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Gordes, Gordes, Provence
Concierge.com's insider take:
Dreams of owning property in the region are often born in this template of a Provence village: The dramatic limestone cliff is covered in red-roofed buildings set at vertiginous angles among olive trees and scrubby vegetation, with views of fields and vineyards for miles around. The village is not above taking advantage of its visual charms: There's a Sotheby's real-estate office on the town square for impulse purchases. Aside from the sweeping vistas that greet you at every turn, the town is fairly standard, with a central square and a few decent restaurants (beware lunch closing time; after 2:30 you're out of luck, with no exceptions), a ruined château, and a church. But the streets are slanted at an especially steep angle, and those views sneak up on you when you least expect it, whether you're exploring an alley or trying to find the church stairwell. A quick trip to the cliff-side village of Roussillon is also in order if you're in the neighborhood. It's worth it just for the drive through the vineyards, especially in fall, when the grape leaves change colors, lighting up the fields in gorgeous reds, yellows, and browns.
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