This compact medieval town is built on the islands of five branches of the Sorgue river, 7 km downstream from its source at Fontaine-de-Vaucluse. The river flows through, past, in and around the town, in its many natural beds and several canals. Even without gondolas, water adds a special beauty and character to a town. Sorgue has its many river branches and canals, huge overhanging plane trees and several large, lovely waterwheels. Even if the many mills are no longer working, some of the waterwheels still turn.
Avignon-Gordes-Apt Itinerary |
Aix-en-Provence 61 km |
Alpilles 25 km |
Avignon 23 km |
Carpentras 17 km |
Cavaillon 10 km |
Fontaine-de-Vaucluse 7 km |
Gordes 20 km |
Lagnes 6 km |
Monteux 14 km |
Montfavet 14 km |
Orange 40 km |
Pernes-les-Fontaines 11 km |
Le Pontet 16 km |
Saumane-de-Vaucluse 7 km |
Thor 5 km |
Hotels near L'Isle-sur-la-Sorgue: |
5 km Thor |
6 km Lagnes |
7 km Fontaine-de-Vaucluse |
10 km Cavaillon |
11 km Pernes-les-Fontaines |
14 km Monteux |
The imposing Notre-Dame-des-Anges church in the center of the "vieille ville" was a Collegial church in 1222. Rebuilt in the 17th century, three sides still show signs of its age; the front is refurbished, and includes a lovely clock showing the time, date and phases of the moon.
The church is surrounded by cafés and shops, and the many shopping streets radiating out from this center have mouth-watering smells and window displays.
L'Isle-sur-la-Sorgue is a good-sized town, and a popular tourist site appearing in printed guidebooks. The Office de Tourisme has lists of hotels, campsites and furnished rentals.
The shopping streets are extensive, with a very wide variety of shops of all kinds.
Antiques - Le Quai de la Gare
This group of 30 antique shops is located across from the railway station.
Open: weekends and holidays, 10h-19h
The Parc Gautier is located just outside the center of the town, near the railway line. It's very large, grassy and shaded by giant plane trees, with plenty of other trees and foliage, an excellent place for picnicking away from the crowds on a hot summer day.
First record, 1126: Isla, the name of the primitive town on an island in the Sorgue river; succeeding names were St-Laurent, L'Isle, L'Isle en Venayssin and L'Isle en Venise. In the 19th century, the railway named the town L'Isle-sur-la-Sorgue.
A castrum was located at Vélorgues, 2 km south, where there are Gallo-Roman remains.
The town was in the fief of the Count of Provence, then of the Count of Toulouse and finally of Saint-Siége; it was franchised in the 13th century.
In the 14th century, the Popes of Avignon fortified the town, making it a place of refuge for the surrounding villages during the Wars of Religion. In spite of divine protection, Sorgue was ravaged by epidemics of the plague in 1458, 1628, 1629 and 1721, followed by cholera in 1837 and 1854.
Hard times continued during the Revolution, when the town was sacked and burned by the troups of the Convention (1793), and then besieged for five years by the Convention's Thermidorienne reaction.
To maintain the rhythm, the town was bombed by the Allies in 1944.
Office de Tourisme
Tel : 04 90 38 04 78; Fax: 04 90 38 35 43
Market day: Thur, Sun mornings; daily during the summer
Antique Market (Puce): Sunday all day
Every Sun - Brocante, Ave des 4 Otages, all day
Every Sat, Sun, Mon - Brocante, by the Gare
Every Sat, Sun - Brocante, LiIsle aux Brocanteurs
Last Sun - Brocante books; Parc Caisse d'Epargne
3rd Weekend July - Marché Provençal, avec Pêche d'Antan
Every Aug - Foire à la Brocante * (every 15 Aug)
1st Sun Aug - Marché Flottant
Foire: closest Thur to 15 Nov; 28 Oct at St-Laurent
Foire à la Brocante: Easter and 15 Aug.
Festival de la Sorgue: 2nd-4th weeks July
Corso Nautique: 25-26 July
Fête Nautique: first week Aug.
Fête du Partage des Eaux: 10 Aug.
Fête St. Cézaire: last week Aug.
Museums & Sites
Toy and Old Dolls Museum - Musée du Jouet & de la Poupée Ancienne
Around a 100 old dolls and toys from 1880 - 1920. A private collection in excellent condition and in a nice setting.
26 Rue Carnot (centre-ville)
Open: June-Sept: 10h30-18h; Oct-Apr: Sat-Sun 13h30-18h; May: daily 13h30-18h
Tel: 0490 209 731, or 0677 778 755; Fax: 0490 209 731
Department 84, Vaucluse Buses
See Beyond's Bus Schedules Page 2: Vaucluse Department for downloading Vaucluse bus-lines map [Plan global des lignes] and bus-line schedules [pdf for each line] (link for PDF files).
• Avignon has train or bus connections to Aix-en-Provence, Arles, Nîmes, Saint Remy-de-Provence, Paris.
• Cavaillon has bus connections to Aix-en-Provence, Arles, Saint Remy-de-Provence.
• Pertuis has bus connections to Aix-en-Provence and Marseille.
Rail Marseille-Avignon (Schedules)
information: Gare Routiere Avignon, tel 0490 820 735
Bus transportation is available from Avignon and other nearby towns:
Line 18 - Avignon, L'Isle-sur-la-Sorgue (via Morières, Chateauneuf-de-Gadagne, Le Thor)
Line 46 - Cavaillon, L'Isle-sur-la-Sorgue, Carpentras, Orange (also stops at Pernes-les-Fontaines, Loriol-du-Comtat, Sarrians, Jonquières)
A VTT (Mountain Biking) rental shop is located near the front of the railway station; tel: (33) 490 20 29 36.
Plein Air Location
lot Chaix, av Aristide Briand
Tel: 0490 382 580
Rental and Repair
10, avenue Julien-Guigue
Tel: 0490 381 912
Provence Country Club
rte Fontaine de Vaucluse (Saumane de Vaucluse)
Tel: 0490 202 065
18-hole golf, school, practice
av Napoléon Bonaparte
Tel: 0490 380 076
IGN (1/25,000) #3142 OT "Cavaillon, Fontaine-de-Vaucluse"
Didier Richard (1/50,000) #27 "Ventoux"
L'Isle-sur-la-Sorgue has no hiking trails at the village, which sits in the rich farmland of the Sorgue, but the Plateau de Vaucluse begins immediately to the northeast. Check out the hiking information for Fontaine-de-Vaucluse, 7 km to the east.
Closed: Wed; Sun evening off-season
Tel: 0490 380 974; Fax: 04 90 20 91 26
Cuisine varies according to the season, but always great, made with very fresh ingredients from the chef's own garden.
Le Mas de Cure Bourse
Rte de Caumont
Closed: Mon, Tue noon; 12 Oct-2 Nov; 4-18 Jan
Tel: 0490 381 658; Fax: 04 90 38 52 31
L'Oustau de l'Isle
• In the Michelin Bib Gourmand Guide 2010
147 chemin du Bosquet
Closed: 16 Nov-10 Dec; 18 Jan-4 Feb; Wed (except eve mid-June to mid Sept) ; Tue.
Tel: 0490 208 136
53, rte de Carpentras
Tel: 0490 211 578
Je me permets de vous envoyer cet e-mail pour vous informer de l'ouverture de mon Restaurant "The Paradise" à l'Isle sur la Sorgue (84800) dans le Vaucluse.
Le restaurant vous propose de vous évader à travers une large palette de choix au niveau culinaire. Il possède 3 salles vous permettant de voyager à travers 3 thèmes différents, et de vous surprendre à travers ses 3 menus à l'éphigie de la salle de votre choix, sans oublier une terrasse en bordure de Sorgue.
4 rue Jean-Jacques Rousseau
Closed: Mon; Sun evening in winter; Nov; Feb school vacation
Tel: 0490 385 729
3-star cuisine (1 Michelin!).
Lodging - Hotels