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Start at the summit of this steep village with the Vieille Eglise (Old Church) and its cemetery. The grounds of stately cedars surrounding this Romanesque church, which dates from the 1100s, provide the best vantage point from which to view the valley's hill towns. Farther down the incline is the Musée de la Boulangerie, 12 rue de la République (tel. 04-90-75-88-34), dedicated to the art of French breadmaking. Exhibits show all stages of the process, from planting and harvesting the grain to the final mixers and ovens that turn the flour, water, salt, and yeast mixture into warm, crusty loaves. The museum is open Wednesday to Monday 10am to 12:30 and 2:30 to 6pm from April to June and September to October, and from 10am to 1pm and 2 to 6pm July and August. Admission is 3.50€ for adults and 1.50€ for seniors and students (free for those 12 and under).

At the lower extreme of town, clearly signposted from the center, is the Eglise Neuve (New Church), from the late 1800s. Its four beautiful panels from the Old Church date from the 1500s and are painted in the brightly colored German style to show the intensity of the Passion of Christ. It's open daily from 9am to 7pm.

Organized Tours

One-day coach tours to the Luberon depart from both Avignon and Aix-en-Provence. Autocars Lieutaud (www.excursionprovence.com; tel. 04-90-86-36-75; from 55€ per person) offers this service from Avignon, visiting Gordes, as well as St-Rémy de Provence and Les Baux. The Aix-en-Provence Tourist Office (www.aixenprovencetourism.com; tel. 04-42-16-11-61; from 60€ per person) organizes a variety of tours throughout the Luberon.

Rendez-vous Provence’s (www.rendez-vous-provence.com; tel. 04-42-96-30-72) guided tours through the Luberon take in Bonnieux, Lacoste, and Roussillon en route. The tour lasts around 5 hours and costs 68€ per person. There’s a full-day (9-hour) tour too, including these villages but heading up to Gordes and the Abbaye de Senaque as well, that costs 122€. Rendez-vous Provence also offers special lavender tours through the Luberon in early to mid-summer (5 hours, 68€).

Tours in Provence (www.tours-in-provence.com; tel. 06-24-19-29-91) leads guided excursions through the Luberon, usually stopping in Lourmarin, Gordes, Roussillon, and the Abbaye de Séanque along the way. Tours—which last around 7 hours, from 9:15am to 4pm—are priced from 80€ per person, depending on the number of participants (up to 7 max).

For avid cyclists, Vélo Loisir en Luberon (eng.veloloisirluberon.com) has marked hundreds of kilometers of bike routes throughout the region’s vineyards and lavender fields. See the website for maps and bicycle rental agencies, as well as a bunch of bucolic dining spots en route. La Provence à Vélo (www.provence-cycling.co.uk) is also a superb website for similar information about cycling throughout the Vaucluse region, the Luberon included. Both organizations highlight the Luberon’s “Le Calavon” voie verte, or green road—28km (18 miles) of smooth, car-free cycling paths, particularly well suited to families—that ripples through the heart of the countryside.

 

 

Find the mere mention of all that pedaling far foo challenging? Sun-E-Bike, 1 avenue Clovis Hugues, Bonnieux (www.location-velo-provence.com; tel. 04-90-74-09-96), stocks more than 200 electric bicycles that can be used to whizz around the countryside. Partners throughout the region mean you can recharge your bike’s battery as needed. The outfit’s website offers eight downloadable cycling circuits that ramble their way around the Luberon. Electric bikes are priced from 35€ per day, with discounts for longer-term rentals.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.