▨ Jamie McHale


A week in the south of France

We're just back from a week-long break in Blauzac, a small village near Uzes in the Gard, south of France.


We visited Les Baux, around an hour to the south east of Uzes. Les Baux-de-Provence is described as one of the most beautiful villages in France. It certainly is very picturesque. It's main function is as a tourist destination: a ruined castle and narrow cobbled streets high on a stony outcrop. I usually don't go in for destinations that are "tourist villages" as their only function, but this was tolerable. We ate a vegan "raw food" platter at Les Baux Jus, making a change from the standard fare. After lunch we checked out Carrières de Lumières, a projection show inside an old limestone mine. They were showing Venetian art, which suited the cathedral-like scale of the venue.


Our second destination of the week was Arles. We followed the Van Gogh walking trail through the city centre. It's an easy walk that takes in several city sights, and it's good to get a feel for the areas in which Van Gogh lived and worked. The city centre is a lovely space to spend some time. We ate at Cuisine De Comptoir just off the Place du Forum, the location of the Night Cafe.

We ended up at the Foundation Vincent Van Gogh and took at look at their Nicole Eisenman and the Modernes expo. The foundation had two Van Gogh paintings on display, alongside a Munch, some Picasso and a Hiroshige. If you are visiting it might be worth checking in advance which Van Goghs are on display there, as most of his work is held in other collections. Head to the roof terrace of the gallery for some nice views over the Arles rooftops.


We spent a further day relaxing at the Pont Du Gard. The aqueduct is from Roman times, and is an impressive bit of engineering. We brought a picnic, rested on the beach and swam in the river.


The rest of the trip was spent relaxing, visiting Uzes and Saint-Quentin-la-Poterie. Uzes has several good restaurants. We enjoyed Ten (nice courtyard for dinner), SiSi (standard fare pizza, friendly staff), Terroirs (fresh lunch, busy, with a shop for buying local treats) and Volver (excellent dinner, tiny menu of two choices per course).

There are some walking trails near Blauzac that go past lovely olive groves and vinyards. Well worth exploring!


Merci France! 🇫🇷