Top activities on Cote d'Azur

The scenic stretch of coastline known as the Cote d’Azur winds its way along France’s south coast from Saint Tropez to Menton, encompassing the chic towns of Cannes, Nice, and Monaco along the way. The area is known as a playground for the rich and famous, and a glamorous holiday destination for those looking to soak up the very best of the French Riviera. When it comes to Cote d’Azur attractions, there are plenty of things to do and places to visit along the coast to keep all character types entertained. Whether you’re exploring Nice’s charming Old Town on a free walking tour, people-watching at Monte Carlo Harbor, or admiring 19th-century art in Cannes, the Cote d’Azur doesn’t disappoint. ​

Top Activities on the Cote d'Azur France - Promenade des Anglais - Monaco - Cannes - Saint-Tropez - Antibes - FranceRent

Nice

With its scenic beachfront location, hot Mediterranean summers, and charming Old Town, Nice is a quintessential French resort town that offers a luxury break by the sea. 

Promenade des Anglais
The town’s busiest and most famous street is Promenade des Anglais, a pedestrianized area that runs along the edge of Baie des Anges beach for 4km and is lined with beautiful buildings. The promenade features a designated cycling and walking lane and is a great place to kick-start your self-exploration of Nice.  

Old Town
Also known as Vieux Nice, Nice’s Old Town is a charming area home to cobblestone streets, pastel-colored buildings, and several places of interest. Sightseeing places in the Old Town include the Palace du Palais de Justice, Vieux Nice Port, and Matisse’s House. 

Massena Museum
If you consider yourself a history buff or culture vulture, pay a visit to the Massena Museum which houses Riviera art and artifacts including Napoleon’s death mask. A visit to this spectacular museum offers the chance to brush up on the history of the region throughout the 19th century and gives you a glimpse into life during the Belle Epoque period. 

Monaco

World-famous for hosting the prestigious Monaco Grand Prix and the official residence of the French Royal Family, Monaco is a glamorous hub of activity. When you’re not yachting watching at the harbor, you’ll likely be gambling at the famous Monte Carlo Casino or exploring the lush gardens of Fontvieille. 

Oceanographic Museum of Monaco
Nestled on a cliff 90-meters above sea level is the Oceanographic Museum of Monaco; a museum of marine sciences and the Mediterranean Science Commission. The museum, which took 11 years to build, is a popular tourist attraction home to three aquariums, over 6,000 marine life creatures, and scientific items that date back to Prince Albert’s explorations. 

Jardin Exotique de Monaco
The Exotic Gardens of Monaco is a cliffside botanical garden found in the Fontvieille principality of Monaco. The gardens, which sit high on a bluff overlook the Mediterranean Sea, are home to a mix of tropical plants including those native to African and Latin America. There are over 7,000 different species of plants on display!

Casino Square
Home to the famous Monte Carlo Casino and several upscale restaurants, Casino Square is one of the city’s most iconic attractions. The area is one of the wealthiest parts of Monaco and on any day, you’re bound to see a long stream of supercars passing by as millionaires and billionaires float from one casino to the next, breaking temporarily to dine on fine seafood. The square was used in James Bond’s Casino Royale and is instantly recognizable. 

Cannes

Famous for its International Film Festival, soft sand beaches, and upmarket boutique hotels, Cannes is another French Riviera town that packs a real punch. When you’re not marveling at the ruins of Lerins Islands or strolling down Boulevard de la Croisette soaking up the coastal views, you’ll likely be exploring the nearby island of Sainte-Marguerite. 

La Croisette
La Croisette is a bustling promenade, and one of the most iconic streets in France, that runs the length of Cannes’ seafront. If you’re looking for somewhere to acquaint yourself with the resort town, begin with a stroll along the promenade past luxury hotels, private beaches, and billion-dollar yachts. Keep your eyes peeled for A-listers and celebrities going about their day.  

Ile Sainte-Marguerite
Another popular tourist destination is the nearby island of Sainte-Marguerite. There are four islands off the coast of Cannes in total, but Sainte-Marguerite is the largest and boasts exquisite sand beaches. If you’d like to escape the hustle and bustle of the main town, catch a ferry over to the island for a day of sunbathing, swimming, and coastal walks. The journey takes just 15-minutes. 

Rue d'Antibes
If shopping is your vacation vice, take a stroll down Rue d’Antibes; Cannes’ renowned luxury shopping street home to designer brands and boutique stores. If you don’t have the money for a high-end shopping spree, head here anyway to see how the other half live. 

Saint-Tropez

Once a quiet fishing village, the town of Saint-Tropez is now a stylish seaside resort known for its fashion boutiques, luxury yachts, and bustling nightlife. Look beneath the glitz and glam and you’ll find the small-town charm of old Saint-Tropez featuring cobblestone streets and modest family-run restaurants. 

Citadelle de Saint-Tropez Musee d’Histoire Maritime
The Citadelle de Saint-Tropez is a historic fortress dating back to the early 1600s which has been transformed to house the local Maritime Museum. The museum allows visitors to uncover the seafaring history of Saint-Tropez and its surrounding towns including tales of local fishermen and epic European adventures. 

La Ponche Beach
Plage de la Ponche is one of Saint-Tropez’s most talked about beaches, found in the oldest part of the village. This small stretch of sand is the perfect place to take a break from the hustle and bustle of the town, and to relax with a good book as the world goes by. The beach is also used as a starting point for the Sentier Littoral coastal hiking trail. 

Place des Lices Market
Saint-Tropez’s heart and soul arguably lie in Place des Lices Market, a twice-weekly market that takes place on Boulevard Vasserot every Tuesday and Saturday morning. Here local vendors gather to sell a variety of homemade artisan products ranging from fresh pastries and fruit to antiques and craft items. 

Top Activities on the Cote d'Azur France - Promenade des Anglais - Monaco - Cannes - Saint-Tropez - Antibes - FranceRent

Wherever you decide to stop along the Cote d’Azur rest assured that you’ll find plenty of things to do, attractions to enjoy, and museums to visit. Stick with our recommendations above and you’ll enjoy a culture-filled break packed with activities that offer an authentic taste of southern France and the French Riviera. 

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