The rue du château in LURSLurs

One of the most beautiful hilltop villages, Lurs looks over both the Durance valley and the Pays de Forcalquier.

Discover its shady little streets, its olive groves stretching as far as the eye can see, the bishop’s walk with its 15 oratories, (Lurs was once the summer residence of the bishops of Sisteron) the clock tower with its wrought-iron campanile and the open-air theatre built on the ruins in the sixties to host the « Rencontres de Lure »

Not far away, a little road crosses a Roman bridge as it climbs up to the Ganagobie plateau. This is all that is left of the Domitian Way which once linked Briançon and Arles along the Durance. To the south, the chapel of Notre Dame des Anges stands on the ruins of Alaunium, a Roman station built beside this same way and adjacent to the remains of an aqueduct.

Le chemin de Saint-Jacques (way of Saint-James of Compostella)

GR®653D – red and white marking.

As you follow the Domitian way linking Rome and Spain and the way of Saint-James of Compostella you can see some very beautiful sites and monuments on the 132 kilometres it covers in the department of Alpes-de-Haute-Provence.

Find out more: Association « Provence – Alpes – Côte d’Azur – Corse » des Amis des Chemins de Saint-Jacques-de-Compostelle et de Rome


Le chemin des écrituresPays du livre & de l’écriture (Land of books & writing)

The Rural excellence cluster Land of  books and writing approval, which has been awarded to the  Pays de Forcalquier-Montagne de Lure finds its best example in Lurs:

- The Rencontres internationales de Lure which take place every year in September are a rendez-vous not to be missed for thebest graphic designers and typographers.

- The « chemin des écritures » takes you on a discovery of the village combined with the history of writing.


Olive oil of Haute-ProvenceThe oil mill of the Masse family

Traditional olive-oil makingduring the winter months. The olives are ground using millstones, pressed in scourtins (fibre disks), and decanted naturally in oak wood vats and the oil is skimmed using the feuille and the jug.

The oil produced here has a unique colour and flavour.

Sale of oil at the mill.



A house in Vachères Vachères

With its houses built in the beautiful local limestone, Vachères overlooks a region so vast that it watches over 9 departments.

The village offers covered passageways, old medieval shops, Renaissance façades and a stop at the Bistrot de Pays.

Musée Pierre Martel

This paleontological and archaeological museum has exhibits of fossils, knapped flints and ancient remains.

Two very exceptional items were found on the spot: the bachiterium (a sort of gazelle) dating back 35 million years and a mould of the Guerrier de Vachères, a Gallo-Roman statue dating back to 1st century B.C.




Into the streets of OppedetteOppedette


In this very beautiful miniature hilltop village perched on a rocky promontory, stone reigns supreme. It takes its name from the Celto-Ligurian oppidum on which it was built. The authentic quality of the village has been respected by a discreet restoration.

Just a few steps away you have a view of the impressive and beautiful Gorges d’Oppedette.





Listed as a  « Villages & Cités de Caractère« , this is without a doubt one of the most magnificent hilltop villages in Haute-Provence.

The walk will take you to from one rich mansion to another and you will see the most beautiful doors.

Make the most of a cool stop in the XVth century covered market with its splendid view.

The castle and the rotunda

At the top of the village, the castle of the Simiane-Agoult castle is crowned by the rotunda, which was a watchtower belonging to the village defence system and whose upper floor is a splendid circular Romanesque hall lined with 12 niches.

An international music festival – Les Riches Heures Musicales de la Rotonde – has been held here every year in August since 1982.

The laboratoire Sainte-Victoire

In the castle, the laboratory is perfect for learning about the uses and properties of essential oils and plunging into the world of lavender, aromatic plants and well-being.


The garden of the Abbaye de ValsaintesThe garden of the Abbaye de Valsaintes

A wonderful tourist attraction 4km from Simiane-La-Rotonde, whose incredible garden with its multitude of plants is maintained using completely natural techniques.






Listed among the « Villages & Cités de Caractère », this dynamic village has been harmonoiusly restored. All info on the site de la commune

Among the events which take place there every year, two are very important: at the end of June Fête départementale de la Musique and at the beginning of August the festival Cruis en Jazz.

The church

The église Saint-Martin houses a mysterious Vth century carved stone, listed santons, a XVIIth century gilt wooden altar piece and a work by the young Monticelli.

Cairn in the Montagne de LureLe Cairn 2000

On 27th August 2000, on the montagne de Lure, hikers built a big symbol known as Cairn 2000 at 1594m. A vous de le découvrir…






The heart of the village is full of places to stop in and take one’s time: art workshops, a tea-shop, wine-bar, café, art gallery, a famous workshop…

Tackle the climb to the top of the village as it would be a shame to miss the ramparts, machicolated gate and other medieval remains. And besides, there are a lot of interesting things to see in the église haute at the top!

Librairie Le Bleuet in BanonLe Bleuet

Push open the door of the Le Bleuet bookshop, and you’ll find it very hard to leave ! Sit on a step to read a few pages, browse around for a gift, or wander from shelf to shelf…. Whatever the reason you had for coming, you won’t be able to leave the bookshop empty-handed – you’re sure to find something interesting in the Bleuet…


Banon cheeseBanon cheese

This AOC cheese is the fruit of a long tradition: its soft curd made into a tome, only becomes a Banon through the alchemy of fermentation in its brown cocoon of chestnut leaves which give it added creaminess and flavour.

Syndicat interprofessionnel de défense et de promotion du Banon

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