This article contains compensated links; please read my disclaimer for more information.
Before going on any trip, I try to do some research – it gives me a feeling of excitement and anticipation. Before our road trip to France, I made a list of things I wanted to see. The lavender fields on Valensole Plateau in Provence were one of those things. We missed our planned hikes and plane tour over the Alps in Annecy. We wasted our time in Chateau de Versailles, so I was hoping the lavender fields of Valensole Plateau was going to be the savior of my road trip.
I dreamt of the sight of the beautiful purple fields as far as the eye could see. I dreamt of the air filled with a lovely scent of lavender. I imagined being a model in my own photoshoot. I saw myself “run” through the fields wearing a beautiful long summer dress, wind in my hair, and my husband patient enough, taking hundreds of shots, to get that perfect one. Every time I think back to that day I always smile.
The location of Lavender fields in Provence
Lavender fields in France are located in Provence, on Valensole Plateau that stretches over an area of 800km2 covered with beautiful purple flowers. The Plateau is situated in the south of the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence and near the Verdon Gorges – France’s Grand Canyon. There are several charming villages that you can visit on a day trip while you are visiting lavender fields. If you are staying in the South of France in Aix-en-Provence, you will have the perfect base for your exploration of the whole area of Provence, Lavender Fields and Gorges du Verdon. Aix-en-Provence is located only 45 miles (70 km) away from the fields.
Click on the pin to save it on Pinterest
Main lavender fields of Provence are centered on and to the north of Luberon, Aix-en-Provence, and Marseille, and to the east of Avignon.
I was so excited to see the lavender fields and had such high hopes. There was not easy to find useful information on the fields’ exact location. We set our GPS on Valensole and set off from Annecy and over the Alps. We drove for about 4 hours, including one quick stop, in bad weather. Coming over the Alps down to Provence, seeing sunshine made me feel like a little kid before her birthday. We didn’t exactly know where we would end up, but I thought we would figure it out when we got there. I knew we would find some fields because we were in Provence in the middle of the blooming season.
On this map (which took me a looot of time to make) I marked positions of some of the most Instagramable spots on Valensole Plateau. You can download and print it by clicking on the link below.
Click on the pin to save it on Pinterest
Best time to visit lavender fields in France
The blooming season of lavender fields in France is from June to August. The best time to see these purple endless lavender fields blossom will vary slightly from year to year and will depend on rainfall and temperature. Word of caution: it is the hottest and the most crowded season. I recommend you visiting the fields just after the bloomings starts, towards the end of June and just before the end of the season, beginning of August. Check
There are many lavender festivals in Provence during the blooming period. Most of them are a one-day event. The theme is lavender, and there’ll be a vast amount of locally produced lavender products to sample and to buy, but you will also experience local traditions like food, folk music, and arts & crafts.
Provence is known as the most beautiful region of France. You can visit many charming villages, national park Gorges du Verdon (among several) – French Grand Canyon, lavender fields, sunflower fields, and an active monastery. The charming small medieval villages “hanging off” the mountain cliffs are screaming for your attention. The purple and yellow colors of blooming lavender and sunflowers will take your breath away. National parks with mountain lakes, mountain viewpoints, and fantastic nature will leave you in awe. I hope you set aside a few extra days to explore Provence because you will either regret that you didn’t or you will have to go back.
When I did my research, I found so many beautiful images of the lavender fields on the Valensole Plateau on Instagram. I had my camera ready and I was almost shaking with excitement, as we got closer to the destination. I imagined all the beautiful pictures I was going to take and show my friends, family, and followers when I got home.
Click on the pin to save it for later
Since we didn’t have the exact location of these Instagram worthy fields, we stopped at the first field we saw. There were no people, no scent of lavender, no tree and cottage, no beautiful sunset. The missing sunset was our fault since we were there in the middle of the day. It was nothing like I have seen on social media. It was hot and dusty, and it was super naive of me to think those pictures were real. I mean they are real but they are a work of art of excellent photographers, and they screw up the reality. On the field, it was us and one Asian couple, who were having their own “photo shoot.” I am not a model and didn’t practice at home, thus my chance of running in the fields with my hair blowing in the wind was fairly small. There was no wind either so my hair wouldn’t flutter anyway. My hubby is not a photographer so I didn’t bother trying to pose. I just took a few snaps of the field, went into the store, bought some lavender soap, and we were off to Aix-en-Provence to continue our road trip towards Normandie. I might sound bitter, but I am not. I love this experience and always think of it with a smile on my face.
BUT, don’t let my honesty stop you from making your own experience, because it doesn’t have to be like mine. I do believe that lavender fields are beautiful, I just had to do even more research and more planning. I do hope you continue reading because Provence is such a beautiful place and there are tons of things to see and do around the fields. Have a base in one of the beautiful villages around the Valensole Plateau, Aix-en-Provence or Avignon and visit Valensole Plateau as your day trip, or even an afternoon trip so you can get these fantastic sunset shots. You can book your day trip to lavender fields from Aix-en-Provence. Did you know that Provence is the oldest wine region in France?