Getting the Most Out of the French Riviera

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Advisor - Lilly Paez
Curated By

Lilly Paez

  • Luxury Travel

  • Boutique Travel

  • Food & Wine

  • Arts & Culture

  • Beaches

  • Honeymoons

  • France

  • South of France

  • Summer

  • Insta-Worthy

  • Outdoors

  • Small Town

  • Coastal

French riviera small streets and yellow buildings.
Curator’s statement

There are stunning coastal views, delicious food and exciting nightlife along the French Riviera, which stretches from Cannes to Nice. In this charming region of France, there's something for everyone, whether you want to relax on the beach, explore charming towns or party all night. With over 300 days of sunshine each year, the French Riviera was once a playground for the European aristocracy as the Mediterranean warmth was a welcome escape from the cold climate. More recently, the area is known for the Cannes Film Festival, which brings the Hollywood elite to this charming region. With summer quickly approaching, it’s the perfect time to consider the French Riviera as your next travel destination.

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Where to stay in French Riviera

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Things to do in French Riviera

The street and buildings in the French Riviera.

Explore Old Town Nice

You can easily spend many days wandering around the Old Town's narrow streets. When I was there, I loved walking into the cute shops and sipping on a coffee in one of the charming cafes. I recommend visiting the Cours Saleya’s Markets, where you will find food, antiques, clothing and more.

Strolling along The Promenade Anglese was a pastime favored by the aristocracy when visiting Nice, and you should take a walk down this quintessential part of town. You will find the beach on one side and impressive hotels on the other.

Last but not least, if you fancy a breathtaking view, walk to Castle Hill Park. It used to be a citadel which was destroyed in the 18th century. It is now a park. The trek up can be a bit tiring for some, but the views are well worth it.

Wander in Cannes

Cannes is synonymous with Hollywood glamour, but it is so much more than that. You can explore the old quarter of Le Suquet and climb up the 109 steps to the Chateau de la Castre. Walk along Boulevard de la Croisette and indulge in some luxury shopping as Boulevard de la Croisette has the highest concentration of luxury stores in France. For the budget conscious, head over to Rue d’Antibes to find more affordable options.

Discover the Lerins Islands

Two islands sit across from Cannes and you can take a 15 minute ferry to visit these two wonderful islands. Isle St. Marguerite is said to have housed the Man in an Iron Mask, the alleged half brother of King Louis XIV. Besides the legend, you will also find unspoiled nature and crystal clear waters in the area. Isle St. Honorat is home to the Abbey of St Honorat with an exclusive vineyard that produces only 35000 bottles of wine. You will be able to enjoy the privilege of a glass only if you are on the island.

The Factory of Natural Perfume and Shop & Exposure

Fragonard is one of the most prominent perfume brands in France. You can learn all about the company’s rich history on one of their free tours. The guide will teach you all about the history of perfume and trade. A bit of shopping never hurt anyone! This is the perfect place to get something to remind you of your trip to the French River.

Visit Eze and Monaco

The charming medieval village of Eze is just a 20-minute drive from Nice. Towering above the Mediterranean, you can easily spend half a day exploring this charming town where each building can tell a different story of years gone by. Explore the shops and cafes as well as the Jardin Exotique d’Èze, which is where you will be able to enjoy breathtaking views of the French Riviera.

Just 15 minutes from Eze, you will reach the Principality of Monaco, a microstate within the French Riviera, known as the millionaire’s playground. Boasting luxurious casinos and the home of the Grand Prix, Monaco is a must visit. You can spend an afternoon in Monaco visiting the Prince’s Palace, home to the American-born princess Grace Kelly, trying your luck at the Monte Carlo Casino and wandering the streets to places like Saint Nicholas Cathedral and the Exotic Garden of Monaco.

Places to eat & drink in French Riviera

Charming cafe with crawling vines in South of France.

Da Laura- Cannes

Indulge in some pasta at this Italian restaurant where everything is home-made. It is perfect for lunch and the dessert selection is to die for.

La Merenda- Nice

This restaurant is an institution featuring authentic local cuisine. Michelin star chef Dominique Le Stanc goes to the market every day to get the freshest ingredients. The restaurant seats about 20 people, so pass by to make a reservation. Cash only!

Château Eza Restaurant- Eze

This restaurant within the hotel has a Michelin star and features Mediterranean food. Enjoy a delicious meal while taking in the view and enjoying a romantic atmosphere.

Need to Know

Looking for more travel tips? Check out this guide, 4-Days in Belgium: From Cosmopolitan Brussels to Medieval Towns.

Advisor - Lilly Paez

Travel Advisor

Lilly Paez

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This guide is part of our ongoing series on travel to France.