Local villages and towns

French Provençal villages have retained the best of the french contry lifestyle with the old buildings and narrow streets. The markets are a delight to all of the senses, visually compelling as well as appealing to the taste buds and nostrils. Selling antiques and gifts as well as local vegetables.

The City of the Dragon to the doors of the Verdon.
Draguignan is more suited for shopping or markets than as a tourist location and has large boulevards of shops coupled with narrow streets, passage-ways and doors from the 13th and 14th centuries. It has a large Provençal market, in the heart of the old town and is famous for it's bell tower. The market is held very Wednesday and Saturday morning.

Famous for it's honey and truffels. The truffel markets are held between November and Feburary. Aups dates back to the 12th century and has beautiful medieval ramparts and a bell tower. The village maintains a swimming pool and tennis courts in the summer months for which a small fee is charged. Market days are Wednesday and Saturday. Village fairs are held in May and August and provencal celebrations at Christmas and Easter. Lots of cafés. Every Wed, Sat - Marché Provençal, Truffle market (Thur mornings, late Nov-Feb), End Jan - Fête de la Truffe, Every Mar - Carnaval, 2nd Sun May - Fête (Sunday before 12 May), 3rd Sun Aug - Fête (Sunday before 15 Aug). General Provençal market, fruit and vegetables and a range of stalls selling food, clothes, gifts and household items. Held on Saturday and Wednesday mornings. Generally more stalls on Saturday than Wednesday.

Perched on the side of a hill between the sea and the mountains, and set in picturesque Provençal countryside, Fayence is rated highly by tourists. It has a southerly climate, charming old streets, warm and welcoming inns emitting the aromas of Provence, and even some relics of times past. Fayence is also well known for its gliding center, where the International Open Air Plane Gliding competitions are held.

Many antique shops, numerous fountains, an open-air theater, caves, and troglodyte dwellings. The houses of the village are at the foot of the Cliff of la Roche de Tuf which spreads out accross 400m of deep crevices, offering a fantastic spectacle. This cliff forms the mountain of Verdaille which dominates Cotignac skyline. This leads to the chapel Notre-Dame Saint-Pierre, built in 1519 where Anne of Austria and Louis XIV made a memorable pilgrimage in 1660. A weekly general market is held every Tuesday.

It took its name from "Talaria", winged sandels of the God Mercure, to whom a a temple was dedicated, or maybe from "taraeou", a provencal tree. The town has Gallic-Roman relics, "Celto-Liguric" Opidum fortifications, Medieval bildings and a Roman road going along the medieval Castrum that overhangs the village. The market is held every Sunday morning.


What to do next
At a glance
Location of property
Location of Flayosc

Location: Flayosc
Region: Var, Provence
South of France
Near: Draguignan

Property Details
Provence gite
Two double bedrooms
2 double beds
1 single bed
Sleeps 5
Roof terrace
Fire place
Original spiral staircase
Separate WC
Large bathroom and bath
Over 8 restaurants and bars
on the doorstep
Lots of parking
Distance to key places
Nice Airport 55 minutes
Toulon Airport 75 minutes
Nearest beach 30 minutes
Nearest train station, Les Arcs 10 minutes
Cannes 45 minutes
St. Tropez 45 minutes
St. Maxime 30 minutes
St. Raphael 30 minutes
Grasse 55 minutes
Marseille 2 hours

Beautiflul little village close to Flayaosc with spectacular views, a pretty square and plenty of interesting shops.

This medieval perched village has a magnificant view out across the surrounding countryside, especially from the low hill where the restored 19th-century church and cemetery sit. The hillsides are all forested, and you can identify distant, lower villages with the help of the "table d'orientation", and if it's clear you can see the Maures, the Luberon, Ste. Baume and the Ste. Victoire near Aix-en-Provence. Tourtour is nicknamed the "village dans le ciel", or village in the sky; viewed from afar it seems to sit on top of the horizon dominating the rest of the landscape.

The village is picturesque, with the road from the southeast entering through an arch (photo to the right). The centre square is well shaded, by a some emormous olive trees. The "oliviers" replace a pair of enormous elms planted in 1638 when Anne d'Autriche stopped on her pilgrimage to Cotignac. There's a 17th-century "Moulin à huile" (oil mill) in the village, and a "lavoir" on the rue de le Lavoir going out of the village to the north.

The village center also includes an imposing 16th-century chateau with massive round towers at each corner (one dating to the 12th century). The chateau is ancient, well restored, and in use: one side houses the Mairie and another houses the post office. Fête: 4 September; fête folklorique: first Sunday in August.

Once the home of Henri Matisse, Paul Signac, Picasso, Francoise Sagan, Jacques Prévert and many others. Made famous by Brigitte Bardot as a place for the rich and famous. It was once a small fishing village, and now a harbour for very large, expensive yachts. The old town is filled with quaint medieval streets, tiny squares and alley ways lined with exclusive boutiques. A typical Provençal market is held every Tuesday and Saturday morning in the Place des Lices. Celebrity spotting is a favourite sport in the summer. The Night life is lively. Helicopters can add to this, bringing elegant guests to private parties in one of the many luxurious villas on the bay.

One of the most ancient villages in provence. The "Font Basse" (Low Fountain) or "Font Couverte" (Covered Fountain) is a classified historic building that was built by religious orders in the Midle Ages. The Ben-Va Chapel has frescos from the 15th century. AOC Cotes de Provence is exported worldwide. It has a wide choice of restaurants including a Michelin-starred one, particularly well known for its truffles.

Lorgues is a small fortified Provençal town, and much of the ancient wall, defensive "portes" and other old buildings remain beautifully intact. The old narrow streets have vaulted passages, ancient stairs, and many buildings and doorways contain lovely stone carvings. Many of the old "portes" allowing entrance into the walled central village, such as the 11th-century Porte Sarrasin and the 12th-century Porte Trébarry (our photo), still have the look of antiquity with their weathered grey stones. The market is held every Tuesday mornings and is very popular, one of the best in the area. Marché aux raisins (grapes): 18 September. Foire: 13 March, 18 September, 30 October, 4 December, 26 December, Fête: 18 September.

Picturesque Provençal village with plenty of medieval alleys and fountains. Villecroze also has underground caves, or "Grottes", and a watterfall, which are definitely worth a visit. It also has a few wine "domaines" that make for good wine tasting. This perched, medieval village is established around a group of caves, some of which are used as dwellings. The main village has a large, shaded square, for parking, playing "pétanque", or sitting at one of the many outdoor café-restaurants. The "vieille ville" (old town) is meticulously restored, with many of the original arched walls remaining.

The "grottes troglodytes" at the edge of the village are in a series of "tuff" cliffs, a very porous, volcanic rock. The site is now part of a municipal park, well landscaped with lawn, pools, plants and trees. A 40m waterfall cascades down the front of the cliffs to one side, while a series of little paths wind up the cliff face further to the right. The park is open every day, but entrance into the caves is only during May-September. Foires: 28 February, 11 November. Fête: St. Romain, Sunday following 8 August.

Châteaudouble is located north of Draguignan on a redoubtable rocky spur overlooking a series of fantastic gorges and valleys cutting through the thickly forested hills. The village clings to the rocky cliffs, with a pair of towers above: one in ruins, on the banks of the river Nartuby, and the other is still standing, perched at the top of Nartuby's slopes overlooking the green canyons of Châteaudouble. The name, which means double castle, is because of these two castles. This semicircular village has wonderful "calades" (rising and falling paved streets), fountanins and a church. The turbulent past of this village reveals itself through the streets with their wide gently mounting staircases, the vaulted passages, the façades sculpted with crosses (the symbol of the knights of the Crusades) and the eighteenth century houses along the river's edge.

The canyons of Chateaudouble have been carved out by the river Nartuby and are surrounded by fragrant and colorful underbrush. The prehistoric caves (classified): Grottes des Chevres (Goat Caves), Grottes des chauves souris (Bat Caves), and the Grottes du Mouret. can be found nearby.

Le Muy
Is home to the the most important market in east Var and a famous vineyard, Château du Rouet. A residence dating from Napoléon III with a large park in typîcal Mediterranean style. Situated in the plains of Argens between the mountain chains of Maures and Esterel, Le Muy has three rivers and several ponds which make it an ideal spot for fishing and canoeing. Mountain climbing is possible too, due to the stunning porphyritic clifts rising up in the middle of this rich environment.

The road which links Le Muy to Bagnols en Foret goes through the forests of Rouet and has wonderful landscapes. The market is open every Thursday and Sunday morning.

This small picturesque hill top 10th century village commune is typical of Provence medieval village. It has beautiful fountains and arched passages in the charming small shaded narrow streets of this 11th century village.

In the near Ampus beautiful walks can be taken in the Gorges de la Nartuby where you will be able to have a splendid view from the bridge le pont de Raton. The church of Notre Dame de Spéluque is a classified historic building, and is also worth a visit.

Ampus is well known for it's, olives, truffles, mushrooms, sheep, goat's milk cheeses, and honey of lavender.

Les Arcs
This is an attractive village dominated by the heritage protected 11th century medieval citadel and is the wine centre for the Cote de Provence. Pass through the clock tower gateway and you will discover a medieval place with a mixture of steep streets and old buildings. The area between the "sarrasine" tower (11th century dungeon) and Paul Simon square, called the "Parage", is the oldest in the medieval town. (11th to 13th century).

Leas Arcs has a medieval heritage with the "Parage" and St Roseline chapel, the St Jean-Baptiste church which has a crib and retable that dates from 1501 with 16 Bréa compartments , Maison des Vins des Côtes de Provence (wine tasting centre), horse riding, canoeing-kayak, fishing.

The Parage Medieval area:
Leave your car in the Town Hall square and walk. Just wander round the narrow streets. From the highest points looking over the village roof tops you can see the Maures and the Roquebrune rock.

The Parage tower, 11th century dungeon, remains of the ancient Arcubus Castrum and the St Pierre chapel from the 13th to 15th centuries, with its two naves and side chapels.

The St Roseline chapel:
Located outside of Les Arcs on the D91, nestling at the foot of a hill among the vines of the St Roseline vineyard this classified monument dates from the XIIth century and holds the shrine and relics of St Roseline.

On the initiative of Marguerite Maeght, modern works of art have been added to the altar and cross which date from 1635 and the 14th century Nativity retable. (A Chagall mosaic, a bronze lectern by Giacometti and stained glass by Ubac and Bazaine). The market is held every Thursday morning.

Le Luc
Le Luc itself is an unspoilt typical small rural village of the area. It nestles in the valley of the beautiful River Argens, between densely forested mountains to the north west, and rolling hills in the south leading to the sea.

The historic town center, with it's narrow streets and little streams, watched over by the 27 meter high Hexagonal tower and the campanile of the Roman clock tower, offers a pleasant environment

As with most small towns and villages in the region, life revolves around the open market square, and Le Luc also boasts a public swimming pool, and tennis courts, Centre Var History Museum, Regional Stamp Museum, Horse riding, leisure centre, karting, with many superb golf courses nearby.

There are excellent restaurants and cafes, and swimming and fishing in the L'Argens river. Many local Chateaux produce fine wines, especially the reds and roses, which are readily available to sample. On Friday mornings, the village hosts its regional Market Fair.

Fréjus is a large, sprawling town with some famous Roman ruins. It's also a very popular summertime tourist town, although the center of town is a couple of km from the beaches, which are 2 km long and 100 m wide of fine sand, between Fréjus and St. Raphaël.
The market is held every Friday and there is a Fête each year on 15 August.

Saint Raphaël
The lovely resort of St-Raphaël sits halfway between St-Tropez and Cannes. Bordering on the Var and Alpes-Maritime départments, it manages to marry the glamour of the Riviera and the timeless feel of a Provençal village. With 36Km of indented coastline and more than 30 different beaches - some sand, some pebble St-Raphaël is very spread out but this section of the coast is rightly famed for its beauty. The coves and inlets are carved from the red rock of the mountains giving rise to pink outcrops with the wooded hinterland. With five separate harbours, the former fishing community attracts keen sailors by the boatload. For supervised beaches, choose from the Plage du Veillat, Beaurivage, Péguière, Le Dramont, Agay and Le Lido.

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Property overlooks Flayosc village square
Tourtour Village

Bell tower at St. Tropez

St. Tropez harbour

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