The French Riviera Your Next French Vacations

French Riviera

I was really not happy about that, but I missed my post on this blog last week. So, to make up, let me talk about one of the most beautiful places of France and on earth called the French Rivera.

I hope  you can enjoy my own personal photos of beautiful French Rivera and some of it’s story and features on this post.

 Canne buildings

If you are planning on visiting the French Riviera this summer, you’d better make your reservations now.  I remember when we were planning on going to Cannes or Nice in the summer we would make our reservations in February or March.

With this post, I wanted to give you a tour of the French Rivera, and see if you’d like to go there this summer or maybe one of those days as they say.

French Riviera is English for “Cote D’azur” which mean “blue coast” as azur is another word for blue in French. The French Riviera is located on the South East sea shore of France, stretching from Toulon to Menton.  Menton being the last city before the Italian border on this side of the country.

The French Riviera also encompasses the “Principauté of Monaco“, where Grace Kelly’s children still live.

La Cote d' Azur

The French Riviera features more than 65 miles of beautiful blue coastline, including about 25 miles of sandy and pebbly beaches. Nice is known for its pebbly beaches, and Cannes for its sandy beaches.

Pebbly beaches are less messy than sandy beach but very painful for your feet, for this reason, I’m not a fan of Nice’s beaches.

The French Riviera is hosting one of the most splendid as well as famous landscape of the world. It is the most visited spot of France beside Paris by tourists and French people themselves, during their famous summer vacation.

The French Riviera has a Mediterranean climate, with sunny, hot, dry summers and mild winters. Winter temperatures are moderated by the Mediterranean sea and the temperature very rarely will go into the minus if ever even in the heart of winter.

Because of this very warm climate The French Riviera has an abundance of palm trees, cactus and other hot climate plants and trees that are found only in the south of the country.

French Riviera Story

Rue Cannes

The French Riviera has been inhabited since prehistoric times and drawings dating between 27,000 and 19,000 BC have been found there.

In the 13th century, a powerful political force appeared with the House of Grimaldi. A branch of the Grimaldis took power in Monaco, Antibes and Nice, and built castles at Grimaud, Cagnes-sur-Mer and Antibes. The present Prince of Monaco is a direct descendant of the Grimaldis.

After world war I, Americans started to come to the south of France as tourists, and the wealthy ones started to purchase properties there. Part of Henry James’s story, The Ambassadors, happens on the French Riviera.

In the 1960’s the famous Mayor of Nice, Jacques Médecin, decided to reduce the dependence of the Riviera on ordinary tourism, however, and wanted to make it a destination for international congresses and conventions. He built the Palais des Congrès at Acropolis, and founded a Chagall Museum and a Matisse Museum at Cimiez.  Then high price apartment buildings started to be built there.

Besides a beautiful vacation destination, the French Riviera is also a center for education, high technology, and scientific research. The largest city of the French Riviera, Nice, is the 5th largest city of France.

Cannes is smaller than Nice but just as well famous because of it’s popular festival and beautiful sandy beaches.

Hotel Le Cheval Blanc

Hotel Cheval Blanc

This was my family Cannes hotel destination. It’s just a very cute and comfortable hotel at less than 10 minutes walk to the beach and to downtown.

The hotel stands on a quiet street named rue Guy de Maupassant. The breakfasts are great there! If you go to Cannes check out this nice hotel.

The Cannes Festival

Palais de Cannes

The Cannes festival was first created in the late 1930’s (with an interruption during WWII) by French minister of National Education Jean Zay a French minister of education and fine art between 1936 and 1939 . 

The first Cannes Festival was on September 1939 with Louis Lumière as its  first president.  The festival was held in the fall back then instead of spring, in May, as it is now.

The new “Palais des Festivals” was built in 1983 and has held the Cannes festival ever since.

The emblem of Cannes Festival, the Golden Palm (La Palme d’Or) was created in 1955.  The palm is the reward trophy of the winners.

For some weird reasons (my guess is that it has to do with some type of “bourgeois tastes) , the winner movies of Cannes Festival are usually really boring, serious or weird.  Sometimes all three at once.  You couldn’t pay me to watch those boring movies.

As a matter of fact when a movie runs for Cannes award and loses, then it usually means that it’s potentially a good movie.  I remember a couple of those.

Enjoy some of the beauty of the French Rivera in video!

I hope you enjoy this trip to the French Riviera. Let me know in the comment area.
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19 thoughts on “The French Riviera Your Next French Vacations”

    1. Hi Gary, and welcome to my blog.

      I’m sure you’ll love France if you go there some day.

  1. Wow Sylviane, it’s such a beautiful place. I’ve always been in awe of the photos I’ve seen of the French Rivera. I’d love to visit someday and I’m jealous that you’ve been there as well. Of course growing up in France I’m sure you’ve been everywhere.

    What a stunning place and thanks for the history lesson too. I always learn so much from your posts. The video was great, fabulous tour through the streets and the Rotchchild’s (did I spell that right) mansion.

    Thank you for this wonderful post Sylviane.

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    1. Yes, the French Riviera is gorgeous indeed.

      I have blown up the first picture in this post and framed it, and it’s in my bedroom on the wall facing my bed so I see it every evening before I go to sleep. The two people on the picture is my and my brother. Yes, I want to go back too.

      I looked it up, according to Google it’s spelled “Rothschild”. Yes, they’ve got that little house out there 🙂

  2. How Tempting Sylviane!

    You have compiled so many beautiful features of the French Riviera that I can almost feel like I am there. I always wanted to visit that special place because I heard how beautiful it was. Now I can see for myself!
    And…what a treat it would be to see the Cannes festival! I didn’t know the history behind it until now, but that red carpet allures me!
    You keep this up girl, and I’m going to have to visit France! lol

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    1. Hi Donna,

      Well, I’m glad I’ve helped you travel right from your chair in front of your computer screen.

      I love the French Rivera, it’s just so beautiful, lots of colors and warm. A dream!

      I’m glad you enjoyed!

  3. Hi Sylviane

    Oh I love the French Riviera. Looking at these photos takes me back. The first time I went there was on a bus tour and we traveled around and we did also see the Palace in Monaco.

    That is some garden Lady Rothschild had!! Really amazing. It must have been so nice to go there frequently as a child Sylviane. I am sure you have many fond memories.

    I am not a fan of those pebble beaches. They have then in England as well. When I was living there I was stupid enough to walk on on one with those high heel wedge shoes on. My ankle went over and I sprained it. How embarrassing to say I fell off my shoe at the beach and sprained my ankle.

    I love this blog so much. So many of your posts here bring back memories for me or I learn some more. Thanks Sylviane.

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  4. Sylviane,I would love to go to the French Riviera this summer but don’t think that is going to happen so I guess it will have to be at a later date. I have been to France but never the Riviera. It is so beautiful. Thanks for the tour. I love the post. Dee Ann Rice

  5. So stunning. We were just in Nice for the Carnival and passed through Nice. We’re thinking of going to Cannes on the next school holiday the kids have which is April 13 for two whole weeks.
    My only issue is it can be so expensive to eat or stay in the area especially during peak seasons. Cap Ferat is really something. we passed by there on the bus and I think i saw Brad Pitt’s helicopter landing at his house. LOL.
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    1. Hi Annie,

      Yes, la cote d’Azur or “la cote” as we refer to it most in France is a stunning place. Every small village to larger city is beautiful.

      Hum Brad Pitt’s helicopter? I didn’t even know he had a house there, but not surprised he does 🙂

      Thanks for coming here.
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  6. I actually thought that the French Riviera is just some idiom that writers made up to elaborately describe something beautiful or breath-taking. But yes, the tourist destination is more than beautiful. Looking forward to visit the blue coast soon!

  7. This is just lovely! I’ve always wanted to visit the French Riviera for the longest of time and I guess with the lack of time, I’d have to wait for some time before I can actually enjoy those lovely sights, in the mean time, I’ll just enjoy your post. Thanks!

  8. Nice to know about French Rivera. I had visited France once for a short period of time but never visited French Rivera. I think I had missed the opportunity. I will definitely visit it during my next visit. Thanks for sharing informative post. Liked reading it.

  9. Sylviane – this is a wonderful guide to a very beautiful region of France. The French Riviera is home to (in my opinion) some of the best food and finest restaurants in all of France.

    If any of your UK readers are regular visitors, or are planning a longer journey through France, they might be interested in the Liber-T tag from Sanef Tolling. The tag enables UK motorists to use the automatic telepeage lanes, which have previously been reserved for French residents.

    Best wishes, Alex.

    1. Thanks for this info.

      I had to take the link out though, but I appreciate the extra information you offered.

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