Posts Tagged With: Provence

Things to do in Provence: Dance inside a quarry in the Alpilles

Have you ever dreamed of having a little dance inside a mountain? Truth be told, I hadn´t – but then I also didn´t know that that was a possibility at all!

Hidden away in the Provencal countryside, in the midst of swoon-worthy mountain landscape Les Alpilles, there´s a place where nature and art meet and melt together in a most surprising, inspiring and uplifting way: Welcome to the fascinating Carrieres de Lumieres, mes amis!

The secrets of the Carrieres de Lumieres

Literally meaning stone-pits of light, the location in itself is a converted quarry dating back to the 19th century. It was then when the so-called “stone of the south“, the limestone that constitutes the building blocks of the quarry, was in high demand. It remained much sought-after up to 1935, when its fancier cousins steel and metal stole its thunder as premier building materials. The limestone itself, onto which stunning artistic images are projected during the much-acclaimed audiovisual shows, formed a staggering 20 million years ago, by the way!

Since 1977, the Carrieres de Lumieres have often served as cultural go-to-location during which spectacular multimedia-shows are projected onto ALL the surfaces of the massive rock-walls that surround you. Yes, even the ground is covered in images, how cool is that? You are basically getting a full body, mind and soul immersion into exquisite art, nature and music when choosing to visit this art-center near dreamy village Les-Baux-de-Provence.

As luck or coincidence had it, famous Spanish painters took center stage at my time of visit, followed by an awesome time-travel back to the Seventies flower-power-hippie days with their life-affirming musical tunes.

What a differently flavored experience that was! I tried to soak up as much of the stunning art pieces detailing the life, love and work of genius Pablo Picasso, Joan Miro and the likes as possible and let myself fall into the sounds, pictures and sensations of spaciousness all around me.

The magic of letting yourself go

There´s a certain magic that blossoms when you manage to leave yourself behind and become one with the art that´s diligently knocking on the doorstep of your soul, begging you to leave the mundane, the ever-repeating and at times numbing rituals and routines of daily life behind, inviting you to step into its glimmering promise of enchantment, rejuvenation and wonder instead.

I let myself dance to the rhythms of the all-embracing multimedia-art and left the Carrieres des Lumieres on an absolute high, feeling excited and just thrilled to be alive and to be able to witness all that beauty! If you feel inspired to do the same, here is some helpful information for you:

Handy information part:

  • Location: Carrières de Lumières, Route de Maillane 13520 Les Baux de Provence.
  • Bookings: Make sure to book ahead through the Carrieres website to avoid those queues!
  • Rates: 13 Euros for adults, free for children under age 7, disabled visitors and journalists.
  • Opening times: Open every day. 
    January, March, November, December: 10 a.m.-6 p.m. 
    April, May, June, September, October: 9.30 a.m.-7 p.m. 
    July and August: 9.30 a.m.-7.30 p.m. 
  • Also: Make sure to pack a jumper/ jacket/ woolen scarf/ your favorite blankie because it´s kinda chilly in the quarry.
  • Current exhibition: Van Gogh/ Starry Night as well as Dreamed Japan are taking over the show until January 5, 2020.

The remaining exciting things to experience when in Provence that I hinted at in my last post will be covered in the following one, don´t you worry! Provence truly is a treasure-chest of once-in-a-lifetime-experiences.

Have you ever been to an art-show that inspired you to your core? Would love to hear from you! Feel free to share below – Vive l´art!

Categories: Posts in English, Reiselust- Hungry for travel | Tags: , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Enchanting Provence: First impressions

Ah, la Belle France… few countries in this world conjure up such enticing and seductive imagery, I dare say. No matter if Disney´s hunchback of Notre Dame let you in on the hidden charms of Paris, or Edith Piaf´s passionate song “La vie en rose” (Life through rose-colored glasses) gave you a heart-felt insight into the French´s famous savoir-vivre –no one seems to be able to resist the charms of this country.

In France, even a visit to a regular supermarket-chain can turn into a gourmet-meal-experience, and I am talking packaged crepes and salads! Yes, the French surely know how to wine, dine and feast on first-class food, there´s no doubt about that.

Southern France: A magic bag of beauty

One of France´s most alluring regions which offers culinary delights a plenty, jaw-dropping natural scenery and artistic pilgrimage places en masse is undoubtedly Provence. Situated in Southeastern France and bordering Italy as well as the Mediterranean, seductive Provence has it all! Exhibit A: The stunning mountain ranges of the Southern Alps, a place in which my companion and me got lost for hours in the middle of the night by following the wrong GPS – indications, but that´s a whole different story! Exhibit B: The one-of-a-kind natural beauty of the Camargue, with its wild gorgeous horses, cheeky pink flamingos and abundant birdlife. Exhibit C: The glitz and glamour of the French Riviera aka beautiful bodies tanning on fantastic beaches, exquisite restaurants and nightclubs waiting for affluent visitors, and so much more. As well as of course, Provence´s picturesque olive groves, pine forests and its world-famous lavender fields.

Picture this: the sky is dressed in its most mesmerizing, popping blue, elegant cypresses line the path in front of you, butterflies swirl over fields of flowers and the enticing, elevating scent of pine trees engulfs your being. That´s exactly how Provence greeted me, and how the images of its beauty chose to stay with me ever since.

French discoveries: Come with me on a mystery hunt

During the five days that I got to spend in this magical corner of our beautiful planet, there were some highlights that stood out. Would you mind coming on an adventure with me and discovering some experiences that could absolutely sweeten your Provence experience to the max? Let´s do it. But wait…why don´t we approach this in a slightly different way?

I´ll give you some scavenger-style-hunt-tips alluding to some outstanding Provence things-to-do, and you can, if you´re up for it, do a little research or guessing-game and find out what those attractions might be. I´ll post them here within the next two weeks with some cool details. Alright? Vamos, on y va, let´s go!

First, head to an area close to enchanting Les-Beaux-de-Provence, where you´ll be inspired by an unusual mixture of nature and arts. Think full immersion into these two fields plus pack a jacket to not freeze your tush of.

Next, follow in the footsteps of one of the world´s most famous painters – and no, he´s not French! I hope you are all ears on this one…

And finally, travel back in time and say hello to the birthplace of a prettyyy well-known seer…he´s been in plenty of movies and stuff, you know.

Of course, you´ll also load up on some delish French cuisine, while you´re at it! No worries, I got you covered on this one!

Any ideas yet on what the former clues could mean? Feel free to leave your notions in the comment section, mes amis!

Photography: All rights reserved @A gypsy at heart.

Categories: Posts in English, Reiselust- Hungry for travel, Reisen, travel France | Tags: , , , , | 19 Comments

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