Many great artists, like Pablo Picasso, have been to Southeast France and Antibes to find the light and depict the amazing views. If you have been here, you just understand – and will return!
Originally Antipolis, a Greek trading post established by Phocaeans from Marseille, it became a Roman town, and from 1384 to 1608 it was a fief of the coast-ruling Grimaldi family. The Grimaldi château, much rebuilt over the ages.
Beaches, mountain villages, lavender fields, shopping, art, food and history in a perfect French compote. Antibes dates from ancient times and the old city center consists of a maze of streets, alleys and squares. Just a stone’s throw away is the Plage du Ponteil beach, which is long-range, fine-grained and free unlike most of the stone beaches in Nice. Here are also the luxury seaside resort of Juan-les-Pins, the Cap d’Antibes exclusive villas and Antibes port, Port Vauban, one of Europe’s largest private marinas that creaks big luxury jungles outermost.
History and inhabitants!
Antibes City Antibes, with its 70,000 inhabitants, dates back to the 19th century when it was founded by the Greeks with the name Antipolis. Today, Antibes is a nice city located side by side with the twin city Juan-Les-Pins. Narrow alleys and stone houses are close to the Old Town, which is not so big but has a genuine conviviality.
In the popular market of the Old Town, Cours Masséna, you can buy different Provencal specialties, flowers, spices, lavender pails and crafts.
Musee Picasso (antibesjuanlespins.com). Pablo Picasso appeared for several years in Antibes, The museum, located at the top of the medieval district and housed in Chateau Grimaldi, also shows works of Fernand Leger and Miro. Here also the Swedish photographer Marianne Greenwood worked as the museum’s home photographer. She helped build a photo archive with Pablo and his family and was one of Picasso’s close friends.
Once a year, Antibes and Juan-les-Pins team up to present the Jazz à Juan festival, which counts Dave Brubeck, Stevie Wonder and Ravi Coltrane among its past patrons. The jazz influence comes from the sister town of New Orleans, from which a number of bands playing in the festival originate. Visitors can expect nine days of grooving in total, for which combination tickets are available online.
A 16th century fort built upon Roman ruins, this place is both a spot to discover an exciting history and to witness a fantastic view across the harbor. Napoleon was for a time imprisoned here during the French Revolution and the fort was also important when Nice was annexed in the latter half of the 19th century. More recently, it was used in the James Bond film Never Say Never Again. Although a bit of a walk from the center of town, it nevertheless makes for an enthralling day-trip.st train that runs daily departs around nine. Weekend is the last at midnight.
It’d be mad to come to Antibes and not spend at least one day sunbathing and dipping in the sea. For a day with family and every amenity under the sun, Plage du Ponteil is the ideal destination: It’s close to town, with showers, toilets, bars and small boats to hire. For something more secluded, try Plage Mala, which is split into a public beach and a restaurant-owned section. This beach was supposedly used by Russian Tsar Nicholas II and his lover when they holidayed in the area.
The famous port!
Hiking along the quays of the well-visited port, Port Vauban, is a must if you visit Antibes. Here you can see everything from small, local fishing boats to the world’s absolute largest yatcher. On the so-called Billionaire Row at Antibes Yacht Club, the giant yatches are side by side. During the day there is full activity here because hundreds of crewmen working on the yachts sow and swallow the boats.
The big fort at the harbor is called Le Fort Carre. The plant is from 1550 and here Napoleon has lived and been detained. From the fort you have a great view of Antibes and its harbor. Guided tours are held several times daily. In Antibes there is also the Archaeological Museum Musée d’Arrégolie with Greek and Etruscan finds from the Mediterranean.
Cap d’Antibes is a lush oceanside with many amazing beaches and coves. Even the millionaires are close, and some of them are home to real celebrities. For example, the artist Madonna and Russians Roman Abramovich, known to own the Chelsea football club, and ex-president Boris Yeltsin have settled down here. At the furthest out of the valley lies the mythical Hôtel du Cap Eden Roc, the most famous film star hotel in the coast, with almost all of the Hollywood elites staying.
Antibes slightly more remote surroundings are also fully explored during a weekend. Vineyards in Provence or Italian Piedmont, Renoir Museum in Cagnes sur Mer, a lovely golf round on one of the nearby courses, perfume production in the mountain town of Grasse, shopping in trendy Cannes or the flower market of Cours Saleya in the big city of Nice.
If you want to go by bus, go left when you get into the Arrivals Hall at Nice Airport and walk out the doors. Outside the doors on the left side you have bus ticket ”kiosk”. The buses are just outside.
Bus 200 is a local bus that stops at Place General de Gaulle in Antibes. There you will find tourist information if you want to get a map of Antibes.
Bus 250 is an express bus that stops at the train station in Antibes. The buses run frequently, about every 20 minutes.
You can also go by train. Take a taxi to Nice Saint Augustin train station. It takes about 5 min by taxi there. Or, take a express bus number 99 to Nice Central Station. Nice is close but the train station is north of the center while the flight is west.
It takes a short time with the train from Nice to Antibes.
It’s easy to fell in love with Antibes, and as you can understand I did!
I hope this blog post made you to want to visit this gem! xoxo