I take you to the PACA region for a wine tourism getaway on the route des Wines of Provence to rediscover this terroir that I love so much by going this time to meet the winegrowers who share their passion with me but also that they have for art, in all its forms, which sublimates these renowned estates. And of course there are these fantastic postcard landscapes between land and sea, as well as these wonderful typical small villages which make up the wealth of the region. Come on let’s take you!
La Londe-les-Maures in the Var
We start this wine route in the Var, in Londe-les-Maures and the first stage of the road trip is the Maravenne castle. Located on the first foothills of the Massif des Maures, between Hyères and Bormes-les-Mimosas, this estate offers a fine range of wines thanks to its 30 hectares of vines planted on a very specific soil, rich in clay and schist. Concerned about respecting the land and its traditions, the entire operation is carried out in organic farming.
Yes, Château Maravenne has many vintages that regularly receive gold medals in prestigious competitions, but it is also a great tourist offer with its 5 guest rooms and 3 lodgings with swimming pool. There is also a tasting cellar where you can obviously buy the domain’s wines, but also buy local products (canning, etc …)
But for me, the big crush of Château Maravenne is this breathtaking view of the Mediterranean, which you can admire at sunset from the vineyards. A moment to live absolutely, if you are passing by 🙂
We always stay in La Londe-les-Maures, but this time we go to Fig tree, a beautiful family estate of 125 hectares of vines classified as AOC Côtes de Provence. Figuière is a state of mind, freshness, “beauty” and strong values. It was Alain Combard who made the choice in 1979 to adopt organic viticulture, making it a point of honor to keep this land free of any chemical product. Suffice to say that it was quite avant-garde and marginal at that time. Whether it is in the creation of wines or even in the labels of the bottles, we always find this sobriety and this natural elegance.
Figuière is also a multitude of experiences to live in a remarkable setting. It all starts in the cellar where you can taste the estate’s cuvées, buy local specialties from the region and also discover the works of artists who are regularly exhibited. There is also this beautiful restaurant, subtly tastefully decorated, which combines the contemporary with the natural setting of the estate and the Provençal imprint. A success. There are many very nice events organized throughout the year such as the Figuière Festival which promotes contemporary theater and live shows. But also very friendly thematic and gastronomic evenings where you can meet outside around a brazier to savor the chef’s specialties. It’s the art of living in Figuière!
Take a walk in the field! It is possible to rent mountain bikes with electric assistance to explore the area in complete freedom, with the help of a road book which will provide you with a lot of useful information. Most ? We can even offer you a picnic basket, delivered on one of the stages of the walk. The top right?
2CV ride to Grimaud and Gassin
This is an atypical way of traveling the roads of Provence: aboard a beautiful vintage 2CV! This is the company Deuch’Moiselles, based in Cogolin, which offers this really nice concept. Accompanied by a guide, we went to the Gulf of Saint Tropez, with a favorite passage in 2 of my favorite villages: Grimaud and Gassin
You know ? If this is not the case, a passage is necessary 🙂
Pointu excursion in the Gulf of Saint Tropez
After the 2CV ride, head to Port Grimaud to board a pointu with Sonia from the company Beyond The Wine, which offers sea trips with tasting of rosé and local specialties. The pointu is the traditional Provencal boat par excellence. A convivial and truly unforgettable moment, especially at the end of the day, when the sun comes to illuminate the colorful facades of Saint Tropez and Port Grimaud!
Kayak trip on the Argens facing the Roquebrune rock
Come on, we get up (very) early! But it’s for a good cause… I left with Erwan from Azur Wine Tours towards the Base du Rocher de Roquebrune to collect kayaks and go on the Argens, towards the famous rock of Roquebrune. The decor is breathtaking and the experience is a must if you are passing through here. Instead of having a tasting of Provence wines at sunset as Erwan usually suggests, this time we had breakfast with a view.
Viewpoint over the Blavet gorges
To enjoy a magnificent view of the blavet gorges, go here: Blavet gorges viewpoint
The view is simply breathtaking! For those who have more time, take the opportunity to go on a nice hike or rock climbing for thrill seekers 🙂
For more information on the must see and do in the area, visit the website of Roquebrune-sur-Argens tourist office
The Château Sainte Roseline
Now I take you to discover the famous domain Chateau Sainte Roseline, located in les Arcs-sur-Argens. The wines produced here have a very good reputation, but what attracts many visitors each year is the famous Chagall fresco, painted in the communal chapel which houses the body and relics of Saint Roseline. There are also works by Diego Giacometti and Jean Bazaine. It is pleasant to stroll in the flowered cloister and in the area in general to discover the works of contemporary art which blend perfectly with this typically Provençal setting. There are many events organized all year round: concerts, afterwork tasting evenings, temporary art exhibitions, etc.
A must if you want to savor exceptional wines and be amazed.
The Commandery of Peyrassol
For this last stage of this road trip on the territory of the wines of Provence, I am at the Peyrassol Commandery
It is a wine estate founded more than 800 years ago by the Templars, but here the great peculiarity is that there are more than 100 works of contemporary art made for some by renowned artists like Buren, Cesar, Plensa, Raynaud, Niki de Saint Phalle, etc …
Before coming, I was just expecting to discover some works in the vineyards, but no! There has been a new contemporary and lavish building created to accommodate new works. It is the perfect harmony between the old architecture of the domain and the modern dimension of this new exhibition space which has nothing to envy to the many foundations of contemporary art… It is quite simply impressive. A discovery that will appeal to laymen as well as the greatest lovers of contemporary art.
The Commanderie de Peyrassol is also one of the standard bearers of Wines of Provence with renowned wines worked with finesse and requirement for a marvelous result. Do not miss a visit to the reception and tasting cellar, which has been completely renovated recently. From mid-April to mid-October it is possible to sleep at the estate in guest rooms and thus continue your “Peyrassol” experience. From June 15 to November 11, it is possible to have lunch at the restaurant “Chez Jeanette” or at the “Bistrot de Lou” to savor tasty local cuisine in accordance with the seasons.
Article produced in collaboration with France asset, the Provence Alpes Côte-d’Azur and Provence Wines CRT
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On the wine route of Provence – Travel Me Happy – Travel blog