Grimaud is a very nice medieval village located in Côte d'Azur, not far from Saint-Tropez. It is different village from Port Grimaud, which is located at the seaside. On the contrary, Grimaud is classic village perché. In the village area there is also a mill and a castle.
Port Grimaud is called "French Venice" or "Mini Venice". It is fabulous town built purposely to be just like Venice. It is located seven kilometres south-west of Sainte Maxime and about six kilometres east of Grimaud. The town was the dream of Alsatian architect François Spoerry who in 1962 bought the marshy areas at the mouth of the river Giscle. It has been built with all channels in a Venetian manner, but with the houses having French "fishermans" style similar to those in Saint Tropez.
We will try to park the car in such a way as to be close to the castle and the mill, and to keep in mind that we also want to visit the village itself. The most suitable parking lot is located on the Piste Serge Fougère street (GPS: 43.275943, 6.521450). First we're going to visit the mill, then we'll go to the ruins of the castle and finally go down to the town.
The mill of St. Roch (A; GPS: 43.277239, 6.522543) is located on a small hill just opposite to the ruins of the castle. This mill, dating from the seventeenth century, has been restored to its full functionality in 1990. Next to the mill there is located a large cross. From the hill you have a beautiful view of the ruins of the castle and its surroundings. Nearby the mill you can also find an interesting Pont des Fées bridge (B; GPS: 43.278415, 6.520479) on the river La Garde. It is a remnant of the aqueduct that supported water from the hills.
After visiting the mill we want to have a close look at castle ruins (C; GPS: 43.274909, 6.521314). We return the same way that we went to the mill, and then enter the path to the hill on which the ruins of the eleventh-century castle are located. The buildings have been partially restored. When you enter the castle grounds you are plunged into a nearly thousand-year history. The views are also breathtaking.
To visit the town we just descend from the castle on the available path. Then we walk along the narrow, flowered, beautifully looking streets. On the lower level, at Rue du Cabro d'Or, there is a seat of local government and the St. Michael church from the 11th century (D; GPS: 43.274063, 6.522900). Going forward, we pass the Place Vieille (E; GPS: 43.273549, 6.522541), which is traditionally a place to play pétanque and then we also see a tourist information center (F; GPS: 43.272845, 6.521598).
After visiting the beautiful village of Grimaud, we go to Port Grimaud, which was built on the model of Venice. The drive via roads D558, D14, D61 and D61A takes approx. 15 minutes, and we eventually park the car in the large parking lot located at the entrance to the town (GPS: 43.275566, 6.579306).
We enter the town on a bridge built over the outer canal and then via gate "Porche Poterne" (G; GPS: 43.275061, 6.579540). Then we go to the Place du Marché (H; GPS: 43.274437, 6.580681), from which we can take a walk to another "island". There are many such "islands" in the town and if you have time, you may explore them because they differ from each other. Even better is to explore the town by boat - a 20-minute tours are organized for tourists throughout the day. From the town you can also sail to Saint-Tropez, Sainte-Maxime and Fréjus. You can visit the beach, both on the northern (I; GPS: 43.275903, 6.583701) and southern (J; GPS: 43.270446, 6.585389) side on the town. Every Thursday there is a traditional Provence market in the town - it is the next point of the visiting program to complete.