There are Medieval Festivals that take place throughout the year in chosen towns around our region. May 5th, 2014’s festival was held in St Maximin where children and adults alike found themed food and entertainment at the park next to the Couvent Royal Hotel. The markets were full of hand crafted wooden toys, books, clothing, artisanal hams and sausage, cheeses and barbecued delights. Even the shops in the centre of the town were decorated and many vendors were dressed in period costume. It was a beautiful day perfect for a picnic on the grass, a bite from the Medieval Crêpe stand, or just “window” shopping at the markets that were open all day long.
Nearer to Cotignac, Brignoles holds its annual Medieval Festival complete with actors and scenarios and lots more entertainment over several days, in August. See our events section for dates in 2014.
There is a great variety of shops in Cotignac selling decorative souvenirs made locally for visitors as well as plenty of choice in furnishings, practical items, and food products. Continue reading Cotignac Shops
The annual Cotignac Parents’ Committee (AAPE) Pasta Party takes place every 14th of July in celebration of Bastille Day and comes complete with live entertainment AND fireworks at massive tables set up at the end of the Cours Gambetta. For just 17 euros per person for four-course meal AND wine, anyone who books in advance (payment can be made by euros cheque to the order of ” AAPE Cotignac” and sent to: La Presidente AAPE, 30 rue Plan de Giraud, 83570 Cotignac) will be guaranteed a place. The event takes place just after the 10km run here and is extremely popular so reserving your places is highly recommended. Tickets will also go on sale at 4pm on the day at the top of the Cours Gambetta but usually sell out in one hour. Apero starts at 7:30pm and dinner at 8pm. Contact Provence-Living for more info.
Village brocante selling silverware, furniture, and deco items (used and old). Continue reading Brocante market in Cotignac
Southern French cuisine is all about freshness and colours. Cotignac has some fine restaurants that serve typical Provençale fare but also something for everyone. Continue reading Cotignac and Local Cuisine – Restaurants
The “Chemin des chapelles et du Monastère” (10km)
From the front of the Tourist Office, take the hill up to the road that leads to the Notre Dame. Continue on the paved road for around 10 minutes. You will soon see a smaller path that runs parallel to the road that is called « le chemin des Pèlerins » (The path of little stairs) which will lead you up to the Sanctuary. Continue reading Cotignac St Joseph Monastery Walks
The « Petit Poucet » Walk (8.5km, 170 m climb, marked yellow and black)
From the centre of the village take the rue de l’Araignée (a hill next to Chez Loli restaurant). At La Bouide, make a left turn. The small lane will lead you to the Cassole river where you will see a beautiful waterfall to the right. Continue reading Cotignac Petit Poucet Walk
Around the Notre Dame (4.5 km with 80 metre ascent) From the Sanctuary, follow the signs for and head toward the St Joseph Monastery. Continue reading Cotignac Walks: The Notre Dame de Graces
The health course (« parcours de santé ») aka « Circuit Walk »- 3km
From the cemetery situated just behind the village church, follow the signs with arrow and sun symbols which will lead you to the bottom of the cliffs, then over to the road that climbs up past the old silk factory (rue de la Puade) then to the two forts at the top of the village cliffs. Continue reading Cotignac Circuit Walk
I love a good rosé but sometimes feel like the world of oenology and viticulture is a too complicated collage of mystery and secrecy to ever feel knowledgeable enough about wine. I know I prefer a Pinot Noir to Cabernet, and Chablis to Sancerre but when I first arrived in the Var, I didn’t know much about how wine was really made.
Continue reading Mirabeau Wine Review
Every Tuesday and all year ’round Cotignac comes alive with the hustle and bustle of its outdoor market. The vendors sell vegetables and fruits (much is organically grown locally), honey and olive oils, clothing and gift items. Summer markets are extremely busy with parking hard to find, so the best time to visit is outside the July/August months.
The Four-Seasons Fountain is one of Cotignac’s landmarks, where people gather to meet or sit for a coffee at one of the many cafés around it. The fountains sits almost at the top end of the Cours Gambetta and the water from it is potable and is even used by the restaurants. The fountain was a gift from the Templars back in the 1700s and is owned by the Commune of Cotignac.
The best beaches are not easily shared by locals here so Provence-Living readers benefit hugely from this information. If less bling and more nature is your style, head to Bormes les Mimosas where you’ll find less crowded pristine beaches at Forte Bregançon or Estagnol. And if you like good wine, you’re in for a treat because the best domaines like Chateau Leoub and Ott are close by and worth a stop-off! From Cotignac, Théoule sur Mer (in the Cote d’Azur) is also a good beach to visit as by car, it takes actually LESS time to get to than the beaches in the Var. In 1 hour and 10 minutes you can get to exclusive and beautiful beach restaurants in Théoule, just a hop skip and jump afterwards to glitzy Cannes for dinner, say. St Tropez’s Pamplonne has the most bling-bling beaches in the style of Club 55 of course, but other restaurants are just as great and less expensive (like Key West Beach and Tahiti, for example). Enjoy the heat and be careful not to drink too much alcohol in the hot, hot sun!
Philip Prior, beekeeper for more than 17 years in Provence, can normally be found at the Cotignac market on Tuesdays.
Continue reading Cotignac market beekeeper removes feral beehive
Cotignac welcomes all buyers and visitors this June 1st 2014 (Sunday) with a ton of locals selling their used (and sometimes antique) items like dishes, silverware, furniture, clothing, jewelry, decorative items and much much more. The local parents’ committee (AAPE) will be serving up crêpes (sweet and savory), hot dogs and sodas, and of course chilled rosé wine at very reasonable prices so bring your whole family and enjoy the fun. This June’s flea market takes place at the Place Neuve, the Cours Gambetta and the Place de la Mairie. For more information, contact us here at Provence Living.
Fairy-tales, Cinderella and Rococo are the images that come to mind upon approaching the magical Château de Robernier. It’s hard to believe a castle like this exists here in Provence let alone be a true part of its Bourbon history.
Continue reading The Fairy-Tale Chateau Robernier
Susana takes us for a drive through the lovely village of Cotignac.
Provence is normally associated with long Summer days. While Winters are usually mild, compared to countries up North, it can snow in February!