An immersion in colours, fragrances and tastes, Provence’s legendary way of life is a genuine ode to the senses. Discover our top 10 ways to soak up Provence lifestyle!
Discover Provencal fabrics
Put a simple yellow tablecloth decorated with black olives on your dining room table to whisk away to Provence! Provence’s beautiful traditional fabrics bring all the warmth of le Sud to your table. Their bright reds, yellows and blues pay tribute to the sunny and earthy character of the locals. Just listen… you can hear the cicadas chirping! The fabrics are decorated with symbols of Provence’s gentle lifestyle, such as bees, olives and lavender – choose whichever one you fancy. Add some nifty needlework and voilà – authentic Provencal fabric is waiting for you at one of the local markets.
Relax with Provence lavender
If Provencal culture is rich, its gold is blue! An intrinsic part of le Sud, lavender is a genuine ode to the senses, unveiling its deep blues in the vibrant paintings of Van Gogh. Used in massage oils, its relaxing properties are truly miraculous. And its legendary fragrance can be used to scent and purify every corner of the house. You can even use it to add flavour to your sweet and savoury dishes. Divine!
Enjoy a game of pétanque with friends
To shoot or point? That is the question when it comes to Provence’s quintessential sport – pétanque! A sport that reflects the philosophy of le Sud: getting together with friends and enjoying life at a leisurely pace. In the Provençal sun, a group of pals, three boules each, and a jack are enough to improvise a friendly contest. But beware if you take the game lightly…
If you’re wondering why the boules are engraved with stripes, it’s to allow them to cling better to the terrain and roll less!
Succumb to the gourmet delicacies of Provence
Being a foodie isn’t a sin in Provence. And thank goodness, because the local sweet delicacies are terribly tempting! Let’s start with Aix’s famous calisson candy. Made with ground almonds, orange flower water, egg whites and candied fruit, the recipe is already enough to make your mouth water. You can buy them from your favourite confectioner, or why not the superb Confiserie du Roy René, a temple of sugary pleasures in Provence. Let’s not forget Marseille’s navette biscuits! Often imitated but never equalled, these little boat-shaped biscuits perfumed with orange flower water are an intrinsic part of Provence’s culinary heritage. Last but not least, who can resist the sun-drenched fruit of Provence, preserved into delicious candied fruit to savour throughout the year.
Enhance your day with olive oil
A symbol of power, wisdom and eternity, olive oil is a concentrate of southern culture, worshipped as far back as Antiquity. It is now an intrinsic part of Provence’s fabulous lifestyle. Its colour is as golden as the sunshine of the le Sud and its powerful aroma enhances every dish. Always opt for extra-virgin oil rather than virgin – it’s far sweeter tasting!
Provence’s liquid gold is also a cosmetic treasure. Applied regularly, it soothes and moisturizes the skin and repairs damaged hair.
Collect Santon figurines
Provence lifestyle is all about beautiful interiors too, including the classic Christmas nativity scene. And the stars of the show are Provence’s santon figurines. Symbols of the region’s time-honoured craft know-how, santons are little clay figurines minutely painted by hand. From religious figures to local artisans, oxen and olive trees, they form a delightful little world that brings your Christmas decorations to life. A tradition to share – and a great souvenir to take back home
Let singing cicadas soothe you
If Provence was a type of music, it would obviously be cicada song. It’s the sign that you’ve arrived in le Sud, where life is good and the people are as warm and sunny as the weather. The cicada song tells you the Med is nearby and its picturesque little coves await you. Whether you opt for a romantic stroll with your partner or a country hike, chirping cicadas provide the perfect soundtrack for every adventure in Provence.
Sip a pastis
Yellow, light, refreshing and popular, pastis ticks all the boxes when it comes to Provence lifestyle. The unrivalled king of le Sud’s bars and café terraces, it is an ode to good humour and friendship. And there’s always a fine reason to treat yourself to a “petit jaune” as the drink is nicknamed locally. Whether you’re celebrating the start of summer, winning a game of pétanque, or the gathering before a concert, there’s no time like the present for savouring its aniseed taste.
To drink in moderation!
Lather up with Savon de Marseille
If you want to bathe in pure Provence, authentic Savon de Marseille is your friend! A flagship product of the le Sud, this famous soap is dear to every inhabitant of Provence. Its authenticity and natural ingredients are winning more devotees every day. It is also the perfect gift or souvenir for pampering your bathroom with a touch of Provence lifestyle.
Spruce up your plate with Herbes de Provence
Thyme, rosemary or sage: Herbes de Provence embody the essence of the region’s delicious flavours. Perfect for plunging back into the atmosphere of le Sud every time you sit down to eat. Sprinkle, season, scatter and simply let the memories of summer bubble up to the surface.
In addition to perfuming every dish with their delicate scent, Herbes de Provence are packed with healthy properties. Relaxing, toning and anti-stress – what more could you ask for?!