This cool, airy building concertinas across a hillside outside of Aix; the black and white facade hints at the kaleidoscope of delight within. The museum houses towering panels of brightly coloured optical art: are those cubes really flat? It seems impossible that they aren't pouring out of the walls. Our children were captivated and we were too. For a couple of hours we escaped the heat and revelled in colour and shape and illusion. We felt truly enlivened and enriched when we launched out into the sun's glare once more.
This small town is a short drive from Avignon on the edge of the Luberon Natural Park. There are many open air restaurants alongside the river, which winds its way through the town. Wander around the markets and along the river to the water wheel and get an ice cream at Compagnie Des Glaces which has over 50 flavours including lavender - very Provence!
The ‘brocantes market’ in beautiful Aix en Provence is held on a wide boulevard shaded with trees and surrounded by fragrant flower displays.
The locals set out stalls under bright coloured umbrellas and hours can be spent wandering from one to another, enjoying coffee and pastries at the street cafes along the way. There is a wonderful eclectic mix of antiques from extravagant chandeliers and glamorous jewels to dusty books and agricultural ironwork.
The market has a lovely relaxed air; visitors can soak up the atmosphere created by the sunshine and chatter of the locals whilst searching for a little piece of treasure.
Place de Verdun: Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday
Google map: bit.ly/H2XobA
On arrival at Domaine de la Brillane you are met with breathtaking views of Mont Sainte-Victoire - painted by Paul Cezanne – bursting yellow sunflower fields and the evocative scent of lavender, cementing the fact that you have arrived in Provence. Now in its eighth year, this family-run organic vineyard and b&b encourages guests to get involved with the vendange (grape harvest) and offers an introduction to the art and science of wine tasting. Bicycles are available to hire for exploring the surrounding villages, or you can just unwind in the Provençale countryside. Just 7km north of Aix-en-Provence, La Brillane epitomises rural France and boasts a wine cellar stocked for eternity. C'est magnifique!
Tel: +33 4 4254 2144
Doubles from €130 including breakfast
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