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Massif de l'Esterel

April 2021

From Provence to the Mediterranean, there are sounds and smells to remember on the corner of a little street or a path. And eye-catching colours, especially in the Massif de l’Estérel, a listed Natura 2000 site. In the Var, with red rocks and crystal-clear water alongside pine trees. Wild and protected nature to discover straight away just north of Fréjus.

Published on 17 May 2021

The mountain in the sea on the coast of the Var

Colourful landscapes between land and water

Head for the Massif de l’Esterel and its unique colourful, craggy landscapes for your holidays in the south of France. Take the Corniche d’Or between Fréjus and Mandelieu-la-Napoule, a famous road which runs along beside the sea and overhangs the cliffs. Amazement and thrills guaranteed with the splendid view of the volcanic rocks which rise up above the Mediterranean Sea and contrast with the deep blue of the sky and the water. To go home with stars in your eyes, there’s nothing better than watching the sun set from one of the little creeks. The flaming colours of the sky make the landscapes look as if they have been transformed by an artist’s paintbrush.

 

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Une publication partagée par Visit Var (@visit_var)

All the options for exploring the massif

A view to be deserved

To visit the Var and get the best out of discovering the wonders of the Massif de l’Estérel, the best way is on foot. Whether you’re a novice or a seasoned hiker, hikes for all will guide you to the most breath-taking views. Two hikes between the sea and the mountain are well worth it in the massif. Head for the famous Sentier des douaniers from Les Issambres. A 2½ hour walk along the coast with steep cliffs and secret creeks. And for hiking families, the Tour du Pic de l’Ours is just up your street! Get up high on this 1½ hour itinerary which starts at the Col de Notre-Dame and enjoy the view over the massif and the Mercantour, with the magnificent Bay of Cannes and Saint-Raphaël. Thrill-seekers will also be attracted by horse-rides and mountain bike rides. The Massif hosts Le Roc d’Azur, a world-famous MTB event.

To discover:

 

What is there to do around the Estérel?

Provencal towns and villages in all their splendour

Some of the most beautiful places in the South of France are hidden around the Massif de l’Esterel. Here, the natural landscapes are a showcase for the villages perched on hilltops or beside the sea . Our top 3 towns and villages to visit? With its rich past dating back to Roman antiquity, you will be bowled over by the typically Mediterranean charm of Fréjus . The Chapelle Notre-Dame de Jérusalem decorated by the artist Jean Cocteau is well worth a visit. Saint-Raphaël is famous for its seaside resort and its pleasant beaches but also because it was a very popular holiday destination in the 19th century. Painters and writers still get their inspiration from the beauty of the place today. And to get up higher, head for the Pays de Fayence with its charming villages: Callian, Montauroux, Bagnols-en-Forêt and Seillans! Seillans is actually one of the Plus Beaux Villages de France (most beautiful villages in France): visit the Chapel of Notre-Dame de l’Ormeau nestled in the cypress trees and box hedges.

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