Vacation In Cannes

Each year, countless Americans cross the Atlantic and make their way to Cannes, France either on business or for pleasure. Family vacations in Cannes are quite a fun experience because there are so many things to do. The best part of this city is that there are no towering buildings that block the picturesque view of the sea.

If you’re reading this then you’ve found yourself in Cannes. I can’t say I blame you, as it’s an incredibly beautiful city. One of the best ways to experience the beautiful city is to take a vacation here. That’s why we’re going to discuss some of the best things to do in Cannes that are both free and great for your wallet.

Where to go, what to do? There are millions of possibilities! We decided that the best way to figure this out was to get opinions from a variety of people. We left it up to the choice of random people online. I’m pretty sure these people were robots because none of the answers they gave us made sense. I guess we’ll never know your favorite vacation spot. At least not from this article.

Vacation In Cannes

Basking in the sun of the French Riviera, Cannes sparkles with glamour and exclusivity. This legendary seaside resort has all the glitz and allure of the Côte d’Azur: private beaches, marinas filled with luxury yachts, stylish boulevards, elegant Belle Epoque hotels, and fashionable restaurants.

Nestled in an enchanting corner of the Golfe de la Napoule bay, Cannes is blessed with a balmy Mediterranean climate. The weather is mild year-round and perfect for sunbathing by the beach from May through October. Leafy palm trees grace the streets of Cannes, and subtropical flowers flourish throughout the city, giving visitors the impression of being in paradise.

The prestigious Film Festival of Cannes has been an important event since it began in 1946. Drawing famous movie stars from around the world, this annual red-carpet gala has earned an international reputation for promoting the art of filmmaking.

For those with more time, Cannes is an excellent base for a vacation in the South of France. Discover the best places to visit in this fashionable resort town on the Côte d’Azur with our list of the top attractions and things to do in Cannes.

See also: Where to Stay in Cannes

Note: Some businesses may be temporarily closed due to recent global health and safety issues.

1. Boulevard de la Croisette

La Croisette
La Croisette

One of the most fashionable streets on the French Riviera, this palm-lined boulevard is the center of tourist activity in Cannes. The Boulevard de la Croisette is lined with opulent villas, upscale boutiques and lavish Belle Epoque hotels, such as the legendary Carlton Cannes, a masterpiece of Art Nouveau architecture designed by Charles Dalmas.

The boulevard extends from the Palais des Festivals to the lovely La Roseraie (Rose Garden) at the Square du 8 Mai 1945. Along this two-kilometer stretch, the beachfront promenade is a great place for strolling, people-watching, and admiring the magnificent sea views. One thing to keep in mind: Many beaches along this stretch are private.

Beyond La Roseraie park is the idyllic Port Pierre Canto, with its rows of luxury yachts docked at the harbor. Also within walking distance is another harbor, the Port de la Pointe Croisette, the departure point for regattas organized by the Yacht Club of Cannes.

Another spot for water sports enthusiasts and sunbathers is the nearby Port Palm Beach. This quiet public beach on the western side of Pointe Croisette has a snack bar and restroom facilities.

2. Le Suquet (Old Town)

Le Suquet (Old Town)
Le Suquet (Old Town)

Perched on the slopes of Mont Chevalier above the bay, the Old Town (Le Suquet) represents the original fishing village. In a picturesque hillside setting, this area offers exceptional views, as well as old-world charm. This traffic-free quarter features narrow cobblestone alleyways, pedestrian staircases, and interesting historic remnants such as the city’s ancient walls.

At the heart of Le Suquet, the 15th-century church, Eglise Notre-Dame d’Espérance, and the 11th-century Tour du Mont Chevalier watchtower dominate the skyline. From the top of the watchtower, there is a wonderful panoramic outlook onto the beach and the bay all the way out to the Lérins Islands. Another joy of visiting Le Suquet is wandering the quaint old streets.

One of the old town’s main shopping streets is the Rue Meynadier. This bustling pedestrian street is renowned for its specialty gourmet boutiques. Another important commercial street a few blocks away at the edge of Le Suquet is the Rue d’Antibes.

A shopping destination for French Riviera fashions, the Rue d’Antibes is lined with designer prêt-à-porter clothing boutiques, perfume stores, and jewelry shops. This fashionable street is also home to the outposts of two fancy Parisian-based pâtisserie establishments: Lenôtre (63 Rue d’Antibes) and Ladurée (79 Rue d’Antibes). Ladurée is famous for its colorful macarons, available in an assortment of flavors, as well as its refined ambience and enticing array of French cakes, cream puffs, and éclairs.

3. Festival de Cannes (Film Festival) in May

Cannes Film Festival Red Carpet
Cannes Film Festival Red Carpet

Of all the things to do on the French Riviera, the Festival de Cannes is the most exciting. This prestigious red-carpet event is definitely one of the biggest moments of the year in Cannes.

The festival draws movie stars and filmmakers from all over the world, as well as crowds of fans and journalists. Originally, the Festival de Cannes was established to rival the Venice Film Festival. Since its first edition in 1946, the festival has earned an international reputation for discovering, supporting, and promoting excellent films.

Address: Palais des Festivals et des Congrès, 1 Boulevard de la Croisette, Cannes

Official site:

4. Palais des Festivals et des Congrès

Palais des Festivals et des Congrès
Palais des Festivals et des Congrès | BearFotos /

The Palais des Festivals et des Congrès is the venue for the Cannes Film Festival. Designed by the architects Bennett and Druet, the building was completed in 1982 and is used for events, conferences, music concerts, and festivals throughout the year.

The Palais des Festivals is an impressive complex of buildings, including numerous auditoriums with state-of-the-art sound and lighting systems. A modernization project was completed in 2015, which included enhancements to the famous entrance staircase and the seating of the Grand Auditorium Louis Lumiere. The foyer was also renovated; it is now brighter and more spacious.

Address: 1 Boulevard de la Croisette, Cannes

5. Eglise Notre-Dame de l’Espérance

Notre-Dame de l'Espérance
Notre-Dame de l’Espérance

Built on the summit of Le Suquet, which dazzles with its dreamy views of the city, the Eglise Notre-Dame de l’Espérance is the most important church in Cannes. The late-Gothic edifice dates to the 16th century and has a notable 17th-century Madonna on the high altar.

When entering the church, visitors are struck by the peaceful interior and the inspiring heights of its Gothic vaulting. The church also features a mix of architectural styles, including a Renaissance porch plus an organ that was installed in 1857 and has been recently renovated. There is also an old cemetery that dates back to the 16th century.

During the Second World War, the church was temporarily used as a hospital. Today, the church is still a place of religious worship.

In July, the square in front of the church is illuminated and becomes a magical outdoor venue for Les Nuits Musicales du Suquet, a classical musical festival featuring one week of performances under the stars.

Address: 1 Place de la Castre, Cannes

6. Musée des Explorations du Monde

Musée des Explorations du Monde
Musée des Explorations du Monde

On a hill overlooking the Bay of Cannes, the Musée des Explorations du Monde in Le Suquet occupies a classified Historical Monument, a medieval castle that was formerly the monastery of Lérins monks, and a Romanesque chapel (the 13th-century Chapelle Sainte-Anne). Surrounded by a Mediterranean garden, the site boasts exceptional views of the coastline and sea.

The Musée des Explorations du Monde has a superb collection of antiquities from Mediterranean civilizations, pre-Columbian primitive art, and 19th-century Provençal landscape paintings. Several small rooms feature exotic art objects from Oceania and the Himalayas. There is also an extensive collection of musical instruments from around the world.

Visitors can climb to the top of the building’s 12th-century tower. This vantage point offers breathtaking 360-degree panoramas of Cannes and its surroundings.

Address: Place de la Castre, Le Suquet, Cannes

7. Public Beaches in Cannes

Busy public beach in Cannes
Busy public beach in Cannes

Cannes is famous for its fine sandy beaches, with gorgeous views and calm Mediterranean waters ideal for bathing. Including the nearby îles de Lérin and Estérel coastline, there are seven kilometers of beach property in Cannes. With so many options, there is something for every visitor.

While many of the beaches in Cannes are private property owned by hotels, several beaches are open to the public, and these are some of the best beaches in the South of France. These include the Plage Macé and the Plage Zamenhof, located off the Boulevard de la Croisette. These beaches charge a small fee for use of the lounge chairs and parasols.

Also available for public use (and free of charge) are the Plage du Casino, a golden-sand beach along the Boulevard de la Croisette; Plage de la Bocca, a quiet beach with gorgeous views and golden sand; the Plage du Midi, a long sandy beach near the center of Cannes; and Plage du Mouré Rouge, a great beach for water sports (paddleboarding, windsurfing, and kayaking) near the fishing ports. The lesser-known Plage des Rochers is the best beach for snorkeling.

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