French Riviera Beaches

May 22nd, 2002, 10:14 AM
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French Riviera Beaches

I'm going to French Riviera in July with 2 kids (5 and 10) - 1 week in St.Tropez area and 1 week in Nice and seeking all kind of info about beaches and kids activities. Please share your experience!
May 22nd, 2002, 12:13 PM
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The beach in Nice is extremely rocky - I don't know how anyone can lay on it without a chaise lounge. There are some private beaches - at which I believe you pay a fee for the all day use of a chaise lounge. These usually have facilities including food. I can't comment on St. Tropez.
May 22nd, 2002, 12:36 PM
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st. tropez is the same way. lots of rocks. a few select areas are not as rocky. but most of the beaches are not public and you MUST pay the hotel/resort to use their chairs. florida has MUCH better beaches than Nice. In fact, i think almost any beach is nice than the beach in nice, france.
May 22nd, 2002, 01:08 PM
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Three years ago when I traveled from Spain to Monaco along the French Riviera I did not find any beach that could compare to the beautiful beaches we have in northern Michigan along Lake Michigan, but the riviera does have many other great things to do and see. Bon Journey!
May 22nd, 2002, 10:56 PM
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There is plenty of sand on the beaches of Saint-Tropez. They constitute the widest sandy beaches along the French Riviera. Still, they're narrow compared to many areas of the United States. And, the best beaches for adults (clothing, all or some, optional) bear flamboyant names such as Tahiti and Bora Bora, are payant(rather expensive for the chaises, though discounted for guests), managed by the hotels and accessible only by car. The beaches closer to town are oriented towards families, I hear. I don't recall seeing many children in Saint-Tropez, which is marketed and run as an adult playground. Plenty of pampered small dogs and big yachts, though. Your children may enjoy a tour of the citadel in the hills above the harbor. At night, the action is in town, around the harbor. Lovely town. Great trip.
May 23rd, 2002, 04:15 AM
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Just a point about the Riviera beaches. You might have to pay to use the chairs / loungers, but you DO NOT have to pay to use the beach. All French beaches are owned by the Government who fiercely protect them - Brigitte Bardot was prevented from cordoning off the beach in front of her home in St Tropez a few years back by the Government.

As long as you stay off the chairs, there's not a lot the hotels can do. That doesn't mean, however, that they will be nice to you....
May 23rd, 2002, 05:02 AM
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Juan les Pins has sandy beaches and seems to be a popular family spot. Enjoy! It's closer to Nice than Cannes, which also has sandy beaches. It is also smaller than Cannes.
May 23rd, 2002, 08:04 AM
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I loved those rocks in Nice! They are large and smooth and the sun heats them up and it's like stone message!

Also in Cannes (20 mins by train) the beach is soft and sandy and beautiful!

We just lounged but we saw lots of jet ski rental in Cannes.
May 23rd, 2002, 12:35 PM
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Cannes has sand trucked into their beach, so they can have a sandy beach. The beach in Nice is medium size rocks that are smooth from the action of the waves.

There are both public & private areas of the beach along the Bay de Angels in Nice. In the public areas you bring your own blanket/towel to lie on, no glass allowed, and you will be approached by many vendors selling food & wares. On the private beaches, you can rent a lounge & umbrella for a full or half day, you get lounge-side service, you can drink wine, eat cheese etc. Rental prices are cheaper during the week than on weekends.

Most of the hotels are partners with the private beach areas and you can get a discount if you go to the beach sponsored by your hotel. We decided that we didn't like the beach sponsored by our hotel and on our "beach afternoons" went to the Lido Plage. They had great food, great service, and very good looking waiters.

If I remember correctly it was about $7 for a half day of lounge rental. Not much for a little extra comfort, some nice service and no vendors are allowed to harrass you.
May 23rd, 2002, 01:19 PM
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quiet sandy beach near nice airport, behind Cap3000 shopping centre

May 23rd, 2002, 01:58 PM
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Antibes has some sandy beaches, as does Cavalaire-sur-mer.

Best wishes,

May 23rd, 2002, 02:27 PM
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If you are used to American East Coast or Southern Cal beaches, you could be very disappointed with those on the French Riviera. (or with most beaches in Europe for that matter). Long & wide sandy beaches with big surf are very rare.

Also, tell your kids in advance that most ladies (even those in their eighties) do not wear their bikini tops over there.

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