Discover the Harmas

Exploring the home and natural gardens, wandering through the rustic farmhouse: treat yourself to a unique experience and immerse yourself in the life of a 19th-century naturalist.

As you enter through the outer walls, you can see the house in the traditional mas style and the grounds totalling roughly one hectare (2.5 acres). When the Fabre family moved here in 1879, the property already included the house, with the exception of the left wing and the greenhouse, which J.-H. Fabre added to pursue his entomological and botanical research. At the time, it was surrounded by completely uncultivated land, known as harmas in Provençal. The Muséum has taken great care to preserve this unique atmosphere. As you make your way around the completely redesigned interior and exterior, you'll be accompanied by a sound system featuring recollections and quotations by J.-H. Fabre. Now, enjoy the visit...

Historic rooms and themed areas

Your introduction into the private world of the Fabre family begins in the understated dining room, where you will discover their family life as well as Fabre the poet, musician, and member of the Félibres group, dedicated to promoting the Provençal language. Upstairs in the left wing, the study and collections bear witness to the naturalist's insatiable curiosity. With their contemporary exhibition design, two completely renovated rooms and another, newly created, help to immerse visitors in the life and history of the naturalist. The herbarium and watercolours room reveals his keen artistic eye in the service of science. Further on, a room in the former kitchen now focuses on J.-H. Fabre and his times. This self-taught man was also a teacher. He wrote around a hundred school textbooks and popular works, in addition to his ten-volume Souvenirs Entomologiques. Take a look at his correspondence with Charles Darwin! Although the naturalist's fame came late, his influence is undeniable, and that's the whole point of the cinema, formerly the pantry.

Harmas Jean-Henri Fabre

Vue de l'Harmas Jean-Henri Fabre

© MNHN - P. Abel

Harmas Jean-Henri Fabre

© MNHN - A. Iatzoura

The scholar's pleasure garden and fallow land

The garden is a natural extension of the house. Thousands of plants now enrich its borders and beds. The fountain and ornamental pool, as well as the tastefully furnished terrace, invite you to linger in this charming green setting. In the "harmas" itself, the Muséum's gardeners have also preserved the spirit of the place by prioritising the introduction of species that are popular with insects, such as thyme and rosemary. As you wander around, explore the naturalist's favourite observation ground, and don't miss the four ingenious instruments he devised for observing insects!

1823 - 2023: bicentenary of the birth of J.-H. Fabre

To mark the bicentenary of the birth of J.-H. Fabre, the Muséum, which has owned the premises since 1922, undertook renovation work at the Harmas. Take advantage of a completely redesigned and modernised visitor trail that highlights the magic of the premises.


Harmas Jean-Henri Fabre

The one-storey house is flanked on the left by a wing that J.-H. Fabre had built for his study. A good way to isolate himself from...

In keeping with the spirit and atmosphere that J.-H. Fabre left behind at his "entomological laboratory", the property's original...

Notes de bas de page