Welcome to the Côte d’Azur, a destination that combines nature, history and culture. This corner of paradise in France, with its golden beaches, wild calanques, verdant vineyards, majestic mountains, picturesque villages and historic towns, is a treasure trove that never ceases to amaze.
In this article, we invite you on a visual journey through the most beautiful landscapes of the Côte d’Azur. Through our photos, you’ll discover the diversity of this region, from its Mediterranean splendor to its rich cultural heritage.
BEFORE OUR TIPS + PHOTOS
HERE ARE OUR FAVORITES ON THE Côte d’Azur
Our favorite car rental platform: DiscoverCars
This opinion is completely independent, based on our experiences. We visited the region anonymously, making our own choices and paying our bills in full.
The most beautiful landscapes on the Côte d’Azur: selection
The Côte d’Azur has no officially defined boundaries. We choose the modern vision that stretches from Cassis to Menton.
We chose a variety of landscapes, the ones that thrilled us the most: beaches, vineyards, villages, towns… and a combination of everything!
Our aim is to take you on an enchanting journey through this region, in the hope of awakening your dreams of exploration and marvellous discoveries.
1. Ponteil beach, Antibes
Our favorite moment on the Côte d’Azur. From Ponteil beach, the best of the region is superimposed: a beach, the sea, a fortified town and the mountains in the background. What’s more, our photo was taken at the end of March, when the peaks were still covered in snow. The ideal landscape for us!
2. View from the Port-Pin calanque hike
Near Cassis, you arrive in the famous calanques of Provence.
We loved the hike between the Calanque de Port-Miou and the Calanque de Port-Pin, with breathtaking views over the bay of Cassis and the Soubeyrane cliffs.
3. View of one of Porquerolles’ bays
The island of Porquerolles is one of the jewels of the Côte d’Azur, with its breathtaking scenery of greenery, turquoise waters and rolling hills. Notre-Dame beach is the best-known and one of the most beautiful beaches on the Côte d’Azur. We particularly liked the panoramic view of the bay from the viewpoint at the beginning of the beach.
No, we’re not on a tropical island!
4. From the village of Eze
The village of Èze is one of the most visited in the region(see our list). And we immediately understood why. The pretty stone houses are set on a hillside facing the sea and overlooked by an exotic garden. What more could you ask for?
OUR TPS FOR RENTING YOUR CAR IN Provence
- Compare prices on our preferred platform: DiscoverCars – one of the best rated sites.
- Choose a car that is powerful enough (the roads are steep) but compact (some passages are narrow).
- Think of thecomplete insurance (some roads are tortuous and narrow).
- There is a lot of demand, book it early.
5. Corniche Esterel: Jardin Louis Valtat
The Corniche de l’Esterel is one of the most beautiful roads on the Côte d’Azur. These red rocks create a surprising contrast with the blue of the sea and sky.
Among our favorite stops along the way is the tiny Jardin Louis Valtat, with its view of the Anthero cove. We love the play of colors.
6. Cassis and its cliffs
In Cassis, our favorite beach isn’t one of the two in the town center. We fell in love with the Corton beach, with its cove and unobstructed view of the Soubeyranes cliffs rising to 394m between Cassis and La Ciotat.
We recommend a visit at the end of the day, so that the setting sun brings out the color of the rock.
7. From Roquebrune castle
Roquebrune is another of our favorite villages. From the top of the castle, which can be visited, you have a bird’s-eye view of the village’s rooftops and the sea. Typically Provençal!
8. Pampelonne Beach
If you’re looking for a long, sandy beach surrounded by nature, without too many buildings, we recommend Pampelonne beach near Saint-Tropez. It’s good to let your gaze wander over the sea.
WHERE TO STAY ON THE Côte d’Azur
Option 1: City of Nice
A city with beautiful architecture, a long seafront promenade and lots of museums.
Option 2: Menton
For a town full of charm, close to several charming villages and mountains.
Option 3: Saint-Tropez
A small town surrounded by nature, known for its jet-set but also with a lot of charm!
9. Village of Sainte-Agnès
The village of Saint-Agnes is a little less well known than others, but it’s the highest seaside village in France. Which means you really are between mountains and sea. The views are breathtaking!
10. La Turbie Trophy Park
If you like cityscapes without the noise and crowds, admire Monaco from the village of La Turbie and its archaeological site, Le Trophée des Alpes.
In our opinion, of all the towns on the Côte d’Azur, Menton has the prettiest historic center. We enjoyed admiring it from different vantage points, especially from the end of the Sablettes beach.
12. Sommet fort Porquerolles
We’re going back to the magnificent island of Porquerolles, because its landscapes deserve 2 photos in our best-of list. If you have the strength, we recommend climbing to the very top of the Fort Sainte-Agathe tower. You’ll enjoy an exceptional view of the island, its beaches and village.
13. Port of Sanary-sur-mer
On the western side of the Côte d’Azur, there are several small ports. One of our favorites is Sanary-sur-mer. Here you’ll find the traditional colorful boats, which are very photogenic.
14. Calanque de Figuerolles in La Ciotat
We were a little disappointed by our photo, which didn’t do justice to the beauty of this cove. Accessible in just a 20-minute walk from the port of La Ciotat, it offers beautiful colors and rock formations.
See our article dedicated to the Figuerolles cove.
15. Fort de Brégançon beach
Even if you haven’t booked a visit to the fort (an official resort for France’s leaders), you can still go and explore the beaches opposite with beautiful views of the fort. We particularly liked an area where the rocks are very colorful.
16. From the citadel of Saint-Tropez
If you’re visiting Saint-Tropez, be sure to visit the citadel. In addition to the museum, you can enjoy some beautiful views over the rooftops of the old town center and the whole bay.
17. Hiking in the Esterel
Volcanic in nature, the Esterel massif is a nature break between the cities of the Côte d’Azur. It’s a great playground for hiking, biking and marveling at the color and shape of the rocks.
18. Ruins of Château de Grimaud
Located in the Gulf of Saint-Tropez, the village of Grimaud is an enchanting destination that combines medieval charm, rich history and spectacular views.
It is dominated by the ruins of a castle, a symbol of the region’s power in ancient times. You can climb up to admire the views over the village rooftops, the hills and out to sea.
19. Calanque Port Pin
Cassis is the limit of the definition of the modern Côte d’Azur.
To the west of Cassis lies the Calanques National Park. The two closest to the town are Port-Miou and Port-Pin. It’s a bit of a hike, but the calanque of Port-Pin is superb, with turquoise water and magnificent trees.
20. Petite-Afrique Beach
One of our favorite beaches on the Côte d’Azur isn’t your typical sandy beach. We had a great time at Beaulieu-sur-mer’s Petite-Afrique beach. Here, the cliffs rise straight up around the water and the scenery is impressive.
21. Seaside vineyards
The Côte d’Azur is also known for its sun-drenched wines, particularly rosés. These include AOP Côtes de Provence.
Which means you can admire the beautiful vineyards with the sea in the background!
22. Cap Camarat lighthouse
The Ramatuelle peninsula around Saint-Tropez is magnificent. We recommend exploring the roads at random junctions. A road may take you to the Cap Camarat lighthouse. From here, a short path takes you to a magnificent viewpoint above the long, sandy beach of Pampelonne. And in the distance, of course, you have the mountains.
23. Château de la Napoule
Unlike the Loire and Normandy, or the heart of Provence, the Côte d’Azur is not rich in castles. Here you’ll find more beautiful villas and the ruins of medieval castles. To the west of Cannes, you’ll find the Château de la Napoulone, whose red stones contrast well with the blue of the sea and sky.
24. The ramparts at Antibes
We love walking on ramparts. The views from the walls are often breathtaking, and the sense of history is intense. A special highlight in Antibes is the modern, monumental statue called “Le Nomade”. Artist Jaume Pensa created it with a white steel letter lace. And when the clouds are perfectly positioned, as in our photo, what more could you ask for?
25. Calanques de Santa-Lucia
We return to the very red rocks of the Esterel. There are several coves where you can admire them up close.
26. View from Cannes tower
In Cannes, don’t miss the Museum of Civilization and climb to the top of the tower to admire the 360° views. To the west, you can see the Esterel massif across the bay.
27. Île Sainte-Catherine
Still in Cannes, take the boat to Ile Marguerite. In just 15 minutes, you’ll arrive in a quieter area with few buildings. It’s good to spend some time in nature.
Book your crossing.
28. View of Nice from the Tour Saint-François
Thanks to the hills, you can enjoy a wide range of views over Nice: from the Colline du Château and Mont-Baron, for example. But our favorite view is from the Tour Saint-François, just above the rooftops of the old town.
29. Corniche de l’Esterel: Pointe de l’Observatoire
And we return one last time to the Esterel… because it really is a majestic area. If you take the Corniche route, there are plenty of stops along the coast to take in the views.
30. View of Toulon bay from Mont-Faron
If you love urban landscapes, take the Mont-Faron cable car to admire Toulon and its bay. Toulon is famous for its harbor, filled with warships, which are clearly visible in this photo.
Calanque En-Vau… at the limit
We’ve now reached the very edge of the Côte d’Azur, heading off into the calanques of Marseille. The calanque considered the most beautiful is En-Vau, with its immense cliffs all around.
PLAN YOUR TRIP TO THE Côte d’Azur
- Where to stay