Arles by Ma cigale est fantastique

Shopping in the footsteps of bloggers

Ancient Arles, Roman Arles, Hail Ceasar! The entire town is an open air museum! Arles, Capital of the Camargue region, is a captivating town. It possesses an extraordinary wealth of cultural and archaeological heritage, if we add to this the extraordinary handicraft and designer shops, a day would never be enough to see it all. I will, however, try to give you a glimpse of our beautiful town, so follow me!

Place du Forum

Place du Forum 13 200 Arles

Let’s stop for a moment on one of the café terraces in the square to do a little people watching and take in the ambiance of the town.
From the top of his statue, Frédéric Mistral, native of the area, watches over the square. Under the square is a cryptoporticus, these are ancient tunnels acting as foundations for the ancient Forum. Formerly a market was held here and it was also used for trading, today this bustling square still remains a hub of activity. In his era, Van Gogh would like to loiter on the café terraces which were, for him, a source of inspiration.

Réattu museum

10 rue Du Grand Prieuré 13200 Arles

Next, I suggest we visit the town’s Fine Arts museum, the Réattu.
We will walk back up towards the Rhône, the legendary river that has its own incredible history. Firstly, the museum is a beautiful monument; formerly the Grand Priory of the Order of Malta, the downstairs room is dedicated to this heritage. In the rooms upstairs you will find an exhibition of the works of the Arles painter Jacques Réattu, a collection of drawings by Picasso and a photo collection.

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Couleurs d'Arles - La chemise du gardian

39, rue Du 4 septembre - 13200 Arles

Traditional Camargue clothing has been made at "La chemise du gardian" for three generations.
Alain Garoyan continues his fathers and grandfathers savoir-faire. He does it all, from A to Z, from the design stage and developing the model through to printing the fabric; and he’s even there to offer you his advice. These are high-quality designer clothes that have nothing to do with those sold on the markets; this is reflected in the price.

Carnet de voyage

4 Bis Rue Calade 13200 Arles

Let’s finish our shopping in the "Carnet de Voyage", just opposite the ancient theatre.
I will warn you that you that things here are not easy to resist! This boutique will be one to remember! You have the choice between numerous articles which are mostly original designs: bags in every shape and size, some unique little guinea fowl ornaments and beautiful tableware from the Luberon. I particularly like the book section that has a collection of books on Arles, Provence and Provencal cooking.

Place de la République

Place de la République 13 200 Arles

The town’s central square. You might have already passed by here whilst following our itinerary.
I love this square, it draws me like a magnet, admittedly I also like to buy an ice cream from the ice cream maker here, but it’s not only that, there is so much to see. It is so vast and surrounded by so many fabulous monuments such as the Obelisk and the Town Hall that I could spend an age here sitting on the fountain just looking in amazement at the beautiful architecture. This is the theatre of some of the town’s biggest fiestas.

A côté

21 rue Des Carmes 13200 Arles

We are now going to the bistro "A côté"; owned by the very famous Chef, Jean Luc Rabanel.
I am not talking about the Atelier, the 2-star restaurant where you need to take your time and also have a certain budget available. No, I am talking about “A côté", perfect for savouring the Chefs delights, the dishes are simple and very affordable. Choose between dining on the terrace surrounded by bamboo or in the dining room with a delightful Spanish feel. We’d recommend booking beforehand.

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La nouvelle Arlésienne

12, rue Du Président Wilson - 13200 Arles

The Arlésienne, is a dressmaking shop that will soon celebrate its centenary, a leading shop in the Arles area!
The shop is quite modern but, at the same time, embodies the history of the Arles people; and it has also seen many "Miss Arles" pass through its doors over the years. It is in fact, here that we find some beautiful silks and cottons from which the beautiful traditional costumes are made. The Arlésienne also sells haberdashery and men’s and women’s underwear.

Bouton d'Or

23 rue de la Liberté 13 2OO Arles

A bubbly young lady welcomes us into the surprising workshop--second hand clothes boutique.
Not far from the Place du Forum, Lisa and Florence, who are mother and daughter, opened this boutique in 2014, where create some beautiful clothes, skirts, jackets, cardigans, etc. Here there are no alterations, just pure creation. Lisa is a wedding dress specialist. Recently, the shop has expanded to include a second-hand clothes section, where you will find some beautiful items that don’t cost a fortune. Soon, they hope to organise themed parties.

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Ma Cigale est Fantastique" introduces you to the very best the South of France and Provence have to offer. "Ma Cigale" shares a hand-picked selection of cultural, touristic and gastronomic events and unveils a host of Made in Provence gems, tips and top addresses. A must!

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Saint Rémy and its painters

Come and spend a delightful half-day in Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, a typical Provençal village in the Alpilles. Following in Van Gogh's footsteps, get to know the famous artist more intimately as you stroll around the streets and other locations he used to visit. While he only spent a year here, when he was a self-admitted patient at the Saint-Paul asylum, he left an indelible mark on the town and its history. Make time also to see the magnificent Provençal building that houses the Estrine Museum dedicated to the artist.

The many faces of Camargue

See the many faces of Camargue on a tour that promises a refreshing change of scenery away from the usual tourist sites! Visit the Langlois Bridge, made famous in several paintings by Van Gogh, before exploring the ecosystem in Le Vigueirat. Then make your way to the Tour Saint-Louis and onwards to Napoleon beach where you can try your hand at kite surfing. In the afternoon, head to Domaine de la Palissade, an ideal destination to observe Camargue's wildlife. La Chassagnette in Arles is our recommendation for dinner where the original menu is prepared by a top chef.

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A renowned seaside resort, the town of La Ciotat has plenty of surprises up its sleeve! You can opt for a casual seaside stroll or take the easy route into the hills. This break offers a variety of activities: outdoor recreation led by "Expenature", the beautiful ''Jardins de l'Espérance" park, fun and games at the "Flots Bleus" Casino and culture at the Eden Theatre – the world's oldest movie theatre still in operation! There's no doubt about it, La Ciotat has something for every taste. What's more, the town has recently refashioned its footpaths, now accessible to reduced-mobility visitors, for an enchanting break between town and country.

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