Humans have lived on the land now called Bonnieux in Provence for more than twelve thousand years. It’s perched on a rocky hill in the area known as The Luberon, 40km from Mont Ventoux. And it’s near the pass between the Petit Luberon and Grand Luberon mountains. Bonnieux is officially one of the most beautiful village in France.
What to see and do in Bonnieux
The Romans made the most of this stunning and productive landscape. In the middle Ages a squadron of the Knights Templar were stationed in the village, on their way to the Crusades. Before they left, they built a small chapel on the hillside. A church was built alongside it. Though now not in use, the ancient church is a landmark and can be seen for miles from around the countryside. And at 425 metres, from the hilltop perch you’ll have one of the best views across the valley’s orchards and vineyards, it’s no wonder this is one of the most popular and magnificent villages in France.
Fans of the film “A Good Year” by Peter Mayle, will remember the beautiful chateau La Siroque. In real life, it’s the Chateau La Canorgue, Bonnieux. Home to wine makers, you can visit their wine shop and be amazed that the chateau looks just as gorgeous as it does in the film.
Bonnieux’s steep upper streets are lined with 800-year old buildings, most of which are built on top of even older structures and the ancient caves. Take a wander and be wowed.
In the village, the Musée de la Boulangerie on the rue de la République reveals the secrets of artisan bread. Be warned, you will want to eat pastries and bread if you visit here.
Luckily, there is no shortage of cafes and restaurants. There’s also a lovely weekly market. Go on a Friday morning and you’ll find great local produce and things made by local artists and artisan that make great gifts.
In the summer months (mid June to mid August), don’t miss the lavender in bloom. The roads leading to, and all around, Bonnieux are lined with lavender fields…
The Friday morning market is held in Place Gambetta in the center of the village. It isn’t a big market but it is colourful and vibrant and well worth a visit.
The museum of bread making. Afterwards buy a baguette or pastry at one of the pretty boulangeries in town. There are two boulangeries in Bonnieux, run by two brothers!
Enjoy Guide to Provence