Vaucluse (84110) Population: 798 Altitude: 250 m
Séguret is a picturesque little village that stretches in a narrow band around the flank of a solitary hill amidst the Côte du Rhône vineyards, beside the Dentelles de Montmirail mountains. This long, narrow village has the tight cobblestone streets and rough stone walls of a timeless Medieval town.
Séguret is one of the Most Beautiful Villages (Plus Beaux Villages) of France.
Portail Renier is the north entry into Medieval Séguret village, part of the original 10th-century walled defenses. This vaulted entry, also called Portail de la Bis, because of cutting the cold north winds, was last renovated in the 14th century.
Heading through the portal up into the beautiful, old village, you'll enter a wonderfully vehicule-free environment.
Free car parks are located just below the village at the north end (one at the Place Jean Moulin), and at the south end, at Place des Arceaux.
The cobblestone Rue des Poternes leads south from Portail de la Bis, up through the length of the old village all the way to the corresponding Portail Neuf at the south end of the village. This narrow, Medieval street curves up between ancient buildings, many with doorways dating from the 17th and 18th centuries, and one from the middle of the 16th century.
In the heart of the old village, Rue des Poternes widens slightly to form a small village square. Tucked into this little square is a covered lavoir built in 1846, and the 17th-century Fontaine des Mascarons with its carved stone faces. Mascaron is simply a word meaning "masks", as the stone carvings depict faces wearing masks.
Beside the Mascarons Fountain square is a 17th-century bell tower topped with a small wrought-iron campanile. The bell tower also has a unique one-hand clock, built in 1660.
Like other beautiful and popular villages of Provence, Séguret has a number of tourist-oriented shops, including art galleries, wine and santons. For once, though, all of the shops are very discretely integrated into the architecture of the village, blending nicely with the stone walls.
The santon workshop of Philippe Fournier, located in the center of Séguret displays and sells the work of this master santonnier. Further on through the village we found "L'oustau dei santoun", with an exposition of the Crèches du Monde and listing the names of seven master santonniers, all "Master Ouvriers de France".
The original Saint-Denis church of Séguret was built on this site in the 10th century. In the 13th-century the church was rebuilt, enlarged and even reoriented. There were "modern" additions and improvements made in the 17th and 18th centuries.
The Eglise Saint-Denis sits on a relatively open area at the south end of Séguret village. Here you'll have a great view of the countryside and vineyards spread out below, and the jagged Dentelles-de-Montmirail rocks nearby to the southwest. There's a panorama panel (table d'orientation) here to help you identify the far sites.
History of Séguret
First record, 10th century: De Sécurelo. From the latin securitas to the Provençal "Ségur", for a place of security.
Prehistoric: Neolithic remains.
Celto-Ligurian: A Ligurian oppidum here contained a statue of a Gaulois god; now in the museum at Avignon.
Gallo-Roman: There was a strong Roman presence here, mostly on the Aubusson hill (north-most of the three adjacent hills of the commune -- Séguret village is on the south-most hill). In addition to remains of a vicus (farm), there was a colossal statue of Jupiter.
Medieval: In the 10th century, the walled and fortified village was established at its current location (on the south-most hill), with a castle on the hilltop.
• GPS: 44.207702, 5.022336
IGN (1/25,000) #3040 ET "Carpantras, Vaison-la-Romaine"
The area west of Séguret is all vineyards, not suited for hiking. With Séguret sitting at the edge of a large area of wooded hills, including the Dentelles-de-Montmirail, many hiking trails are available to the east of the village.
The GR4 goes southeast from Séguret, through the hills at the northern edge of the Dentelles-de-Montmirail and on to Malaucène and points east.
THe "GR de pays" (Grande Randonnée) trail makes a large loop around the hills containing the Dentelles-de-Montmirail, passing almost to Malaucène at the eastern part, and through the village of Beaumes-de-Venise in the south.
A mixture of small trails and forestry roads provide for good hiking in these same hills, with possibilities for shorter loop hikes.
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.
Contributed by Jane Champagne, Canada, Apr 2003
Seguret -- I spent a wonderful several weeks there at the Atelier de Seguret, an artists' colony that is run by....? (another senior moment), and wonder if you'd want to add it to your site -- ancient church still prone to excellent concerts. And Sablet too...the vineyards between the two villages are among the most picturesque.