Delightful 3 star hotel in a historic stone building set below the historic village of Gordes in a peaceful rural location. Attractive gardens and swimming pool to relax and a good restaurant serving delicious meals.
PANORAMAS OF PROVENCE: GRAND TOUR OF LUBERON
8 to 10 days walking/12 nights
As well as visiting some of the best loved historic villages in Provence such as Gordes, Bonnieux & Roussillon this unique walking holidays goes off the beaten track into the higher hills and through some less frequented, charming hamlets and villages.
A great circular trail exploring the full range of landscapes in the Luberon
Visiting stunning, historic hill-top villages
A multitude of landscapes and vegetation with lavender, vines, olives, orchards and forest
Choice of difficulty of walks on most days
A warm and sunny climate, ideal walking in spring or autumn
Delightful guest houses full of character, most with swimming pools
Let 's discover the full itinerary!
Day 1: Arrival
Welcome in Avignon and transfer to your relaxing hotel near the historic village of Gordes.
Day 2: Walk from Gordes
Choice of walks depending on your interests and length of walk desired. Explore the historic perched village of Gordes - probably the most famous village in the Luberon - and undertake a circular walk via Abbaye de Sénanque. Your walking tour takes you to Sénanque Abbey. Built in 1148, the abbey has housed an order of Cistercian monks for over 850 years. A guided tour of the abbey is possible and will allow you to visit the medieval parts of the monastery. Your path then climbs out of the Sénancole valley, with breath taking views of the abbey. Your descent back to Gordes is just as scenic, walking along ancient stone walls and among bories – dry stone dwellings. Short walk through the historic streets of Gordes and through fields to your hotel just outside the village.
Other options include exploring the Vezoule Ravine or semacole gorge.
Overnight: Gordes, Walk: 13-17km, +250m or +450m.
Day 3: Gordes - Goult
From Gordes your walk passes through vines and then thyme and rosemary scented hills before reaching the hamlet of Saint-Pantaléon. You then continue towards the perched village of Goult, a wonderful historic village far less popular than Gordes but nonetheless charming, its alleyways twisting around the ruins of its castle. From Goult you descend through old terraces into the Calavon valley.
Overnight: Goult, Walk: 14km, +240m
Day 4: Goult - Bonnieux
Your walking trail takes you off the beaten path but provides an overview of so much of what makes the Luberon special: tiny hamlets, vineyards, an ancient church, bories, an old lavoir and amazing views. You then reach the beautiful perched village of Lacoste, where you can climb on cobbled streets all the way to the top and visit the ruins of the castle of the Marquis de Sade. You then make your way to Bonnieux, another wonderful Provence village, on top of which stands a 12th century church surrounded by century-old cedars. The view from Bonnieux is wonderful out across the valley floor with its patchwork of orchards and vineyards, towards Lacoste across the Vaucluse plateau.
Overnight: Bonnieux, Walk: 14km, +390m
Day 5: Petit Luberon & Cedar Forest or rest day
After exploring Bonnieux climb onto the Petit Luberon hills for stunning views and a walk through its Cedar Forest. Visit a borie village on the way. Or you can decide to have a rest day and relax in the beautiful village of Bonnieux.
Overnight: Bonnieux, Optional Walk: 14km, +450m
Day 6: Bonnieux - Boux
Head through olive groves and scrubland with wild herbs to reach the top of the wild and beautiful Aigue Brun Gorge. Your hotel is in a great location at the base of the gorge. You have the option of an additional circular walk taking you to the pretty village of Sivergues or of visiting Fort Boux (depending on which walking option you intend to do the next day.)
Overnight: Boux, Walk: 14-18km, +200m or +370m
Day 7: Boux - Saignon
The easy option walking trail follows the Aigue Brun Gorge before passing picturesque lavender fields to reach Saignon, another pretty hill-top village. The harder walking trail passes Fort de Boux, which is well worth a visit, before climbing to the grassy ridge of the Grand Luberon hills for great panoramic views. You’ll then cross an enjoyable lavender covered plateau south of Apt before a varied walk takes you to the pretty village of Saignon perched on a ridge.
Overnight: Saignon, Walk: 10 -19km, up to +710m
Day 8: Saignon - St Martin de Castillon
Your walking trail climbs to a small plateau where tiny hamlets nestle among lavender fields & orchards. The easier walking option traverses through vine covered slopes with great views, whilst the harder option climbs to the summit of Mourre Negre, at 1125m, the highest point of the Grand Luberon for vast panoramic views in all directions, including the Alps. A fine ridge walk follows before descending to re-join the easier trail and cross the Calavon Valley. Transfer to your guest house.
Overnight: Cereste, Walk: 15km or 24km, +350m, or +900m
Day 9: Cereste - Rustral
Your walking trail leads you to the historic hill-top village of Viens with its chateau perched on the edge of a rock band. Here you have great views towards the Gorge of Oppedette. A great ridge walk follows that descends gradually towards Rustrel. Afterwards, explore the wonderful landscapes and colours of the Colorado Provencal where ochre deposits form wonderful towers, cliffs and fins of rock. A delightful woodland trail leads you to a desert of exposed rocks before making your way to Rustrel for your transfer to your guest house.
Overnight: near St-Saturnin-les-Apt, Walk: 13km, +450m
Day 10: Rest Day
Relax at your lovely guest house near St Saturnin with pool and great views.
Day 11: St-Saturnin-les-Apt - Roussillon
Visit the wonderful hill-top village of St Saturnin les Apt, nestled along the base of a long, low cliff, with the ruins of a castle above. Explore its pretty streets and climb onto the cliff for beautiful views of the Luberon before heading west through vineyards and orchards. The easier walking trail stays below the wooded slopes whilst the harder option climbs to the north to follow the top of the impressive Madeleine cliffs overlooking the hamlet of Lioux, which are 100m high and over 1km in length. Great panoramic views as you progress before heading south and climbing to the pretty ochre coloured village of Roussillon, which sits on top of a small hill and is classed as one of the prettiest villages in France.
Overnight: Roussillon, Walk: 19km or 22km, +290m or +600m.
Day 12: Roussillon - Gordes
Visit the sentier des ochres walking through the old ochre quarries before heading west back towards Gordes via the pretty hamlet of Joucas set above the vines. The longer route heads into the hills to reach the charming hamlet of Mur surrounded by vines and cherry orchards. Your trail descends back to your guest house via the wonderful Vezoule gorge and a beautiful forest.
Overnight: Gordes, Walk: 12km or 19.5km +50m or +350m
Day 13: Departure
Transfer to Avignon after breakfast for your onward travel
At a glance
April - June & September - October
From €2095 per person (based on 2 sharing)
12 nights / 9 or 10 days walking
Distance: 11-23km per day
Ascent: upto 800m per day
Small guest houses & 3 star hotels
Full Board 9 nights & 3 nights B&B
Other walking holidays in the Luberon
Similar self-guided walking holidays in Provence
Our Grand Tour of the Luberon self-guided walking holiday undertakes a beautiful circular trail around the hills, gorges and historic villages of the Luberon Regional Park in Provence. As well as visiting some of the best loved historic hill-top villages in Provence such as Gordes, Goult, Lacoste, Bonnieux, Roussillon and St Saturnin les Apt, each with their own special character, your walking trail takes you off the beaten track into the higher hills and through some less frequented, charming hamlets and villages such as Saignon and Viens. On most of the days you'll have the choice between easy and more challenging walks, meaning it is suitable for those looking for a fairly relaxed walking holiday as well as those seeking a tougher walking trip. This walking holiday in Provence is has 12 nights with 1 or 2 programmed rest days, although it's possible to add more with additional nights.
Our Panoramas of Provence walking holiday lets you discover Luberon's pretty landscapes covered with vines, lavender, orchards and forests, where small and bigger hills alike provide generous vantage points. Despite the popularity of this picturesque part of Provence, your walking trip explores quiet trails inbetween the villages where each step is infused with the smell of Provence herbs. At the end of each day, relax by the pool and soak up the Provence sunshine at your delightful guest houses and hotels.
12 nights/13 days: 9 or 10 days independent walking moving between guest houses
Everday of week subject to availability during March, April, May, June, September & October
Walking Profile & Grade
10 days independent walking moving between hotels and guest houses with two possible rest days. This holiday is suitable for walkers seeking both a moderate and more challenging walking trip. The moderate days have an average of 14km and +300m of ascent per day, whilst the more challenging options average 20km and +600m of ascent. You'll be walking on a mixture of small paths, tracks and quiet roads. The paths in the Luberon are often stony and rugged due to the nature of the geology, and so walking boots are recommended.
This walking holiday is graded moderate or Moderate/challenging depending on the options you choose. See more information about walking grades.
Accommodation & Meals
12 nights accommodation in several charming guest houses in historic buildings full of character and interspersed with quality 3 star hotels and auberges, double or twin rooms with own bathroom.
Where is the Luberon?
When to Travel
Our self-guided walking tour of the Luberon is available from April to June inclusive and in September and October. We do not run this holiday in the height of the summer due to the high temperatures and the difficulty in securing our top choice accommodation. This walking holiday is not available in March because the higher hills can still have snow and frost cover. Because much of the vegetation is evergreen the landscape remains relatively colourful the whole year round. The vines start to sprount from April onwards. Ideal walking temperatures are experienced up to mid June, after which it can become very hot. Average day time temperatures are 18°C for mid April and 23°C for mid-May. By Mid June temperatures have reached 27°C on average in the afternoon whilst September highs average 25°C. March can still be fresh with morning temperatures averaging 6°C and highs of about 16°C. It is a also a relatively dry and calm period. October remains warm with temperatures often still reaching 20°C. Mistral winds are more common during the transition periods of April/May and September. The autumn is wetter than the spring in general due to the chance of stormy weather.
Navigation, Walking Notes & Maps
This walking holiday partly follows GR (Grande Randonnee) long distance trails which are well way-marked with red and white markings. There are also a number of signposts along the trail. The walking follows clear paths for its entire duration. The remaining sections follow local trails waymarked in yellow, whilst other sections have no or little markings. Our walking notes are very detailed (more information here) and include intermediate distances for sections of the trail. They also include information about the sites which can be explored along the route. We supply one walking guide per person on this holiday. As well as the detailed walking notes we supply official walking maps produced by IGN at a scale of 1:25,000. Your trail is highlighted on the maps.
On this walking holiday your main luggage is transferred between guest houses so you only have to carry a day rucksack with picnic lunch (supplied by the guest houses and included in the holiday price), water and spare clothes, waterproofs, camera etc. On this holiday a local taxi company is responsible for transporting your main luggage. We use the same company throughout the walking holiday, so if you have any specific requests you can ask the driver at the beginning of your trip. Please limit the weight of your bags to 20kg. We generally use hotels and small guest houses in historic buidlings and some of the rooms are accessible only by stairs.
Transfer from Avignon train station or Avignon airport is included in holiday price. Reduction in holiday price if you decide to take the regular bus journey to Beaumettes and a short taxi transfer from there to your hotel. Cost of bus journey: 2 euros.
TGV trains run from Paris and Lyon to Avignon. During the main holiday season TGV trains run direct from London to Avignon. If you decide to take the bus, it's line 15.1 from just outside the TGV station.
The closest airport to the Luberon is Avignon. There are regular flights from a number of UK airports as well as French airports. Flybe has services which run at certain periods of the year from Exeter, Southampton, Birmingham, Manchester and Leeds.
Note: Please check concerning the available
12 nights / 9 or 10 days walking & 1 or 2 rest days
- From €2095 per person, based on 2 sharing
- Please contact us about single supplement prices
What's included in the price
- 12 nights accommodation
- Meals: All breakfasts, 8 lunches, 8 evening meals
- Detailed walking notes and maps
- Luggage transport between guest houses
- Taxi transfer between Avignon train station or Avignon Airport and Luberon at start and end of holiday (reduction in holiday price if you decide to take bus from Avignon TGV to Beaumettes followed by a shorter taxi transfer. Bus costs 2 euros)
What's not included in the price
- Travel to Avignon, France,
- 3 evening meals, drinks with meals & 3 lunches,
- Any excursions or visits,
- Travel insurance.
- A deposit payment of 30% or at least £250 or 250€ per person must be made to confirm your booking. The balance of payments is due 8 weeks before the holiday date. If the holiday date is less that 8 weeks away at the time of booking, then the full price should be paid.
On this independent walking holiday in the Luberon, you will stay in a mixture of delightful small guest houses in historic buildings full of character and quality 3 star hotels and auberges. They are located in wonderful settings, often on the outskirts of the historic villages. Warm welcome and fine Provence cuisine. Most of your guest houses have swimming pools. Below you'll find a selection of the accommodation on this walking holiday in the Luberon..
It's a little Eden in the heart of the village of Roussillon. A mythical place, with its history and contemporary decor. La Maison des Ocres is not only a charming hotel, but also an exceptional place to discover, ideal for transporting you into an exalted tranquillity.
Situated at the foot of the picturesque village of Bonnieux, this tranquil bed and breakfast provides a relaxing base within a ten-minute walk of the village of Bonnieux, with breath taking views from the terrace in front of the rooms. The views stretch across the valley with some of the prettiest villages in the Luberon visible on their ridge top positions.
Extra nights are possible at any of the stopovers. There are already two nights in Gordes at the start of the holiday and two nights in Bonnieux as well as at Domaine Saint Jean near St-Saturnin-les-Apt. We can also recommend an extra night in Roussillon.
Arles and Avignon: The walking holiday starts with a pick up in Avignon. We can book include nights in Avignon as well as in the nearby historic town of Arles as part of your holiday package. Avignon is one of the prettiest cities in Provence, which includes famous sites such as the Palais des Papes and the Pont d’Avignon. Avignon is famous as the city to which the Popes fled when leaving the corruption of Rome in the 14th century. The palace they built, 'Le Palais des Papes,' or the palace of popes, is the world's largest Gothic edifice. The Ramparts themselves were erected to keep the plague and invaders out during the middle ages, when Avignon belonged to the papacy and not the French crown. Avignon is also famous for the Saint Benezet bridge which spans part of the Rhone River and is known the world over due to a nursery rhyme. We can also include Arles in your Luberon walking holiday. Take in the atmosphere of this lively Provence town surrounded by city walls on the banks of the Rhone River. There are numerous museums to visit. It was Van Gogh's home for a year when he produced about 300 of his celebrated paintings. We use 3 or 4 star hotels.
Please consult us for a price on any of the above options.
If you want to learn more about the region's culture through tailor-made activities and visits, check out those trips that include a few days in the Provence. Contact us to add them to your hike.
A trip crafted for foodies and wine lovers to experience the world's finest gastronomy from Paris to Dijon, Lyon, Avignon and Marseille.
Discover the natural wonders of Southern France in Provence : Saint Remy de Provence, Saintes Maries de la Mer, Cassis and Marseille.
A thoroughly enjoyable tour of the Luberon valley, accommodation that never failed to delight, with opportunities to meet very friendly & helpful local people. Will remain long in our memory, together with our other 2 successful High Point Holidays in France.
Carol & Mike D.
In many ways it has exceeded expectations on returning to the area after 11 years. The notes were the best of any offered by many companies used over decades.