Var (83630) Population: 1,796 Altitude: 500 m
This very pleasant small town is full of fountains, and has squares shaded with huge plane trees. The town forms an ampitheater walled by ramparts and crowned with the ruins of its feudal castle
The houses date back to the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries, and in their cluster you can find tiny streets, friendly cafés and plenty of shops. There's a square lookout tower (beffroi) and an 18th century clock tower topped by the iron-caged bell tower (in one on the attached photos, above). These wrought-iron belfries, called Campaniles de fer forgé, are one of the many wonderful sites of the Beyond region, and you could do a whole trip visiting just them.
La Chapelle Nôtre Dame de la Délivrance was built in 1852, on the ruins of a 12th-century chateau.
We originally put this Aups page online in Beyond in October 1995, one of our first Beyond villages. We've visited or passed through several times since then, but only took the time recently (autumn 2004, summer 2005) to take some more photos with better camera equipment.
We also took a leisurly second breakfast at on of the terrace cafés on the Place Général Girad, shaded by a gigantic plane tree, "tinkled" by the sound of the old stone fountain [ photo-6 ]; café au lait and a fougasse à l'huile d'olive-citron from a great bakery just up the street [ photo-7 ].
Fougasse - The Aups fougasse is a large, round, thin tarte made with olive oil and lemon, and has a distinct lemon smell and flavor.
History of Aups
First record, 11th century: Almis
Prehistoric: Natural iron deposits in the here made this an iron-age settlement, and bones have been found in the Plerimond caves, 8 km to the southeast.
Gallo-Roman: There was an oppidum (Roman fortified site), and there are Gallo-Roman vestiges at nearby Mousque, Plerimond and Raton.
Medieval: The area was ruled by the Seigneurie des Blacas. In 1574, the church was pillaged by the Huguenots, and in 1590 the Ligurians had their turn.
Place Martin Bidouré
Tel : 0494 84 00 69; Fax: 04 94 84 00 69
Market day: Wed, Sat.
Jan (End) - Journée de la truffe - Truffle Day, traditonal village festival
Mar - Carnaval
May (2nd Sun) - Féte
Aug (3rd Sun) - Féte
Nov-Feb - Truffle market (Thur mornings, late Nov-Feb)
• GPS: 43.626501, 6.22375
IGN (1/25,000) #3443 OT "Aups Salernes"
Didier Richard (1/50,000) #25 "Maures Haut-Pays Varois"
Didier Richard (1/50,000) #19 "Haute Provence Verdon"
The area around the village has many farms and vineyards, so cross-country hiking is limited.
A couple of trails follow the roads south and southeast out of the village and then go through lovely forests towards Salernes, Villacroze and Tourtour.
There are some nice loops hikes east of the village in the wooded Montagne des Espiguières, that get up to 834 m (and 880 m further east).
Northwest of Aups there are several forest roads in the beautiful La Colle and Les Cugulons hills (with forested peaks in the 800-950 m range). You can get to this area also by a trail that goes northwest from the D957 road 6 km north of Aups. This trail goes up the ridge of Les Cugulons about 6 km to where it joins the Grande Randonnée GR99, the trail that goes along the southern part of the Grand Canyon du Verdon.
- International Camping - tel: (33) 494 70 06 80; fax: (33) 494 70 10 51; Apr-Sept
- Les Prés - tel: (33) 494 70 00 93; permanent
- St-Lazare - tel: (33) 494 70 12 86; Apr-Sept
- Les Prés - tel: (33) 494 70 00 93; permanent
There are several café-restaurants and a couple of pretty good hotel-restaurants. On a Sunday noon in early Feb (2002) the restaurants filled up fast, so either start early or phone ahead.
Aups has the Musée Simon Segal art museum (paintings), housed in what must have been an old church. It's a really fine old building, on one of the streets in the center of town.
Faykod Sculpture Park - Musée de Faykod
- Location: Route de Tourtour
- Web: www.musee-de-faykod.com
Mainline rail service, from Paris or Nice, is available to Les Arcs (station Draguignan-Les Arcs), Toulon and Brignols. The TGV from Paris also stops at Les Arcs. [map]
the nearest car rental is in Draguignan
Department 83, Var Buses
- See Beyond's Var Department Bus Schedules for downloading the Var bus-lines map [Plan du Reseau] and bus-line schedules [Horaires] (link for PDF files).
- Schedules for the Var bus lines are on the VarLib Horaires-Ligne page (http://www.varlib.fr/horaires_ligne/?rub_code=6") - type the line number in the Numéro ... ligne box to access the bus schedule PDF link. (Type a couple of digits in the box to get a list of route numbers.)
Les Arcs - Draguignan - Salernes - Aups Bus 1201
- Var bus line 1201 connects Les Arcs (Gare SNCF/TGV), Draguignan, Flayosc, Villecroze, Salernes, Aups.
Schedules for the Var bus lines are on the VarLib Horaires-Ligne page (http://www.varlib.fr/horaires_ligne/?rub_code=6") - type the line number (1201) in the Numéro ... ligne box to access the bus schedule PDF link. (Type a couple of digits in the box to get a list of route numbers.)