French Riviera Itinerary
Despite the numerous vacation destinations that have come and gone throughout the years, the French Riviera remains a timeless classic. Full of beauty, elegance, class and frequented by the likes of Elizabeth Taylor and Brigette Bardot, the lost era of romanticism is captured from the shores of Monaco to Saint-Tropez. But don’t mistake classic for antiquated. Sprawling beaches, Michelin-star restaurants and luxury boutiques keep the region modern and highly sought after. Still a hotspot for the rich and famous, there is always a plethora of luxury indulgences. Yet, juxtaposed with the decadence, the French Riviera still holds a unique charm in its quaint towns and local gastronomic haunts. Sail through the waters of Côte d’Azur and experience its undefinable je ne sais quoi.
DAY 1 — MONACO
Enjoy the breathtaking views as you make your way from Nice Côte d'Azur International Airport to the principality of Monaco to begin your luxury yacht charter. A late afternoon aperitif on board is imperative before heading off to explore the city. Visit the Princes of Grimaldi Palace on Le Rocher and the adjacent old town for a more historical perspective of the country. Dine at a Michelin-star restaurant and then try your luck at the famous Monte Carlo Casino or dance the night away at one of Monaco’s chic clubs.
DAY 2 — CANNES
Best known for its yearly film festival, Cannes does not disappoint. The palm tree-lined streets evoke a feeling of paradise as you pull into the marina in Antibes lined with moored superyachts. Have an afternoon picnic complete with a bottle of rosé as you catch glimpses of celebrities lounging on their own private vessels. Visit the Picasso museum filed with numerous works painted by the artist during his stay at the chateau in 1946. In the evening, numerous bars, clubs and live music hubs ensure you’re never bored.
DAY 3 — SAINT-TROPEZ
Formerly a sleepy fishing village, Saint-Tropez was transformed overnight by Brigette Bardot and her starring role in Et Dieu Créa la Femme. Add a hint of Juliette Greco and Paris’s post-war, left bank residents and the region quickly became a site for glamourous parties and bohemian ideals. For a taste of the 50’s glamour, depart early from Cannes and dock at Pampelonne Beach, best accessed by helicopter or yacht. Sunbathe under the same rays as these bikini-clad legends followed by dinner at Alain Ducasse’s Rivea in Byblos Saint-Tropez.
DAY 4 — ÎLE DE PORQUEROLLES
Precious and unspoiled, the Île de Porquerolles is one of the last vestiges of natural wonder as France purchased 80% of the island and made it a national park. Sheltered by rugged cliffs, the island houses immaculate beaches, abundant vineyards and miles of forest. Since cars are prohibited on the island, embrace the echoes of a simpler time while exploring the streets by foot or bike. Despite its remoteness, excellent cuisine is not lacking. Top your day off by dining at Le Mas du Langoustier.
DAY 5 — ÎLES DE LERINS
Composed of two islands—Île Ste-Marguerite and Île St-Honorat—enjoy double the tranquility of another set of traffic free islands. Just off the coast of Antibes, visit the abbey on Saint Honorat to taste the exquisite white wines crafted by the inhabiting Cistercian monks. For a touch of excitement, stop at the fort on Ste Marguerite which once housed the infamous “Man in the Iron Mask”.
DAY 6 — VILLEFRANCHE-SUR-MER
Despite being sandwiched between Monaco and Nice, Villefrance-sur-Mer has managed to maintain its small town charm where people actually know their neighbours. The idyllic community atmosphere is mirrored by a fairy-tale setting; medieval architecture and narrow brick roads make you feel as if you’ve stepped into a Hans Christensen story. Be sure to visit Èze, a hilltop village with incredible views.
DAY 7 — MONACO
Despite its penchant for glamour, Monaco has a number of tourist activities. Apart from the Princes of Grimaldi Palace, visit the Exotic Garden or dive into the Oceanographic Museum and aquarium before your final helicopter ride back to Nice.
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