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 Route de Mimosa photo mimosa0009s.jpg (8 k) [Route du Mimosas Map]

The Route du Mimosa is an annual inter-village celebration of the bright yellow mimosas plants. One idea is that a visitor can drive the 130-km route from Bormes-les-Mimosas to Grasse, passing through each of the member villages along the way, and experience the country of the mimosa.

More realistically, though, you could plan to visit each of these places during the Route du Mimosa season, from mid January to March, synchronizing each village visit with the mimosa events at that place.

Each year a printed brochure is available from the Office de Tourisme of these towns and villages, detailing the schedules and events taking place, including offers of multi-day lodgings available that coincide with the events.

Bormes-les-Mimosas

[Map r14, SE] East of Toulon and Hyeres and west of St Tropez, Bormes-les-Mimosas is a flowered town, with an old village on the edge of the Maures mountains and a seaside part (the Port de Bormes) on the Mediterranean.

Bormes-les-Mimosas has a Circuit of the Old Village, a walking tour to discover the village. The Pépinières Cavatore, a nursery, has 180 varieties of mimosa on hand.

Mimosa festivities include the Mimosalia, a sales-exibition of plants, at the end of January, and the Corso Fleuri, a flower parade, at the end of February.

Rayol-Canadel-sur-Mer

[Map r14, SE] This village-pair enjoyes a seaside location while being nestled in the pine forests and mimosa bushes, 20 km east of Bormes-les-Mimosas and 25 km southwest of St Tropez.

The key interest at Les Rayol-Canadel-sur-Mer is the Jardins du Domaine du Rayol, a large garden-park to be visited. During this season, there's of course a lot of mimosa in bloom around the village and near the park.

Sainte Maxime

[Map r14, NE] The seaside resort town of Sainte Maxime is about 30 km northeast of La Rayol-Canadel-sur-Mer, past Grimaud and St Tropez.

Sainte Maxime has its Corso du Mimosa, parade with floral floats, at the beginning of February. The local flower garden, Jardin des Myrtes, has visits during Jan-March with the theme of mimosa.

Saint Raphäel

[Map r15, W] The seaside town of Saint Raphael is 14 km up the coast from Sainte Maxime, joined to the eastern edge of the Roman town of Fréjus.

Mandelieu-La-Napoule

[Map r15, NW] From Saint Raphael it's about 35 km up the coast, past Agay, Théoule and La Bocca to Mandelieu-La-Napoule, on the western edge of Cannes.

Mandelieu-La-Napoule Fete du Mimosa festivities in mid-February include two Sunday Corsos Fleuris - Batailles de Mimosas parades and a Saturday-night Corso illuminé parade.

Mandelieu-La-Napoule is on the edge of the Massif du Tanneron, an area of forested hills with the largest mimosa forest in Europe. This are included the next two stops on the Route du Mimosa: Tanneron and Pégomas.

Tanneron

[Map q15, NW] From Mandelieu-La-Napoule it's about 12 km up over the hills to the northwest to Tanneron.

This little village is at the top of the hill, in the midst of the mimosa forest. Apart from the walks available from here, various "mimosistes" have shops and rooms decorated to show off the possibilities of the yellow plant.

Pégomas

[Map q15, NW] Pégomas is 10 km back down the hill to the east of Tanneron.

There's a village Corso Fleuri the last weekend of January, including the Election of Miss Mimosa.

Grasse

[Map q15, NW] The "City of Perfume" is 10 km north of Pégomas, past Aurbeau-sur-Siagne.

The last stop on the Route du Mimosa, Grasse has its three world-famous parfumeries for visiting: Fragonard, Galimard and Molinard.