Gordes & Fontaine de Vaucluse

France, Gordes
europe_franceWe pass by Isle sur la Sorge strolling through the tiny and no so interesting downtown area; then we head towards the much more famous’ Fontaine de Vaucluse, a tourist trap even in winter…We refuse to stay there for the night so we move to Gordes. This village is one of the most beautiful of the area and although it is equally touristy, it is not to be missed.

Isle sur la Sorgue is often been called the Venice of Provence I wonder who had this not so felicitous inspiration, but it is evident that he never saw Venice, not even in postcard 😉
The only interesting part of Isle is the antiques’ market and the candied sweets; unfortunately the shop was closed so we had to content ourselves with admiring them in this wonderful display window!

France, L'Isle-sur-la-Sorgue

The old town is not bad but not anything special either. The only good reason to spend a night here is if you have a passion for antiques and nice objects. If this is the case, the most convenient parking is the one of the train station [43.91769,5.04687], where there is a dedicated area for motorhomes to park.
We move in Fontaine de Vaucluse famous for the crowds of tourists who visit it each year, of course not for the fact that it hosted in the past Francesco Petrarca. To get there we pass the impressive bridgeaqueduct of Galas

France, Fontaine-de-Vaucluse
France, Fontaine-de-Vaucluse

France, Fontaine-de-Vaucluse The ‘welcome’ was not so warm: all the parking lots in Fontaine are for a fee, even out of season where everything else seems to be closed (the house of Petrarch for example…)! You can choose from the camper area [43.9203,5.12475] that charges just’ 9.60€ per day, including services with WiFi, but without electricity, or to go closer to the village center and pay only 4 per day, though it is unclear if you can stay for the night.
We take advantage of the small size of our RV and we park it a few hundred meters away at the side of the road, exactly opposite the campsite which is closed until spring.

France, Fontaine-de-Vaucluse
France, Fontaine-de-VaucluseFrance, Fontaine-de-Vaucluse
France, Fontaine-de-Vaucluse

The village is nice, but nothing special. We climbed up to the famous spring, but there was not a lot to see… To water level was so low that all the cascades were dry. In high season it would be more impressive but not a great natural phenomenon 😉

The only striking thing about the water is its color! The picture below is not photoshopped!

France, Fontaine-de-Vaucluse
France, Fontaine-de-Vaucluse

France, Fontaine-de-VaucluseThere is a sign warning the Italians that it could be dangerous to leave this ‘chimney’! It could be very risky indeed :)
On our way back we visit the museum of the paper mill, the only place open during January. To tell the truth it is not a museum. It is rather a small factory with a huge shop selling craft paper. At least they don’t charge the entrance...

France, Fontaine-de-Vaucluse
France, Fontaine-de-VaucluseFrance, Fontaine-de-Vaucluse

The Petrarch museum, as I told, was closed. This is how it looks from outside.

France, Fontaine-de-Vaucluse
France, Fontaine-de-Vaucluse

We took advantage of the free WiFi outside the tourist office (it was closed too !!!!!) and we left the village a little disappointed. We took the road to Gordes planning to spend the night at the nearby camper stop [43.91494,5.19759]. What a beautiful village! What a great view! It is almost impossible not to stop and admire it. They had built a ‘parking’ for this purpose but you can stop only for 10 minutes :)

France, Gordes
France, GordesFrance, Gordes

France, GordesThe camper area is not so well designed. It is built in a slope and it is inclined everywhere! Furthermore there is a ‘mysterious’ sign that prohibits the overnight stay, but it is placed in the other parking lot not the one designed for the motorhomes. The water dumping is for free, but they charge 3€ for ten minutes of water supply.

France, Gordes
France, GordesFrance, GordesFrance, Gordes
France, Gordes

The village is very cute but it seemed like a ghost town. Even in these conditions, the tourists are always there!

Carpentras & Pernes les Fontaines
Village des Bories & Roussillon
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