The French Riviera is many travelers’ dream destination: a place for lying out on a sun lounger with the jet set, sipping cocktails brought out by uniformed waiters while the Mediterranean ocean laps at the sand. The iconic south-of-France beach vacation isn’t far away at these popular beaches on the Cote d’Azur of France.
Considered by many to the westernmost point of the French Riviera, St Tropez is the hedonistic paradise of the party set. Hip beach clubs, nearly nude dancing, and prices to match, makes St Tropez the capital of fashionable partying. Pampelonne Beach is the center of the action, with powdery white sand and a host of pricey beach clubs, some of which are racier than others. Tahiti Beach is also a notorious spot, a beach that tolerates nearly nude or nude guests who want to go skinny-dipping.
Another extremely popular resort town, Nice is crammed full of tourists during the summer season, despite the fact that its beaches tend to be covered in small stones, known as galets, rather than soft sand. Most of the beaches here are private, such as the popular Castel Plage, and you can rent a sun lounger and have food and drink brought to you all day as you gaze at the ocean or toast in the sun’s rays. There are a couple of public beaches, although they tend to be less beautiful, and you’ll need to bring a pad or mattress to sit on to avoid the pebbles.
The beaches of Antibes have that coveted soft golden sand, and a vibrant tourist industry. The two main public beaches along the waterfront of town are Plage du Ponteil and Plage de Salis. These wide ribbons of golden sand feature calm and shallow waters, perfect for families, but can be extremely crowded in the summer. The more pristine beaches along Garoupa Bay are more beautiful and secluded, but the majority of them belong to private beach clubs.
This is where the jet-set come to have their vacation, with upscale hotels and beach clubs by the dozen. The main beach is Plage de la Croisette, a wide swath of soft sand that is, unfortunately, privatize, meaning that you’ll have to pay a fee to enjoy a sun-lounger and drinks brought to you all day. Plage du Midi is the public beach option nearby, and although it doesn’t have the services of the main beach, the sand is soft and powdery and it is a great place to soak up some rays.
Despite much literature written about this town, Marseille is more of an industrial rather than a resort town. Nevertheless, its beaches are still popular among people touring the Cote d’Azur. Plage du Prado is the most popular beach and boasts a wide stretch of sand, although the sand is not as fine as other popular beaches on the coast. Bars and restaurants are available nearby, and surfing is quite popular here too.
The beaches of Corsica are a veritable paradise, with many secluded beaches accessible only by foot. The beautiful cliffs and bright blue ocean are a picturesque sight, with delightful white sand beaches hidden between the cliffs. Calvi Beach is the most popular public beach on the island, with ample amenities and restaurants nearby, soft sand, and clear shallow water.