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The Département of Bouches du Rhône is situated on the left bank of the mighty Rhône River and encompasses its massive delta. Its name translated into English simply means the Mouths of the Rhône.

It is the third largest French Département with about 2 million inhabitants and a land area of 5087 square km. Its capital, Marseille, is France's second city in terms of population with about half the Département's population. Bouches-du-Rhône's other large cities are Arles, Salon-de-Provence and Aix-en-Provence.

Place de la République at Arles

A county of vast contrasts, it stretches from the wilderness of the Camargue in the West to the Bay of La Ciotat and Mont Sainte-Victoire in the East and to the rugged Alpilles and the Luberon in the North. The result is a wide variety of landscapes from the pink flamingo populated wetlands of the Camargue to rugged mountains and variety of culture ranging from Camarguaise Guardians to Gypsies of Saintes Maries de la Mer to sophisticated city dwellers in the capital.

The Calanques





Aix-en-Provence Calissons

Calissons d'Aix

Beaucaire & Tarascon

Where France kept an eye the Holy Roman Empire


Mistral's Capital in waiting

Text © Paul Shawcross

Images by @ Paul Shawcross, © Paul Shawcross