Grimaud, Var

Grimaud is a Spa- place ( in one of the warmest winter on the coast ), a commune with 4106 inhabitants (as of 1 January 2011) and capital of the canton of the same name. It consists of the districts Grimaud Village, Port Grimaud, Saint -Pons- les- Mûres and Beauvallon.


Dominated by the imposing ruins of its castle from the 11th century dominates the hilltop location of the bay of the Gulf of Saint- Tropez, which later was called the Gulf of Grimaud during the French Revolution and the Gulf of Athenopolis. The still mostly medieval-looking town is located between the main road D588 and the castle, at the foot of the very wooded Maures Mountains, extending from Hyères and Pierrefeu -du -Var eastward to Frejus.

Due to its elevated position, overlooking the Maures massif traversing pass in La Garde -Freinet, Grimaud played especially during the Middle Ages and later to the 18th century In at the Sarazeneneinfällen and also during their occupation an important role in the line of early warning system of regional villages perchés ( places in altitude, here: Ramatuelle, Gassin, Grimaud, La Garde- Freinet with his so-called Saracen fort, Le Vieux Cannet at Le Luc ). Due to its position, the place was in the defense against raids and incursions of any kind ( eg, pirates, etc. ) is of strategic importance.

Of the partially restored ruins of the castle offers magnificent views of the surrounding hills of the Maures massif, with its ( cork ) oak, chestnut and pine forests, as well as the Gulf of Saint- Tropez, on which also the to the municipality associated port - Grimaud is located.

The place, with its old streets and fountains, is tasty, but not overly restored. Some houses go to the 15th and 16th centuries back, some have stone walls in the old style, others are decorated in bright pastel colors of Provence. A number of old door frames and plunge are of large, polished stone plates - made ​​- either black or dark green lava serpentine.


Prehistoric remains ( menhirs ) and numerous traces of Gallo-Roman times testify that the rocky hills of Grimaud was very early, but certainly already settled to Gallo-Roman times. Grimaud is the ancient port Sambracis have been, since the sea far out enough at that time in the now very fertile plain between the river Giscle and Garde: 2 m high, set into the earth stones have been interpreted in excavations as landing a Roman port. In addition, many pieces of pottery, amphorae and tiles were found from that period.

End of the 8th century distributes William I, " the liberator ", the Saracens from the Freinet, an area that today would extend approximately between Saint- Tropez and La Garde -Freinet and between Sainte -Maxime and Cavalaire. Here it is a Gibelin de Grimaldi to the side, the return receives the use of the fief Grimaud. Whether this Grimaldi has something to do with the Princely House of Grimaldi of Monaco, is not finally resolved, as this noble family is attested in Genoa until the 12th century and until the late 13th century or early 15th century (alone) control of Monaco attained.

The Grimaud mentioned about the middle of the 11th century in a document of the Abbey of Saint -Victor in Marseille for the first time as Grimal and castrum has replaced an earlier structure. This has been extended from the 12th to the 14th century and again. During the reign of the families of the viscounts of Marseille, the Pontevès, by Jean de Cossa and the Castellane family are also the abbeys of Saint -Victor, Lerins, Thoronet and the Bishop of Fréjus over the centuries participants in the possession Grimaud, the in the 18th century bears the title of a Marquisats.

As a result of the Wars of Religion (1562-1598), the castle, the castle now has character, abandoned and destroyed under Richelieu. The following is a new construction, of which two towers are still visible today. In the French Revolution the facility neglected. Today it stands, as well as some other buildings, conservation area ( Monument historique ).


  • Impressive ruins of the castle of Grimaud with up to seven meters high surrounding wall
  • Romanesque parish church of Saint -Michel from the end of the 12th century; dreijochiges ship with half-dome apse; Round portal. Particularly worth seeing is the baptismal font made ​​of Carrara marble from the 12th century; modern windows 1975
  • Büßerkapelle ( Chapelle des Penitents ) from the end of the 15th century
  • Chapel of Saint- Roch, 17th or 18th century
  • Notre- Dame de la Quest chapel from the 11th century
  • Street of the Knights Templar ( Rue des Templars ) with its arcades from the 15th century
  • Old village mill ( Moulin Saint -Roch ), since 1990 working again
  • Feenbrücke ( Pont des Fees ), 15-16. Century, below the cemetery. About it a water pipe partly preserved led up to the castle.
  • Monumental fountain, Place Neuve: In the year 1886, here is pumped up for the first time with the aid of a steam engine the water from a source in the plane to the village.
  • Museum of folk art and tradition. This museum is located in the buildings of a former oil mill and an old cork factory directly on the D588.
  • Several art galleries
  • The municipality also includes the district of Port -Grimaud, a kind of modern Venice, now a tourist attraction; this place was erected in 1968 by the Alsatian architect François Spoerry in La Foux at the inner end of the gulf of Saint- Tropez.


Main source of income of the municipality is tourism. Other lines of business include: viticulture (wine domains; winegrowers: wines with quality seal AOC " Côtes de Provence " ), cork, flowers, bee-keeping. Agricultural cooperative. Sand and porphyry extraction.

Festivals / Events

  • Wool Festival ( Foire de la Laine ), Ascension Day
  • Mill Festival ( Fête du Moulin ), June
  • Michael Festival ( Fête de la Saint -Michel ), September
  • Hubertus Festival ( Fête de la Saint- Hubert ), November
  • Art exhibition of Les Peintres de Grimaud in the Salle Beausoleil, April and September
  • Music Festival Les Grimaldines, music of the world, in July / August. Here, during the day, see the place mini-concerts, parades, etc. instead, then then music evenings in the open air theater at the castle.
  • Flea market, ( Brocante ), 1st Sunday of the month. Another flea flea market takes place every Sunday morning instead of Jas de Robert ( direction Sainte -Maxime ).
  • Market day ( Place Vieille ), Thursdays