'World's most beautiful small town' is hidden in France and looks like a fairytale

Gordes , Province France as background of the lavender field during summer
Gordes , Province France as background of the lavender field during summer -Credit:Getty Images

A small, often overlooked place in France, complete with a castle and hidden caves, has been dubbed the 'world's most beautiful' town. While many Brits heading to France for their holidays tend to flock to popular spots like Provence, the French Riviera or Paris, the quaint hilltop village of Gordes offers a fairytale-like charm that is hard to resist.

It boasts art galleries, abbeys, and charming cobbled streets lined with quirky boutiques and cosy restaurants serving world-renowned French cuisine. Notable landmarks include the majestic Gordes Castle, the intriguing underground Caves of the Palais Saint Firmin, and the 12th-century Church of Saint Fermin, known for its striking interiors.

Despite its secluded location in the countryside, getting there isn't too much of a hassle for Brits. The most straightforward route is to fly to Marseille and then drive for about 45 minutes (direct routes are offered by Ryanair, easyJet and British Airways).

Alternatively, one can take a train to Paris and then switch to the TGV for a direct 2hr40 journey to Gordes, reports the Mirror. Budget-friendly accommodation options are also available. For instance, Tripadvisor lists some of the best hotels in Gordes starting from £73 per night, while Kayak offers stays from £102 per night.

Expedia also features affordable breaks, with hotel rates starting from £32 per night, although these cheaper rates are usually available outside peak seasons.

Travellers to the surrounding countryside shouldn't miss Le Sentier des Ocres, a natural wonder that currently sits at the top of Tripadvisor's highest-rated attractions in the region. Noteworthy for its striking rock formations and stunning valley views, it has received rave reviews from many visitors.

One contented tourist noted: "You will have seen the pictures of the ochre cliffs, so yo know what to expect. But the colours and shapes really are amazing. The walk takes you to several viewpoints with views of the cliffs and spires. Some information boards explain the geology and history. It's an easy walk, although some sections are steep and sandy, so you do need decent trainers at least. Expect your hands (and children, and dogs) to get dirty from the coloured sand. Yes you pay a few euro to get in but the boardwalks, handrails and information boards are worth it."

Another reviewer appraised: "A delightful, interesting site with spectacular cliffs and shapes of quarried and weathered ochre deposits. Very well-maintained steps and walkways with a choice of 'short' or 'long' walks through the wooded trails. Photo opportunities abound and also offer some great views of Roussillon itself - a unique red town mirroring the landscape. A must do on the tourist route."

Gordes has been recognised as the most beautiful small town in the world by Travel and Leisure. They elucidated their decision, saying "Gordes tends to be swarming with tourists during the summer months. But can you really blame visitors for wanting to soak in the magic of one of the most beautiful villages in France, if not the world? Perched high on a cliff above the valley, it's a must-see destination with cobbled lanes, churches, and a monastery punctuated by lavender fields that look like they've been plucked from the pages of a storybook."