A hidden gem of art and gastronomy
Perched on a hilltop overlooking the purple and green landscapes of Grasse, Mougins is the quintessential medieval French town.
Winding cobbled lanes meander past softly painted homes, while the skinny Cyprus trees sway in the breeze. The breath-taking light of Mougins has been attracting artists for generations - Pablo Picasso spent the last 12 years of his life here.
There's also a rich gastronomic heritage. World-renowned chef Alain Ducasse cut his teeth under legendary Roger Vergé at Moulin de Mougins. There's much to discover in and around the village, which is an easy wander from Le Mas Candille.
See the lotus flowers in bloom at Etang de Fontmerle
If you visit from July to mid-September, the Fontmerle pond is a must. This is Europe's largest lotus colony, and at this time of year you'll see a multitude of massive, beautiful flowers burst into bloom.
The five hectare site is worth a look at any time of year, with more than 70 species of birds flitting between the trees and hiding amongst the undergrowth. A wonderful place for a relaxing stroll.
Step in the footsteps of Picasso and Churchill at Chapelle Notre Dame De Vie
The art and soul of Picasso are embedded in the town of Mougins, and nowhere is it more obvious than the Notre Dame de Vie. The grounds of this Medieval chapel inspired the painter, who once lived and worked at the priory next door.
The grounds include a monumental 1930’s tomb dedicated to the Guinness family, who once owned the estate and entertained famous people including Winston Churchill here. Like Picasso, he was so taken by the chapel that he was moved to paint it himself.
Get back to nature in Valmasque forest parc
The Valmasque Forest offers an array of walks, some challenging and some less so, around the rolling forested hills between Mougins and Vallauris. Stop at a clearing and unfurl your picnic or follow the trails all the way to Europe's largest lotus colony at Fontmerle.
See legendary paintings at Mougins Museum of Classical Art (MACM)
Escape the hazy heat of the Provence afternoon with a wander around MACM. The rich collection includes a diverse array of art from a range of eras. Admire paintings by the likes of Henry Matisse, Andy Warholl, Salvador Dali and Pablo Picasso (of course).
There's also an array of antiquities and ceramics from the Roman, Greek and Egyptian eras. Don't miss a gander at the world's largest collection of Roman Greco helmets.
Stroll alongside the Canal de la Siagne
The picturesque trail alongside the Canal de la Siagne has won acclaim for being one of the best easy hikes in Southeast France.
Winding trails follow the meandering route of the waterway, which in some areas burbles and flows like a brook. Overgrown foliage hangs romantically over the path, providing plenty of shade and an other-wordly atmosphere.
Take a guided tour of the village
One of the easiest ways to get your bearings and understand the cultural heart of Mougins is with a guided tour. The Côte d’Azur tourism board provides an audio guide, which you can listen to at your leisure.
So if you want to take your guided tour as the evening light spills across the sky, or first thing in the morning as the sleepy village slowly comes to life, the choice is yours.