Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur : soft singsong accents
The land of olive oil and azure-blue skies, a region exuding the sweet smell of lavender, landscapes home to the singing of the cicadas… On the mountainside or by the sea, Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur (or as we know it, the French Riviera) is full of endless clichés, but this to everyone's great delight.
Tradition and new technologies
Greek, Roman, Germanic, Catalan… Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur has been a cultural crossroads since Antiquity, when grapevines and olive trees were already being cultivated. Today, though, new technologies and research are the motors of the regional economy.
The Arles Amphitheatre
Built around 80 BC, the amphitheatre is one of the major monuments of the ancient Roman colony. The central stage stretches out for 136m, surrounded by stands and arches on two levels. In its time, the amphitheatre could hold up to 250,000 spectators.
The Pont d'Avignon
Originally built as a wooden bridge, but just as quickly demolished or carried off by the rises in the water level of the Rhône, the Saint-Bénezet Bridge was finally constructed in stone. It once spanned 900m and had 22 arches. Only 4 of the arches still stand today. The bridge is on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
Pétanque and the santons of Provence
Pétanque, a typically Provençal game, has seduced many a sportsman… all the way to Laos. And while Marseille soap, made using olive oil, can be found at any good linen maid, the santons (small terracotta figurines) of Provence fill the Christmas nativity scenes.
To olive and herbs
While you are sure to find olive oil in all of the dishes, garlic and aromatic herbs are never far off. Bouillabaisse, ratatouille, daube and pistou are sure to seduce all foodies. And to accompany them, a wine from Bandol or a Chateauneuf-du-Pape.
The Cannes Film Festival
Founded in 1946, every year the film festival welcomes producers, directors, actors and photographers. Famous for its red carpet and climb up the steps, several awards are presented by an international jury after 12 days of competition.