Sentier Botanique

The Sentier Botanique is one of the more well-known botanical trails in the hinterland of the Côte d'Azur and Dr Betts' Guide to it is was published in 2004.  Some of the path has changed since then in this land of rock falls and torrents, but much still endures and you can download the Guide here. The trail runs between Sospel in France and the Italian village of Olivetta, crossing the old frontier and skirting around the more recent (but now virtually obsolete) customs post. Following the River Bévéra for much of its length, the Sentier presents a great variety of habitats and, in consequence, plants. Open calcicolous grassland, olive groves, shady woods, gorges and ravines, rocky outcrops, springs and streams can all be seen along the way.  The altitude (about 350m AOD) means that the vegetation is intermediate between the coastal Mediterranean woods of Aleppo pine and downy or evergreen oaks and the montane coniferous forests and high alpine pastures.  Plants from both these biomes can be found along the path, the thermophilic ones that enjoy the hot aspect of the adret, and the umbricoles of the ubac.