What is more typical than a field of blooming lavender when thinking of the South of France? You will find them mainly in the Provence region. However, you can also spot some lavender fields near Montpellier in the Hérault department. At the Mas de Villetelle between Gignac and Saint-Bauzille, to be precise. And every year, around 20 June, they celebrate these deliciously fragrant flowers during the Fête de la Lavande.
Fête de la Lavande
Mas de Villetelle’s annual Fête de la Lavande is already in its seventh year. This year, they are holding open days from Saturday 24 June to Sunday 2 July. No need to make a reservation; you are welcome on any of these days from 10h00 to 18h00. On the program: a walk through the lavender fields at your own pace. After that, you can order homemade refreshments or a ‘meal-on-a-plate’ (15 euros) to enjoy while gazing over the purple haze. Of course, you can also have a look at the little boutique. Here, they sell homemade and certified organic lavender products like essential oil, room spray, cold processed soap and lip balm. Don’t expect a lot of entertainment, though. The Fête de la Lavande is about time to relax and surrender to the scents and beauty of the lavender.
But if you want to experience pure magic, you can make a reservation for the sunset buffet. Every evening, except Monday 26 and Thursday 29 June 2023, you can enjoy homemade local food marveling at the sun setting over the lavender fields. Chéri and I signed up for one of these special dinners, and we were utterly enchanted by this natural show. The sky gave its best, turning into a canvas of warm hues and transforming the lavender field into a dreamscape. What a memorable night!
Mas de Villetelle
Years ago, English Terri Andon made the move to France as she wanted to be more in touch with nature and to live outside. She had found an old mas called Villetelle with nearly two hectares near Gignac. Over the years, she and her husband, Bernard, created their little piece of paradise. Today, Mas de Villetelle is a farm that cultivates certified organic crops like lavender, Italian Immortelle (or strawflower), and khakis. They also collect honey from our beehives. Most of the work is done by hand, with the help of WOOFERs (young people who help on organic farms). The farm is off grid, meaning that water has to be brought in from the village in tanks, and electricity is generated by solar panels. As Terri says: “The basis of organic farming is to work with nature, not against it.” A precious lesson to be shared!