-- From 2012/05/25 to 2012/05/27
-- From la Base arrière to Miami, FL, USA

By a sunny Sunday we visited the Var department in the back-country rich in historical sites. We drove the road from Draguignan to theThoronet Abbey then the road in the High-Var while crossing by Entrecasteaux, Sillans-la-Cascade and Tourtour.

Thoronet Abbay

Founded in 1146 Thoronet is one of the most remarkable abbeys built by the Cistercian Order.The proportional purity, spatial simplicity, rigorously dressed stone and absolute sobriety of the architecture give it an austere beauty depleted of any artifice, in accordance to the spirituality advocated by St Bernard. The most characteristic buildings are the church, the cloisters, the chapter house and the lavatorium, fountain in a hexagonal building.

The Thronet Abbay, Var
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The church The cloisters
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The chapter house The lavatorium

Castel of Entrecasteaux

This high and narrow masonry was built in the 17th century by Castellane before belonging to the family of Grignan, of which one of the members married the countess of Sévigné's daughter. It owned to the family of Bruni of which the admiral d'Entrecasteaux died during an expdedition looking for La Pérouse. The castle was restored at the beginning of the 20th century by the painter Ian Mc Garvie-Munn.

Bridge over La Bresque
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French garden The Castle


The village is perched at the edge of La Bresque river with remainders of ramparts and picturesque streets. The high cascade of 42 meters high is enchased in a green site. Its access walks on in a pretty landscape.

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Signpost The cascade


The village is perched in an timbered area with well restored pretty houses. The central square planted with ormeaux is next to the castle decorated with sculptures by Buffet. The area is rich in fossils as the museum testifies by exhibiting eggs of dinosaurs and ammonites.

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The central square The castle, sculpture by Buffet

Les Arcs-sur-Argens

The village was built as from 11th century by Gerard de Villeneuve, lord of the Arcs, who built the castle in the 12th century and was destroyed during the French Revolution. The village medieval built on a rock piton is furrowed cut by tortuous streets, staircases and vaults. It is called Le Parage because it is from the top of the keep that the guetteurs supervised the plain to avoid Sarrasins' invasions. (شرقيين sharqiyyīn, Wikipedia)

Le Parage quarter
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The Keep Street
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Middle-age quarter Beautiful house
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The clocktower Landsscape
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Guy at work

During my stay I helped the Lord of Les Rochilles, Sir Christian, with the maintenance work.

Mathys & Marie
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Guy as logger

Back to Miami

Thursday 24 May I took a direct TGV train from Les Arcs-Draguignan to Roissy-CDG where I spent a night at the Hotel Ibis. The next day a direct flight by Air France transported me in 9 hours 25 from Paris to Miami where I disembarked at 14:10, local time, to remain four nights at Hampton Inn & Suites to visit the city.