Castellane is located at a height of 760 meter in one of the most sparsely populated areas of France. Castellane is a very old village with a long history. The first traces of habitation are from about 6000 years B.C. 40 million years ago the area was a sea. Next to the town hall you find an archaeological museum. On the Col des Lèques is a nice trail who takes you to an area with fossils of manatees. An observant hiker could find fossils, and even the remains (dolmen) of residents from the bronze age. The region has been occupied by the Romans and the Sarecens. Because of the many wars and quarrels in the turbulent middle ages the residents regularly search for shelter on the Rock. With a height of 180 meters this Rock was an almost impregnable natural fortress. In 977 Pon Arboud Aldebert built a castle on the Rock. The ruins of the castle are still present.
The church on the rock was built by monks in the late middle ages. Over the centuries it has fallen into disrepair. In 1590 and in 1860 the last repairs were carried out. Perhaps this is the reason of the strange architecture. Until 1900 the church was a popular pilgrimage site. Testimonies of miraculous cures are found in the church. Then there is also the legend of the Knights Templar who have hidden their treasures in this region. (movie)
Fortunately, these tumultuous times are past. Nowadays Castellane has about 1500 inhabitants. The historical appearance has been preserved and the bustling village became famous because of the location at the entrance to the famous Grand Cayon du Verdon. The central location on the Route Napoleon, offers the opportunity to make day trips to the coast. For example, the beach at Frejus is about 80 km. to Nice (90km). And to the mundane Monaco (100 km) or Saint-Tropez (100 km.)(Movie Castellane village)