France // The Côte d’Azur //

Fréjus and around

Fréjus – along with its neighbour St-Raphaël, 3km east – dates back to the Romans. It was established as a naval base under Julius Caesar and Augustus, and its ancient port – known as Forum Julii – consisted of 2km of quays connected by a walled canal to the sea (which was considerably closer then). After the battle of Actium in 31 BC, the ships of Antony and Cleopatra’s defeated fleet were brought here. Little remains of the Roman walls that circled the city, and the once-important port silted up and was filled in after the Revolution. Today you can see a scattering of Roman remains, along with the medieval Cité Episcopale, or cathedral complex, which takes up two sides of place Formigé, the marketplace and heart of both contemporary and medieval Fréjus.

The area between Fréjus and the sea is now the suburb of Fréjus-Plage, with a vast 1980s marina, Port-Fréjus. Both Fréjus and Fréjus-Plage merge with St-Raphaël, which in turn merges with Boulouris to the east.

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