A fairy-like Christmas at the Féeries de Noël in Aniane

Féeries de Noël Aniane

Yearly, the little village of Aniane near Saint-Guilhem-le-Désert completely transforms into a winter paradise. During the Féeries de Noël, the Chapel of Penitents hosts France’s largest life-sized nativity scene. Of course, you can also have your picture taken with Santa Claus in the twinkling decorated covered market, visit the Christmas market, or marvel at the ‘Lueurs d’Hiver’ light show at the former abbey of Aniane. Enough activities to get the jingle bells rocking!

Féeries de Noël

If you want the whole Christmas experience, I suggest going to the Féeries de Noël in Aniane. From 1 to 23 December, you can immerse yourself in the famous nativity scene in the Chapel of Penitents, covering more than 400m². A symbolic entrance fee of 5 euros (kids under 12 years old are free) gives you entrance to a completely different world. The crèche is entirely set up by volunteers. They spend hundreds of hours over several months creating these detailed Provençal folklore settings. There is also a shop where you can admire a huge collection of santons, or the ‘little nativity scene saints’. These small terracotta figurines represent traditional Provençal life.

Féeries de Noël Aniane


After visiting the crèche, the 5-euro ticket also gives you entrance to the adjacent covered market, transformed into Santa Claus’ Village. Here, you can absorb the Féeries de Noël even more. Keep in mind that the queues can be long on the weekends, both for the crèche and the covered market. Compared to the serene Chapel of Penitents, the illuminated Santa Claus’ village is quite kitschy. Wintry and Christmassy scenes shimmer all over with blue light and other bright colours. And on some days, you might even say hello to Santa Claus. If you go during a Christmas market day (17, 23 and 28 December), the streets will be filled with joy and laughter. These Christmas markets are one of the most significant holiday events in the Hérault Valley, so expect a lot of people. You will find many stalls selling all kinds of locally crafted gifts and winter products.

Féeries de Noël Aniane

Lueurs d’Hiver

To extend your stay to the max, you should also go to the magical light show in the gardens of Aniane’s former abbey. Les Lueurs d’Hiver- Winter Glow- lives up to its name with fairy-like dancing lights and impressive projections. You will have to pay an additional fee of 10 euros for anyone who is 16 years and older. Children from 5 to 15 can enter for 7 euros, and admission is free for children under 5 years old. Tickets can be bought online. From 1 to 23 December, the light show starts around 18h00 every Wednesday to Sunday. You can visit daily from 26 December to 7 January (closed on 24 and 25 December). Together with the Enchanted Forest, the Christmas markets and the parade, the Féeries de Noël in Aniane will bring magic into your heart.

Lueurs d'Hiver
TO SEE - Celebrations
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