The magical Mimosa festivals of the south of France

Written by on January 16, 2017 in Festivals and Carnivals, Provence-Alpes

mimosa

Mimosa is a vibrant symbol of winter in the south of France and a sure sign that spring is on its way.

The bright yellow flower of this scented plant grows prolifically in southern France in the Var region where the Cote d’Azur and Provence meet. The route du Mimosa is 130km long and runs from Bormes les mimosa to the perfume capital Grasse and you’ll see it at its best from January to March.

British visitors introduced Mimosa to the French Riviera in the late 19th century. The area was popular with those craving the sunshine of the Med and Victorians flocked to this area including Queen Victoria who spent several months at a time here. The plant loved the climate and the soil and mimosa growers proliferated. Used in the perfume industry (Givenchy, Yves Saint Laurent and Guerlain are all fans) for its scent and in bouquets for its exquisite beauty and gorgeous colour.

Its other main use is in the fabulous Mimosa festivals that take place in the Riviera, heralding the arrival of spring. And, you’ll also find it in syrups and some locally produced specialities.

The Route du Mimosa – the best towns to visit

Bormes-les-Mimosa

One of the prettiest floral villages in France. This ancient town is home to 90 different species of mimosa and celebrates with an annual festival.

Mandelieu La Napoule

mimosa-growing-Mandelieu

The principal area of mimosa production on the Riviera, famous for its annual mimosa festival. La Tarte Mimosée was created by François Raimbault, pastry chef at the Oasis de Mandelieu restaurant.

Grasse

Internationally famous for its place in the world’s perfume industry. The town boasts gorgeous architecture including a cathedral with artwork by leading painters including Rubens. The Perfume Museum reveals the part mimosa has played in the success of Grasse’s perfume industry.

Rayol Canadel

Take the staircase from the centre of the village down to the sea and enjoy the spectacular views over the mimosa forests.

Sainte-Maxime

Beautiful botanical gardens, elegant seaside resort and a laid back vibe make this town well worth a visit.  Local chocolatier Jean-Louis Vaissaud has created mimosa flavour chocolates to honour the famous flower.

mimosa-festival

Saint-Raphael

The reddish coloured volcanic rock contrasts stunningly with the yellow mimosa, a sight you’ll cherish. Famous chocolate maker of the area, Didier Carrie, has created a unique recipe called “Le Mimosa d’Agay”, a white truffle chocolate, flavoured with plant liquors and lemons, covered with mimosa powder. Yum.

Tanneron

Gardeners will love this place which has the largest concentration of mimosa in the whole of France, forests of mimosa glow in winter.

Pégomas

Mimosa, olive trees and vines grow in abundance here. While you’re here, try La mimosette, a brioche specialty from Pégomas, decorated with mimosa seeds and stuffed with a cream that remains the secret of the baker. It is only prepared during the mimosa festival.

mimosa-festival-parade

www.visitvar.fr
www.cotedazurtourism

Related Articles

What to see and do in Orange, Provence

Orange in Provence is a sunny city with oodles of charm that has been built up over the centuries quite literally. The Romans were here two millennia ago and the town is proud of its ancient legacy. The UNESCO Listed Roman ruins You just can’t miss the incredible Roman theatre at Orange. It’s one of […]

Continue Reading

Visit to the Roman Theatre at Orange Provence

You can’t go to Orange in Provence and not see the UNESCO listed Roman Theatre. I think it might actually be against the law! It’s not a theatre like we might know it, somewhere with a dark interior with plush velvet seats. It’s an open-air theatre with a 37-metre high wall and a stage facing […]

Continue Reading

The Antiques markets of L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue Provence

I nibbled on a flaky golden croissant for breakfast on the terrace of the hotel where I watched a couple of local fishermen down “keep me awake for a week” espressos. Across the Basin, the clock on the wall of the restaurant read the same time as it did when I arrived, the same time […]

Continue Reading

Top things to see and do L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue Provence

L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue in Provence makes for a perfect holiday destination year-round thanks to its status as the antiques capital of France. Not to mention the fact that it is one of the prettiest towns you’ll ever meet. It’s a lovely sunny place, full of charming restaurants, bars and cafés and a buzzing atmosphere. Here are some […]

Continue Reading

Take a tour of Provence in the fall for all things glorious

To enjoy Provence in the fall is one of life’s most beautiful pleasures. The shades of autumn colour the vineyards and tree lined squares and avenues. The rays of the sun seem more golden than at their bright summer peak, making everything they touch glow and shimmer like a magical paint brush has daubed the […]

Continue Reading

Subscribe

If you enjoyed this article, subscribe now to receive more just like it.

Subscribe via RSS Feed

Comments are closed.

Top