You will discover the Inland Var area on your travels to visit Thoronet Abbey! This place of mysteries and legends was the homeland of Gaspard de Besse, the bandit with a heart of gold. Its hills are laden with oaks, sweet chestnut trees, broom, thyme and rosemary. Don't miss the Aoubré park in Flassans and its treetop adventure trail in the cedar trees!
The Maures Plain – a genuine little Savannah - pans out in the centre of the area and offers many footpaths, cycle paths and bridle paths. This is the kingdom of the Hermann tortoise: the Tortoise Village in Gonfaron is entirely dedicated to its conservation.
PAYS DE FAYENCE
Set against a pottery-blue backdrop, the little hilltop villages of Pays de Fayence stand guard over the distant sea. This is the very essence of the land of blue-green and gold - the Tanneron Hills literally drown in mimosa bloom in winter!
Take to the air in a glider from Fayence to appreciate the immense beauty of this area from above, in total silence…
Pays de Fayence abounds with treasures, such as the villages of Mons, Callian and Seillans. The Mandarin bamboo plantation in Montauroux is just one of the surprises awaiting you.
Saint-Cassien lake offers an agreeably refreshing stop-off in summer. You can hop onto a canoe, a rowing boat or a pedalo to appreciate its watery pleasures!
Stretching from the Maures plain to the rooftop of Le Var, this is a land of contrasts; a patchwork of picturesque villages and exceptional natural sites. Canjuers plateau marks the natural frontier between the vineyards and olive groves to the South and the Alpine landscapes of the Verdon Canyon to the North.
Attractive villages to visit around Draguignan include Les Arcs-sur-Argens, Bargemon, Châteaudouble, Bargème and Comps-sur-Artuby in the Verdon Regional Nature Reserve. If you appreciate fine wines, this is the heart of the Côtes de Provence terroir! Thrills and spills fans can enjoy bungee jumping off Europe's highest bridge and paragliding off Le Var's highest summit.
The fiery red rocks of the Estérel Hills plunge into the Mediterranean waters below. How about a 2CV ride along the coast road to admire the show?! Roquebrune Rock, Argens river and the local resorts, home to three towns bearing the "Station Nautique" water sports label, offer a marvellous playground of land and sea activities.
Take a voyage back in time to the Roman Era and Belle Époque as you travel along the stretch of coast running from Roquebrune to Saint-Raphaël. Don't miss a visit to Fréjus – an official "Town of Art & History. Saint-Raphaël's magnificent underwater archaeology museum is a must, while Roquebrune is home to the "Maison du Chocolat" and "Maison du Terroir".
UPPER VAR – VERDON
This wild and unspoiled area is home to Europe's finest canyon. The vistas are breathtaking and the villages, standing like sentinels above Sainte-Croix lake and at the edge of the gorge, are simply unforgettable. Take a plunge into the history of the village of Salles-sur-Verdon, swallowed up when the reservoir was first flooded.
This is a land of tradition, with surprises around every corner as you meander from village to village. You will love discovering Régusse and its windmills, Salernes, home to many craftsmen and a ceramics museum (Maison de la Céramique), the magnificent village of Tourtour, Villecroze and its grottos, and Aups, the truffle capital!
VERDON GRAND CANYON
Welcome to the Verdon Grand Canyon, the natural frontier between the Var and Alpes-de-Haute-Provence areas. This gigantic chasm, seemingly carved by the gods, is actually the result of erosion of the chalky plateaux of Provence by the Verdon river. It is unique in France. The depth of the canyon – up to 700 m – and its geographical location on the cusp of Alpine and Mediterranean zones have produced an incredibly rich plant and animal life. Nature, both astonishing and wild, is king here. The Verdon Regional Nature Reserve offers a plethora of outdoor leisure opportunities, including walking, canoeing, white water rafting and hydrospeed…
You can also discover the canyon via the road: the Corniche Sublime is interspersed with fabulous viewpoints, such as the Falaise des Cavaliers and Balcons de la Mescla.
The lake is located at the foot of the Verdon Canyon, on the open Valensole and Canjuers plateaus, an important centre of lavender-growing.
The lake has a surface area of 2200 hectares. It is the third largest dam in France by surface area. There are three pretty villages at its southern end Aiguines, Salles-sur-Verdon and Bauduen.
Framed by the surrounding majestic landscape, it has become a very popular tourist site. Much favoured by kayakers and windsurfers, the lake is ideal for a whole range of water activities that can be practiced right up to the exit from to the Verdon Canyon where the river enters the lake.