The Pâques bank holiday dawned fine with clear blue skies.
We took a trip to the historic town of Cotignac just 16km from Le Diamant Noir holiday rental accommodation, Aups
Link below shows the route
This village is in the heart of la Provence Verte, half way between the gorges du Verdon and the Mediterranean.
Cotignac has a unique position -nestled into the valley below a majestic tuff rock of 80 metres in height , which protectesthe village from the harsh winter mistral. In the past the river Cassole flowed over the rock, leaving behind crevices and petrified waterfalls.
This rock has cave dwellings which were used as a hiding place for the inhabitants, their cattle and food during periods of invasion. There was a cave big enough to hold all the inhabitants and their flocks when they had to hide.
From the fourteenth century life and the economics of the village centred round the rock. Flour mills and then hydroelectrric power used the weater from the river.
Surrounded by typically provençal countryside with vines, olive groves and wild flowers, Cotignac is a popular town and a good base for artistic inspiration, with several artists, writers and photographers having their studio in the village.
On Easter Monday the artists of the village had an open day welcoming the bank holiday visitors in their galleries.
The Cercles de Arts consists of 16 artists workshops situated around the town giving the ideal opportunity not only to admire the work of local artists, but to wander through the historic streets soaking up the culture, while enjoying a taste of spring.
The small boutiques and gift shops were open and their inviting window displays were attracting the passers by.
The cafés opened their terraces and the beautiful day encouraged al fresco dining.
The sun came out and the place came alive!