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Porquerolles, a small island (12.54 km2; 4.84 sq mi) in France, is one of my favorite islands. You can find paradise in Porquerolles with all the things to do, restaurants to try, beaches to enjoy… the list is endless, but let me give it a bash from our visit to the island.
Much of the island is a national park and nature conservation area. This is thanks to the state having bought 80% of the island (in 1971) to preserve the landscape from development.
Since June 2018 you can view contemporary artworks at the Villa Carmignac opened its doors to the public in June 2018 in the beautiful surroundings of a national park, along with temporary exhibitions, a sculpture garden, and a rich program of cultural events.
The church (built 1849 – 1851) was listed on October 19th, 2019 as a “Monument Historique”.
On display, you will find the Stations of the Cross (1869) done by Joseph Wargnier, who was a soldier in recovery at the sanitary facility of Porquerolles.
Like most coastal forts the Alycastre squared pyramidal tower with an eight-pointed star enclosure and drawbridge gate entrance was built (between 1633 and 1637) to defend the coast and prevent entrance on the nearby beaches. It was closed to the public at the time of our visit, but still, a beautiful picture coming into Porquerolles by boat.
The Provence-style windmill is 200 m from Fort Sainte Agathe. In other words, when you visit the one, you might as well visit the other! It has been restored by the National Park of Port-Cros and guided tours are available in season.
The Sainte-Agathe fort (1531) has an old canon tower redeveloped over the centuries. The fort houses an exhibition tracing the history of Porquerolles and the actions of the National Park of Port-Cros. I loved the passages and how well maintained the fort is. The view from the outside terrace is a photo opportunity of note!
The lighthouse (1830) rises 84m above the sea. Although this powerful lighthouse is closed to the public, it’s worth a mention because its white light has a range of 54 km!
Emmanuel Lopez garden (one hectare of spectacular plants) is at the exit of the village. Here you will find plants from all over the world (South Africa, Australia, South America, South Asia, and Florida) adapted to the Mediterranean climate. Such as olive trees, laurels, cacti, and a high diversity of palm trees.
Access was free.
In closing, at sunset one fully understands that it’s a paradise in Porquerolles island. It is well worth a visit!
I’ve seen the most beautiful cliffs on the south coast, whereas on the north coast you have the port and the beaches of Notre Dame, La Courtade, and Plage d’Argent.
If you stay in medieval/historic Hyères you can’t go wrong. Not only is this the point from where you depart to the island, but you’ll love the harbor. From the castle, you’ll be treated to an amazing 360° view.