Tourtour, Provence: tourism & sightseeing
Visit Tourtour (Provence, France)
Tourtour is about 50 kilometres inland from the coast in Provence, west of Frejus and north-west from Draguignan. The town is also at the north of the Cotes de Provence region, a wine growing region that stretches south-east to the coast from Tourtour.
The old town dates from the middle ages and is the most interesting part of a visit to Tourtour. There are two parts to the old town, the earlier dating from the 11th century, and the latter (around the square) from the 14th century.
You enter the village through a gateway in the original ramparts, with a bell above the gateway, and enter a small square with a lovely old fountain. From here, the main pleasure comes from simply strolling along the streets enjoying the ambiance, discovering the ancient streets and vaulted passages and seing the ancient houses and fountains.
There are lots of the narrow streets lined with very picturesque Provencal houses to explore that we associate with the region, and a few minor highlights such as the oil mill (still in operation) and the clocktower with its campanile, and the remains of two old castles.
The beautiful old olive trees in the central square were imported from Italy to replace the elms that long stood here but died.
The town hall and the post office are in a 16th century chateau painted in lovely pastel colours and like a manor house with towers at each corner, and the Chapel of Saint Trinity is a later addition, dating from the 17th century.
On a clear day there are great views from the church that extend out across to the Mediterranean beyond Frejus, and also to Mont Ventoux - hence the village has been attractively labelled as 'the village in the sky'.
France This Way comment: there are lots of beautiful villages in this region but if you have limited time to explore you should definitely include Tourtour on your schedule!
There is another church just outside the historic centre of Tourtour, the Church of Saint-Denis, that is an attractive roman style church with origins in the 11th century. The church is on a small raised hill surrounded by trees and also has exceptional views across the surrounding countryside. Inside the church there are several interesting religious artefacts including 16th century busts of Saint-Stephen and Saint-Nicolas.
You can also see the 12th century Grimaldi tower a little way outside the town (direction Aups) as well as a medieval bridge across the River Florieye below the village.
Tourtour is one of a group of towns each with their own particular charm in this part of Provence known as the Upper Var - see also Salernes, Les Arcs, Aups, Lorgues and Flayosc as well as being listed among the most beautiful villages in France.
Note: photos kindly contributed by Valerie Willis
Map of Tourtour and places to visit
Visit near Tourtour with France This Way reviews
... or see ALL recommended places to visit in Var
Tourtour is classified as a one of the most beautiful village in France (plus beau villages)
Address: Tourtour, Salernes, Draguignan, Var, Provence, 83690, France || GPS: latitude 43.5903, longitude 6.30306
Plan your visit to Tourtour, Provence
Sightseeing & tourist attractions to visit nearby
- Thoronet Abbey: national monument (15km)
- Abbaye du Thoronet (Le Thoronet): religious monument (16km)
- Gorges du Verdon: grand site of france (17km)
- Lac de Sainte-Croix: site of natural beauty (22km)
- Verdon: regional natural parc (22km)
- Lac de Quinson: site of natural beauty (24km)
- Seillans: most beautiful village (28km)
- Moustiers: most beautiful village (29km)
- Lac d'Esparron: site of natural beauty (31km)
- Barrage de Chaudanne: site of natural beauty (35km)
The French version of this page is at Tourtour (Francais)