We stopped in Eze, high above Monaco on the south coast of France for the night on the way back to Italy from Spain.
We stayed at a hotel at the bottom of the rocky hill where the town perches.
The entrance to the medieval village is through the Poterne, which actually means hidden door. In ancient times it was made up of a series of doors and a drawbridge over a moat. I guess you really had to want to get in back then.
It is different now, visitors are welcomed through the door into the Placette, small square at the beginning of the Rue Brec which goes towards the parish church. Enjoy a crepe on the way.
…and the view over the edge.
Eze clings to an arid rocky peak and has always suffered water shortages. Throughout its history the inhabitants were forced to draw water from one of the 2 village cisterns. In 1930 a fountain was installed, with the water being pumped from Bass Corniche on Eze canal. It wasn’t until 1952 that a water supply reached the houses.
When you walk to the top of the town along the gorgeous stone streets lined with stone houses it is easy to see the difficulties there must have been to bring facilities to the residents. Life must be a bit easier now, and it would be a beautiful place to spend your days…take a look.
We found a restaurant with a view over the coast and watched the sun go down and the lights appear.
The restaurant had an outdoor terrace, but it was a bit too cool to be there…next time.
The next morning we were out bright and early to make our way all the way to the top of Eze to see the gardens.
After WWII the municipal council of Eze created a botanic garden with the help of Jean Gastaud, creator of the Exotic Garden of Monaco. Because of the poor soil and arid conditions cactuses, agaves and aloes were chosen with great success. Originally called the Exotic Garden, it was renamed Garden of Eze in 2004.
Above the gardens are the ruins of a castle built during the second half of the 12th century by a noble family of Eze. The castle was destroyed in 1706.
The views from the top make the steep climb worthwhile.
We had one last look at Eze on the way back to the main road, and home to Bagni di Lucca. This was our second visit to Eze, it won’t be the last.