Five seaside towns within easy reach of Monaco

Fecha de publicación: 29/05/2024
Monaco’s superb location on the French Riviera makes it the perfect base from which to explore the local seaside towns along the coast. Here are five you can get to within just 45 minutes.

1. Cap d’Antibes
There’s a stunning seaside trail in Cap d'Antibes that runs for nearly 5 kilometres along the edge of the glittering Mediterranean, and takes around two hours to walk. Along the way, you’ll see beautiful chalk cliffs, occasionally giving way to charming coves, with sumptuous villas sitting amid verdant gardens planted with Aleppo pines, hundred-year old olive trees, and exotic species. At the end you’ll come to the absolute highlight of the walk, the Villa Eilenroc with its magnificent landscaped gardens. Then it’s time to turn around and make your way back towards La Garoupe, via the quaint inland lanes.

2. Nice
Nice is synonymous with the Riviera, famed for the Promenade des Anglais and its lofty palm trees. The city is home to a variety of cultural places of interest, and numerous districts to explore. Take a stroll on the Place Masséna and admire the distinctive red walls and bronze statues, then make you way towards the Cours Saleya, a bustling pedestrian esplanade lined with restaurants, where every morning the food and flower sellers set up their market stalls. And don’t miss the walk up to the Château de Nice, built in the 12th century and later demolished on the orders of Louis XIV, to see the panoramic views over the city and the coastline. Finish your walk with a meander through the Old Town, with its authentic and traditional character.

3. Villefranche-sur-Mer
Villefranche-sur-Mer is famous for its deep roadstead, wooded hilles, and picturesque marina. The Circuit de la Rade is a ninety-minute walk that starts in Villefranche’s old town. Along the way, you’ll pass through a narrow, dark medieval alley by the name of Rue Obscure, and further on you’ll emerge into the Chemin de la Madone Noire with its splended sweeping views of the bay and the town. And for the perfect end to your walk, head down to the wide pebbled beach of the Plage des Marinières, and take a dip in the Mediterranean.

4. Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat
Once a tiny fishing village, Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat has around 10 kilometres of coastal footpaths with marvellous vistas, perfect for a stroll in the sunshine or a spot of water sports. The Tour du Cap Ferrat is a walk around the peninsula, and is worth it for the breathtaking views of the Mediterranean alone. There are also glorious, verdant gardens, wild plants and flowers, chalk cliffs and rugged reefs to admire. Ideal for families, the walk takes around two hours. To add a splash of culture to your stroll, visit the Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild, a palatial villa that sits amid no fewer than nine gardens, all overlooking the Mediterranean.

5. Menton
A stone’s throw from the Italian border, Menton’s balmy climate, colourful houses, festivals and museums make the town a popular destination all year round. The old town, with its narrow streets and typical ochre buildings, inspires thoughts of the Italian-style dolce vita. You’ll want to stop by the Cocteau Museum housed in the Bastion by the sea, stroll through the orange and lemon tree-filled gardens, and of course experience the famous Fête de la Citron, a celebration of all things citrus. For a spot of sunbathing on the sands, head to the Promenade de la Mer and the Plage des Sablettes, one of Menton’s finest beaches with splendid views of the mountains and the picturesque local houses.

Take advantage of your stay in Monaco to discover all the cultural treasures and varied landscapes of the French Riviera. There really is nowhere quite like it.

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