Tour of Provence June 11-21
Day 8 – June 18 – Visit to Eze – hilltop village on the coast and the Exotic Garden at the top.
Eze is a tourist spot, definitely not off the beaten track! It is a well-known hilltop village – and it is definitely worth walking to the top, but only if you are fit. It is steep walk all on large slippery cobblestones which, if you don’t have the right shoes, can be lethal even with no rain. I hate to think how slippery they would be in the rain.
You have to pay before you go into the Exotic Garden and the walking is easier in some ways (gravel not cobblestones) but you can visit the church and the shops without paying anything, except in energy!
This is taken from a website on Eze :
“Eze is a medieval village perched like an eagle’s nest on a narrow rocky peak overlooking the Mediterranean sea. The ancient fortified village is still crowned with the ruins of its 12th-century fortified castle (torn down in 1706), sitting on a narrow rocky peak. The castle grounds host the well-known Jardin Exotique, and from the top (429 m) you’ll have an great view of the coast.
The village forms a circular pattern around the base of the castle. The old buildings and narrow streets are very well restored, with high stone walls and narrow roadways of red-brick centered stone. The narrow roads wend their way upward to the well sign-posted Jardin Exotique Panorama with its panoramic view.”
The Exotic Garden is amazing – it has masses of cacti / succulents, and lovely sculptures by Jean-Philippe Richard – they were what interested me. You can read more about them on Jean-Philippe’s website.
The sculptor gave each of them a first name (they are all young females) and the first one you come to is Justine!
And they all had a sign with their name and 3 lines about them.
Margot says: Follow me young man – And you shall know -all my secrets … almost
Melisande says: Who has dreamt me? – Who has created me? – To whom have I said yes?
After we left Eze we drove to Monaco! For a New Zealander that sounds so odd… but drive we did. I was confused as to the difference between Monaco and Monte Carlo – this website explains it in detail, but briefly, Monaco is the country (but to confuse us all, it is also the name of the city). Monte Carlo is just part of the city – a suburb if you like!
We drove around for a little while – there was nowhere that we could stop easily – and when we drove to a parking building, we were told it would cost 20 Euro an hour to park there – we decided it wasn’t worth it for a 5 minute photo stop!
Lots of super large yachts in the harbour… a few old buildings that we could see, but the most obvious sign of money were the two lamborghinis (the cars that look like an elephant sat on them) at the petrol station! Corinne said that the petrol stations love lamborghinis as they are such gas guzzlers and need to constantly be refueled.
There is so much building on such a small amount of land and we passed quite a few building sites.
I got a zoomed shot of what I think (via Mr Google) is commemorating – Juan-Manuel Fangio Argentinian Paul Vestey with his GB Mercedes – if it isn’t this one (the one I found was in a museum) it looks very like it.
That night we had dinner at Clovis Michelin star restaurant in the village but as it was Father’s Day we had the set menu – it was mostly very nice but not as amazing as some meals we had had and the desert let the restaurant down. There was more to the menu but the lighting was no good for photos.