Hyères (main town)
|Community association||Toulon Provence Méditerranée|
|surface||132.38 km 2|
|Residents||55,588 (January 1, 2017)|
|Population density||420 inhabitants / km 2|
Old town of Hyères
Hyères [ jɛːʀ ] (also: Hyères-les-Palmiers , Provencal Ieras [ ˈjeɾɔ ] or Iero [ ˈjeɾɔ ]) is a French commune and port town with 55,588 inhabitants (as of January 1, 2017) on the Mediterranean coast in the Var department in the Provence region -Alpes-Cote d'Azur . Hyères is the capital of the canton of Hyères and is partly part of the canton of La Crau in the arrondissement of Toulon .
Hyères is the southernmost municipality of the Var département and is located between Toulon and Le Lavandou and has 55,588 inhabitants (as of January 1, 2017). It is the southernmost city in Provence and a popular seaside resort.
The city is located on the south side of the mountain range Les Maurettes , part of the Massif des Maures , at the base of the peninsula of Giens . The Îles d'Hyères , which geologically also belong to the Moors massif, lie in front of the city and peninsula .
The headland that connects Giens with the mainland forms two extensive bays in front of the city with a total of 35 km of sandy beach , which also offers space for larger tourist flows. The bay of Almanarre is one of the most popular windsurfing and kiteboarding areas in France.
The area of the municipality covers an area of more than 132 km² and the towns of Les Salins, L'Ayguade, Les Borrels, Sauvebonne, Le Port, La Capte and Giens and the three island towns Porquerolles , Port-Cros and Le Levant, which are not directly connected to the urban area .
Hyères is divided into three cantons , the city being only the capital of the cantons Hyères-Est and Hyères-Ouest , each with around 25,000 inhabitants. A small part of the municipality with around 600 inhabitants belongs to the canton of La Crau .
The climate in Hyères is a distinct Mediterranean climate with mild and humid winters and hot, dry summer months. In July, precipitation reaches its minimum with an average of significantly less than 10 mm, the average daily maximum temperatures reach 28 ° C in summer. The average low temperature reaches its minimum in January and February at 5 ° C.
The second determining factor of the climate in Hyères is the mistral . The city benefits from the dry and relatively cool northwest winds in several ways: On hot summer days, it softens the heat in the city, and provides a reliable basis for the surf and kite offerings in the bay. On the other hand, it increases the risk of fire due to its dryness and endangers smaller boats due to the unusually heavy swell that it can cause.
The area of today's city of Hyères has been inhabited by humans for over 5,000 years. A cup stone on the hill of Castéou above the city testifies to this .
The first settlement in historical times dates from around the 4th century BC. BC, when Greek sailors established a fortified maritime trade office in the area known as the Almanarre , which they named Olbia ( the lucky one ). The place created there existed until the fall of the Roman Empire.
The current name of the city appears for the first time in the years 963 and 964 in two sources. A bull from Pope Leo VIII and a document from Conrad III. of Burgundy approved and confirmed the assignment of Hyères and its surroundings to the Benedictine Abbey of Montmajour . The documents mention the salt pans and the fishing grounds of the municipality called Eyras . After the Saracens were driven out by William I of Provence , the place, including the Îles d'Hyères, fell to the Lords of Fos in 972 , who had the castle built on the Colline de Castéou in the first half of the 11th century .
Hyères was the first place on the French Mediterranean to be visited by the English upper class in the late 18th century, making it one of the birthplaces of tourism in France . Regular guests to the city included Queen Victoria and Robert Louis Stevenson . Towards the end of the 19th century, luxury tourism shifted towards Nice , Cannes and Monte-Carlo .
|Sources: Cassini and INSEE|
Since the 1960s, Hyères has seen population growth well above average due to strong influx.
Culture and sights
The ancient city of Olbia
The ancient city of Olbia is on the D 559 in the direction of Carqueiranne . Greek navigators built in the 4th century BC The fortified trading post of Olbia with a port on the Gulf of Giens. Small, fortified port ports of this type were part of the defense strategy to ward off attacks by Gallic pirates on Greek merchant ships. In the first century BC The Romans took over Olbia. The port was named Pomponiana, but did not lose any of its economic importance. With the fall of the Roman Empire , Olbia also lost its importance. In 578, Guntram I , king of the Franks, destroyed the settlement . At the beginning of the 13th century, 600 years after the decline of the ancient city, a Cistercian abbey was built, which was abandoned in the 14th century. The ruins of the ancient city are now the site of archaeological excavations and can be visited with an expert guide.
The medieval old town is well preserved. With its location on the slope of the Casteou, one of the foothills of the Maurettes, it dominates the lower level and offers a wide view of the sea and the offshore islands. Some structures are classified as monument historique :
- The ensemble of fortifications includes the old town in the north of Hyères. The complex dates from the 13th and 14th centuries. Fortification walls with square towers and the four city gates Porte de Baruc , Porte de Fenouillet , Porte de Saint-Paul and Porte de La Rade surround the old town center.
- The Templar Tower ( Tour des Templiers , also Chapelle Sainte Blaise ) was built by the Templars in the 12th century . In 1673 the brotherhood of the Commanderie de Beaulieu took over the building and the original castle walls were torn down. It served as the town hall until 1913; today it is a courthouse and shows changing exhibitions.
- The Saint Paul monastery also dates from the 12th-13th centuries. Century, but was significantly rebuilt between the 15th and 16th centuries. It shows collections of votive pictures and two reliquary shrines.
Parks and green spaces
For its numerous green areas, gardens and parks, Hyères was awarded a ville fleurie ( city in bloom ) and received a gold medal in the European competition .
- The Jardin Olbius Riquier is in the south of the city. It is both an ornamental garden and a botanical garden in which numerous exotic and rare plants are cultivated. With its shady paths, games and entertainment for children, a zoo, greenhouse and a small lake, it offers an attractive range of recreational opportunities on an area of 7 hectares . The name of the park goes back to Olbius Hippolyte Antoine Riquier , from whose legacy it came into the property of the city in 1868 and initially became a branch of the Jardin d'Acclimatation in Paris.
- The gardens of the Parkhotel and the casino extend the green vein in the modern center of the city. They were newly laid out in 1990 and 2000 in the style of the 19th century and planted with roses, orange trees and hedges.
- The Park Saint Bernard with the Château Saint-Bernard on the Montée de Noailles offers a wide view over the peninsula of Giens, the bay and the islands of Hyéres. The publicly accessible park lies below the Villa Noailles, planned by Robert Mallet-Stevens in 1923, for the Count and art patron Noailles, who had this garden laid out. In addition to exotic plants, the park also gives plenty of space to the Mediterranean flora.
- The Villa Castel Sainte-Claire with its park was created by Olivier Voutier (1796–1877), a French naval officer and archaeologist who discovered the Venus de Milo . His grave is also in the park of the villa. The villa is located near the Saint Bernard park on the hills above the city and is connected to it by a small path. Later the property belonged to the American writer Edith Wharton (1862–1937). Today the 6500 m² property, in which rare South American and Australian plant species grow, is owned by the city of Hyères. The Castel was the first building in the once deserted areas of the upper old town, which had been rebuilt and expanded since the middle of the 19th century.
The area of Hyères includes the peninsula of Giens and the offshore Îles d'Hyeres, which not only offer a wide range of bathing and sports tourism, but also have a cultural heritage that is worth seeing.
- The small village of Giens is dominated by the remains of the Château des Pontevès . The place is located on the peninsula of the same name, a former island that is now connected to the mainland by a long headland.
- In the east of the peninsula is the Tour Fondue , which was built as a defensive structure in the 17th century and later rebuilt. Its building complex includes accommodation and a powder store.
- The island of Porquerolles not only has a large nature reserve, but also a number of scattered fortifications. Fort Sainte Agathe was built on the top of the hill overlooking the small island village and the port . The terrace of the tower offers a wide view over the roadstead of Hyères and the bay of Porquerolles.
- Around the island of Port-Cros there is also the Port-Cros National Park , which is also popular with divers.
The town twinning with Rottweil was decided in 1970 and goes back to contacts of Rottweiler war returnees with the Anciens combattants prisonniers de guerre from Hyères. The partnership with Koekelberg was sealed in 1977.
One of the most important activities of the town twinning is the regular student exchange between the schools in the communities.
Economy and Transport
The Toulon-Hyères International Airport (TLN) (La Palyvestre) is located four kilometers southeast of the city center on a sandy plain near the coast. As early as the beginning of the 20th century, the area was used as an airfield for private flights. When the marshland was drained in the 1920s, the French Air Force began using the area and eventually took it over as an official base and military airfield . The airport has been used commercially again since 1966, but the army remained present in the area. In 2012 there are direct flights to and from Nantes , Bordeaux , Rotterdam , Tunis , Brest , London , Brussels and Paris .
Hyères is the end of a short railway line from Toulon . A pair of TGV trains runs here every day on a continuation of the LGV Méditerranée high-speed line , which connects the city with Paris in four and a half hours . From Hyères via Toulon to the start of the high-speed line, the TGV runs on a normal-speed line. There are also local transport connections ( Transport express régional ) to Toulon and Marseille.
sons and daughters of the town
- Paul Berna (1908-1994), author
- Hermann Fehling (1909–1996), German architect
- Alain Senderens (1939–2017), French nouvelle cuisine chef
- Lucien Aimar (* 1941), racing cyclist
- Christophe Dal Sasso (* 1968), jazz musician
- Stéphane Ortelli (* 1970), Monaco racing driver
- Benoît Vétu (* 1973), cycling trainer and former track cyclist
- Julien Sandrel (* 1980), writer
- Fabien Sanchez (* 1983), racing cyclist
- Antoine Hoang (* 1995), tennis player
Associated with Hyères
- Edmond Tulasne (1815–1885), botanist and mycologist, died in Hyères.
- Gustav von Bonstetten (1816–1892), Swiss archaeologist, owned a villa and died in Hyères.
- Paul Bourget (1852–1935), writer, owned a villa in Hyères.
- Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894), Scottish writer, lived in Hyères from 1882 to 1884.
- Edith Wharton (1862–1937), American writer, owner of the Sainte-Claire park and castle.
- Georgi Ivanov (1894–1958), Russian poet, died in Hyères.
- Yann Arthus-Bertrand (* 1946), photographer, lives on the island of Port-Cros .
- Benoîte Groult (1920–2016), French journalist, feminist and writer, died in Hyères.
- Hyeres . In: Meyers Konversations-Lexikon . 4th edition. Volume 8, Verlag des Bibliographisches Institut, Leipzig / Vienna 1885–1892, p. 842.
- Ville de Hyères (French)
- Hyères Les Palmiers Tourist Office (multilingual)
- German description of Hyères