If you’ve been following along on Instagram, you know that this week is kind of (ok, not kind of….is DEFINITELY) a crunch week for us! We leave this weekend for United in Santa Barbara and then we’ll go straight in to WPPI in Vegas, then we’re home for just a couple of days and then it’s off to Germany (more on that to come!!). As we speak, I am writing & practicing no less than 5 talks and trying to pack for pretty much every climate imaginable. Let’s just hope I don’t accidentally take my Germany suitcase to Vegas or else I’ll be wearing a parka by the pool! Word! :)
But all of this thinking about heading to Europe again got me thinking about the last time we were there: when we went to London & France to see the lavender fields over the summer! I realized that I had only ever shown a sneak peek of just a couple pictures of our trip, but had never gotten around to posting the whole thing. Well, we’ve been working on all the pictures to put together an album for us of our trip, and I can tell you that they definitely won’t all fit into one post! So we’re going to do it in three parts: first up the lavender fields in Provence, then Nice & the French Riviera, then finish up in London!
First up, Provence! We flew into Marseille, which is a great way to go if you ever want to go see the lavender fields. The fields themselves are way out in the country where there isn’t a lot going on (although there are a few really nice resorts you could stay in), so Marseille made for a great home base where there were restaurants & things going on. Plus it’s just such a charming little port city with a market right along the water where you can buy lavender & dried fruit and see street performers. We’re BIG fans of websites like lastminute.com, so we were able to watch the hotels there and get this crrrrrazy amazing deal on a hotel there that looked like a palace (the Marseille Intercontinental overlooking the city.
So we would stay in Marseille, and every morning we would get up and the hotel would do this incredible brunch out on the veranda overlooking the city with this warm breeze blowing in. And then we would hop in our rental car & go exploring. Funny thing about the rental car: over there I guess BMW is just like your basic domestic car so when we checked in they said we could either have VW Jetta or a BMW 1 series. We took the BMW!! Justin LOVED driving all over France in that!
If you are going to try to go see the lavender fields, the first two weeks of July is a really good bet for when they will be in peak bloom (although it changes year to year). From Marseille you can head North away from the coast and slowly making your way toward Senanque Abbey (l’Abbaye Notre-Dame de Sénanque) in Gordes. Take your time though and just stop off and random fields you see along the way. They’re everywhere & they’re gorgeous! Feel free to skip over the Lavender Museum in Cabrières-d’Avignon though….we basically just paid 20 euros each to walk into a gift shop! :) But the Abbey is definitely somewhere that you want to make sure you get to! You have to drive up this crazy steep hill where you see views like the one below & then back down the other side of this crazy steep hill. But once you get there, you’ll just want to stay there forever soaking in the beauty. It was incredible!
The absolutely STUNNING Senanque Abbey!!
When there are just two of you traveling and you both happen to be photographers, you entertain yourself by putting on photoshoots of each other! Don’t judge! :)
I may or may not have brought this dress just to wear in the lavender. :)
Finally, at the end of an incredible day of lavender peeping, do yourself a HUGE favor & go to La Coquillade in Gargas for dinner at Le Gourmet. We had a TEN course meal (TEN!!) of some of the best food I’ve ever had in my life!! Plus the property itself (the driveway is pictured above!) is stunning!
Ok, that’s it for Part I! Stay tuned for Part II when we head over to Nice!