The Parc Naturel Régional (PNR) des Préalpes d’Azur is a regional natural park extending broadly through the Grasse backcountry and well into the foothills of the Alps in the Alpes-Maritimes department. It is a rural, but inhabited territory, a living and dynamic territory, one that is delicately balanced and united by a common objective.
This area is nationally recognized for its tremendous natural and cultural heritage and unique, vastly varied landscapes. The PNR classification is awarded territories of remarkable character that also nurture sustainable development projects.
It is primarily a tool that facilitates expertise, activity development, education, dialogue, and mediation for the protection and promotion of many forms of heritage and to further local development.
What makes a PNR distinctive is the nature of the missions it pursues supporting the territory’s objectives, along with the absence of regulatory competence. It is a way to provide structure to projects.
* It devises, develops, and proposes innovative projects ;
* It provides its municipalities with services and guidance ;
* It expedites mobilization of funds ;
* It stimulates networking and forges partnership contacts ;
* It ensures coordination of preservation, management, and development initiatives within its territory via the various public authorities involved.
This territory, set between the French Riviera and the summits of the Mercantour, is composed of medium mountains, gorges, forests, and farming valleys, making it one of France’s great biodiversity treasures : the blend of Mediterranean and alpine influences in a protected region gives it exceptional natural depth and breadth.
The Parc Naturel Régional des Préalpes d’Azur can be visited year-round. It is a territory in motion with astounding cultural, linguistic, and historic heritage, enchanting hilltop villages boasting breathtaking views, savoir-faire specific to the region, and well-known personalities from both the past and the present.
A vast palette of local taste treasures exists here : honey and gingerbread, goat cheese, lamb, garden produce, raspberries, farm-fresh products, myriad products made from olives (such as oil and pasta), and more.
Some of these treats are specific to the territory, such as crystallized flowers, citrus liqueurs, and essential oils.
A story of landscapes and men
The landscape of the Préalpes d’Azur is an open book, easy to read and very educational. It tells the story of the relationship between the natural environment and the society that has occupied it for ten millennia.
Since Neolithic times, human activities have been weaving a tapestry across this landscape – forestry, grazing, farming – that must be viewed as a form of cultural heritage in and of itself.
You will find more information on the website of the Parc Naturel Régional des Préalpes d’Azur : www.pnr-prealpesdazur.fr