Jungle gyms / Activity parks

The majority of villages have activity parks and jungle gyms for the kids to let off steam. If they’re not immediately visible ask at the local shop for le parc de l’activité des enfants.

After lunch nap in Lourmarin - keeping his little tennis ball safe and sound

Le Jarditrain

Twenty-five-miniature trains chug through a massive re-creation of Provençal villages and farms in a garden in Saint Didier (about 8km from Gordes). Open the year round, it is always best to ring first in case of power failures and the day’s actual opening times (04 90 40 48 18). It is well sign posted from the Saint Didier village centre. They have great activity quizzes for children that make the visit even more worthwhile. There is a very small entrance fee – it varies!

Zapiro cartoon - Timeslive

Zapiro cartoon - Timeslive.co.za

We found these two in a shop in Lourmarin

Canoeing

Fontaine de Vaucluse is one of the best canoeing spots in Europe and there are many places in the village for hiring and guided trips. There other activities for the young at heart in the village – avoid over a weekend as it becomes impossibly crowded.

Looking through from the Place de l'Horloge in Menerbes with the Luberon Valley in the background

Cycling

Apart from visitang many of the iconic venues of the Tour de France such as Sault and Mont Ventoux,  the Luberon is cyclist heaven. If you do not have cycles with you there are a number of places where you can hire them on a daily or weekly basis –

· Cavaillon Cycles

· Robion

· Coustellet

· Lourmarin

· Bonnieux

Cycle routes and maps are freely available from all the tourist offices and also on www.provenceguide.com

Spotted at the entrance to a Domaine near Chateauneuf-de-Pape

Here’s a few hints and tips for people wanting to bring their children on a tour of the Luberon and what to do and where to go. For space reasons, it’s spread over a few posts.

Let’s start with the most traditional:

Carousels, Fun Fairs and Circuses

Each major town has a carousel and these are always hubs of children’s activities. In Avignon there is a large Ferris wheel during the mid-summer season, as well as buskers, clowns and other activities in front of the Palais des Papes.

It is French tradition during the spring and summer period to have travelling (non animal) circuses and puppet theatres travelling around the towns and villages. Keep your eyes open for the colourful posters, which appear about a week before the circus hits town.

A regular calendar of childrens’ activities is kept on the Vaucluse Information Bureau’s web site – www.provenceguide.com

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