Perhaps the most consecrated spot for antiquing in Provence is L'Isle sur la Sorgue (which means the island on the river Sorgue). The village is reputed for hosting 300 antique dealers, who set up shop here on the weekends, public holidays and, in high season, Thursdays as well.
The river itself is a fascination and hems this village in on both sides, as the river divides when it comes to L'Isle sur la Sorgue. It flows from a very pure source: la Fontaine de Vaucluse, the largest natural spring in France (fifth largest in the world). These waters are pristine - hence the beautiful color and immaculacy.
Antiquing here, one finds individual shops with a curated selection of a particular style or time period. There are also enclaves through archways that lead on to groupings of antique dealers.
The act of perusing through the vaults of time is in itself enough - no need to walk away arms full. That said, when a treasure is found - what a delight to bring it home and make its place among other treasured items.
These baskets are from the grape harvests in another time. They are enormous and still stained with the juice from the many harvests they brought in.
Always an eclectic mix...
This bird was part of an ancient weather vane - une girouette, en français.
Always love a collection of frames...
In the 14th century, Petrarch - poet and scholar from Italy - came again and again to the region to find La Sorgue. This was the early renaissance period and Petrarch believed that these waters were holy - that they spoke to him:
"The beautiful source of the river Sorgue, famous in her own right since time immemorial, is celebrated once more by my own extended stay and by my songs."
(La très illustre source de la Sorgue, fameuse par elle-même depuis longtemps, est devenue plus célèbre encore par mon long séjour et par mes chants).
Follow along for all our adventures in Provence: