Best time to go to Provence & French Riviera

Fête du Costume in Arles 2021

What could be better than lovely Arlesian women dressed in gorgeous costumes walking the streets of beautiful Arles?


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Disclaimer: Due to COVID-19 concerns, many events might be canceled, postponed, or changed into limited versions, sometimes at very short notice. Please check with event organizers directly for the latest updates.

In a lot of towns of Provence residents dress up in traditional costumes for celebrations but in Arles this tradition is special. The Arlesian costumes are famous for their delicacy, elegance, and originality, and back in the day, they were the most fashionable in the region since they followed trends directly from Paris. Once a year, on the first Sunday of July, Arles holds its Costume Festival where hundreds of people put on their most splendid vestment. It's definitely the most picturesque event of the year and a true dance of colours and textures. The Arlesians are very protective about their traditions so once every three years they choose their Queen of Arles, a beautiful woman that can represent the local language, costumes, and traditions. During the Costume Festival, ​she makes her annual speech. The presence of the Queen and her Maids of Honour is an essential part of any festivity in the town just like the bull fights, the mu​sic, and the aïoli.

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