Welcome to the Côte d’Azur! The French Riviera, home to sun, stars, and of course, Le Mas Candille, has lots on offer. Although it is well-known as a summer destination, the south of France is open and welcomes visitors all year long.

From adventure sports and skiing to spa days and art galleries, there is always something on.

Le Mas Candille is proud to be a part of one of France’s most visited and celebrated regions. Read our blog here for an extensive list of must-do activities on the French Riviera! Our guests join us from far and wide to enjoy our hospitality but also to discover the riches of our region, and we encourage them to do so.

In February, the Côte d’Azur plays host to the iconic Menton Lemon festival. Occurring annually, the lemon festival is an unforgettable sight. Being so closely located to Le Mas Candille, we encourage all of our guests to visit the event!

grasse views

A Celebration of Citrus

The Menton lemon festival, or the Fête du Citron, is an internationally-known event. Officially founded in 1928, it attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors every year and is an absolute must-see during your time on the Côte d’Azur!

But what actually is the lemon festival?

Much like the name suggests, the Menton lemon festival is a celebration of all things citrus. It usually takes place over the course of several weeks between the end of February and the beginning of March, at the height of the lemon season.

In 2020, the festival was scheduled to take place between February 15 to March 03 2020. While those getting involved can dig into their imagination for their works, each year does have a theme. This year, the theme was “parties around the world”. Unfortunately, this year’s celebrations were cancelled due to the global Covid-19 outbreak, however, the festival will go ahead as planned in 2021.

Thanks to Menton’s micro-climate and excellent location and temperature, the fruit is incredibly prevalent in the town. During the time of the festival, the town celebrates the fruit by creating larger-than-life constructions out of lemons and oranges. Which, yes, is exactly as fun as it sounds!

If you’ve ever wanted to see a life-sized elephant made out of oranges, this is the place to be!

A Festival for Everyone to Enjoy 

What can you expect to see at the lemon festival?

The squares and streets of Menton will be filled with massive lemon and orange sculptures. Take a walk through the beautiful town and explore all of the artistry, as well as soaking in all the sights and smells of the fruit.

As well as the installations, Menton hosts regular night and evening shows to illuminate the sculptures in the dark. Something for everyone in the family to enjoy, as this event is very popular with children.

The entire festival is very child-friendly and caters especially well to families. Like a proper festival, there is so much going on alongside the sculptures and installations themselves.

These include parades, such as the Corsos des Fruits d’Or (the Golden Fruit Parade) taking place every Sunday at the Promenade du Soleil. For this event, giant sculptures are paraded down the street and accompanied by musicians for an excellent party atmosphere!

Evening processions are often followed by firework displays over the stunning bay. A great half-day trip could include a walk around the streets in the afternoon, followed by a procession, dinner, and some fireworks.

The Jardin des Lumières (the Gardens of Light) are the hosts of the celebrated light show, in which the large fruit installations are involved in a phenomenal light and sound show. It is also worth heading over to the Palais de l’Europe, as it often hosts beautiful displays and evening shows.

Monaco Travel Guide

An Excellent Day Out on the Côte d’Azur

A visit to the Menton lemon festival, the Fête du Citron, is an absolute must for those visiting the Côte d’Azur this time of year. Not only is the brightly-coloured fruit festival an excellent pick-me-up from the usual monochrome of winter, but it is also an excellent chance to get to know the region that exists beyond the beaches and glamour.

Much like Mougins, Menton is a beautiful corner of the French Riviera and southern coast. With its alpine backdrop and stunning coastline, it is a popular destination. The lemon festival is a great excuse to discover this gorgeous town, so don’t miss out!

The festival is open to everyone and visitors do not need tickets to access the town and to view the installations. However, many of the parades do require tickets. Find out more on this on the official website here.

While visiting Menton, why not also pop along to Antibes and discover the historical seaside town? We find the best way to do so is on an excellent walking tours! Having tried this ourselves, we highly recommend for a great day out. Read our blog about them here.

Only a Short Distance from Le Mas Candille 

So what kind of sculptures will you be seeing on your visit? While the exact creations are never known for sure before each event, we can guarantee there will be something for everyone!

How about elephants, giraffes, and other safari animals? That would be sure to catch your eye!

Another special of the festival is entire buildings made out of lemons, oranges, and tangerines. And when we say entire buildings… we mean entire buildings! More than just the Eiffel Tower, you may sight the Taj Mahal or even a castle. Though these may not be life-sized…

Menton is easily accessible from Le Mas Candille in Mougins. Less than an hour’s drive away on a beautiful coastline route, the festival is perfect for a day trip. Whether you visited Le Mas Candille with your own vehicle and have parked it with us, would like to arrange a hire, or would like to arrange direct transport to the event, we would be happy to help.

Feel free to contact our excellent reception team ahead of time to arrange for transport to take you to the festival. We work with a range of trusted companies who know the roads and will get you there in perfect time. If you’re interested in more guidance on events, nearby towns to stop in or where to eat, ask our friendly reception staff! They’ll be able to guide you to the best there is. 

Sunset dinner table at Le Candille.

Get to Know the Region by Visiting One of its Most Well-Known Attractions 

One of Le Mas Candille’s strongest assets is its one-of-a-kind setting. Mougins is ideally located to explore the Alpes Maritimes, our region, thanks to its central location between the sea, the mountains, and the famous towns dotting the coastline.

The Menton lemon festival takes place between February and March every year. Be sure to book a weekend trip to catch the celebrations, or swing by for a day during your stay with us. We would be happy to arrange all of this if you give us a call on 04 92 28 43 43.