One of the coolest places we went on our trip to France was the Carrieres de Lumieres (the Quarry of Lights) in Les Baux de Provence, not far from Arles. Look at this place!!!
It's an ancient quarry that's been converted into this incredible multi-media art space, a sound and light show like nothing I've ever seen before. This year the show is: "Klimt and Vienna: A Century of Gold and Colors," and basically it is like walking through Klimt paintings. They couldn't have chosen an artist better suited to this treatment. It's a dreamscape, created by seamless projection of paintings over every surface of this vast space. There's music. The show is a little under a half-hour. You just walk or stand still and look in all directions while the paintings surround you, moving and blending and coming to life. It's indescribable. You can stay as long as you want, see it as many times as you wish. From every vantage point it's a different show.
Here's some of the on-site signage describing the history of the quarry:
The Cocteau movie mentioned above is projected on perpetual loop in another semi-enclosed chamber of the quarry. So cool.
Schiele and Hundertwasser are also in the main show. I love Hundertwasser, and look how cool his paintings look at this scale:
And then--bonus--the Carriere happens to be in a beautiful village capped with an amazing sprawling ruined medieval castle you could spend all day exploring, not to mention see the trebuchet demonstration, the duel, and practice your crossbow skills.
Les Baux de Provence, set in the Val d'Enfer (Valley of Hell):
Clementine put us in stocks and took our picture...
Local girls taking part in a religious procession:
These "santon" figures are everywhere in this region. There's a museum in town, and tons for sale in the shops:
The day we spent here was a highlight of the trip.
A great day out with kids or without. Highly recommended!