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  • Writer's pictureMarilyn Scott

8 of the Most Beautiful Towns to Visit in the Southeast of France

Updated: Nov 3, 2021

You’ve probably heard all your friends tell you how nice France is, but usually, they’re talking about Paris. Would you believe me if I told you France has far more to offer? This, of course, doesn’t mean you lose any of the charms of the rest of the country, but Southeast France has a unique feel.

A small sample of the region’s delights: turquoise water, historic villages, miles and miles of coastline, and of course, shopping! For more details, continue reading below…

1. Cannes

This elegant resort city may look modern, but it holds a ton of historical value. Hundreds of years of history were made between this city’s walls. Aside from strolling along the coast of the mile-long La Croisette, dine at one of the many fabulous French restaurants and hike the Massif de l’Esterel, a coastal Mediterranean mountain range.

2. Cotignac

Nestled between cliffs and two 12th-century towers, Cotignac is full of stunning Provencal villages and vineyards. You’ll find the famous Gorge du Verdon a short distance from the commune, a spectacular canyon with breathtaking views!

3. Menton

Near the border of Italy, the half-moon bay on the French Riviera is one of Menton’s most enjoyable sites. It’s also one of the warmest resorts in the winter. As you wander through town, you may notice the citrus trees and giant sculptures. Don’t miss out on the annual Lemon Festival (Fête du citron) if you happen to be in town for it. Plenty of activities with citrus fruits – parades, exhibits, and scenes – await your arrival.

4. Nice

The first stop in the city is the Cours Saleya flower market. Bask in the sweet, floral scents of the wide range of flower varieties, and once you’ve had your fill make your way to view the Roman ruins on Colline du Château. Before you leave Nice, make sure you head to the Promenade (known to locals as the Prom) for some shopping. Feel free to enjoy the seven-kilometer stretch of picturesque views, beaches, exhibits, and much more!

5. Peillon

This perched village sits in the mountains of the Alpes-Maritimes. Walking through the narrow passageways might get tricky, but it’s worth it to see the medieval houses, vaulted alleys, and of course, the painted wall at Chapelle des Penitents Blancs.

6. Villefranche-sur-Mer

This charming 14th-century Niçoise fishing village on the French Riviera is mentioned for its deep harbor, lovely old town, and seaport overlooking the gentle Mediterranean waters. Walk down the cobblestone roads until you reach the Citadel St. Elmo and Port de la Darse, two of the prime exploration venues in the village.

7. Antibes

Known as a harbor town, Antibes has quite the shoreline with one of the most impressive beach scenes in the region. Its main attractions include Viele Antibes (Old Town), Cap d’Antibes & Juan-les-Pin beaches, Absinthe Museum, the Exflora Museum, and the Grimaldi château, which is now a museum that contains the works of Pablo Picasso (who doesn’t want to see Picasso?!). If you make your trip in July, you can treat yourself to the Jazz a Juan festival too!

8. Vence

Vence (not Venice) is a medieval village that highlights its past. Once you’re here, visit the Cathedral of Nativity of Saint Mary, The Chapelle des Pénitents Blancs, and stroll through the historic old town.

Ready to explore idyllic Southeast France? I’m happy to help you with your journey and make it the next destination for you! Once you’ve decided to move forward, schedule a consultation with me, and we’ll get you on your way.

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