Located on the limits of the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence department on the edge of the Luberon, Manosque is an old walled town filled with ancient doorways, fountains, meandering streets and charming squares like Place du Terreau, Place Marcel Pagnol and Place du Contrôle. Furthermore, Manosque has numerous historical buildings like Hôtel d’Herbès, the Town Hall, Hôtel de Gassaud, the Gothic-Romanesque Saint-Sauveur Church and, of course, the Notre-Dame-de-Romigier Church, which was built in the 10th century.
A “walled town” implies gates and fortifications, and Manosque has both, with two of its most popular attractions being the Porte de la Saunerie and Porte du Soubeyran, which both date from the 14th century.
For unobstructed views of the pear-shaped village, its burnished rooftops and the surrounding countryside filled with orchards and olive groves, visitors should consider trekking to Mont d’Or, a feat easily done thanks to a bucolic setting and the town’s typically sunny weather (over 300 days out of the year). Less than a mile away from Manosque’s center, Mont d’Or is also home to the remains of a 10th-century castle and lookout post erected by Guillaume the Liberator, which offer 360-degree views of the vast horizons stretching over the Luberon, including the southernmost peaks of the Alps on clear days.
Manosque makes for an easy day trip from Aix-en-Provence, being just 35 miles (57 km) away via the A51, roughly a 40-minute ride. It is also possible to reach Manosque by regional train from Aix-en-Provence and Marseilles (arrive at Manosque Greoux Les Bains station).