Moustiers Sainte-Marie, France

The town

The town

Moustiers Sainte-Marie is located at the entrance of the Gorges du Verdon and is a good base from which to explore the area. With a few restaurants and hotels, it’s by far the most populated town in the region.

12th-century parish church

12th-century parish church

The cliffs loom over the town.

The cliffs loom over the town.

The village is tucked between two limestone cliffs with an aqueduct at the base.

Houses lining the river

Houses line the river

A sunny morning

A sunny morning

Street sign

Street sign

Moustier is the capital of faïence , or ceramics, which have been produced here since the Middle Ages. When the French kingdom melted silverware to mint currency, Moustier stepped in and supplied the palaces with ceramics. In the 17th and 18th centuries, the town became wealthy off ceramics.

None of the ceramics were our taste, but there's no shortage!

None of the ceramics were our taste, but there’s no shortage!

Atliers

Ateliers

Even today, every other storefront is an atelier.

Around a sunny corner

Around a sunny corner

View from the hilltop

View from the hilltop

Moustier is surrounded by olive groves and is also known for its olive oil.

Typical street

Typical street

Buildings line both sides of the rushing river

Buildings line both sides of the rushing river

Though the area was first inhabited about 30,000 years ago, the village was officially established in the 5th century when Lérin monks moved into caves in the cliffs. The caves later came in handy in the 10th century when residents hid from the invading Moors. Today, bats are the sole residents.

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