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Both PARADES in the cours Mirabeau, which opens the Festival d’Aix-en-Provence, and Parade Pique-Nique, part of MPG2019, are all booked out, (June 30th), but it’s always nice to wander in town around these events.

It’s very much the beginning of a packed summer of events in town, and also throughout the region, so what you need is a copy of ‘Le Guide de l’Eté’ published by La Provence. (more…)

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It’s incredible to think that Princess Grace would have been 90 years old this year.  To celebrate, the palace has put on an exhibition based around the brief meeting between Grace, then a well-known actress visiting Cannes, and Rainier, a prince in search of a bride.  At the same time, you get a tour of the palace.  The exhibition closes on October 15th, as does the palace as far as visits are concerned until next spring.

Monaco is a long drive from Aix, but do-able in a day, and a fascinating place to visit.  More on visiting the palace here:  https://www.palais.mc/en/visits-of-the-palace-online-booking-1-31.html

Afterwards, you can wander down to the Cathedral where the marriage took place, and where they are buried.

Lots to do in town of course: https://www.monte-carlo.mc/fr/visites/office-tourisme-monaco/

 

 

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…..starting with the wild Sirocco wind that roared through the south of France on Friday.  Here in Aix, it brought down two branches in the little Place Saint-Honoré (up Cours Mirabeau, left before Café le Grillon, just along from Etam…)  Incredibly, they hit (more…)

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En Avignon

I learned in my French class yesterday that we may say, ‘à Marseille’, ‘à Aix’, but it should always be ‘en Avignon’, as it sounds so much

Photo from France 3

better.  I wonder if Barak Obama knew that last evening as he flew into Provence for a short family holiday.  In fact they will be staying not far from Villeneuve-les-Avignon, just across the Rhone, a charming old town…”C’est un peu le 16e arrondissement d’Avignon’ according to one local.  The inhabitants seem delighted with their famous visitor but emphasised that they wish them to have a peaceful stay, without too much attention.  According to reports in La Provence, though, their accommodation will be surrounded by a 24/24 police presence. I hope they can get out to enjoy the area.

Avignon itself has a lively programme of cultural events all year round; but in the summer, comes into its own with the Festival d’Avignon.  It started in 1947 and attracts tens of thousands of visitors: there are more than forty different shows performed during the Festival, plus readings, exhibitions, films and debates. It’s worth noting that there are often plays in their original language.

Expect some challenging art too – I look forward to seeing the oils of talented young Syrian painter, Miryam Haddad, at the Collection Lambert.

Their permanent collection has many of the great names in contemporary art, housed in an elegant hotel particulier.  The courtyard café, La Violette, under the shade of a magnificent plane tree, is a great venue for lunch.

The festival starts at the beginning of July. 

More on Miryam Haddad’s work here: https://www.festival-avignon.com/en/artist/2019/miryam-haddad

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…for a week.  It seems unbelievable that such a venerable institution as (more…)

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A Bus tour south of the city

and

Sunset apéros on board ‘un bar sur le mer’. (more…)

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May 28th will see the return of the thrice-weekly Food Market to the newly-pedestrianised and smartly-paved Places Verdun-Precheurs where it was up to 2016.  The Textile and Brocante stalls will stay in the cours Mirabeau, and the two areas will be linked by the Artisanat Market which will occupy rue Thiers. (more…)

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