Where is Le Coin de Manon?
Le Coin de Manon is situated in Provence between Toulon and Marseilles. The nearest international airport is Marseille (60 km) whilst the nearest beach is Bandol/Sanary or St Cyr sur Mer (10 km). A car is necessary as the house is situated in the vineyards and a drive away from the nearest town. If you are arriving by car, the closest motorway junction is Exit/Sortie 11(highway A50) Le Beausset (6 km from the house). The nearest ferry port is Toulon (25 km) and railway station is St Cyr sur Mer (10 km).
What is it like to stay at Le Coin de Manon?
Life at Le Coin de Manon is outdoor, sunshine living. Start your day with a long lazy breakfast under the shade of the pergola in the courtyard at the front of the house (seating 8 people). Spend your morning on sunbeds by the pool and lunch on cheese and fresh baguettes on the terrace under the hanging wisteria (seating 10-12 people). Explore the area in the afternoon and return to enjoy a sundowner on the Zanzibari terrace overlooking the vines and the medieval village of Le Castellet. Challenge your family and friends to a game of boules or simply relax by the fire in the beautiful stone summer dining area. (Please note: the summer kitchen is fully equipped with crockery, cutlery, glasses and all you need to make your outside entertaining a pleasure.)
What is there to do in the area?
There is plenty to do in this part of the world including cycling, mountain biking, horse-riding, swimming, golfing, hiking, sailing, eating out, wine tasting, sight-seeing or simply having a walk on the Cote d'Azur's wild side. Read here.
There are some lovely walks around Le Coin de Manon and a farm nearby where you can go horse riding. You can also explore the medieval village of Le Castellet, which is only a short distance away. Once there, you must visit the Office du Tourisme where they have all the information you might need about events and places to visit in the area. Le Castellet itself has many art galleries, restaurants and unique shops to discover.
Where can we shop for supplies?
Our closest supermarkets are in Le Beausset. We always use Carrefour which can be found by following the main road into the village, past the fire brigade and then half left at the round-about, straight past the turning (to the left) into the main square of the village and continue to the next round-about (where the road to the right goes in the direction St Anne d’Evenos). Carrefour is situated to the left ofthe round-about and sells everything you might need -lovely fresh fish, meat and vegetables in true French style. They also have a wonderful stall at the front door selling delicious olives, tapenade, etc. There is also a Casino supermarket but it's not usually as well stocked. For Casino, drive to the ‘Carrefour round-about and then take the road to the left. You will find Casino on your left after about 500 metres.
Croissants and delicious French pastries
Just 2km down the road into our little village Le Brulat du Castellet, there is a brilliant and very friendly boulangerie -perfect for your daily supply of bread and croissants. It is situated at the far end of the village on the main road coming in from Le Beausset. Make sure you get there early to avoid disappointment.
Newspapers and magazines
The Presse in Le Beausset next to the boulangerie (opposite the road from Casino) is very well stocked with international papers and magazines.
Most villages have regular market days. Le Beausset has a market in the main square two days a week. These are always colourful and cheerful events -a great way to shop for things like olives and fine cheese. The tourist offices in Le Beausset and Le Castellet will give you information on markets further afield. The market in Cassis, every Wednesday and Friday, is our absolute favourite.
Clothing and other shopping
For big shopping centres, you have the option of either driving 15 minutes along the highway to Toulon or 20 minutes in the other direction to Aubagne. Please note that during the summer holidays, these places are packed so if you'd prefer to avoid the crowds, we'd suggest staying by the pool!
Is there somewhere local we can eat out?
Opposite the boulangerie in Le Brulat is a fantastic local pizzeria. Here you can enjoy the lively atmosphere and dine on delicious slices of pizza. We also love Le Pied de Nez in Le Castellet looking out to La Cadiere and the sea beyond. They do excellent local dishes and the 'al fresco' dining experience is magic. For a quicker bite to eat, there is the Roy d’Uys Creperie. This is really a fast food restaurant but is excellent. For a more formal meal for special occasions, La Farigoule doesn't disappoint but please remember to book on 0494 32 6458.
Is there a beach nearby?
Bandol is our nearest beach and St Cyr is very close as well. There is also Les Leques and Sanary sur Mer that aren't too far. Each destination has plenty to entertain the littles ones. On the port at Sanary is the most beautiful old fashioned carousel.
Most of the coastal villages will offer watersports. We find that Bandol is particularly relaxed and friendly. Next to the casino on the left as you enter the village on the waterfront road from Le Beausset, you can hire jetskis, go waterskiing or send the kids out on doughnuts behind a speedboat. A couple of hundred metres further on, you will find the sailing club where you can hire a Hobiecat 15. In the Marina itself you will find motor boats for hire, and schools that will teach you how to drive them.
The summer evenings in this area are buzzing. After the heat of the day lying on the beach or by the pool, things seem to happen when it all gets cooler and the cicadas cease their song for the day. In fact, there are many different festivals, fireworks displays and evening markets all along the seafront.