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Utelle

 
The departement of the Alpes Maritimes - Pop.: 70 h.

45 Km from Nice.
Take the RN 202 heading for Digne then the D23 at St Jean La Rivière.
Utelle, le village
The municipality of Utelle is located at the confluence of the Var and the Vésubie, and includes several hamlets and even a few peaks (e.g. Tournairet at 2,034 m). .

Formerly this town had an important position as it was located on the crossroads of the mule trails linking
the Vésubie valleys. It was prosperous thanks to the salt trade, but today Utelle is no more than a very small medium altitude mountain village (70 inhabitants in winter, 300 in summer.

Utelle, terrace in the village
It is no easy task to get to Utelle, perched on a ridge, at the top of a steep slope where the olivie trees cling to the mountainside.

MBut you will be well rewarded by the panoramic view of the peaks of Haute Vesubie that can be enjoyed from the Tilleuls car park, at the entrance to the village.


Utelle, bell-tower

After stepping through an archway, which is the remains of a medieval surrounding wall, you will be enchanted by the atmosphere of the square with its coloured facades, its impressive 19th century fountain decorated with lion heads, the trompe-l'oeil pink and yellow murals, and in particular the church of Saint Véran.

The church of St Veran was originally Romanesque but was then rebuilt in the 16th century. It seems to be a monumental edifice for such a small village.

Utelle, bell-tower

Be sure to go inside and admire its blend of Romanesque style (nave with columns and capitals) and baroque style (amazing sculpted vaults with figures in stucco.


Close by is a White Penitents chapel listed as a historic monument. It is discretely baroque in style and its facade has been repainted in pale yellow. It can be visited on request.

Utelle, facade

As you take a stroll through Utelle's streets and small stepped alleyways, you will be able to admire the contrast between the pink and yellow roughcast facades and the old stone medieval houses in various states of disrepair.


Perhaps you will manage to decipher the mysterious patterns that decorate the lintels on several of the old doors: historians are still wondering about their meaning...


What to see:

St Véran Church (XVth and XVIth centuries).
White Penitents chapel.
17th century sundials.



Leisure activities:

Hiking (long-distance hiking path GR5 passes through here).
Horse-riding. Mountain biking.
Fishing.



Accommodation:

Hotel.
Holiday rentals.



Neighbouring towns and villages:

Duranus (14km), Lantosque (16km).







Provence and French Riviera
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Utelle en FranšaisUtelle in English
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Utelle
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Alpes Maritimes
Villages in the Alpes Maritimes (169)

Utelle, village square


Utelle, facade

Utelle, fountain




 
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