Holiday makers relax on a sandy beach in Antibes, France, on a sunny day
Photo by historical couple  –  Link

Antibes

France

Nestled between Cannes and Nice on the glamorous French Riviera is Antibes, an enchanting and rather intoxicating seaside resort town. Ask anyone who's been here and they'll tell you the same thing: once you visit Antibes once, you'll be hooked. The picturesque and lively town is so alluring, in fact, that it has captured the hearts of many a famous figure, from historic luminaries like Picasso and F Scott Fitzgerald to modern A-listers including Bono, Leonardo DiCaprio and Bey & Jay.

One of the main celebrity draws is the spectacular Cap d'Antibes, a four-mile-long peninsula jutting out into the glittering Mediterranean. Here, luxurious hotels - like the famous Hotel Eden Roc - and stately mansions abound, turning it into a mecca for the rich and famous. Even if you're staying elsewhere, it's worth treating yourself to a meal at one of the swanky restaurants here to experience the glitz and glamour.

Things to do

It may seem like Antibes is reserved exclusively for the jet-set, but that's far from true. History buffs will be charmed by the 16th-century ramparts and attractive old town (vieille ville) with its old stone houses, medieval churches and narrow pedestrian streets. Antibes has been occupied since the early Iron Age, so there's plenty of historical artefacts and ruins to discover. The Musee d'Archeologie on the seafront will give you a better idea and help put things into context.

Art lovers, visit the quaint but informative Picasso Museum, housed in the artist's former residence, Chateau Grimaldi. Here you'll find a collection of incredible paintings and drawings spanning his entire career, including some of his best known works.

Foodies will love the covered market place (Marché Provençal) with its never-ending selection of fresh produce, aromatic spices and delicious French treats. It's open daily from 6am to 1pm, except for Mondays during the winter time.

Adventurers looking for an outdoor excursion can embark on the five-kilometre Chemin des Douaniers walk, which starts at the Old Town ramparts and winds its way around the coastline.

Beaches

A trip to Antibes would be very much incomplete without some sun-bathing. Here are some of the best beaches in the area:

  • Plage de la Gravette: Antibes's city beach is pleasant and super convenient, located right below the ramparts. If you don't feel like going too far afield, this is your best bet.
  • Plage de l'Olivette: You might recognise the colourful boats and pebbly shoreline of Plage de l'Olivette, one of the most photographed beaches in Antibes. This Cap d'Antibes beach is small and scenic, but you'll need a car to reach it.
  • Plage de la Gallice: Located in the Juan les Pins area, this sandy stretch is popular with the locals and not so well-known by tourists - the perfect combination. It's peaceful and secluded, with calm waters sheltered by the harbour.

Day trips

If you're staying in Antibes for an extended period of time, why not get out of town for a day? Our favourite day trip destination is the hilltop town of Grasse, the perfume capital of France. The perfumeries in Grasse have been producing exceptional fragrances for more than 400 years. Head to the Musee International de la Parfumerie to learn more.