Executive summary by Darmansjah
Les Baux-de-Provence is a commune in the Bouches-du-Rhône department of the province of Provence in southern France. It has a spectacular position in the Alpilles mountains, set atop a rocky outcrop that is crowned with a ruined castle overlooking the plains to the south. Its name refers to its site: in Provençal, a bauç is a rocky spur. The village gives its name to the aluminium ore bauxite, which was first discovered there by geologist Pierre Berthier in 1821.
Les Baux is now given over entirely to the tourist trade, relying on a reputation as one of the most picturesque villages in France. Its population of 22 in the old village is a fraction of its peak population of over 4,000, and many of its buildings (in particular the castle) are picturesque ruins.
In the Château des Baux demonstrations of huge catapults (the biggest Trebuchet in Europe, a Couillard also called biffa and a Bricole) are given every day from April to September.