Top 10 Cities to stay on the Cote d'Azur

25 Oct 2021
Côte d'Azur

The Côte d'Azur, a luxurious section of coast along the Mediterranean Sea, begins from the town of Théoule-sur-Mer and stretches to the French-Italian border. Along this route are the most beautiful cities in southern France: Cannes, Nice, Antibes, and even a separate state, Monaco.

The name "Cote d'Azur" has long been synonymous with bohemian life, endless fun and festivities, largely due to the sunny weather that prevails here most of the year, along with the natural beauty of the Mediterranean coast.

When planning a vacation to the Côte d'Azur, it's important to choose a place to stay that will let you be close to the sea and at the same time experience the rich culture of the area. Choose one of these ten cities and you will not regret it! 

» READ MORE - The non-touristy French Riviera: a living fairy tale

Nice

Nice

Located on the east end of the Côte d'Azur, the region's capital combines the effervescent energy of Italy with the subtle charm of France. Here are just three of the many advantages of staying in Nice:

First, the city is filled with all kinds of entertainment: museums, clubs, stores, restaurants, galleries, theaters, etc. Of the local festivals, the most famous is the Nice carnival, which takes place in spring.

Second, the city has several beaches, so to enjoy the gentle Mediterranean Sea, you will not need to go anywhere.

Third, we can say that Nice is in the center of the Côte d'Azur, and from here it is very convenient to travel both on the French side of the Riviera and on the part of it that stretches closer to Italy.

» READ MORE - Nice Côte d’Azur: local guide

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Antibes

Antibes

On the western part of the Côte d'Azur lies the tiny town of Antibes. Its fate is remarkable: it began as a simple fishing village, but has now become a haven for the most luxurious yachts in the world. Antibes may not look as elegant as Nice, but once you get lost in its intricate streets, you'll fall in love with the city forever.

Antibes has both lovely beaches and the extraordinary atmosphere of genuine Provence, which the city has managed to preserve to this day. It's an ideal base for a laid-back vacation if you want to combine trips to the beach with a cultural program and culinary discoveries.

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Cannes

Cannes

For many people, Cannes is first and foremost the famous film festival and the beautiful bohemian life that is invariably associated with it. But Cannes is not only a place for the film world's elite; it is also available for vacationers to enjoy any time of the year. It is a beautiful resort town with quality infrastructure and an interesting history.

There are both private and public beaches, and plenty of picturesque places for walks, from the famous Croisette to the labyrinths of the Old Town. It is best to start with the Forville market, which is a kind of exhibition of the gastronomic achievements of the region, and continue exploring the many restaurants and cafes.

» READ MORE - How to spend one day in Cannes

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Saint-Tropez

Saint-Tropez

Saint-Tropez is the quintessential luxury destination on the Côte d'Azur. It may not be as culturally interesting as Nice, and it may not have the authentic charm of Antibes, but a trip to the Côte d'Azur would not be complete without a visit to this spot on the Riviera.

Nowhere else will you have the chance to run into international celebrities who have a special passion for this particular city. If you love partying, fast-paced life and intense entertainment, you will be satisfied by the charms of nightlife in Saint-Tropez. And if you want sun and sea, the best beach on the French Riviera, Pampelonne, is located here.

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Cassis

Cassis

You may never have heard of this city, and that's no surprise, as Cassis is not at the forefront of the French Riviera like Nice or Cannes, but almost in the middle of nowhere. Don't let that put you off, as Cassis is a lovely town in the south of France. You will especially like it if you are in search of a new experience and are tired of the beautiful but hackneyed sights of the Cote d'Azur.

Cassis is a paradise for lovers of water activities, as well as mountaineers and hikers. And it is also worth visiting Cassis just to see the calanques, unusual geological formations in the sea water that are distinguished by their astonishing beauty.

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Villefranche-sur-Mer

Villefranche-sur-Mer

This place has long been the resort of choice for many millionaires and celebrities. Villefranche-sur-Mer is not as famous as Antibes or Cannes, and that is precisely its advantage. This charming town, which has not yet lost its naturalness and uniqueness to an influx of tourists, combines the traditional and modern lifestyle.

In fact it is not even a city, but more of a quiet village with a sandy beach, where you can find refuge from the hustle and bustle of the Cote d'Azur. However, if you are tempted to escape from the quietness of Villefranche-sur-Mer, you can easily and quickly get to Nice or Monaco by public transport.

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Beaulieu-sur-Mer

Beaulieu-sur-Mer

Villefranche-sur-Mer flows seamlessly into Beaulieu-sur-Mer, an even quieter and more peaceful town than its quiet neighbor. In the past, Beaulieu-sur-Mer was often visited by the royal families and the high society of Europe. The wealth of vacationers here is evidenced by the luxurious mansions and magnificent parks, as well as chic limousines that barely fit into the tiny streets of Beaulieu-sur-Mer.

The beaches are located in the lower part of the city, adjacent to the Maurice Rouvier promenade, a beautiful street framed by palm trees and stately villas. Evenings can be brightened up at the local casino or the bars and restaurants that can be found on every corner.

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Eze

Eze

If you are looking for a very unusual place to stay on the Côte d'Azur, look out for the village of Eze. It is situated on a huge rock between Nice and Monaco, rising 500 meters above the sea.

The main attraction of the village is its medieval castle, and many tourists come here for the Exotic Garden, which is located at the top of the cliff. But we want to call attention to the whole of Eze itself, so unusual and interestingthis tiny village.

Eze has its own beach. Staying here is best if you have your own car; public transport runs here but it's not frequent, and there's not a lot of entertainment, especially in the evening. But, having chosen Eze as a place to stay, every evening after all the tourists go away, you can enjoy the magical atmosphere, lit by strings of lights.

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Monaco

Monaco

If you are not intimidated by the prices in Monaco, it is worth staying here at least for a few days, because it is a rare chance to observe the everyday life of the fairy princedom, in which there seems to be no poverty, boredom or sadness.

Despite its tiny size, Monaco can easily compete with any European country for the number of interesting sights and events. Casinos, luxurious gardens, stores, museums... every day you can discover something new. The beaches of Monaco deserve special praise: they are very well maintained and comfortable.

» READ MORE - 10 ideas for things to do in Monaco

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Menton

Menton

Menton is the most "Italian" of all French cities, because it's much closer to Italy than any settlement in France. But is it really worth going that far, given that Menton is on the edge of the French Riviera? Why not!

It's worth considering staying in Menton for a number of reasons.

  • First, the hotel prices here are not as hard on the wallet than they are in other cities on the Cote d'Azur, and the beaches are still quite nice.
  • Secondly, Menton is one of those entertaining provincial towns in which you can constantly discover new charms and secrets.
  • Thirdly, although Menton is often bypassed because of its sleepiness and lack of nightlife, this is probably its main advantage, especially for families traveling with children.

And there's one more thing that is important to say about Menton: there are great citrus fruits growing in the surrounding area, and the harvest of lemons and oranges is celebrated with a big carnival.

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We wish you a successful holiday on the Cote d'Azur!

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