" TOURIST INFORMATION"




Syndicat d'Initiative "Les Terrasses du Ventoux ".



This is Mormoiron's own little tourism office, situated near the centre of the village. It is manned by volunteers. If you are a newcomer to the area, you'll find plenty of useful information there.
Address: Place du Clos. Tel/fax: (00 33) (0)490 61 89 73. There is an answering machine.
Email: tourisme.mormoiron84@orange.fr

Opening hours: in season (i.e. from Easter to the end of September) open Monday to Saturday from 10.00 - 12.00; and 15.00 - 17.30. It is also open on Sunday morning (next door to the Sunday market qv).
Out of season (i.e. October through to Easter), it is open only in the morning, 10.00 - 12.00, and infrequently in winter. Will reply (in French…) to messages left by phone, email or letter. They will also try to find someone to translate from/to English if necessary.

· Its activities include providing:
- Documentation on our commune and on the region
- Lists of bread-and-breakfast places, gites for rent in season, etc.
- Exhibitions of paintings, local products and handicraft
- Maps for footpaths (see below)
- General information.

There are, of course, much larger tourism offices in Carpentras and Avignon which you can not only visit in person but also easily access via the Web: www.carpentras-ventoux.com; and www.ot-avignon.fr . They provide a great deal of information about the area generally. Or try Site Web : www.provenceguide.com

Administration

The commune is administered by a village council (Conseil Municipal) elected every six years. The last elections were held in March/April 2008. You will find the names of the Mayor, his deputies, and the other councillors, in the French-language version of this website "Conseil municipal"
Neither the Mayor's team nor their adversaries in the last elections, stood for office under any political label.
The village council publishes the village magazine (now called Mormoiron: le Mag "the most informative village magazine") which you can access via the French-language version of this site.
Our départment, the Vaucluse (84), is divided into three: Carpentras is the capital of the middle part which is known as the Comtat Venaissin, while Avignon is the capital of the whole of the Vaucluse. Then, the Vaucluse is part of a larger region called "Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur" (PACA), created in the early 1980s. Beside the Vaucluse, it includes the five nearby départments of Alpes d'Haute Provence (capital, Digne-les-Bains), Alpes Maritimes (Nice), Bouche du Rhone (Marseille), Hautes Alpes (Gap), and Var (Toulon). Whether people from Mormoiron identify themselves more closely with their village, the Comtat Venaissin, the Vaucluse, their region (PACA), or their nation, you can only discover by asking them…

Where to stay

At present, there is no hotel But there are quite a number of "Bed and Breakfasts" (Chambres d'hôtes), as well a simply-furnished holiday lets (Gites) and bigger houses for rent. Several have their own websites, including (in no particular order):
· Siloe, chambres d'hôtes.
· Villa Boutet
·The Mas Bacalan, chambres d'hôtes
·Au Brabo, chambres d'hôtes
·Cigale, chambres d'hôtes
·La Ferme Michel, large gite
·gites at the Domaine des Anges vineyard - see below
You may not be able to open all these links - in which case, just google the same e-addresses. In the French-language version of this site, you will find the postal addresses of many other places to stay in the village which do not yet have a website of their own (- if any of them decides to create a website, please let us know at once and we'll add it.) The e-list above is not complete: you can find more addresses on the web, simply by googling "Mormoiron".

Where to eat

There are at present four fairly modest restaurants in Mormoiron:
· La Fringale, a restaurant/pizzaria in the village. Pleasant shaded courtyard in summer.
· La Cahute, a restaurant beside Lake Salettes (see below), 1 km from the village. Open only from Easter to October.
· La Sadreille. Also about 1 km outside the village, where the D14 road to Mormoiron meets the D942 from Carpentras to Sault.
· Le Grand Deffend, just along from Le Fringale. Simple family cooking.
There is also a take-away pizzeria: Pizza Basta.
Addresses and phone numbers are in the French-language version of this website.

Facilities

For its size, Mormoiron is quite well provided with shops. These include a well-stocked grocer, a butcher , a delicatessen selling charcuterie, meat and cheese; two bakeries; a pharmacy; a newspaper/tobacco shop that also sells books and maps (visit at www.lecoindescurieux.com.) a hardware shop (droguerie); a flower shop; a gift shop; and several hair salons. There are also two garages. Addresses for all these businesses can be found in the French-language version of this site. There is at present one bar/cafe: Le Ventoux. It is in the main street.
There is a cash-dispenser (at last - installed in 2008 after a long wait…), in the Place du Clos. It is operated by Credit Agricole.
Should you fall ill, the village GP is Dr. Dominique Lunadier, plan de Saule (tel 0490 61 80 27). There are also three local nurses; and a couple of physiotherapists. You will find their addresses in the French-language version. First Aid is provided by the village's volunteer Fire Service team (see below). The nearest hospital is at Carpentras (Le Pôle Santé - visit at www.ch-carpentras.fr .
There are a number of artisans in the building trade (masons, electrician/plumbers, painters, blacksmiths, etc) - see French-language version of this site.
Among other artisans of various sorts, there is a gifted potter/ceramicist (Jean-Luc Fizet) whose work makes excellent post-holiday gifts. Other important facilities include the post office; the gendarmerie (i.e. national police force); the library; the small museum mainly focussed on the fossil-history of the area; and last but not least, the local tax office. There is a flourishing primary school (about to be extended), plus a crèche.
Mass is now celebrated in the church, dedicated to St Laurent, only one Sunday a month: there is no longer a full-time curé: he now covers several neighbouring villages.
The village's volunteer fire-brigade is called the Sapeurs-Pompiers. Besides being the First Aid (First Response) team, they will also deal with problems like hornets' nests.
A facility deserving special mention is the Salettes Lake [Le Plan d'Eau des Salettes]. This small artificial lake was created by the village itself in the mid-80s, and was officially inaugurated in 1987. It is about two hectares in size; has a sandy beach; and is surrounded on one side by fields of vines, and on the other by pinewoods. Fine views of Mt. Ventoux in the distance.
The water-quality is classified as 2 (out of 3 by EU standards allowed for bathing); and swimming is supervised in July and August. The lake is also open throughout the year for fishing - though in summer, fishing is allowed only until 10.00 (for details, ring 0490 69 88 11; you can buy a fishing day-pass at the Lafouries' hardware shop (droguerie) in the village). There is an exciting adventure park/playground, great for kids, beside the lake (Ventoux Adventure) with wire-walks, slides and tree-top obstacles, near the small restaurant (La Cahute) already mentioned above; both are closed in winter.

Events

Events happening regularly in the village include the following:
· Sunday Farmers' market (Lou Picha Merca). Small Provençal market, open between about 09.00 and 12.00 in the Place du Clos, selling locally produced fruit and vegetables, olives, cheese, wine, honey, sausages, flowers, etc. Closed from end-December until Easter. (Note that on Tuesday morning, you will also find a fishmonger, a fruit-and-veg seller, and sometimes a knife-grinder, beside the fountain.)
· Asparagus Fair. This is to promote the production and sale of asparagus in the region generally, not just Mormoiron. Not only asparagus and early strawberries are for sale, but all sorts of local produce at dozens of stands in the main street. There is also a parade of ancient tractors. The fair usually takes place on the last Sunday of April. Most of the action happens in the morning although it continues well into the afternoon. Definitely not to miss!
· Music Festival. Every summer, there is a national music festival in France: professionals and amateurs alike are encouraged to perform. Recently, Mormoiron has started joining in, with a concert showcasing local musical talent. In 2009, the date for the Fete de la Musique is Sunday 21 June.
· National Day, 14 July. Mormoiron celebrates this national holiday in a different way each year - usually with some sporting competitions.
· The Festival of St Laurent (Mormoiron's patron saint). Lasts four days over a long week-end in mid-August. Traditional fairground attractions, including bumper cars, roundabouts, and street-dancing. There are also petanque competitions. Fireworks show on the last night.
· The Mormoiron Film Festival. This tradition now goes back 11 years. The festival takes place for four days over the last long-weekend of August, at the Hangar Lamy (see under Culture). Three or so films are shown each afternoon/evening, relating to a chosen theme: in 2010, this is "Liberty and Dreams". Entry is free.

Culture

What would holidays in France be without wine and culture?… The next two sections focus on these two important subjects.
Mormoiron now has its own cultural centre: Le Hangar Lamy. This former barn, just east of the village, was presented to the village in 1999 by its then owner, on the understanding that the village would pay for the repairs and extra work needed to make it useable.
It is now equipped with proper cinema seats (for about 120 spectators) , a projection room, and a small stage. It is used not only for the annual cinema festival (see above) but also for regular film shows (usually twice a month), concerts, theatrical events, and lectures. You can find out what is going on either via the Syndicat d'Initiative, or notices in shop-windows, or in the village magazine.
In the summer, especially July, there are usually a number of extra events, including concerts and exhibitions, in various locations. A renowned Russian pianist, Valery Sameliotov, has lived part-time in the village for many years and sometimes gives concerts. Several other professional musicians also live in the village.
The 123 Association arranges original exhibitions, some quite surprising (such as a display of scarecrows in a nearby field, in 2007).

Wine and vineyards.

The quality of Mormoiron's wine (included in the Appellation d'Origine Contrôlé [AOC] Cotes du Ventoux) has improved hugely in the last three decades. The largest producer remains the Cave Cooperative. In 2003, Mormoiron's co-operative, Les Roches Blanches, merged with the co-operative of Villes-sur-Auzon, the neighbouring village 5 kms to the east, which was called (La Montagne Rouge).
The new joint enterprise is called Cave Terra Ventoux - visit their site at www.terraventoux.com . The sales point, below the village, near the D942 road from Carpentras to Sault, is open 7 days a week: well worth visiting.
In addition, during the last four decades about a dozen individual producers have started making and marketing their own wine, some of which regularly win prizes. They include:
· Chateau Pesquié. Easily the biggest private vineyard (over 80 hectares), on the north-east edge of the village. Wine for sale on the spot. Visit their website at www.chateaupesquie.com [why does this link not come up? I can find their site via Google.]
· Chateau St Laurent. East of the village, just before the lake. Wine not on sale at the vineyard, but can be bought at the delicatessen Les Murmures du Terroir.
· Domaine de la Massane. On past the lake up towards Les Hautes Brigueres. Laurent Trazic.
· Domaine des Anges. Near the top of the hill of the same name, due south of the village. Now has an Irish owner - and an South African winemaker. Wine for sale on the spot. Visit their website at www.domainedesanges.com
· Domaine de Bérane. North-east of village, towards Flassan.
· Domaine des Hautes Briguères. East of the village, uphill past the lake.
· Domaine le Murmurium. Past Château Pesquié, on the other side of the road.
· Domaine la Peyronnière. North-east of village, towards Flassan.
· Domaine les Sables du Défend. North of the village.
· Domaine du Tix. Next door to and just below, Domaine des Anges. Wine for sale on the spot. Visit their website at www.domaine-du-Tix.com
If you are on holiday here, why not set aside an afternoon to visit some at least of these local vineyards? A few of these wines are also on sale in the village grocery and the delicatessen (see above).
For more information about Cotes du Ventoux wine, visit http://www.cotes-ventoux.com

Walking in the Mormoiron area.

There are plenty of fine footpaths around Mormoiron which will help you discover the village's beautiful natural surroundings. Walking in the countryside around Mormoiron is rewarding not only because of the superb views, but also because the area has such varied geology.
This affects the landscape as well as the plants that grow there. The Rhone Valley was once a tropical sea; and the basin in which Mormoiron lies (along with the neighbouring villages of Bedoin, Flassan, Villes-sur-Auzon and Methamis) became a sort of perched lake at the edge of it, into which nature deposited all sorts of different mineral sediments. The hill just west of the village (Le Limon - see Walk 2), for example, is largely composed of highly alkaline gypsum which was quarried there for decades to make plaster. (Now operations have shifted further along the seam to near-bye Malemort-le-Comtat where the largest gypsum quarry in Europe is sited).
East and north of Mormoiron (e.g. at Les Sablons - see Walk 4), there are bands of multi-coloured sand (mostly acid); and a large sand-quarry is still operating north of Mormoiron on the frontier between Mormoiron and Bedoin. In times past, ochre was also extracted from the east side of the commune. Bands of clay just east of the village also used to be exploited for medicinal purposes. The village museum contains much interesting information on all this.
It is worth mentioning that the hunting season lasts from about mid-September until late February. Hunting (for birds and wild boar) is permitted for the first month on Wednesday and Sunday - though if the boars are causing too much damage in the vineyards, hunting is allowed on extra days. The four walks round Mormoiron described below are not in areas particularly favoured by hunters in the season: still, it is sensible to look out….
Four walks, to the south, west, north-east, and south-east, and taking between 2 and 3 hours, are summarised below,followed by detailed descriptions with maps. The times indicated are approximate and of course depend on the speed of the walkers. None of these walks is difficult, although they all involve a certain amount of climbing and descent; but you should wear proper walking shoes, especially for Walks 1 and 3.
Especially if you are new to the region, you will find it useful to have the 1:25,000 walking map to the Mt. Ventoux area (IGN, TOP 25, ET 3140) , which you can buy from the village newspaper shop (Le Coin des Curieux, see above).
The four walks described in detail below are:

1. The Notre Dame des Anges walk, to the south.    map
· Time: 2 - 2 ½ hours.
· Starting-point: the Wine Co-operative's Cave beside the D 942 road between Mazan and Villes-sur-Auzon, about 1 km south of the village.
· General: a walk to the top of the hill south of the village. Magnificent views of Mt. Ventoux and the village. One or two short stretches are quite steep.

2. Le Limon and Saint Alban walk, to the west.   
map · Time: 2 hours.
· Starting point : Place de la Mairie, in the centre of the village.
· General: a walk over Le Limon, the hill west of the village, giving good views of the village from above, and of Mt. Ventoux.

3. Les Vallats and Briguères walk, to the north-east.   
map · Time: 2 ½ hours.
· Starting-point: the car-park beside the Salettes Lake, east of the village.
· General: the longest of the walks, but not the most difficult. Includes a section along the escarpment above Villes-sur-Auzon. · Note: this walk is the one described in the French-language version of this site as the "Le petit sentier des Vallats". The walk it describes as the "Le sentier des Vallats" consists of Walk 3 plus the second half of Walk 4 below.

4. Le Marquetton/les Sitos/ le Picarel walk, to the south-east.   
map · Time: about 2 ½ hours.
· Starting point: the car-park beside the Salettes Lake, east of the village.
· General: this walk is in the hills and woods east of the village. Sandy terrain, passing near remains of ochre works.

You will find detailed descriptions below together with maps. The numbers in red the text refer to points indicated on the maps (about half a dozen for each walk). Copies of these descriptions are available from the Syndicat d'Initiative, or from the newspaper shop Le Coin des Curieux. Many of the tracks and paths described pass though private land over which there is no established right of way: so it cannot be guaranteed that between one update of this site and the next, access may not have been closed somewhere. Please observe all signs about private property; respect the countryside generally; leave no litter; and above all, do nothing that might start a fire.
The notes below are designed simply to help you find the way. For more poetic descriptions, with interesting information about the flora and fauna, etc, try the French-language notes about these walks on the village website or in leaflets available at the Syndicat d'Initiative.
For descriptions (in French…) of walks further afield, including on Mt. Ventoux, you can buy the "Topoguide: Le pays du Ventoux" from the village newspaper shop (there is no English-language version of this invaluable guidebook). Equally good is Ventoux et Dentelles by Isabelle and Henri Agresti (pioneers of walking in the Vaucluse). Another useful little guidebook for walks is the Chamina "Balades à pied autours du Ventoux" (which describes Walk 3 below).
If you have any comments on any of the walks described below, please leave them in writing at the Syndicat d'Initiative, or send them by email to the webmaster at the village website www.mormoiron.com .( What you are reading now is both on the English- language version of the village website, and also in leaflet form at the Syndicat d'Initiative...)

Voluntary Organisations.

These days, the French state actively encourages the creation and operation of voluntary associations of all sorts. That explains why Mormoiron has just built for itself a brand-new centre for voluntary organisations (la Maison des Associations), opened for use during the summer of 2009. It is sited between the school and the gendarmerie. Exactly how this new facility will be used, it is too soon to tell. Meanwhile, you can find out more about the village voluntary organisations from the French-language version of this site, which mentions a score of them (and the list is by no means exhaustive).

Getting to Mormoiron.

Getting to Mormoiron by car is straightforward. Being a small administrative centre, it is shown on Michelin and similar road maps of France. When you reach Carpentras, just look out for the D942 road marked for Sault and Mazan. If you are coming by train, Avignon is the nearest station. But make sure at which station your high-speed train (TGV) will stop: most go to the futuristic new TGV station south of town; but a few still stop at the old central station. Getting by bus to Carpentras from either train station is not too difficult. There are a few buses direct from the TGV station to Carpentras; for the rest, you have first to take a shuttle to the Avignon bus station, which is beside the old train station. Buses between Avignon and Carpentras (line 5.1) run at least once an hour. Onward from Carpentras to Mormoiron (line 12.1) is less easy: the timing is mainly aimed at schoolchildren, so the buses run only in the early morning, at lunchtime, and at about 17.00 (usually one less a day during school holidays).
The nearest airports are Avignon (small; but at present Flybe runs a few flights to Britain - see
http://www.avignon.aeroport.fr/ ; Nimes (fairly small; Ryanair and others); and Marseille (quite an important regional hub, with frequent flights to Britain and other European destinations).
Unfortunately, there are no direct bus services to Avignon from either Nimes or Marseilles airports.
Mormoiron has one taxi firm at present: Taxi Ghanem (tel 0490 37 64 25; mob. 0609 37 10 57.

Further information.

Much has been written in English about the region in general: guidebooks to Provence, books of photographs especially of Mt Ventoux, novels, not to mention the works of the ubiquitous Peter Mayle. Some can be bought in the village newspaper shop. But there is so far nothing in English specifically about Mormoiron. The only full-length book about the village in French is Un village comtadin: Mormoiron by Guy Gerard Durand, published by Barthelemy, Avignon, in 1984. Unfortunately, it is now out of print, although you may be able to persuade people in the village to lend you a copy. However, you will be able to glean a good deal of information from the web-links above (and again, if any of the links do not work, try googling the e-addresses). In 2008, children at the school put together a charming little video about the history of the village, called L'Histoire du Blason (i.e. the history of Mormoiron's coat of arms).

History of this website.

The original website was created in 2003/4, at the initiative of three people in the village: Mireille Ortuno, François Chausson, and Jean Philippe Morel (who is currently the Webmaster). It has gradually expanded since then. This English-language version was created by Christopher MacRae in February/March 2009. Feedback is welcome: if you want to contact us,
We thank all those who bring life to our village.

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© Copyright 2003, commune de Mormoiron