Thoronet Abbey, one of the three Cistercian gems in Provence (along with Senanque and Silvacane) was built during the second half of the 12th Century. Set in a secluded spot in Darboussière forest, between Draguignan and Brignoles, the church and its cloister provide a wonderful illustration of the simplicity and sobriety of Cistercian architecture.
Quai de l'Abbaye 83340 Thoronet.
Tel.: (+33) (0)4 94 60 43 90.
Opening times: April to September: from 9:00am to 6:00pm.
October to March: 10:00am to 1:00pm and 2:00pm to 5:00pm.
Closed from 12:00pm to 2:00pm on Sundays and in 01/01, 01/05, 01/11, 11/11, 25/12.
Entry price: ?5.50 Euros.
Mass is sung by the Sisters of Bethlehem every Sunday at 12:00 pm.
The three openings on the western wall of the abbey represent the Holy Trinity.© brezina123 / 123RF
The location of the cloister was determined by the direction of the river.© brezina123 / 123RF
The chevet in the abbey-church is devoid of any form of decoration, in accordance with Saint Bernard's simplistic ideology.© Jaroslav Frank / iStock
The Cistercian cloister of Thoronet Abbey takes the form of an elongated trapezium.© brezina123 / 123RF
Thoronet Abbey is a day's walk away from the diocese of Frejus.© brezina123 / 123RF