Montagne Sainte-Victoire

Mount Sainte-Victoire ...

The steep slopes of the Mount Sainte-Victoire rise up to the East of Aix-en-Provence. Forming an imposing edge to the huge Arc Valley, it is a majestically perfect demonstration of Nature’s power. The light of Provence heightens its reliefs and vegetation. Sainte-Victoire acts as a magnet for painters: in around sixty paintings, Cezanne tried to express this richness of colours.

Astonishing as it may seem, Mount Sainte-Victoire was formed along with the Pyrenees by the collision of the Iberian plate (Spain, Corsica and Sardinia) with Europe. This collision lifted mountains all the way from the Pyrenees to Provence. It wasn’t until much later, that the centre of this Pyrenean-Provencal mountain range collapsed, allowing the sea to enter, and form the present Gulf of Lion. The proof of this orogeny is that Mount Sainte-Victoire, like the Pyrenees, is orientated East-West, while the Alps are oriented North-South.

Mount Sainte Victoire

Mount Sainte-Victoire stretches over 18 km (11 miles), culminating in the 1011 metre (2200 ft) Pic des Mouches. Sainte-Victoire is still growing: recent satellite measurements show that it is rising at the rate of 7mm per year !

At one time the Arc Valley was a vast dinosaur inhabited swamp. Several deposits of fossilized eggs and remains have been excavated. Very near to Chateau Grand Boise, dinosaur remains were found on the slopes of Mount Olympus. Even today there is still a richly varied fauna with wild boar, hares and large birds of prey, such as eagles, buzzards and sparrowhawks.

Mount Sainte-Victoire is a real marvel of nature.
This impressive limestone massif amazes and surprises.


NB: The photographs of fossils and dinosaur eggs were taken in the “Maison Sainte Victoire” (at Saint-Antonin sur Bayon) where they are exhibited.

Chateau Grand'Boise

Chateau Grand Boise
1536 Chemin de Grisole - 13530 Trets-en-Provence - France
Tel. +33 (0)442 292 295 - Email:
Grand Boise • 1536 Chemin de Grisole • 13530 Trets • France • Tel. (0)442 292 295 •