The French Village of L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue is absolutely enchanting. Not only is it considered ‘The Provençal Venice’, but it’s also the antiques capital of Provence. Crystal-clear, emerald water that flows through this compact medieval town. Narrow footbridges cross five branches of the Sorgue river. Ducks and the occasional swan doze on the banks. Water wheels are still seen throughout the city with quiet, mossy blades delicately tracing out time in the old city, relicts from silk and paper manufacturing ages ago.
One January day, we set off from Avignon to visit this lovely island on the Sorgue River. We arrive in the late morning and set off on foot to explore. This is one of the larger villages that we visited in Provence, really more of a small town, but it was idyllic nonetheless.
L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue was once the center of a prolific crayfishing industry (up to 35,000 crayfish a day!), today it is simply bursting with stylish shops and restaurants. We enjoyed a simple, but delicious lunch at a delightful crêpe shop.
Shopping is a major draw for those visiting L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue, there are 300 permanent antique dealers and second hand shops here as well as a large provençal flea market every Sunday. Twice annually, major antiques fairs are held with over 800 exhibitors setting up their wares.
By this now it was time to head on to our next destination, but we were so glad that we had the opportunity to visit this beguiling little town.