The Luberon is a range of mountains stretching 65km/40mi from Cavaillon to Manosque. The Petit Luberon in the west and the Grand Luberon in the east are separated by the beautiful Combe de Lourmarin which runs through the mountains from Bonnieux to Lourmarin.
In order to protect this magnificent unspoiled terrain the authorities created the Parc Naturel Regional du Luberon in 1977. It covers about 140,000 ha. mostly in the Vaucluse. although some of the Park is in the Alpes de Haute-Provence.
The highest mountain is the Mourre Negre or ‘Black Face’ at 1125m/3691ft in the Grand Luberon. From the summit you can see the Vaucluse Plateau and Mont Ventoux to the north and the Durance Valley and Mont Ste-Victoire in the south.
The thing which strikes everyone visiting the Park is the difference in the vegetation between the two slopes. The southern slope is unmistakably Mediterranean while the northern slope is much cooler and more alpine in appearance.
Don’t miss: the downy rockroses, the Etruscan honeysuckle, and the aspic lavender. Much more difficult to find but worth keeping an eye open for are the rare Bonelli’s eagle and the white Egyptian vulture extinct elsewhere in Europe.