The French Riviera: Places to Explore

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Juan-les-Pins

If Antibes is the elderly, historic parent, then Juan-les-Pins is the jazzy younger-sister resort town that, with Antibes, bracelets the wrist of the Cap d'Antibes. The scene along Juan's waterfront is something to behold, with thousands of international sun seekers flowing up and down the promenade or lying flank to flank on its endless stretch of sand. Yes, the Plage de Juan-les-Pins is made up of sand, not pebbles, and ranks among the Riviera's best (rent a beach chair from the nearby hotel concessions, the best of which is Les Belles Rives). Along with these white-powder wonders, Juan is famous for the quality—some pundits say quantity—of its nightlife. There are numerous nightclubs where you can do everything but sleep, ranging from casinos to discos to strip clubs. If all this sounds like too much hard work, wait for July's jazz festival—one of Europe's most prestigious—or simply repair to the Les Belles Rives; if you're lucky enough to be a guest, you'll understand why F. Scott Fitzgerald set his Tender Is the Night in "Juantibes," as the place retains the golden glamour of the Riviera of yore and is surrounded by the last remnants of the pine forests that gave Juan its name. Elsewhere, Juan-les-Pins suffers from a plastic feel and you might get more out of Antibes.

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