Montagne Sainte Victoire (Cezanne's Mountain)

  • Chaine Rocheuse a l"ouest de la Montagne Sainte Victoire - © From Wikipedia Commons, by JM Rosier
  • Croix de Provence Sainte Victoire - © Frorm Wikipedia Commons, by BEN LIEUSONG
  • Montagne Sainte Victoire Approach - © From Flickr, by Anjci
  • Montagne Sainte Victoire Bimont Dam - © From Flickr, by Maarjaara
  • Montagne Sainte Victoire Herbs and Juniper - © From Flickr, by Jatdoll
  • Montagne Sainte Victoire Sunset - © From Flickr, by Mojobaer
  • Montagne Sainte Victoire Tree - © From Flickr, by Anjci
  • Montagne Saint Victoire Typical Cezanne Picture - © From Wikipedia Commons
  • Montagne Sainte Victoire - © From Flickr, by Jatdoll
  • Montagne Sainte Victoire - © From Flickr, by Jatdoll
  • Montagne Sainte Victoire View Over Aix - © From Flickr, by AndrewJohnMitchell

Key information: Montagne Sainte Victoire (Cezanne's Mountain)

  • Provencal mountain made famous as a repeated motif in the paintings of Paul Cézanne.
  • A toughish slog to gain spectacular views from the top over the lavender fields of Provence and northwards to the Alps.
  • There are 250km of footpaths, from half-day to two-day walks, across and about this 18km by 5km protected massif.

Walkopedia rating

  • Walkopedia rating82
  • Beauty30
  • Natural interest14
  • Human interest10
  • Charisma30
  • Negative points2
  • Total rating82
  • Note: Negs: popularity; deforestation

Vital Statistics

  • Length: Variable
  • Maximum Altitude: 1011m
  • Level of Difficulty: Variable
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Croix de Provence Sainte Victoire - © Frorm Wikipedia Commons, by BEN LIEUSONG

WALK SUMMARY

The Montagne Ste Victoire is a breathtakingly charismatic limestone massif, 1000m high, that rears suddenly from the vineyards and lavender fields of rural Provence, South-eastern France. Although alpine in nature, and affording great views of them, it is cut off from the Alps by the Rhone river.

 

The mountain is best known  as a repeated motif in the work of the great post-impressionist painter, Paul Cézanne, who painted it more than fifty times, but has provided inspiration for the likes of Kandinsky and Picasso (who lived nearby between 1959 and 1962). Topped by a simple cross above a chapel, the mountain affords spectacular views across the rolling farmland of Provence, and north to the peaks of the southern Alps.

 

There are many routes across the massif, from a four-hour round trip to a segment of the Grande Randonnee (GR) 9 long-distance route which runs the full 17km of its length, but all involve a sharp 1 -2 hour uphill puff.

 

The general guide-books listed in our books section would be a good starting-point for seeking out some of Cezannes viewpoints. We would welcome any ideas about finding these.

 

As a result of a careless campfire in 1989, some 50 sq km of hillside was deforested, and is still only slowly recovering. Since then, access is heavily restricted, if not banned altogether, in July-September.

 

Also worth noting: the shooting season runs from 13 September-13 Jan. Hiking can still be done, but stick to the main paths at all times, and wear bright clothes.

 

This area is popular, with over 700,000 visitors a year, so can be busy at high times.

Other accounts: share your experiences

Your comments on this walk, your experiences and suggestions, and your photos are very welcome. Where appropriate, you will be credited for your contribution.

PRACTICAL INFORMATION

We have a lot of helpful practical information and tips about this walk, covering everything from the best books and maps, to timing and weather, geting there, possible problems, whether you need a guide and where to find them, and useful websites. This section is only open to members.

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Safety and problems: All walks have inherent risks and potential problems, and many of the walks featured on this website involve significant risks, dangers and problems. Problems of any sort can arise on any walk. This website does not purport to identify any (or all) actual or potential risks, dangers and problems that may relate to any particular walk.

Any person who is considering undertaking this walk should do careful research and make their own assessment of the risks, dangers and possible problems involved. They should also go to “Important information” for further important information.

Anyone planning an expedition to this place should see further important information about this walk.

Montagne Sainte Victoire Bimont Dam - ©From Flickr, by Maarjaara

OTHER ACCOUNTS
share your experiences

Add your experiences, suggestions and photos. We would be delighted to receive your writing and ideas (which will be attributed appropriately where published).

Anyone planning an expedition to this place should see further important information about this walk.

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Montagne Sainte Victoire Herbs and Juniper - ©From Flickr, by Jatdoll...
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