Table of contents
- Day 1: Monte Carlo
- Day 2: Nice
- Day 3: Antibes
- Day 4: Cannes
- Day 5: Saint-Tropez
- Day 6: Hyères
- Day 7: Cassis
The French Riviera is arguably the world’s most luxurious destination for yachters, unveiling a mesmerizing journey through azure waters and undeniably glamorous coastal towns. This iconic stretch of the Mediterranean coastline, known fashionably in France as the Côte d'Azur, offers a sublime blend of natural beauty and ultra-luxury living, where you’ll encounter everything from unreal beaches and bays to designer boutiques, Michelin dining, and exclusive VIP clubs.
Setting sail from famous ports like Nice, Cannes, or Saint-Tropez, yachts are greeted by a vividly blue sea framed by the stunning backdrop of the French Alps. As you cruise along the coast, hidden coves with crystal-clear waters ideal for swimming reveal themselves. Charming villages dot the shoreline, inviting yachts to sail in to explore their quaint streets, savor delectable Provençal cuisine at waterfront restaurants, and explore all the glitz that shines in several star-studded spots.
Whether you're seeking a relaxing escape or a taste of the high life, cruising the French Riviera on a luxury yacht charter promises a voyage of Mediterranean elegance and splendor.
Day 1: Monte Carlo
And what better way to begin than with the hub for wealth and luxury? Monte Carlo is a classy yachting escape on the French Riviera. This tiny city-state within Monaco exudes opulence at every turn and beckons with its world-renowned Casino de Monte-Carlo. Stroll along the harbor, lined with the most affluent and famous yachts. Explore the exquisite Jardin Exotique with its breathtaking views. Savor Michelin-starred dining experiences and indulge in high-end shopping along the Casino Square. Whether you're drawn to the thrill of casinos or Mediterranean elegance, Monte Carlo promises an unforgettable, high-class adventure on your yacht charter.
Day 2: Nice
Your yachting adventure continues to Nice, a captivating coastal jewel that wows with Mediterranean charm, cerulean waters, and fine pebbled beaches. But this haven offers more than a paradise for sun-seekers. Stroll along the iconic Promenade des Anglais, dotted with palm trees and seafront cafes. Explore the historic Vieux Nice old town, with its narrow streets and the colorful Cours Saleya market. Marvel at art in the Marc Chagall National Museum or take in panoramic views from Castle Hill. Relax on pebbled beaches and indulge in exquisite Provençal cuisine at local bistros. Nice is also a gateway to the stunning villages and landscapes of the surrounding Côte d'Azur.
Day 3: Antibes
Your next stop is Antibes, a charming town between Nice and Cannes. Antibes boasts a rich history and stunning coastal vistas. Its old town, enclosed by ancient ramparts, reveals narrow cobblestone streets and a bustling Provençal market on Cours Masséna. Take time to marvel at the historic Fort Carré, a 16th-century fortress with panoramic sea views. Visit the celebrated Picasso Museum, housed in a historic château. Stroll the Port Vauban marina, considered one of Europe's largest and a haven for yachts of all sizes. After a swim, kick back and dine at a variety of waterfront restaurants or explore the nearby Cap d'Antibes with its scenic coastal trails.
Day 4: Cannes
You can’t skip Cannes, situated just northeast of Antibes. Synonymous with cinematic glamor, Cannes offers an array of attractions beyond its famous film festival that draws in celebrities and film enthusiasts from around the world. The iconic Promenade de la Croisette boasts sandy beaches, upscale boutiques, and palatial luxury hotels. Wander through the picturesque Le Suquet old town, where cobbled streets are lined with Michelin-starred restaurants and stunning views of the Bay of Cannes. Discover cultural gems like the Musée de la Castre and Musée de la Mer, and don't miss its bustling Marché Forville market for local delicacies. Cannes also serves as the entrance to the Lerins Islands, adding to its allure as a Riviera gem.
Day 5: Saint-Tropez
And then there is Saint-Tropez, a legendary seaside resort that effortlessly blends sophistication with seaside charm, perfect for the fashionable and the curious. Once a humble fishing village, Saint Tropez attracts celebrities and elite international travelers today. Explore the Vieux Port, where luxurious yachts mingle with traditional fishing boats, while the Place des Lices hosts vibrant markets and petanque games. Explore the quaint old town with its pastel-colored houses, art galleries, designer boutiques, and busy cafes. Visit the Musee de l'Annonciade to admire works by renowned artists. The famous Pampelonne Beach stretches along the azure Mediterranean, offering a backdrop for lavish beach clubs like Club 55 if you want to let loose. Delectable seafood is served at its harborside restaurants, and world-class nightlife lights up the evenings at the town’s most exclusive clubs.
Day 6: Hyères
And when you’re ready for something different? The picturesque town of Hyères is a hidden gem renowned for its historical significance. Serene yet culturally rich, Hyères is nestled amidst palm-lined boulevards, boasting a well-preserved medieval old town filled with cobblestone streets, colorful facades, and charming squares. Visitors are drawn to its Provençal ambiance, lively markets, and the 12th-century Castle of Hyères. It is celebrated for its lush gardens, including the exceptional Jardin Olbius Riquier and the exotic Parc Saint Bernard. Hyères is also a gateway to the idyllic Porquerolles Islands, a perfect addition to your French Riviera yacht charter.
Day 7: Cassis
To conclude your French Riviera yacht charter, there is no better town than Cassis. Tucked between the Calanques National Park and the turquoise sea, Cassis is considered a relatively ‘low-key’ destination compared to its more luxurious counterparts. Nonetheless, it is celebrated for its picturesque harbor, lined with pastel-hued buildings and bustling with fishing boats. After exploring the historic old town with its medieval streets and markets, don’t miss the rugged Calanques, a series of dramatic limestone cliffs and hidden coves perfect for hiking and swimming.
Packing Essentials for Your French Riviera Adventure
The south of France is one of the world’s most famous fashion runways, and your luxury yacht attire should play the part. But don’t let the designer-heavy Côte d'Azur make you feel like Chanel is the only option when packing for your next cruise. Instead, think Mediterranean chic.
So, what does that mean? As you would for any luxury yacht charter, consider lightweight clothing and breathable fabrics that will keep you cool in the warm weather. Cotton and linen are king on this coastline, and a simple linen dress or trousers could be dressed up or down from day to night. Remember that more formal apparel and footwear may be required when visiting yacht clubs, nightclubs, and 5-star establishments.
While stiletto heels may not do so well on the cobbled streets, consider packing wedges, thicker heels, or fancier flat sandals for the nights you decide to dress to the nines, while loafers are perfect for your male counterparts. Comfortable walking shoes are also a must should you explore the towns for longer periods.
Chic swimwear, coverups, and wide-brimmed hats are always a go-to on luxury yacht charters, while a light jacket or sweater is wise for those potentially cooler mornings and evenings.
How many days in the French Riviera is enough?
If it were up to us, we would say forever! However, we know that’s not entirely realistic. Ultimately, your itinerary should align with your interests. Whether you're drawn to glamorous beaches, culture, outdoor activities, or a mix of all these, tailor your visit accordingly. You should also consider the time of year you're visiting, as the French Riviera can get crowded during peak tourist seasons like summer, which might impact your travel pace and preferences.
A shorter yacht charter (around 3 to 5 days) can focus on one or two main destinations like Nice and Cannes or Monaco. You'll have time to enjoy the coves, explore the old towns, and visit some key attractions. A slightly longer stay, between 5 and 7 days, allows you to adventure to multiple towns and immerse yourself in the diverse experiences of the French Riviera. You can include destinations like Nice, Cannes, Antibes, Saint-Tropez, and even venture into the Calanques near Cassis when you need to stretch your sea legs. And if you have more time? A minimum of 7 days means you can delve deeper into each destination and enjoy a slower pace at sea, with far more freedom on your itinerary.
What is the best month to go to the French Riviera?
The best month to visit the French Riviera also depends on your preferences and what you want to experience. Late spring to early summer is often considered the best time to visit as the weather is warm and the region is less crowded than in the peak summer months. Early autumn is another excellent time to visit. The sea is still warm for swimming in September and October, and the crowds thin out after the summer peak. As expected, July and August are the peak summer months when the French Riviera is bustling with tourists. While you'll have the warmest weather and plenty of outdoor events and festivals, prices can be higher, and popular destinations may be too crowded for your liking.
Top restaurants in the French Riviera
The French Riviera boasts an array of exceptional restaurants, ranging from Michelin-starred establishments to charming local eateries.
Le Louis XV, led by Alain Ducasse at Hôtel de Paris in Monte Carlo, speaks for itself. This 3* Michelin restaurant is well-known for its exquisite Mediterranean cuisine and opulent ambiance and is regularly considered one of the world’s best. Le Cap at Grand-Hotel du Cap-Ferrat is located on a peninsula between Nice and Monaco, where executive chef Yoric Tièche’s menu reflects the region’s identity for an elevated dining experience that focuses on local seafood and vegetables. Don’t skip La Palme d'Or, a 2* Michelin restaurant at the Hôtel Martinez in Cannes, offering a creative menu crafted by Chef Christian Sinicropi. Fashionable hotspot La Petite Maison in Nice is a renowned restaurant specializing in Mediterranean and Niçoise cuisine, with an always lively atmosphere. And when you’re in Saint-Tropez? You cannot miss La Vague d’Or, another 3* Michelin and Mediterranean masterpiece led by legendary chef Arnaud Donckele. Remember that reservations are often recommended to ensure you secure a table during your visit, especially at Michelin-starred establishments.
Hiring a yacht charter on the French Riviera provides a luxury, comfort, and freedom that is hard to match with other forms of travel. It's a fantastic way to immerse yourself in the region's beauty and enjoy the ultimate Mediterranean vacation.
Convinced yet? Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to plan your perfect French Riviera yacht charter today!