The village of Les Vigneaux is appealing thanks to its history and wine-producing activity. Visitors who love history and mountain life will feel at home in the charming village, nestled at the foot of the Montbrison Massif, cradle of many outdoor activities.
On the edge of the Gyronde, the village of Les Vigneaux is the gateway to the Vallouise Valley. At the foot of the Tenailles de Montbrison, Les Vigneaux has a wealth of architectural, religious and agricultural heritage.
Moreover, viticulture was very present. Remnants of this activity can be found along the road that leads to the village at the site of Les Vignettes (Saint-Martin-de-Queyrières municipality). Today the site is a place worth visiting. It recounts the history of the vineyard, ideally exposed on the southern side of the Durance gorges.
History and heritage in Les Vigneaux
Les Vigneaux is a typical, small village and is a delight for walkers. Located on the edge of the Gyronde, it gets its name from the vineyards that were one of the Seigneurs de Rame’s main preoccupations in the Middle Ages.
Ideal soil, perfect exposition and sunshine meant the vineyards, that were imposed on the farmers, thrived. The grape varieties were frost-hardy, but unfortunately did not resist disease in the 19th century! A few vine stocks have survived here and there, just as a record for history’s sake.
The Saint Laurent Church is an incredible local feature! The polygonal steeple is remarkable, and its elegance is derived from the perfect lines, the porch with marble columns and especially the superb external wall paintings representing the sins and their punishment.
Anecdote: it is said that the artist, whose advances were refused by the beautiful Madame Carle – of the famous Pré – decided to represent her as the image of lust! Bitter revenge!
Three superb sundials are also of interest in this small village.
The small village is well worth a visit and is the start point for some wonderful outings, white-water sports, via ferrata, etc.
Les Vigneaux: wine village on the higher lands at the entrance to La Vallouise.
"... There are few sites that are as pleasing to the eye as Les Vigneaux. Backed up to the Montbrison limestone rockface, the village is in perfect harmony, overlooked by the elegant silhouette of the steeple. The former priory, just next to the church, is covered by a superb trellis, as indeed are most of the lovely houses with wooden balconies. It is obvious that Les Vigneaux is wine country… ’
Located on the edge of the Gyronde at an altitude of 1100 m, the municipality of Les Vigneaux has more than 400 inhabitants and is at the entrance of La Vallouise.
Its name comes from the vineyards that used to grow there due to the exposition and suitable soil. In the Middle Ages, cultivating vines was one of the main occupations for the Seigneurs de Rame and they even obliged farmers to plant a row of vines each year.
The vineyard occupied a large area of Les Vigneaux, L’Argentière and La Roche de Rame. The grape varieties were frost-hardy but were very prone to the diseases that appeared towards the 19th century and today there are merely a few sparse vine stocks that bear tiny bunches.
In several of the surrounding villages, there are still some presses that are in good condition and can be visited. On the road from Les Vigneaux to Prelles, is the site of Les Vignettes, a former winegrowers’ hamlet to which people from Saint-Martin-de-Queyrières came with their harvest.
Saint Laurent Church
Climbing site: La Tête d’Aval
La Source de Marcellin
Le Bois de Parapin
Contact Les Vigneaux town hall: firstname.lastname@example.org