The Mimosa Route consists of eight stages on a 130-kilometer long road that is usually travelled from January to March to enjoy the beauty of the Côte d’Azur – winter version. Here is a selection of recommendations and what not to miss on the famous Mimosa Route.
STAGE 1: BORMES-LES-MIMOSAS
Bormes-les-Mimosas, starting point on the Mimosa Route.
To celebrate the beginning of the calendar year, the village of Bormes-les-Mimosas, often considered one of the most beautiful flower villages in France, drapes itself in a yellow floral shawl. It’s simple, Bormes is THE mimosa capital of the Var and lists more than 90 species. This is obviously the natural starting point on the Mimosa Route. It’s difficult to miss since Fort de Brégançon, the holiday home of the President of the Republic, is in Bormes.
STAGE 2: RAYOL-CANADEL
On the Corniche des Maures, this discreet little village on the Côte d’Azur, is a must on the Mimosa Route!
Want to go on a botanical world tour? Stop at the Domaine du Rayol. An extraordinary 20-hectare garden overlooking the Mediterranean, it is a mythical place where the Mediterranean flowers are out in winter. There the Maures hills tumble into the sea – ideal for mimosa. Our tip: don’t miss the RD27 departmental road to Col du Canadel and enjoy a breathtaking view of the Côte d’Azur.
STAGE 3: SAINTE-MAXIME
Did you know? Miss Mimosa is elected here in Sainte-Maxime!
On the famous Gulf of Saint-Tropez, Sainte-Maxime is a seaside resort ideal for a family stay on the Côte d’Azur. In the purest tradition Sainte-Maxime, the 3rd stage on the Mimosa Route, celebrates the arrival of spring with its flower parade. Don’t miss its 11 kilometres of coastline, many sandy beaches, botanical gardens and the beauty of its pedestrian streets. Our favourite: the natural Pointe des Sardinaux peninsula is an ideal place for a family picnic on the Mimosa Route.
STAGE 4: SAINT-RAPHAËL
On the Mimosa Route, you arrive at the gateway to the Estérel massif.
You’ll discover: 36 kilometres of coastline, thirty beaches and secret coves and of course an omnipresent nature. A modern and historic city, the resort of Saint-Raphaël offers its coastal path, the Ile d’Or and in February the opportunity to take part in its carnival celebrating mimosa. Another date not to be missed: every year during the last weekend in February the Fête des Fleurs is held in Agay.
STAGE 5: MANDELIEU-LA-NAPOULE
The golden route which penetrates the largest mimosa forest in Europe starts here.
Late February in Mandelieu: the famous Fête de Mimosa and the election of its queen takes place. You’ll also be able to see the many flower parades. Mandelieu is the cradle of mimosa growing and it can be felt. Both literally and figuratively. Our recommendation on the Mimosa Route: excursions “From mimosa to the perfume creation” offered by the Tourist Office. A half-day trip: discover the largest mimosa forest in Europe and meet a grower in his mimosa forest.
STAGE 6: TANNERON
You said Mimosa? Head to Tanneron and the immense forests of fluffy yellow balls as far as the eye can see.
Twenty-two hamlets in the heart of the Tanneron massif and the largest area of cultivated and wild mimosa in France. Between February and March, you’ll see mimosa around every corner. Not surprising! It covers 200 hectares. During this period, mimosa in all its forms can be enjoyed, including in sweets and honey. Calling all gourmets – they’ll love it! Our tip: don’t miss the guided walks “Tanneron, the mimosa and its companions”. Discover the perfume plants in the Massif du Tanneron: mimosa of course but also bilberry bushes and pistachio.
STAGE 7: PÉGOMAS
The penultimate stage of the Mimosa Route!
In Pégomas, the mimosa will enchant – a treat for the eye and the nose. Did you know? Pégomas houses the Jardin des Mimosas with a dozen different varieties of mimosa under an always blue sky. It celebrates the first mimosa blossoms at the end of January. Our tip: why not opt for the visit to a forcing room? Head off to Reynaud forcing rooms in Pégomas. After your visit, mimosa will be an open book!
STAGE 8: GRASSE
Awakening the senses guaranteed: the final bouquet on the Mimosa Route.
Logically, everything stops in the heart of the perfume capital of the world. Grasse and mimosa is a love story as old as the world. There is the MIP (Musée International de la Parfumerie) where mimosa is considered from every angle, including the heart of all the historical perfumeries. Needless to say, the city celebrates flowers and fragrances whatever the time of year.
YOU’LL ALSO LOVE!
VISIT THE MUSEE DE LA PARFUMERIE
If like me, you love the world of perfumes and want to know all its secrets, then don’t miss a visit to the Musée International de la Parfumerie in Grasse, the most beautiful museum in France honouring the olfactory universe. Adults and children alike will love visiting the Musée International de la Parfumerie!
DISCOVERING PERFUMERIES IN GRASSE
Grasse had some flair when, five centuries ago, it began creating perfumes. A world of fragrances that is still the source of its wealth and delights its visitors. Come and discover the very essence of the Pays de Grasse, its DNA, and its history. It was listed in 2018 as a UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage site for its perfume-related know-how! We now invite you to discover Grasse’s perfumeries.
WANT TO CREATE YOUR OWN PERFUME?
On holiday on the Côte d’Azur? Why not follow me for a getaway in Grasse, the world perfume capital? Today, I tested a perfume creation workshop! Apart from the tour around the historic Fragonard perfumery, discover their olfactory "Apprentice Perfumer" workshop and create your own perfume in Grasse.