Sault is an old fortified village perched along the top of a high ridge overlooking a wide valley, with large lavender fields spread out below to the south and west. A long multi-arched road bridge crosses the tiny La Croc stream below, past the southeast end of the village. Along with the ancient buildings lining the high ridge are the remains of a huge feudal castle.
Apt Lavender Itineraries |
Lavender Fields |
Lavender Sault |
Mont Ventoux |
Apt 36 km |
Aurel 5 km |
Avignon 65 km |
Banon 29 km |
Carpentras 40 km |
Forcalquier 54 km |
Gordes 40 km |
Javon Chateau 15 km |
Nesque Gorges 6 km |
Saint Christol 11 km |
Saint Jean-de-Sault 7 km |
Ventoux Mountain 26 km |
Villes-sur-Auzon 23 km |
Hotels near Sault: |
11 km Saint Christol |
36 km Apt |
40 km Carpentras |
40 km Gordes |
54 km Forcalquier |
65 km Avignon |
The village is open and relaxed, with wide squares and a good selection of cafés, and the nicely-restored central church. There's a good selection of shops, some with local and regional products.
There's a fair amount of tourist traffic in the summer.
The fields around Sault sit in a low area surrounded by mountains: the Ventoux and the Lure mountains range across the northwest and northeast, and the Plateau de Vaucluse is spread out across the south. Just a few kilometers out of the village to the southwest are the deep canyons of the Gorges de la Nesque.
The "Pays de Sault" (the region) was an ancient Comté, ruled by a count. In the 18th and 19th centuries Sault was the center of an important glass industry. Today the glass works are gone, but the weekly market (Wednesdays) has remained -- since 1515!
There are also many other lavender fields towards the eastern end of the gorges de la Nesque, and southeast along the D30 road to St. Christol.
Distillerie du Vallon
Free visit of the traditional distillery of lavande and lavandin. Commented demonstration of distillation during the season. Boutique.
Tel: 0490 641 483
Jardin des Lavandes
Collection of lavenders. Guided botanical visit of the garden and greenhouses. Sale of plants and products.
Hamlet of Verdolier
Open: July-Aug, daily 10h-13h, 14h-19h
All year by rendez-vous.
Tel: 0490 641 497
English, German, Japanese
Lavender Festival (Fête de la Lavande)
Maison du Tourisme
Tel: 0490 640 121
Maison des Producteurs de Sault
This is the cooperative of the lavender producers for the Pays de Sault. Exposition and direct sales.
Rue de la République
Open: Apr-mid Nov, daily 10h-12h30, 14h30-19h.
Tel: 0490 640 898
Routes de la Lavande en Pays de Sault
The Maison du Tourisme offers 7 guided tours to the principal lavender-raising sites (lavandicoles).
Tel: 0490 640 121
The name Sault comes from "Saltus", referring to the forests that covered the territory.
Aeria was an ancient habitation at this location that was destroyed and abandoned during the barbarian invasions.
Paleolithic, neolithic and bronze-age vestiges and artifacts have been found in the Bois du Défens to the northeast of the village, where a large cave is located.
Vestiges were discovered at the hamlet of Loges, on the river plain just west of the village.
The Barons of Agoult ruled Sault in the 11th century and maintained their rule for five centuries. The last of the various succeeding rulers was the Duke of Villeroy, who lost his head to the guillotine during the Revolution.
Office de Tourisme de la Région de Sault
Avenue de la Promenade
Tel : 04 90 64 01 21
Market day: Wednesdays, an active market that's been going on since 1515.
Foire: 25 June; 25 Nov
Foire: Monday after "Passion"; the day after Assomption
Fête votive (fireworks): 2nd Sunday Aug
Fête St. Jean (at St. Jean): end June
Fête St. Rose (at Verdolier): end Aug
Fête of Lavender: 15 Aug
Museums & Sites
The municipal museum of Sault has a natural-history collection and great collection of antiques, many obtained from the village and surrounding area.
Department 84, Vaucluse Buses
See Beyond's Bus Schedules Page 2: Vaucluse Department for downloading Vaucluse bus-lines map [Plan global des lignes] and bus-line schedules [pdf for each line] (link for PDF files).
• Avignon has train or bus connections to Aix-en-Provence, Arles, Nîmes, Saint Remy-de-Provence, Paris.
• Cavaillon has bus connections to Aix-en-Provence, Arles, Saint Remy-de-Provence.
• Pertuis has bus connections to Aix-en-Provence and Marseille.
Bus Carpentras - Sault
Route: Carpentras, Mazan, Mormoiron, Villes-sur-Auzon, Monieux, Sault.
Cars Comtadins; tel 0490 672 025
Bus Apt - Sault
Route: Apt, Villars, Saint Saturnin-lès-Apt, Petits-Cléments, Grand-Cléments, Rustrel, Saint Christol, Sault.
For details, contact the Gare Routière Avignon (tel 0490 820 735) or the Office de Tourisme in Sault, Apt or Carpentras.
Jean Nouveau Cave - Aven de Jean Nouveau
Sault is in the Vaucluse mountains, about 80 km due north of Aix-en-Provence (31 km north of Apt ). It is well west of the Durance river and the Aix-Sisteron A51 autoroute (54 km west of Forcalquier on the D950). One of the most famous pits in the world, the Aven de Jean Nouveau was first explored in 1892. A Beyond reader has been down to -578 metres here.
Rental and Repair
Route de Saint-Trinit
Tel: 0490 640 932
Mont Ventoux Climb
Sault is a popular base for cyclists. One of the 3 Mt Ventoux Climbs (Les 3 montées du Ventoux) begins in Sault: 25 km, 1180 m altitude difference, 4.7% average. The Office de Tourisme will stamp your start time.
Tour de France
On the route of the 2009 Tour de France, stage 20, Montélimar to Mont Ventoux, via Aurel and Sault.
IGN (1/25,000) #3240 OT "Bannon, Sault"
IGN (1/25,000) #3140 ET "Mont Ventoux"
Didier Richard (1/50,000) #27 "Ventoux"
The GR4 (Grande Randonnée), from just west of the village, goes south through the Bois des Fayettes to a peak at 1059 m.
Just past this peak, the GR4 and GR9 join, and both trails explore the forests and mountains of the Plateau de Vaucluse.
From just west of Sault, the GR4 also goes northwest, joining the GR9 in the Sault Forest.
The mountains here, with their forests and many hiking trails, connect with the Ventoux mountains to the north and to the west, and there are days of uninterrupted hiking possible.
A hiking trail east of Sault crosses fields and woods without significant climbing, passing through the village of Revest-du-Bion.
Ave de l'Oratoire
Open: 1 Mar-15 Jan
Closed: Sun off-season
Tel: 0490 640 622; Fax: 04 90 64 17 28
Val de Sault
Route de St Trinit
Open: 27 Mar-6 Nov
Tel: 0490 640 141; Fax: 04 90 64 12 74
Lodging - Hotels
Hotels in Towns Nearby to Sault
• 11 km — Saint Christol hotels
• 36 km — Apt hotels
• 40 km — Carpentras hotels
• 40 km — Gordes hotels
• 54 km — Forcalquier hotels
• 65 km — Avignon hotels