Oriented to the south and influenced by the Mistral that blows almost one third of the year in the Vaucluse, Gordes enjoys an exceptional climate with about 300 days of sunshine per year. But only one of the reasons that make Gordes one of the most visited villages of the Regional Natural Park of the Luberon.
Located halfway between Cavaillon and Saint-Saturnin-lès-Apt, Gordes, beautiful village perched, is ranked among the most beautiful villages of France thanks to its rich and varied heritage: two abbeys, several mills and water and wind several hundred huts or dry stone Bories.
Gordes is one of the most common areas of the region with 4 804 hectares. The north of the town is formed by the mountains of Vaucluse. That is the culmination of the town at 635 metres altitude, near the "Pouraque" and "Three terms". The south of the town is composed of the plain of Calavon (also called "North Luberon Valley") and hills of the sector said the "Garrigue" where is the lowest point of the town.
The village of Gordes lies on a limestone promontory of the Vaucluse mountains, overlooking the plain of Calavon of 120 meters to 370 meters high above sea level. The Vaucluse mountains are known to be rich in water (Fontaine-de-Vaucluse lies a few kilometres west only), as several rivers roam the town, both surface and underground. The Sénancole, west of the town, is causing the siting of the Senanque Abbey.
With nine hotels (including several four-star), many houses (covering all price ranges), several Real Estate Agencies making the seasonal rentals, lodges and camping, Gordes is ready to receive Tourists who arrive en masse when the weather. It must be said that Gordes is not without strengths.
The first quality of Gordes is without doubt his desire to control the nearest town planning. The construction standards are very strict over the town. The stone is everywhere and any new construction must adhere to the traditional implementation in addition to bury power lines and telephone. This obligation to build a stone, like the use of tile for roofs, the strong limitation of height, the fulfilment of certain seismic building standards, give a stamp Gordes copy.
The monument marking the most Gordes of the castle which remains the most visible part is Renaissance. Built in the village centre, this imposing building, rebuilt in 1525, was classified a historical monument on July 4, 1931 and currently houses a museum devoted to painting Pol Mara, Belgian artist and the tourist office.
Going down to the lookout, stands the church of Saint-Firmin built on the foundations of an ancient church in the thirteenth century and dedicated to St Firmin. The square tower, which probably dates from the fourteenth century, serves as a bell tower and has the distinction of having an outside staircase to nowhere, proof that another building was once attached to him. In addition, accessible through the streets of the oven, Palais Saint-Firmin, gardens and cellars (troglodytes halls, stairs underground oil mills) are listed in the inventory of historical monuments since March 4, 1998.
Several streets in calade (paved with stones) leave this place south of the castle to join the remains of ancient fortifications whose Porte de Savoie, Hotel and Pluvinal chapel, the house Andre Lhote, whose facades are included in the 'inventory of historical monuments, and chaplaincy Saint-Jacques. Further down, at the foot of the village in the district called "Fontaine low," there are old wash, a mill and several ancient chapels whose chapel at the bottom, "carved in the rock.
Under the new name of "Village des Bories" exists, 3 km west of Gordes, a former group of huts drystone oriented farming and use mainly seasonal, formed last three decades in open-air museum. It is reached by a path lined with oak and stone walls and having its point of origin on the road No. 2, from Cavaillon / Imberts, just before reaching the neck of Gordes. Called simply "shacks" in the Napoleonic cadastre, buildings have taken the name of scholarly "Bories" that during the second half of the twentieth century.
In a valley to the west of Gordes, bordering the Sénancole who gave his name is the famous Cistercian abbey of Senanque, founded on June 23, 1148 at the initiative of the bishop of Cavaillon by monks Cistercians from Mazan-l'Abbaye in the Ardeche.
The abbey is a listed monument since April 10, 1921 and annually attracts a considerable number of visitors.