French Riviera on a
By Kate Reeves
Cannes to Menton!
Lets look at the French Riviera on a shoestring budget! When you find an area you like and you feel relaxed in, it's hard to imagine moving on to explore further afield.
Iles de Lerins:
The Iles de Lerins just off Cannes is one of those places. With so much to do - visit and attend a service in the monastery on Saint Honorat, sample the famous wine made by the monks from grapes grown on the island, climb the ancient tower for spectacular views over all the islands and across to Cannes, stroll along the tree-covered paths of each island, take a dip in a private cove, watch the boats coming and going, explore the fort on Sainte Marguerite where the man in the iron mask was locked up for many years, try some wild blackberries - it really is hard to leave the French Riviera!
But the time will come, usually with a strong wind forecast or a big swell, and you'll decide to move on. So here's the east French Riviera on a shoestring...
Best Value Marinas:
- Reservations available by
email, excellent shelter, friendly service, shower facilities, wifi, excellent
provisions, daily market, restaurants surrounding the port and in the old town,
beach clubs, easy access to the old town of Nice and further afield by bus and
train, about £50 per night in peak season. (All prices based on a 15 metre sailing yacht)
- Reservations available by email and telephone, very helpful and friendly staff,
excellent shelter, some provisions, lots of restaurants, pretty town with
access to cliff walks, about £60 per night in peak season.
Port de Beaulieu:
- An excellent alternative to
the exceptionally expensive port in St-Jean, reservations by email and
telephone, helpful and friendly staff, excellent shelter, good provisions in
town, easy access to trains to Monaco, buses to Eze, about £55 per night in
- Although cheaper than Monaco
Port, it is still expensive but one that provides excellent service and value
for money. Explore Monaco and Monte Carlo on foot from the marina, enjoy the
hustle and bustle of the Principality but know that you have a peaceful marina
for the night. Very friendly and helpful staff, reservations available,
heliport, roughly £80 per night in peak season.
Menton Old Port:
- Very friendly and helpful,
provisions in town, willing to help in bad weather although the visitor quay
has poor shelter from the swell. Wifi, water and electricity all available for
about £50 per night in peak season.
Juan les Pins:
- Known in its heyday for its hedonistic
tendencies, this lively town with beautiful beaches has long attracted the rich
and famous to the French Rivera.
- The whole bay between Cannes and Juan les Pins is the anchorage of
choice for many huge super yachts but the more modest-sized yachts head to the
east of the bay and tuck in under the Cap d'Antibes between the Hotel Eden Roc
and the small Port du Crouton.
- You'll hold well and will be very well sheltered
from any wind and swell with east in it. You can leave the dinghy on the
visitor quay at Port du Crouton and wander into the town for excellent
provisions, restaurants and the Petit Train to Antibes.
- A number of small anchorages
provide pretty lunch stops but are not particularly well protected. Try Anse
de l'Aregnt Faux on the southerly tip of the Cap, the bay off La
Garoupe for beach clubs and beach restaurants and the large anchorage
east of Antibes for lovely views of the old town.
Rade de Villefranche-sur-Mer:
- Anchor at
the head of the bay outside the yellow buoys; take care to stay out of the no
anchor zone as there can be up to 3 cruise ships a day anchored here. Take the
dinghy onto the town quay and tie up with the others.
- A lovely anchorage, very
popular in the summer during the day, quiet at night, but you may need to make
use of a stern anchor to keep the boat into the prevalent swell which comes
straight in from the sea.
Anse de la Scaletta:
- Tucked into the Cap Ferrat and well
protected from anything with south in it, this shallow anchorage is another one
of those places you can stay for days.
- Paloma Beach on the shore provides water sports
in the day time and romantic summer beach-side evening meals. Easy dinghy
access to the port of St-Jean for provisions and a variety of restaurants as
well as access to the popular walk along the coast between Villefranche and
Baie de Roquebrune:
- Anchor in
good holding under the town of Roquebrune. Good shelter from east but open to
the sea swells from the south. Good walk up to the ancient town, stunning views
across the Riviera and sandy beach with good snorkelling.
- The east side of
the Cap is a good anchorage for lunch and can be used in very settled weather
for overnight stays. Sandy bottom with good holding although quite deep as
restricted by protected swimming area.
French Riviera Helpful Hints:
- Stock up on provisions at the big supermarkets when you can as small
town supermarkets can be extremely expensive in the French Riviera. Local bakeries however are
excellent value for morning croissants and afternoon pastries!
- Keep your eye on the weather, check it every day on the radio and again with a local port as local winds can be missed by national forecasts.
- Book ahead in bad weather. If bad weather is on the way, plan ahead and get yourself into a good harbour. Remember, the less pricey ones fill up first so make sure you've got your space.
- Be safe in the sun. Always wear a hat and sun cream and drink plenty of water to keep hydrated and energy levels up.
The French Riviera
is truly beautiful all year round. Although the best weather is during the
summer months, May and October can be the perfect time to cruise, with lower
marina fees, quieter anchorages and warm sun.
Here at Essential
Sailing we love the French Riviera and can't wait to welcome you on board our
beautiful Beneteau Oceanis 50 sailing yacht.
Come with us and cruise the French
Riviera in style, knowing that we will take you to all the best spots. Enjoy
life aboard with your own professional crew and cook who can cater to your
Article Source:Ezine Articles Kate Reeves
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