What to Do in the French Riviera!
We hope that our recent newsletters have helped you with your travel arrangements and your restaurant reservations for the forthcoming FIDI Congress in Cannes.
During your visit, we encourage you to take some time and enjoy the beauty of the city and the surrounding areas. To help you with your sightseeing plans, we present you with some suggestions based upon the time you have available.
For those traveling to France, the latest COVID update is as follows:
- French authorities will end the “COVID Pass” requirement from March 14, avoiding the need to show any document to enter restaurants and bars.
- The requirement to wear a face mask in indoor settings will also end on March 14, except on public transport or if required by the establishment.
Finally, a reminder that you will need to show that you have had all three shots of a European approved vaccine to avoid testing prior to your arrival in France. Approved vaccines Pfizer/BioNTech, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson , AstraZeneca, and Novavax.
More travel information available on this link
A Walk on La Croisette
La Croisette is one of the most famous streets in France. La Croisette runs along the 1.6 kilometer (1 mile) stretch of the Cannes seafront. You will find plenty to see along the palm tree lined street which is home to the best hotels, casinos, and boutiques. You will also pass the iconic Palais des Festival where you can have your photo taken on the famous steps.
La Mairie de Cannes & Marché Forville
Located within a few minutes of each other, La Mairie de Cannes (the Town Hall) and Marché Forville (Forville Market) are well worth a visit.
The Town Hall was designed by Cannes’ architect Louis Hourlier and completed in 1877 and has a bandstand opposite. The building is a good example of French architecture from the Third Republic.
Then enjoy an authentic French experience at the Forville market. The building is not attractive, but inside you will be impressed by the range of cheese, sea food and other products at the many stalls. Simply watch the local people as they buy their local produce or enjoy some oysters or paella for lunch.
Le Suquet is a Roman settlement in the oldest area of Cannes. The neighbourhood is a great way to learn what the city was like in the 18th and 19th centuries before it became a tourist destination. Enjoy the cobbled streets, bars and restaurants with fantastic views of the bay.
While in Le Suquet, visit the Notre-Dame d’Espérance, the gothic church built in the 14th and 15th centuries
3-4 Hours to Spare?
Mougins and Grasse
Both of these locations can be seen on one trip as Mougins is on the way to the perfume centre of France in Grasse.
Mougins is a very charming fortified city and a former home of Pablo Picasso. You can park at the city gates and then walk the narrow streets. A nightmare for moving companies but a beautiful sightseeing trip as you get lost among the art galleries and specialty ships that line the streets. Please note that some of the walking may be difficult for people with disabilities.
After Mougins, you can head to Grasse to sample some perfume. There are two main perfume shops called Fragonard and Molinard. Fragonard has several shops in the area, but we recommend the downtown location which also offers free tours. You can also learn more about the history of the perfume industry at the International Perfume Museum, located close to the shop.
We suggest a walk in the many pedestrians streets and to park your car in this parking garage.
If you are ready for lunch, Grasse is also home to great restaurant, Jacques Chibois that we mentioned in our restaurant guide.
Biot is a small medieval hilltop village between Nice and Cannes with winding cobblestone streets on the fort.
Biot is known for its cubist art museum as well as its handmade glass, plates with a bubble inside.
Visit the Verrerie shop that includes a large international glass art gallery as well as watching how the glass is made. If you make a reservation, ahead of time, you can also learn how to make your own glass.
Juan les Pins and Antibes
For those that enjoy a scenic drive, a visit to Juan Le Pins and Antibes will be right up your street.
Parking at the beauty spots along the coast should also be much easier in April compared to the summer tourist season.
The high-class resort of Juan-les-Pins is well-known for its sandy beaches and promenade that features many smart outdoor restaurants and fashion boutiques. A walk into the town will find you in narrow streets that are home to cocktail bars and nightclubs.
As you drive on you will pass through the forested Cap d’Antibes peninsula with its grand villas that separates Antibes from Juan-les-Pins. Antibes is known for its old town surrounded by 16th-century city walls and Fort Carré that overlooks the luxury yachts moored at the Port Vauban. The city is also home to the Picasso Museum.
East to Nice and Monaco
Taking the highway east from Cannes or by driving along the coast through Antibes and you will arrive in the port city of Nice. Take some time to see the port, visit Massena Square and stroll along the Promenade des Anglais. If you are hungry or thirsty stop at the Hotel Negresco for a drink or a meal.
Carry on driving east from Nice and you will arrive at Cap Ferrat with the beautiful Villa Ephrussi, a lovely house and French garden. Cap Ferrat is also home to the Four Seasons Hotel with a very large salt water pool in front of the sea where you can enjoy your lunch.
After Cap Ferrat you can continue along the coast with commanding views of the ocean and arrive in the millionaire’s paradise of Monaco. You can park your car in one of the numerous underground parking areas and take time to visit the iconic sights that you have seen in magazines.
“Be seen” in Casino Square, enjoy a drink and people watching at the Cafe de Paris and stroll along the sea front “Promenade of Champions”. Motor racing fans can visit the famous areas of the track that you have watched many times on television.
Here is a map of Monaco and more information.
On the way back stop in the village of Eze and enjoy the 2 Michelin Stars restaurant, Chevre D’or.
Return to Cannes on the highway (about one hour) or the roads along the sea (90 minutes to 2 hours).
West to Saint Tropez
Saint Tropez is located about 20 miles from the nearest highway exit, so we suggest you take a drive along the sea as a better alternative.
You will pass by the beach called the Plage du Midi and the Pullman Casino Hotel where you can stop for a drink or an outdoor meal by the ocean.
Drive on and you will arrive in the city of Theoule. This is charming city by the sea and you can also enjoy a mid-level hike in the Parc de la Pointe de l’Aiguille. Further west along the coast will take you past the cities of Saint Raphael and Sainte Maxime which are also nice places to stop at one of the numerous beach bars.
You will then arrive in the famous city of Saint Tropez. There is a large parking area at the entrance to the city which is walking distance from the main attractions and narrow shopping streets. Have a drink at the well-known Senequier Bar or eat at La Petite Plage with a menu from Three Michelin star Chef Eric Frechon. If you are on a smaller budget, there are many bars and restaurants for watching the yachts and people in Saint Tropez!
When you’re done with shopping we strongly recommend the 20 minute drive to Port Grimaud, a beautiful city full of canals, nicknamed “Small Provencal Venice”.
The return journey to Cannes will take you about 75 minutes.
Please don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions or concerns.
And remember, in addition to sightseeing tips, we also offer fine international moving services!