The tiny Grimaldian principality exerts a powerful effect on the imagination – and all the more because this is a fairy story that’s true: medieval castles, twentieth century movie stars, historic derring-do and modern-day four wheeled duels on the roads – The Grand Prix – and wheel of fortune – the world famous casino. An exhilarating place to launch a cruise.
Cap d’Antibes and Antibes
One of the world’s best-placed peninsulas, jutting out from a glorious coastline between the indefinable charm of Nice and the glamour of Cannes. The old town of Antibes is still encompassed by its ancient protective alls and overlooked by its mellow stone castle – now the official Picasso Museum – while, close by, the largest yachts int he world have their own home berths.
St. Tropez still, miraculously, has what it had when it first entered the world’s consciousness: the bustle of a fishing village, the physical presence of a natural harbour and the beauty of long – extraordinarily long – golden beaches. And in addition it has also attracted the buzz of people enjoying themselves, spending money and making the night life a way of life.
Ile de Porquerolles
The largest of the three islands in the Gulf of Hyeres is stringently protected against any hint of over-development and time spent in the Provencal sunshine among its eucalyptus forests, parasol pines and delightful, traditional villages is time out of the stresses of the modern world.
Iles de Lerins
These two tiny islands are entirely pedestrianized – the Man in the Iron Mask would still recognize the place where he spent such a quiet retirement, with its Aleppo pines and Cistercian abbey. But it has had its noisy interludes, as Barbary pirates, Genoan pirates, Spanish pirates have successfully swashed their bucklers through its history.
Villefranche-sur-Mer is an idyllic town in an outstanding setting – a natural amphitheater overlooking a protected bay; a rich micro-climate and busy shopping esplanade.
Helicopter back to the 21st century at Nice Cote d’Azur Airport where excellent direct connections include New York, Moscow, Dubai, Paris, London, Milan, Madrid, Amsterdam and Dusseldorf, amongst many others.