fields in and around London is a great start.