A quiet commune in Alpes-Maritime Department on the French Riviera, Grasse is situated at a distance of 16kms from Cannes. Originally this town was known as the best center for leather tanning but at present it is considered to be the perfume capital of the world. It also houses the international museum for perfumes and though the best perfume manufacturers can be visited here, there is certainly more to Grasse than just perfume. At a distance of just 16 kms, you can bask in the glory of fine sand beaches and luxurious yatches and reach Nice for one of the best international airports. Grasse has clean air and the fragrance of freshness lingers in your head long after you have gone away from this town. The town is at an altitude of 300-400 meters above the sea level and the beautiful view of the mountains behind it gives it a picturesque look.
The serene environment and the fresh air give Grasse the credit of being one the best health resorts since times immemorial. Princess Pauline Bonaparte, the Emperor’s sister had happily spent the winter of 1807-08 here recovering her physical and mental strength. Queen Victoria was a frequent visitor to this place as well. The Annual Fete du Jasmin or La Jasminade is an annual festival here. Held annually in every august, it has been in existence since 1946. Young women in skimpy costumes ride on decorated floats and throw flowers to the crowds waiting to catch a glimpse of these lovely women. The entire Town center is decorated with Garlands of Jasmine and the firs trucks spray a Jasmine infused shower on to the spectators. The fete also has folk lore, dances, free parties and fireworks. A similar kind of a festival is held in May every year with an exhibit and celebration of Roses called Expo Rose.
When To Go:
The best time to visit this place is in the summers. The rest of the year is wonderful as well. Winters here are extreme due to the altitude of this place. So you may want to plan your trip away from the winters, if you are not very friendly towards the cold breeze and snow. While winters have their own charm but most of the outdoor expeditions are not that much fun, when it is dark, wet and cold outside. The spring is awesome with the flowers in full bloom. This is what this place is actually famous for anyways. The summers are much cooler compared to the neighboring towns and cities and the autumn a delight to see for the leaves strutted streets and alleys. So plan you trip in advance to catch the best sites in town.
Musee International da le Perfumerie
This is the most important tourist spot of Grasse. Almost everyone who visits Grasse does see the museum which is grandeur in itself. Very different from the other museums, this place is non-conventional and allows photography too. The information about the perfumes, their history, origins and the various aspects is mind blowing. The best part is that the information provided is in English too making it easy for you to understand and sync with the flow. The guides are extra helpful and do not mind doing a bit extra to help you out. The
Musee International da le Perfumerie
also has a garden outside it and just relaxing in the various scents of the place is amazing. If you have even wanted to know why you love a particular perfume and which one would suit your body the best, then there is no better place than this. It is captivating to listen to the stories behind each perfume and its specialty while you look at the beautiful bottles and ancient methods of perfume making.
This museum is quirky, funny, interesting and they teach you how to combine different scents and make the one who desire deep in your heart. And yes, many people do come up with some weird scents that they rumble up. This museum is much bigger than it appears to be from the outside and you can also see all the distilleries also. The raw material and the processing which makes the perfume what it is, keeps you focused for a long time. The array of the various perfume bottles is very interesting and the exhibits are just the right size to keep you hooked and not bore you. The museum itself is lovely and a great piece of architecture. So while you are immersed in the exhibits that you can see and smell, the children are kept occupied in the dedicated multimedia stations throughout the place. The fragrant garden and a fil testing of the sense of smell will keep them busy. A perfect place to visit with your entire family!
Cathedrale Notre Dame Du Puy
An impressive old construction, this magnificent building in Grasse has Rubens paintings one the walls. Always lit in light, you do not need to be religious for visiting this place. There is a beautiful view point just behind the cathedral and you can immerse yourself in the Perfumed Siesta on the square in July and August. There are several amazing altars in this Church. Three of them are the amazing Rubens ones and one is a Fragonard. While the exact date for the construction of this Church is not known, it is believed to be built somewhere in the 13th century. The three Rubens Paintings were not meant for this place originally. They had to be sent to Rome but instead were donated to the hospital in Grasse and the only religious painting is the “washing of the feet”.
Designed with simplicity and decorated at ease, this Ancient
Cathadrale Notre Dame Du Puy
also has witnessed a period where it was used as a fodder store in times of need. You may want to attend the mass out of choice and the singing will make you traverse to a different dimension altogether. While the cathedral is very old, just a quiet stroll in this area is enough to make you fell at peace with yourself. Grand and majestic, the appearance of this building deceives you for its interiors. Also, you would not find a very big crowd here. Only a selective tourist would wish to be enthralled with a history as rich as this. A pure example of the Romanesque architecture, this Church has an awesome location, overlooking the Mediterranean Sea. Nothing beats the peace of mind when you know that you are close to God and this is exactly why one wants to stick around here for longer.
Domaine de Manon
How does a perfumery session with a literal trip to the fields sound to you. The
Domaine de Manon
is a beautiful flower farm that will elate you with its beauty and fragrances. Centifolia Rose and Jasmine are cultivated here on a very large scale and this place is pure heaven when in full bloom. The owner of this place personally takes you on a tour to explain how the flowers are grown and how the perfumes are made. This flower field supplies just to Dior and not to anyone else.
There is a catch here and that is that the tours are held only in the flowering seasons and on Tuesdays only. So if this is on your agenda, you should be making you trip sometime between August and Mid October for checking out the lovely Jasmines. The place is located 7 Kms south east of Grasse and is located in a small village called Plascassier. You would love this place for its beauty and simplicity. Just the kind of places that make you feel that humanity cannot beat Mother Nature when it comes to symmetry and planning.
Golf de Saint Donat
If you love Golf then you might try to spend every day of your vacation here.
Golf de Saint Donat
is not a very long golf course but the river nearby alters the winds making it very tricky. Stretched over 18 holes, the elevations and the rises make it a treat to the human skill. There is a lovely club house here, which caters to all your needs of food and beverages along with some excellent seating for relaxation after a good game played. While every golfer has their favourite slopes and holes, anyone playing here would remember it for sure. From the easiest puts to the most difficult holes, that can madden you, this place is a golfer’s delight.
There is a small sigh seeing spot just round the corner which can keep your friends and family busy while you are playing a good game and enjoying your day. The services and the carts are well maintained and the hospitality is wonderful. The staff here does not mind taking a little extra step to make your trip memorable. The scenic backdrop against the golf course makes this an ideal place to click some pictures while you are busy and engrossed in your game. Something about the winds is mysterious. Apart from making your game very difficult, they have this beautiful scent of the flowers in them. Over all a must visit for the golf lovers and especially for those who cannot stay away from their games for long. This place does not even cost you much to enjoy a memorable game here.
Casino De Grasse
Name one person who does not have fun in a Casino. This is one thing that men and women enjoy alike. The best part about the
Casino de Grasse
is the themed evenings that welcome the guest. Based on culture, festivals and themes, his place totally rocks. The food is awesome and so is the ambience. There is a live band that can play numbers from all across the world and you would fall in love with the music almost instantly. Totally meant for the fun loving types, this place is fun and frolic combines with excellent betting tables and games. You would not feel like leaving this place after you have entered this once. The specialty here is the steak which is very well cooked.
And you do not need to be shelling tones of money to be the boss here. Reasonable menus and rational choices make you win both the game and the hearts. The staff is very simple and very courteous. They have the ability to solve all your problems and also, help you out if you need something at your disposal. You can spend the entire night just dancing to the guitarists and the lighting is just perfect at the right places to make you feel comfortable. The restaurant ensures that you enjoy your meal and the team continuously tries to keep you happy. What more do you want in a place?
is the fun lovers delight. This is one place in Grasse that will let you enjoy all the games on the big screens. So now you do not need to worry about the schedule of your favourite teams playing. You can very well watch a game with love and enjoy your drinks while you are at this classy Junction. The ambience is light and the music to soothe your nerves. It is not as chaotic as the other pubs, but the place is buzz with people all through. They also offer you the happy hours. This is another reason why you should be here at Grasse Castle Pub.
Pay for just one of your drinks and get the other one for free during the happy hours. Based on the design of an English Pub this place actually has the feel of a pub, not that of a bar or a café. Most of the crowd here is French and local and not a tourist hub. This makes you feel as comfortable as the local inhabitants here. The staff is expert in English and they would make you feel at ease instantly. A must visit again and again to chill and make some loud noise!
Grotto Saint Nezaire
Imagine a cave which is lined with musical stalagmites, this is the
Grotto Saint Nezaire
– A perfect place to visit for strange things and lovely excursions. While a precise trip takes just half an hour, you could spend the full day too if that is what interests you. The caves are dark and mysterious and have been left it their natural way without mush of pondering and changes. The underground depth of the caves makes it warmer in comparison to the outside. The narrow passages take you inwards further and you would not feel like coming back out again. These caves were very famous in the earlier war times and are very attractive tourist spots today.
You may not be able to classify this as an extended and a full fletched museum, but this place needs to be seen at least once in life for its simplicity and beauty. So once you are taken down , you would want to enjoy a bit more. Listen to the stories that the guides narrate with expertise making you almost live the moment. So there is also a story of the lake which is 90 feet below this layer of ground beneath your feet. That means you would have to dig deeper for 90 feet beneath your feet to reach this magical phenomena of nature. Make yourself comfortable and you would be able to belong to this place completely.
Spectacular views of the ground beneath you and beautiful lovely skies above you , this amusement park offers you the best rides and difficulty levels through the fun. Very well organized and with a very helpful staff, Riviera nature offers four difficulty levels of the rides. The loads of zip lines will keep you zapping and hanging upside down all day. The rides are according to the age groups and are surely the state of the art technology. A lot of emphasis has been paid to the safety and security of the rides to keep you safe while you are shrieking at the top of your lungs at the
. This place is a must visit if adventure and thrill is what you are looking for.
A stroll in the old town will acquaint you with the town, the people and the warmth of everything around you. Grasse is well disciplined and organized and welcomes all. Grasse is considered to be the biggest industry hub for the perfumes and proves employment to more than half of France. Not just the perfumes but the natural beauty of this place is incomparable to any other location in France. While walking down the town is the best idea, you can easily hire a vehicle here. Walking lets you shop and connect with the people. Shop till you drop is so aptly applied to this place. Grasse welcomes you into its fragrance!
Nothing treats you better that a warm place and Grasse will make you love it!