The famous 'villages perchés' are typical to the Luberon and Provençal countryside and we will often see them on our custom guided tours. They are instantly recognisable because of their distinguishing features. They are located high up on rocky crags having impressive views, they were often built in a historically important defense position. Most villages were originally built around castles and surrounded by fortifications . The entrance to these villages was originally through a narrow, easily defended doorway. Streets are typically narrow and winding with decorated arcaded narrow passageways. The houses in the villages are traditionally tall and narrow, built of local rock. The village fountain is often decorated and served as a social place to gather similar to the lavoir (clothes washing area). A simple small chapel is usually found at the village centre.