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AvignonIsle sur la Sorgue

Know as the Venice of France Isle sur la Sorgue (literally: island on the Sorgue River) lives up to its name. As the Sorgue River splits in two at Isle sur la Sorgue and surrounds the center of town, thus creating the island in the town’s name. There are canals and the river to walk along. Just like in Venice you can enjoy a coffee and riverside view. Only in Isle sur la Sorgue you won’t have as many tourists!

The past of Isle sur la Sorgue is very much present as a number of the water wheels that once powered its wool and silk industry are still in operation, turning as they did in yesteryear, albeit for tourist to look at and not industrial use.

Isle sur la Sorgue also has a weekly antique market from Saturday through Monday. Just incase you might get hungry there is also weekly provincial market, where local fruits and vegetables can be found, along with other typical products like fish and meat. The provincial market is on Thursdays and Sundays year round. Isle sur la Sorgue is one of the largest producers of fruits and vegetables for a town its size in Europe. Thus its market is a grommet delight not to be missed. This is a slice of French life that tourist often don’t experience. Don’t make that mistake.

Isle sur la Sorgue is part of the Comtat Venaissin, a region that became apart of France for good in 1791. Before that it was linked to numerous kingdoms and even spent a time as part of the Papal enclave at Avignon. During the 14th century Isle sur la Sorgue was the capital of the Comtat Venaissin.

Isle sur la Sorgue can be reached from the A7 Autoroute - exit Avignon Sud. Just follow the signs after exiting the Autoroute. Isle sur la Sorgue does have a train station and it is possible to take a TGV from Paris to Avignon and then take a local train to the town.

The tourist office is in the center of town just next to the church. Just look for signs reading ‘Office de Tourisme’. There are brochures in English.

Isle sur la Sorgue is not far from Avignon, about a half an hour’s drive. Making it a nice day trip (or longer) from the Papal city. Isle sur la Sorgue offers the visitor more than tourist attractions. It offers an insight into French provincial life through its markets.

Last but not least, one must visit the Pâtisserie Leyris. It is a pastry shop and bakery where you will find the best bread and goodies in town. And best of all it’s run by an American-French couple. The Pâtisserie Leyris is on rue Carnot just down the street from the Mairie (Town Hall). Enjoy!

Related Link:
BBC Holiday guide to Isle sur la Sorgue

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