Robion

Robion has two very different faces. There is the modern Robion you see as you drive through on the D2, and the shops and restaurants along this road are the usual reason people come to Robion. There are a couple of bakeries (one is excellent with a wood-fired oven), two butchers (including the self-titled 'King of Skewers' specialising in BBQ items), a very good fruit and veg place, a mini-supermarket, pharmacies, a bank, and some restaurants and cafes. Driving through, you may think Robion holds no interest at all.

You have to head in towards the mountain to get a different take, this is the Robion that started off as a fortified village in the middle ages, complete with castle and ramparts. Nothing remains of these fortifications, but the old Robion is a typical Luberon village, minus the hill-top setting - beautiful old village houses, cobbled paths, a village square with towering plane trees and the essentials - church, water well and bar. Around the church you will often see a cluster of villagers gathering and peering anxiously at the ground, before giving their opinions on the best course of action. When you notice the heavy metal balls in their hands you understand the gravity of the situation - a game of pétanque.

Robion is (at time of writing) the western-most point of the Veloroute cycling path that will eventually cross the entire Luberon and beyond. It is currently 23 miles/37km long, paved, and offers gentle riding terrain, usually following the old railroad, through idyllic Luberon landscapes. It's an excellent place to cycle with kids as it's a dedicated cycle path away from any roads, with a couple of brief exceptions at Coustellet and Les Beaumettes.