Le Castellet is a medieval French citadel overlooking the beautiful rolling southern hills of Provence. What else is there to love?
Only accessible by car, the citadel is up a twisting road surrounded by colorful vineyards and quaint southern cottages. To pass through the city walls, you have to cross under one of the stone gates by foot – no automobiles allowed. Even the tiniest of European cars wouldn’t be able to squeeze their way through the tight, winding streets.
It’s a small village with more tourist shops than housing. Out of the mere 4,000 people who live in town, only a few call get to call la cité home.
I bought some sel au vin that I later gave away as a gift (and mildly regret because it’s salt that – wait for it – has been soaked in red wine . . . like, two of my most favorite things in the world other than cheese). We had lunch at a creperie in one of the many tiny courtyards. Everything in Le Castellet is small. Everything except for the crepes.
All of the creperies have menus two to three pages long with so many crepes that you risk going into crepe shock. There are crepes with Nutella, peanuts butter, and ice cream. There are crepes with lettuce and meat, crepes with curry and mangos, crepes with five different kinds of cheese . . . you could have a crepe as an appetizer, a main course, and a dessert.
We walked the cobblestone streets, basking in the views. Like many places in France, Le Castellet is very relaxed. People take their time wandering from shop to shop, talking to vendors, slowly eating all those glorious crepes, and sipping espressos for hours. Unlike Carcassonne, a citadel northwest of Marseille, it’s livable rather than militaristic. Twisting vine creeps up stone walls and overgrown flowers blooms from windowsills.
I was definitely getting those provincial life vibes. It’s easy to picture Belle walking the streets with her nose in a book. There was even a Gaston-worthy tavern with antlers mounted on the wall.
Visit a church first constructed in 1153 and, for the best view of Provence, look through window like the ones out of the pages of a storybook called the Le Trou de Madame (pictured below).
Until next time,