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Things to do in Cannes

Things to do in  Cannes

Welcome to Cannes

The French Riviera, that sun-dappled stretch of the southern coast of France on the Mediterranean Sea, delivers on its reputation for sophisticated relaxation, with sandy beaches and sidewalk cafes brimming with beautiful people. The resort town of Cannes certainly does the Côte d’Azur proud, with its own pristine beaches, luxury hotels, boutiques, and restaurants—many clustered on Promenade de la Croisette. The city is ideally situated for day trips around the area, including guided shore excursions. For travel to cities in the area, take a half- or full-day guided trip to see the well-known seaside destinations of nearby Nice or the independent city-state of Monaco. A continuation to the less-visited town of Èze offers commanding views over the French Riviera from its hilltop lookout. In the other direction along the coast, St. Tropez offers yet another chance to bask in the Mediterranean sun, while also visiting historic monuments such as the citadel, built in the early 17th century. Head into the hills to explore the town of Grasse—a capital of the perfume industry—where the scent of Provence lavender is in the air. Options include small-group and fully private tours for the ultimate in luxury, and yacht trips are another luxe alternative. And if it's celebrities you’re seeking, the best time for star-spotting is during the Cannes Film festival, which usually takes place in May.

Top 10 attractions in Cannes

#1

Île Sainte-Marguerite

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The largest of the Lérins islands located 1 km (2/3 of a mile) from Cannes, the Ile de Sainte-Marguerite is abounding with eucalyptus and pines. The island is most famous for allegedly holding the mysterious Man in the Iron Mask captive during the 17th century. During the summer months, a vast amount of boats stay in the shallow, safeguarded "Plateau du Milieu" between the islands where there is more area for water sports. The village of Sainte-Marguerite is comprised of about twenty buildings. Most of these are home to fishermen, but there are a few establishments offering refreshments to tourists who are exploring the island. The historic Fort Royal now contains a youth hostel and a Museum featuring items recovered from ancient shipwrecks. Island visitors are also able to explore a number of former prison cells and an old Roman cistern room. Close to the Fort Royal is a small cemetery for French soldiers and another alongside it for North African soldiers.More
#2

La Croisette Boulevard (Boulevard de la Croisette)

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La Croisette Boulevard, or Boulevard de la Croisette, is the heart of Cannes, with luxury hotels, designer shops, and glittering nightlife spots lining the way along the curving coast. On the other side of the boulevard reside Cannes famous sandy beaches. It extends completely along the spectacular Cannes coastline. The boulevard overlooks the impressive harbor which is home to extravagant yachts and a pirate ship built for a film. The eastern section of the boulevard extends south at the lovely Parc de la Roseraie, curves along the Port Pierre Canto and ends at the southern tip of the Pointe de la Croisette near the Port du Palm beach. On the east side of the cape lies the charming Boulevard Eugène- Gazagnaire and its lovely beach, which extends north to the Port du Moure Rouge. The Croisette is the main drag of Cannes and features many of its major attractions.More
#3

Palais des Festivals et des Congrès

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The Film Festival Palace, or Palais des Festivals et des Congrès, was built in 1982 and houses year-round events in Cannes, most notably, the Cannes Film Festival. The prestigious film festival attracts movie stars and the media from around the world. The festival is one of the most prestigious international film events and overtakes the Cannes luxury establishments for two dizzying weeks in May. The famed palais provides 25,000 square meters for exhibitions as well as many rooms and 18 auditoriums equipped with state of the art sound and lighting. The original Palais was built in 1949, and a new one was built in 1982 in response to the growing popularity of the film festival and the need for business convention space. Now, the Palais is a contemporary building that plays hosts to a variety events besides the film festival, such as the international music trade show MIDEM and the International Television Programme Market.More
#4

Verdon Gorge (Gorges du Verdon)

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Verdon Gorge (Gorges du Verdon) is a deep and wild limestone canyon worn away by the Verdon River in the French Riviera. Running up to 700 meters deep, Verdon Gorge is aptly known to locals as the Grand Canyon du Verdon and receives over 100,000 visitors a year. With glacial waters as blue as the sky, the gorge is popular among swimmers, kayakers, sunbathers and hikers. It’s also especially beloved by rock climbers, with hundreds of climbing routes across its rocky 25-kilometer-long expanse. If you’d like to boat along the crystal clear waters of Verdon Gorge, rentals are available from nearby towns like Castellane during summer. Or you can just hop right in for a swim in the refreshingly cool water. For hikers, there are plenty of trails that take in the canyon’s jagged limestone cliffs and azure waters, including the popular nine-mile Martell trail, which takes about seven hours each way.More
#5

Port Grimaud

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Next door to St Tropez, the seaside town of Port Grimaud is known as the “Venice of Provence” for its famous canals. Just 50 years old, the town was designed by architect François Spoerry in the 1960s, who designed the pastel-colored houses in the traditional fisherman’s style of the French Riviera—all wrought-iron balconies and terracotta tiles. Initially controversial and seen as a faux Provence town, today Port Grimaud is a popular pleasure port full of luxury yachts, fancy restaurants and manicured gardens beloved by the European elite. There are over 3,000 berths and three ports at Port Grimaud, but no cars. In this land dedicated to the luxury yacht, every home has its own personal mooring space at the end of its garden. Port Grimaud is also known for its modernist Church of St Francis of Assisi, with abstract stained glass designs by Vasarely. Near the church at place du Marché is a market of fresh Provençal goods on Thursday and Sunday mornings.More
#6

Gorges du Loup

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Forty-five minutes from Antibes in France’s Alpes-Maritimes region, the scenic drive along the Gorges du Loup takes visitors up close to the Loup River (pronounced “Lou”) as it follows the deep canyon out to the Mediterranean Sea at Bouches-du-Loup. Cutting through the hills at the foot of medieval Gourdon village, the Gorges du Loup road is full of beautiful twists and carved-out tunnels. Two and a half miles (4 km) into the narrowing gorge, keep an eye out for Cascade de Courmes. For a small fee, you can park your car and walk down the steps to the terrace, where the free-falling cascade descends 130 feet (40 meters) below. There are two other waterfalls to be visited at Gorges du Loup: Saut du Loup and Cascades des Demoiselles.More
#7

Port of Cannes (Port de Cannes)

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Cruise ships dock in the bay and tenders take you to Le Vieux Port (the Old Port) from where you turn right and it is an easy walk to the main promenade along the beachfront and into town, or you can catch a taxi. The train station is also an easy walk. Local buses along the coast are also a good option for day trips as many destinations are reached for only 1 euro. Cannes is a lovely place to spend the day if you like to stroll the beachfront promenade, shop or eat in lovely surroundings. French bakeries are famous so pop in there for a light lunch. If you fancy more sumptuous surrounds, head to the hotels along the front, such as the Sofitel Mediterranee with its top floor restaurant with lovely views. Or have a cocktail at the famous domed Hotel Le Carlton. Up the hill in the old quarter of La Suquet is the Gothic church Notre Dame d’Esperance and 12th century Saint Anne’s Chapel plus panoramic view of Cannes Port.More
#8

Gourdon

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Located in the south of France by the Loup River, the beautifully preserved village of Gourdon looks all the way out to the Cote d’Azur from its mountaintop peak. A place of refuge and defense during medieval times, the feudal village is surrounded by thick ramparts and has only one entrance, the Roman Gate, which leads onto Gourdon’s medieval stone house-lined main street, rue de Major. Here, look out for Maison d’Anglars at No. 17, which dates back to the 13th century. Chateau de Gourdon, a historic monument since 1971, is a popular spot in Gourdon. The castle’s 17th-century gardens were designed by André Le Nôtre, who was also responsible for the Palace of Versailles’ famous gardens. At the top of the village sits a beautiful square revealing the huge church of St Pierre. For a perfect view of Gourdon’s golden-stoned ramparts, make sure to stop at the lookout point right before you enter the village.More
#9

Fort du Mont Alban

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For visitors to Nice, a stroll up to the top of Castle Hill offers extraordinary views of the city from the Old Town straight on to the airport. And with such beautiful weather being the norm, getting a bird's eye view of the Cote d'Azur can be addictive! For those who want to see even more from up high, Fort du Mont Alban is a must. Built in the mid-1500s for military defense, Fort du Mont Alban is located close to Nice in Mont Boron Park, just outside of Col-de-Villefranche. Although it suffered some damage in WWII, the fort is in excellent condition and was declared a national monument in the early 20th century. While tours of the fort are available only by appointment, the grounds are open to the public and free to enter. From the top there are sweeping views from Italy to Antibes – and after a rain, when the skies are clear, those with binoculars can even see Corsica!More
#10

L'Occitane Factory

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High among the lavender hills between Avignon and Nice, the L’Occitane Factory is open for popular one-hour guided tours. The site is located near the Provence hamlet of Manosque, and as you go through the factory, you’ll get to see production line rooms and learn how L’Occitane harvests and distills its organic ingredients from the area: lavender, olives, rosemary and almonds are all used in the creams and perfumes that make the brand famous worldwide. On a tour of L’Occitane, you’ll learn about the history of the company. Once Olivier Baussan founded it in 1976, he started out making rosemary essential oil and selling it at local Provence markets. By 1981, Baussan had opened his first store in Provence, and today, there are over 2,000 L’Occitane stores in 90 countries around the world.More

Trip ideas

Provence Day Trips From Cannes

Provence Day Trips From Cannes

How to Spend 3 Days in Cannes

How to Spend 3 Days in Cannes

Monaco Tours from Cannes

Monaco Tours from Cannes

Top activities in Cannes

Cannes Large Group Shore Excursion

Cannes Large Group Shore Excursion

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2
From
US$1,325.01
per group
Catamaran from Cannes

Catamaran from Cannes

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87
From
US$74.30
Nice City Private Half-Day Tour

Nice City Private Half-Day Tour

From
US$399.38
per group
Eze and Monaco Private Half-Day Tour

Eze and Monaco Private Half-Day Tour

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50
From
US$399.38
per group
Ferry from Cannes to St Tropez

Ferry from Cannes to St Tropez

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70
From
US$79.10

Recent reviews from experiences in Cannes

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Canned Shore Excursion: Small-Group Monaco and Eze Half-Day Tour
CINDY O, Sep 2019
Monaco, Monte-Carlo, Eze Half-day from Cannes small-Group and Shore Excursion
The small group excursion was an excellent way to see Cannes, Monaco, Monte Carlo and Eze.
star-5
Wonderful excursion to Nice
Joan S, Aug 2019
Nice city tour and Old town Half-Day from Cannes and Shore Excursion
We saw everything we wanted to see and had some time for wandering.
star-4
What an incredible day! We booked this...
Neil Y, Mar 2012
Provence Countryside Small-Group Day Trip from Cannes
We booked this trip because we wanted to see a side of southern France that cannot be seen in Cannes, and we certainly did.
star-5
The best way to see Monaco and Eze...
Ivy N, Jul 2017
Monaco, Monte-Carlo, Eze Half-day from Cannes small-Group and Shore Excursion
The best way to see Monaco and Eze when you are only in Cannes for a day!
star-4
Beautiful sites to see and very...
Dean R, Aug 2014
Monaco and Eze Small Group Day Trip from Cannes
Beautiful sites to see and very interesting.
star-5
A great trip and a fun way to see...
Balti-most, Sep 2013
Monaco and Eze Small Group Day Trip from Cannes
A great trip and a fun way to see the area from Cannes without a car.
star-5
No stress tour
Rbob4ABZ, Oct 2019
Eze and Monaco Private Half-Day Tour
Like to see that part of south France in a day .
star-5
Highly recommended!
aworsley319, Jul 2019
Provence Wine Tour - Private Day Tour from Cannes
We took the SNCF train to Cannes from Nice because all the Nice wine tours were booked for the course of the summer.
star-5
You must go on this tour!
Flyer02416731568, Jun 2019
Eze, Monaco, Nice Full Day Tour from Cannes Small-Group Shore Excursion
He took the time to show us places that everyone likes to visit.
star-5
Took myself on a solo trip to visit...
Michele L, Aug 2018
Ferry from Cannes to St Tropez
Took myself on a solo trip to visit several areas in France.
star-5
Lovely Tour
teresaxo, Jul 2018
Cannes Antibes St-Paul-de-Vence Half-Day from Cannes Small Group Shoreexcursion
There is just so much to see and appreciate there our quick little trip didn’t give us enough time for anything more than a quick run through.
star-5
Great way to see Cannes, Monaco and...
tcariati, Sep 2017
Monaco, Monte-Carlo, Eze Half-day from Cannes small-Group and Shore Excursion
Great way to see Cannes, Monaco and Eze.
star-4
St Paul de Vence was spectacular.... and so was the ride along the coast to Antibes
ferikov, Jul 2018
Cannes Antibes St-Paul-de-Vence Half-Day from Cannes Small Group Shoreexcursion
We've been a few times in Cannes so the option to see some of the surrounding places like Antibes and St Paul de Vence was the attraction.
star-5
This excursion was by far one of the...
Michele L, Aug 2018
Catamaran from Cannes
This boat ride allowed me the chance to see a bit of Cannes before and after the ride and the gorgeous coastline, and to hear the stories of the Lerins Islands.
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Yannick was an excellent driver, and...
Robert B, May 2017
Full-Day Private Custom-Made Cannes Shore Excursion
Yannick was an excellent driver, and he took us to the best sights.
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Saw much more of Cannes and Monoco...
kyle.armstrong, Jul 2017
The best French Riviera Full-Day from Cannes Small-Group Shore Excursion
The tour lasted our entire time in port and we were able to see much more than we thought we would.
star-5
We arrived in Cannes from a cruise...
terasaka, Jun 2016
Full-Day Private Custom-Made Cannes Shore Excursion
We got to see exactly what we wanted to see and enjoy.
star-5
This was AWESOME! Got to see flea...
Susan R, Jul 2015
Monaco, Monte-Carlo, Eze Half-day from Cannes small-Group and Shore Excursion
Got to see flea markets and a perfumery in Cannes and then off to Monaco.
star-4
Definitely worth doing to check out...
Anand P, Jul 2012
Ferry from Cannes to St Tropez
They don't keep a headcount to see how many people have a return voucher.
star-4
This tour was excellent, we were...
GILLIAN B, May 2013
Monaco Small-Group Night Tour from Cannes
It was a lovely place, would recommend this tour to see Monaco especially at night.

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