Mimosa and Sea Urchins
Despite it being February, the coast of France bordering on the Mediterranean becomes bright yellow during this time of year.
Synonymous with the Mediterranean, I’ll never forget when I was in Italy during International Women’s Day. It’s the custom there to hand out Mimosa to every woman you see in the streets. I had quite the bouquet by the time I got back to my apartment!
Otherwise, this is also the month of sea urchins (oursins).
A lot of the action in Provence is on the coast in February. Comment below if you’ve ever been to any of these events, or if you have any more suggestions.
February Events in Provence
Salon de la Pâtisserie – Marseille
Instead of the chocolate festival this year, there’s a festival in Marseille celebrating all that is wonderful about complicated French pastry. Tens of exhibitors giving tips, recipes and tastings. A gourmet excursion! Located in Parc Chanot.
Fête du Mimosa – St Maxime
One of the many Mimosa festivals on the coast this month. Celebrate this fragrant yellow flower carnival style. The festival kicks off the beginning of the flowering season where you’ll be able to hike along the Provencal coast while admiring the abundance of this wildflower.
Feb 17- March 3rd
Carneval – Nice
There are all kinds of events that happen during Nice’s Carnival. Think of a toned down version of Rio’s carnival. Every bit as colourful. Check out the website for more.
11 February – 1st of March
84ème Fête du Citron (Lemon Festival) – Menton
Another event with all kinds of activities including parades, gastronomy, films and more. Celebrate the lemon! Something that I must always have in my kitchen. This year, the theme is Bollywood! You’ll encounter exhibitions of citrus patterns and golden fruit parades.
Feb 4th, 11th, 18th and 25th
Oursinades (Sea Urchin Festival) – Carry le Rouet
Since 1960, this small town has been paying homage to the artisanal fishing, as they call it, of the sea urchin. With each sea urchin picked by hand, by experienced divers, it’s impossible not to appreciate their luxuriousness. Are you a fan? Here, you’ll find flea markets as well as be able to buy large platters of all kinds of seafood to eat at long communal tables or on the rocks by the sea. Be aware- the rosé flows at these events.
If you’re worried about opening them- you use scissors. A local will for sure help you out. Eat just with lemon juice on a butter biscuit or bread. Also called the “coral of the sea,” sea urchins are very rich and considered a delicacy here in Provence.
350 stands with all kinds of goods on offer for bargains.Articles for the home, well being, cars, and gastronomy. A little or everything!
Feb 2nd – March 2nd
Les Hivernales – Avignon
Dance performances, workshops and photography exhibitions with a focus on contemporary dance.
Sentier de Mimosa – along the coast
Click on the link to find the best places along the coast (130 km of it!) for hikes among the mimosa trails.
Marché aux Truffes
Truffle markets occur normally very early in the morning, and with some secrecy. The best known in the area are Richeranches (great atmosphere) and Carpentras.
Photo Novel – Marseille Mucem
Marseille’s European Civilization museum exhibits Photo Roman. Their description:
“Invented in Italy in 1947, the photo-novel was the greatest editorial success of the post-war period and would remain the best-seller in Mediterranean popular literature for more than two decades. Its readers – for the most part women – numbered in the millions. The magazines in which they were published were passed along from person to person, so it is estimated that one in three French people read photo-novel in the 1960s.
Jealousy and betrayal, tender kisses and broken hearts, convertibles and microwaves, Dolce Vita and class struggle: Photo-novel is a saga full of surprises, twists and love at first sight. An experience not to be missed under any circumstances!”
Lookout for many small exhibitions during the month of February exploring the idea and feelings of love. For Valentines Day-of course!
Until March 11th
Curious about the new large exhibition space and funky building going up in Arles? There’s free tours of the currently unfinished space for locals in both French and English? Contact them to reserve. Visits last 1.5 hours and are usually Wednesdays and Sundays. Make a day of it and eat at Le Refectoire. The food is delicious! Though, it’s a cafeteria system. Also, see the exhibition on Jean Prouvé.
For reservations of the tours:
e-mail à firstname.lastname@example.org / Tel. : +33 9 67 12 51 56.