The Alpes-de-Haute-Provence is a mountainous and sparsely populated department that comprises a striking range of landscapes, from agricultural plains and hillside lavender farms to alpine forests and vertiginous mountains. Its most famous sight, the Gorges du Verdon, France’s miniature Grand Canyon, was carved by the turquoise waters of the Verdon River.
Near the gorge lies the photogenic mountain village of Moustiers-Sainte-Marie, perched between limestone cliffs and famous for its potters, who make a distinctive faience (tin-glazed earthenware). A mountain stream cuts through its center, surrounded by narrow alleys, hidden squares, stone fountains, artisan potters and a 12th-century church.
La Bastide de Moustiers, a sophisticated country inn created from a 17th-century stone farmstead just outside the village, makes an ideal overnight stop for those traveling between Avignon (the Rhône Valley) and Nice (the French Riviera).