At least 200 firefighters battled the Alisal fire, which had scorched 21 square miles (54 square kilometres) along coastal Santa Barbara County and was only 5% contained, county fire officials said.
Authorities urged people to stay well away from the blaze, near the village of Gonfaron, about 50km (30 miles) west of the Riviera tourist town of St Tropez.
The winds weren’t expected to reach the ferocious speeds that helped the Dixie Fire explode in size last week. As of Sunday, the fire had destroyed 489,287 acres (198,007 hectares), authorities said, up from the previous day's 447,723 acres.
The fire has destroyed more than 200 homes and killed two people since it broke out Tuesday near the village Ruidoso, a vacation spot that draws thousands of tourists and horse racing fans every summer.