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Montbrun-les-Bains travel guide

Photo of Montbrun-les-Bains in Provencal Drome (Rhone-Alpes region)
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Visit Montbrun-les-Bains (Auvergne Rhône-Alpes, France)

Montbrun-les-Bains is a picturesque village and spa centre spread out across a hillside above a valley of lavender and opposite Mont Ventoux. It is in the Drome department of south-east France in the region described as Drome-Provencal, and now classified as one of the 'most beautiful villages in France'.

Note: this article refers to Montbrun-les-Bains in the Rhone-Alpes not Montbrun in the Gorges du Tarn.

Exploring Montbrun-les-Bains

The historic centre of Montbrun-les-Bains is best accessed through Porte du Beffroi, one of two of the original gateways that pass through the town walls (the other is near the church). Originally the town had four of these entrances.

colourful houses in the village

The 13th century belfry that gives the gate its name is topped by a small campanile and once formed part of the defences of the village. You can also see one of the most impressive of the 16 fountains of the village here in Place du Beffroi: the fountain originally had pride of place in the centre of the square but is now in one corner.

Strolling along the narrow, often cobbled, streets of this exceptionally characterful village you pass numerous traditional stone houses, often very tall and squeezed together to make the most of the limited space available, through ancient vaulted passageways and up steep staircases, and passed small stone fountains. Flower displays along the way bring a splash of colour to the centre

On the way through Montbrun-les-Bains you will also see the 14th century church (significantly modified in the 17th century) which contains some medieval frescoes and an impressive altarpiece.

Eventually you reach the ruins of the medieval castle that stands above the village. Although the castle itself is not open to the public, you can see enough ruins to appreciate the importance that the castle once had. The original medieval castle was largely destroyed in the 16th century, and a renaissance style castle built here - this also fell to abandon after the revolution.

The thermal waters here have been recognised since roman times, although it was only in the 19th century that they were developed as a commercial enterprise, and still many visitors come to Montbrun-les-Bains to enjoy a treatment at the spa. The spa centre is on the edge of the village and called Valvital. It is open end march to end November - see details of treatments and other options at Valvital Montbrun.

Market day in Montbrun-les-Bains is Saturday morning.

Castle on the hill above Montbrun-les-Bains

Attractions and activities nearby

The lavender fields of the region are one of the big attractions, especially scenic during the flowering season (end-June - July), and there are many walks in the region that enable you to make the most of the scenery.

You will also discover numerous picturesque small villages close to Montbrun-les-Bains. Among our personal favourites are Brantes, Aurel, Rochette du Buis, Reilhanette and Banon but you will find many others we haven't yet discovered.

Cyclists will want to follow the route of one of the most popular Tour de France mountain routes and make the ascent of Mont Ventoux.

You can find more travel ideas in the Drome guide and the Rhone-Alpes guide.

See also: 

Map of Montbrun-les-Bains and places nearby

Visit near Montbrun-les-Bains with France This Way reviews

Sault

Sault

In a region most visited for the surrounding lavender fields, Sault is also a picturesque village to explore

Sault guide
Simiane-la-Rotonde

Simiane-la-Rotonde

The medieval castle with its domed rotunda is just one of the sites of interest in the lovely village of Simiane-la-Rotonde

Simiane-la-Rotonde guide
Saint-Saturnin-les-Apt

Saint-Saturnin-les-Apt

It is true that Saint-Saturnin-les-Apt is larger and less visited by tourists than many of the Luberon villages, but find the time and you will discover another scenic small town

Saint-Saturnin-les-Apt guide
Le Barroux

Le Barroux

From the castle ramparts in Le Barroux you have very far-reaching views across the vineyards and olive groves of the region

Le Barroux guide
Oppedette

Oppedette

After a stroll around the historic village of Oppedette you can visit the Gorges d'Oppedette, a lovely local landmark

Oppedette guide
Gorges d'Oppedette

Gorges d'Oppedette

The Gorges d'Oppedette are picturesque gorges in provence, accessible by several hiking trails

Gorges d'Oppedette guide

... or see ALL recommended places to visit in Drome

Address: Montbrun-les-Bains, Séderon, Nyons, Rhone-Alpes, 26570, France || GPS coordinates: latitude 44.176111, longitude 5.443611

Plan your visit to Montbrun-les-Bains, Drome

Sightseeing & tourist attractions to visit nearby

  • Mont Ventoux: grand site of france (13 km)
  • Gorges de la Nesque: site of natural beauty (17 km)
  • Colorado Provencal: site of natural beauty (28 km)
  • Vaison-la-Romaine: town of art and history (30 km)
  • Cathédrale Notre Dame de Nazareth (Vaison-la-Romaine): religious monument (30 km)
  • Dentelles de Montmirail: site of natural beauty (31 km)
  • Venasque: most beautiful village (31 km)
  • Nyons: recommended detour (32 km)
  • Jarditrain: remarkable garden (33 km)
  • Roussillon: most beautiful village (33 km)
  • Apt: recommended detour (33 km)
  • Seguret: most beautiful village (34 km)

The French version of this page is at Montbrun-les-Bains (Francais)

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