In the heart of the fertile plains of Comtat Venaissin, Carpentras its capital, offers a real treasure to all lovers of history and architecture.
In the center with its streets bathed in coolness and light, one discovers the wealth of its history. There is the Porte d’Orange (seen below), ruins of the old fortress, the episcopal palace, St. Siffrein Cathedral, the Hotel Dieu and a superb 18th C. pharmacy.
Take particular notice of the building facades as some are 17th and 18th C. private mansions bearing remarkable doors and balconies restored in the true Provencal tradition.
Carpentras has been a city of commerce with the Greeks and the Phoenecans coming to the market here for honey, wheat, and sheep.
This tradition still endures and every Friday morning the colorful market attracts people from all over the region. During the winter, an added attraction is the early morning “black truffle market” before the regular Friday market.
The St. Siffrein Fair is also a great moment in the life of Carpentras, it begins on the 27th November and coincides with the start of equally famous black truffle market. Excellent candied fruit, strawberries, melon, bonbons “berlingots” and grapes ( used for the wine Cotes de Ventoux) are all specialties claimed by the city of Carpentras.
On the outskirts of the city there are numerous marked trails where one can walk and admire the local fauna and flora. The Tourist Office will be happy to provide you with a map showing 5 different excursions in the area, one of which is a wine circuit-wine lovers take notice!