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Brrr .. Le Mistral ..

This strong, cold wind sweeps through parts of southern France and plays an important part in the life and culture of Provence. The mistral is usually accompanied by clear and fresh weather and it can reach speeds of more than 100 km an hour.

Life in Provence simply adapts .. the masor farmhouse traditionally faces south, with its back to the fierce gales. The village bell towers of Provence are often open iron frameworks so the wind can easily pass through - an ingenious and artistic solution. The traditional Provençal Christmas crib often includes a figure of a shepherd holding his hat, with his cloak blowing in the mistral.

The name of this famous weather phenomenon comes from the Languedoc dialect of the provençal language and means "masterly".


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