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About Valbonne

French Riviera, France

Valbonne lies approximately 10km due north of Cannes and the Mediterranean and is perhaps one of the few towns on the Riviera which do not follow the traditional path of tourism. Less than fifty years ago the ‘town’ had a population of only approximately 1,300 hundred residents, while today that number has increased tenfold to just over 13,000. The main reason for this is the town’s connection with the technology park at Sophia Antipolis, which is only 5km away. As a consequence, while the population has increased rapidly, the town centre has remained fairly untouched and retained much of its medieval charm and character.

A short history of Valbonne

Though traces of human habitation can be traced back as far as the Iron Age, the area of Valbonne was only referred to as Vallis Bona up until 1519 when the village which is now Valbonne was first inhabited. Built alongside the abbey, the village was instigated by Augustin de Grimaldi and built by the monk Don Taxil, who imported Italian artisans to create a Roman style village. Unlike many other towns in and around the French Riviera, Valbonne’s hilltop location is not centred around a spiral road system, but instead the village comprised ten streets crossed by ten further streets. Valbonne is also a commune divided in to two parts, the old medieval town and as mentioned, the new technology park at Sophia Antipolis.

tourist attractions in Valbonne

Ordinarily one would want to talk about tourist facilities when discussing a town on French Riviera, but as mentioned, Valbonne is different and the facilities to hand are based more on a technological front than for pure entertainment. The technology park at Sophia Antipolis is quite remarkable considering its location. At present it is believed to hold over 1,000 companies who employ over 25,000 staff, yet all of this started when the University of Nice chose to relocate parts of campus up in to the hills above the city, so creating a new centre for research and development. The actual park now extends to over 2,500 hectares and its expansion has also seen the creation of the three new municipalities of Roquefort-les-Pins, Colle-sur-Loup and Villeneuve-Loubet.

festivals and events in Valbonne

The main attraction to Valbonne is the period architecture. Though there are art galleries or visit and Valbonne is home to the international glass maker Ada Loumani who both works and displays his creations at La Galeria. The buildings which remain include the 13th century Abbey built by Benedictine Monks and which has been undergoing continuous renovation since the 1970’s and which now contains the ‘Vieux Valbonne’ museum.

gastronomy in Valbonne

The place des Arcades is in the centre of town and the hub of the gastronomic community. Amazingly, with a registered population of 13,000 residents, Valbonne and surroundings boasts over 50 restaurants, though this is predominantly due to the number of people employed at Sophia Antipolis. All tastes are catered for and through a sense of competition, plus being slightly off the beaten track as far as the more traditional French Riviera town, prices are extremely affordable. The joy of good local food can be sampled at restaurants such as Le Coin Gourmand and Le Valbonnais.

recommended restaurants in Valbonne
Château de la Bégude rte de Roquefort les Pins F - 06650 Valbonne
Phone: +33 4 93 12 37 00
Daniel Desavie 1360 rte d'Antibes F - 06560 Valbonne
Phone: +33 4 93 12 29 68
Le Mas des Géraniums Route de San Peyre F - 06660 Valbonne
Phone: +33 4 93 77 23 23
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villa rentals in the Valbonne area
The Frogs House

Looking for an unforgettable experience in a typical French village, 15km from Nice and the French Riviera ? Come to enjoy our 7 cosy bedrooms with views to the sea and over the surrounding hills.

  • Villa Belmonte "Villa Belmont" is a brand new luxury villa in the beautiful old village of Biot in the South of France.
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