Chapelle Saint Quinis


Built on a raised bank, the St Quinis chapel dates from 1849.

It was built on the site of the original priory that became the centre of the parish in the 12th century before being destroyed in the 16thcentury Wars of Religion. A new sanctuary erected in 1638 was at risk of ruin as the hill crumbled, and had to be rebuilt in 1849.

The legend of the flying donkey originated at this site in the 17th or 18th century: On St Quinis’ day, a procession took place across the land, and the inhabitants were asked to clear the way in front of their doorways to allow the saint’s statue and its procession to pass through the narrow, sloping streets. One bad-tempered man announced that he would not clear the way, and that if the saint wanted to pass through, all he had to do was fly. One day, when he was making his way down from the la Roquette hill on his donkey, the animal suddenly picked up speed, slipped and went gliding over the ravine. The bad-tempered man was thrown to the ground. The inhabitants of Gonfaron believed this accident to be the saint’s act of vengeance, crying ‘Saint Quinis has punished him, the donkey has flown’. And so the legend was born that donkeys fly in Gonfaron.