Route: 250 km | Duration: 4 days | Recommended period: June/July
Starting from Menton, take the D23 to the village of Gorbio, the highest seaside village in Europe. This is a beautiful panoramic road that climbs among goats grazing among the rocks and breathtaking landscapes on the Riviera.
From there, continue to Sainte-Agnés. See the gigantic fort, accessed by a drawbridge, which was part of the infamous Maginot Line, 240 km of military fortifications.
- If you have time and love walking in Gorbio, from the Montée du Souvenir, you can reach the ruins of a castle via 187 steps: a pleasant and evocative place.
- If you come to Gorbio in June, the Fête Dieu is celebrated: the inhabitants light up the medieval streets of the village with snail shells placed in vases filled with burning olive oil. Not to be missed!
- Also in Gorbio, you cannot fail to enjoy a delicious Provençal lunch at the Beau Séjour, a typical Provençal inn with mint-green shutters and a delightful jasmine-scented garden overlooking the village square, where the ever-present fountain and a 300-year-old elm tree are bubbling. A place you will never want to leave!
Driving along this road is a real treat for the mind and eyes: you will pass mountain villages clinging to the rocks and admire extraordinary views, which light up under the scorching Côte d’Azur sun.
Continue on the D22 to Peille, a picturesque, perfectly preserved medieval village (where you can make a short stop) via the Col de la Madone, a mountain pass that is truly awe-inspiring, as it is carved out of the rock, and then to Peillon, a classic example of a nid d’aigle, or eagle’s nest village. See the Chapelle des Pénitents Blancs, famous for a cycle of particularly macabre frescoes.
From here, we continue on to a series of villages that are mainly worth a look, the sensation of the Grand Corniche road: Contes, Châteauneuf Villeveille, Tourrette-Levens and Coaraze.
We recommend an overnight stay in Vence.
- In Peille, you can walk the Vie Ferrata de Peille, a very challenging footpath that climbs up the rocks between ladders, Tibetan-style bridges and pulleys. Allow at least 3½ hours for the complete route and 45 minutes for short sections.
- On the outskirts of Contes, you can visit the Moulin à Huile de la Laouza, still in operation, to learn all about the pressing of olives.
- At Châteauneuf Villeveille you can stroll freely among the castle ruins for a truly romantic stroll.
If you love nature, rivers and hiking, then this day should be dedicated to the Gorges du Loup, a winding road winding through the gorge carved by the river.
To explore this area, visit the Gorgesdu Loup itinerary.
The Massif de l’ Estérel is a red porphyry formation cloaked in pines, eucalyptus and oaks and is one of the most spectacular rock formations in the area. This itinerary follows the Corniche de l’Estérel, also known as the Corniche d’Or, the N98 from which one can see wonderful landscapes.