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In the south of France, along the coast of the magical Mediterranean, it’s time to celebrate Spring. Biggest and most exuberant of all celebrations is the carnival in Nice on the Cote d’Azur. Here, the processions of elaborate floats work their way up to a crescendo of gigantic decorations on the Place Masséna.

These massive, colourful parades take place day and night, with entertainment provided by over 1,000 musicians and dancers from around the world. This year, Nice carnival continues until  1st March and on Saturday 21st and 28th February there is a flower parade in the afternoon and a Carnival Parade of Lights in the evening.

Menton is also on the Cote d’Azur, close to Monte Carlo, and the Menton Lemon festival continues  until 4 March, with fabulous displays of citrus fruits and flowers.

The medeival village of Tourrettes-sur-Loup lies between the mountains and the sea and hosts a charming Violet festival on 21st and 22 February, celebrating the village’s role as a centre of cultivation of the beautiful, perfumed flowers.

Fluffly yellow Mimosa flowers are gorgeous, bright symbols of spring in warmer climes. Bormes-les-Mimosas, situated between Hyeres and Saint Tropez, holds a Grand Mimosa procession on 22nd February, and from here you can drive the mimosa route between the Maures mountains and the sea.

We’ve a range of gorgeous apartments and Provencal villas to rent in and around these towns and villages, for spring, summer and autumn holidays and fun short breaks beside the blue Mediterranean. Where will you stay for the flowers, floats and sunshine?