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This is a beautiful Provence Village, a hidden gem!

Little is known about the history of Biot between the end of Roman domination and the start of the Middle Ages. What is known for sure is that in 1209, the Count of Provence donated the small village to the Knights Templar.  Buying the surrounding lands, and sometimes through donations, the Knights Templar achieved the unification of the entire territory of Biot.

In 1307, Philip IV the Fair, King of France, started the suppression of the Knights Templar Order, presumably in order to get rid of his debt. In 1314, the last Grand Master of the Knights Templar Order, Jacques de Molay, was burnt at the stake in Paris. After the end of Knights Templar domination, Biot was donated to the Knights Hospitaller Order, which, in 1530, will become the Order of The Knights of Malta. Biot remained under their control until the French Revolution.

Biot had a tumultuous history, with difficult periods. The villagers lived a peaceful and organized life until the war of Succession of Queen Jeanne of Provence. After that, pillaging gangs and the Black Plague decimated the village. Biot and its church were devastated in 1387. In 1470, King René encouraged around fifty families from the Oneglia Valley in Italy to come and settle here, offering them various incentives. This action once again reinvigorated Biot, and a prosperous life started again.

During the 16th and 17th centuries, Biot extended its perimeter, and pottery manufacturing, starting mainly in the 16th century, enriched villagers' lives. In the 18th century, hard moments came back again. In 1707 and 1746 invasions partially destroyed the village and crops were devastated. In the 19th century, pottery and related activities declined. The trend continued at the beginning of the 20th century, the agriculture like wine making and horticulture becoming the main focus. These activities declined as well around the 1960s, with a pottery making revival around the 1970s.

Provence: Biot
Provence: Biot

How to get there:

By Bus: Frequent buses run from Antibes, on the French Riviera, to Biot, located only 5 km to the North.
If you drive: A good GPS will do the trick!

You can get all the info you need about Biot at the Tourist Office:

Office de Tourisme
46 rue St Sébastien
Tél. : 04 93 65 78 00

Walking from the Tourist Office, you will pass through the centre of the village, the "Place of the Arcades". Going further, you will notice the buildings, typical for Provence Medieval architecture, and narrow passages. At the end, you will reach the Church of Biot, rebuilt in the 15th Century. Once you enter, on the left, there is a splendid table, "The Virgin with the Rosary", the work of Louis Brea (1450-1523).

What makes Biot so special is not only its Medieval heritage, but also the "other Biot", the Biot of artisans and arts. The famous "Verrerie de Biot" is the landmark of the main local craft, the hand blown multicolor art glassworks. There are also pottery and ceramics workshops.

Biot is full of shops selling "Provençale" pottery, ceramics, and glassworks. With their lovely interior designs, and plenty of beautiful art works for sale, chances are that you will not leave them without buying something.

Enjoy your vacation!

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