Clinging to the top of a vertiginous cliff at an altitude of 760 m, Gourdon is a balcony overlooking the Loup gorges and the Mediterranean. Massed behind an imposing castle surrounded by gardens designed by Le Nôtre, the old houses have been well preserved and restored in this lively village animated by craftsmen.
The main historical highlight of Gourdon is the Castle of Gourdon (dating from the 9th century but rebuilt in the 16th century), which is surrounded by gardens designed by the famous André Le Notre. Only the gardens can be visited today.
Named after Queen Victoria, who came to visit Gourdon in 1891, the square opens onto an exceptional view of the Riviera. Sometimes, the horizon in the distance is indistinguishable, between the blue of the sky and the blue of the Mediterranean Sea.
The church of Saint Vincent de Gourdon was built in the 11th century as a chapel of the castle, in the Romanesque Provencal style. It was served by a small chapter for the service of the lord of the village. The existence of a church in Gourdon is confirmed by the confirmation by Pope Adrian IV, in 1158, of its possession by the bishop of Antibes, Raimond I. This belonging is confirmed in 1189 by the pope Clement III.
In 1605 the bishop of Grasse, Mgr Boucicault, made his canonical visit to the church of Gourdon. In 1617, the same bishop indicated that he found “the church brand new, built according to the order given on our last visit”. This is the only ancient act preserved concerning the present church. In 1623, the bishop notes: “the church, the walls in good condition … but the roof of the church will be covered if necessary”.
It is probably at this date that the castle chapel was restored and became a parish church. In 1610 the seigneury and the castle had just been bought by Louis Lombard. The castle was then completely renovated. The door which gave a communication with the castle was walled up. The current door with a triangular pediment, giving access to the second bay of the nave, was built in the 17th century.