A Guide to the French Riviera: Where to Swim, Stay and get the best Champagne

Brianna Kozlarek / Tuesday September 17, 2019

We’re closing out our France Travel Guide with the ultra dreamy French Riviera (see the Paris guide here, Provence here). This was a highly anticipated part of our trip. Growing up as a lakehouse kid, I’ve always found water instantly calming and relaxing. So, how could the South of France be anything less that heaven? I’ve also read so many books that have described the location as seemingly the most sought after spot for the chic and rich (a girl can dream right?) We wanted to end our France trip here because we imagined sitting sun soaked by the water each day, rosé in hand. For a psycho planner, I didn’t do the best at planning this leg of the trip, so let’s just dive into what I learned, what we did and how you can make it the best experience possible:

A Guide to the French Riviera

Where to Stay

There are a TON of choices when picking your home base. St. Tropez is mentioned a lot, and while I’m sure it’s fabulous, it’s kind of an isolated location and UBER expensive (in an area that’s already not too budget friendly). Nice and Cannes are both beautiful locations, but there’s not as good of a beach scene. Which is how we landed on Antibes: less touristy, nice beaches, and a good home base to travel around. In Antibes we stayed in an AirBnb, and while it was cute, this was probably a poor choice. I picked it for cost reasons, but I feel like it really impacted our stay. Your absolute best bet would be to stay at a hotel with water access. Lugging your towels, wine and lunch to a tiny public beach in 90 degree heat is less than ideal, and pretty much all of the beach chairs were sold out (#July). SO, stay at a hotel, and these are the ones that looked hella cute: