Var (83780) Population: 3,233 Altitude: 235 m
Flayosc is a medieval village perched on a low, conical hill a few km west of Draguignan. The village was defended by its circular wall of houses, much still visible today. In some areas, a second wall of buildings is separated from the outer section by a very narrow street. Within the old village, sections of ancient walls and the three old "portes" Sarrasine, Cresson and Paris can be seen.
The hilltop in the center of the village, usually the site of the Medieval "vieux village" is now mostly low-cost apartments surrounding the old church. The appartment buildings are painted in the Provencal pastel colors and blend in well.
The large St. Laurent church with its fortified bell tower and bulbous campanile dates back to the 11th century, when it was the Chapelle Notre-Dame-des-Anges. It was rebuilt in the 16th and 18th centuries.
Flayosc is a very active village year-round. The "center" is at the Place de la République and Place Jean Brémond, traversed by the single main street, half named Bvd Jean Moulin and half named Bvd du Général de Gaulle. The main D557 road from Draguignan has a bypass loop around the Flayosc, so there's only village traffic inside the village.
A lovely old fountain at the center squares has water going out over a mossy stone. There's another old fountain at the Place Cresson at the northern part of the old village, and one at the Place Reinesse, a quiet old square with two giant plane trees at the east end of the village.
There's a very pretty old "lavoir" on the Bvd Jean Moulin, past the wine co-op. The stream is channeled around a central area, covered by wooden-beamed roof with symmetrical steel-rod supports.
An alley-like canal and walkway passes through a hidden part of Flayosc, running from the back of the lavoir southeastward, to Rue de la Conque, parallel to Bvd Jean Moulin. This shady walkway is bordered sometimes by stone walls, and passes along back gardens, hanging flowers and beneath the occassional overhead walkway.
The Clinique de Poupées (Doll Hospital) repairs, buys and sells old dolls. They handle the accessories, hair, original clothing and copies of the ancient ones.
Visit by rendez-vous
KLIKS Antiquaire; Route des Plans, Allée; Sauges
tel: (33) 494 70 45 92
A very lovely country drive from Flayosc is along the Sauve-Clare road south to Lorgues. The road leaves from the center of Flayosc and is called, handily enough the Route de Sauve-Clare. It's only 2-1/2 km to the hamlet of Sauve-Clare, with a pretty little church, and the road passing over the old railway line from the Lost Railway.
Another km south of Sauve-Clare is the mossy-waterfall-rock at the ruins of the old mill. Just south of the mossy rock and the mill, the road curves west and arrives at Lorgue, at the road leading up to the St Ferreol Hermitage.
The "cascade" at Sauve-Clare, is about 2 km south of the village on a pretty country lane through the fields and forests. The cascade is small but very lovely, sitting behind a huge multi-centenarian plane tree next to the road. The water comes out over very mossy stones that have built up from deposits over thousands of years. The cave at the top, beside the falls, goes back into the rocks and seems to have been smoothed out inside by human effort. The ruins of a huge old mill are around the bend above the cascade. (Photo-8: the big photo; click on the thumbnail.)
The bridge is about 6 km northwest of the village, actually in the commune of Tourtour. Take the N557 west from Flayosc and turn right just after the gas station (Route des Plans). After 1.5 km, turn right towards "Fontroussière". After 3 km the pavement ends. Park and walk (or drive) down the dirt road, the old Voie Romaine, to the bridge. The bridge is in very good condition, crossing a beautiful forested valley. We photographed the bridge by sitting on a tree jutting out over the gorge on one side, and by climbing a tree leaning out over the gorge on the other side. [Photo-12] [Photo-13]
History of Flayosc
First record, about 1050: Flaiosc. The name probably comes from the Ligurians, who lived here a long time before the Romans came along.
Gallo-Roman: Flayosc was a Roman settlement, with a Roman road passing nearby. A Roman necropole was discovered at Flayosquet, one km northeast. Roman habitation, necropole and Roman road remains were discovered at St. Pierre-de-Lavenon, a few km west, and the funerary stele of Julius Asiaticus is located at St. Pierre. Another Roman site was located at Basse-Vaoure, half way between Flayosc and Tourtour. Artifacts from the Flayosc settlement are on display in Draguignan at the Musée-Bibliothèque.
Medieval: Flayosc was in the domain of the Lords of Villeneuve. Reine Jeanne favored Flayosc with certain good deeds and franchises, including running water. In 1589, La Valette pillaged and burned the village, massacring the lord and 16 inhabitants. In 1678, Flayosc became a marquisate under François de Périer. In May of 1792, the Lord of Flayosc, who evidently was aware of his popularity, was in refuge in Strasbourg when the population, led by the Mayor, destroyed his castle.
More Recently: Flayosc had a flourishing shoe industry during the 19th century and beginning of the 20th.
Place Pied Barri
Tel : 0494 70 41 31; Fax: 04 94 70 47 91
Market day: Mon.
Brocante-Puces: 4th Sun
Mar (2nd Mon) - Foire - Fair
May (1st Mon) - Foire - Fair
Oct (1st Mon) - Foire - Fair
• GPS: 43.534562, 6.393509
IGN (1/25,000) #3444 est "Draguignan"
Didier Richard (1/50,000) #25 "Maures Haut-Pays Varois"
Hiking trails just south of the village, between Flayosc and Lorgues, allow some loop hikes in the wooded hills around Le Peyrega and Les Lunettes, and past the hamlet of Sauve-Clare with its waterfall.
The nearest trails to the north are in the mountains between Tourtour, Ampus and Chateaudouble, about 10 km away.
To the southwest, there are a number of hiking trails in the hills between Lorgues and Salernes.
Flayosc is an excellent village for dining. Even on a Sunday, and off-season, we found several restaurants open. Most restaurants seem to be in the low-to-medium price class, and all looked neat and inviting. We settled on the Italian-flavored Vezza d'Oglio, and we're rewarded with excellent price-quality. Located on Bvd Jean Moulin, towards the lavoir, the Vezza d'Oglia also had a great house wine, and also offered other local Var wines, from Flayosc, Taradeau, Draguignan, Villecroze and Lorgues.
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.)