How do you spend a day in Antibes, France?
It seems as if the whole city of Antibes, one of the French Riviera destinations, is on an elevated location, abutting the Mediterranean Sea.
It is because of the Alpes-Maritimes department of which, the entire Cote d’ Azur is a part of.
The entire southeast coast of France, starting from Menton city, and ending with Toulon is the most coveted tourist destination and a proud place to have a seafront villa/apartment/bungalow. for the French people has properties all long the Cote d’ Azur.
The beauty of Cote d’ Azur has no match in Europe.
In this blog post, I am covering best things to do in Anitibes that is sitting right to Nice City. To the right of Antibes (south of Antibes) sits Cannes, the venue of annual film festival that is attended by world’s top tinsel world celebrities and a truckload of journalists.
Location of Antibes
Look below the map of French Riviera showing the cities facing the Mediterranean Sea.
Distance from other famous French cities to Antibes.
- Paris-917 km
- Lyon-455 km
- Monaco-50 km
- Nice-28 km
- Cannes-11.5 km
- Tropez-97 km
- Marseille-184 km
This information will help you plan your trip to Antibes. If Paris is your starting point, a superfast train will get you to Antibes in about 6 hours, whereas a normal train will consume more than 9 hours.
Best Things to Do in Antibes, France
Now that you know the position of Antibes on the French Riviera, read further to know what the tourist attractions are in the enchanting coastal city.
Fort Carre (Fort Carie)
Similar to other cities on the Cote d’ Azur, Antibes is also an historic city that had connections with Roman regime and Greek rule. In fact, Antibes was founded by the Greek during the famous Roman reign in the 4th century BC.
Fort Carre was built on a hillock with great views of the approaching war ships from the Mediterranean Sea.
It is one of the tourist attractions in Antibes.
There are so many yachts docked at Port Vauban that gives you an impression the port is cramped for space in spite of the Mediterranean Sea, which hosts the port.
Like all other cities in southeast French coast, Antibes is also equipped with a wonderful harbor and serves as an important stop for cruise ships, and chartered yachts.
Standing on the promenade, you can spend an hour or so watching the movement of vessels.
The ultra-luxury yachts are owned by top businessmen in the world including that of the co-founder of Microsoft!
Aside Port Vauban, there are more ports with great capacity of hosting hundreds of vessels.
Take a walking tour of the different harbors that are beautiful attractions in Antibes. They are worth paying a visit.
A port is so different from a beach that you don’t get bored watching the mooring live and seeing passengers of different ethnicity, disembark and walk eagerly towards the exit gate.
Below is a fine example, the video clip of Port Galice (Poer Gallice).
- Port Crouton
- Port de la Salis
Beaches in Antibes
Antibes is proud of its own share of beautiful beaches on the Mediterranean coast
Some of the beaches you should visit:
- Plage de la Gravette
These kinds of cove beaches are the most beautiful, next to beaches surrounded by tall cliffs that you find on the Italian Riviera.
- Plage de la Salis
With the backdrop of several condominiums facing the Mediterranean Sea, it is obvious; it is a coveted beach in Antibes. From some places on the beach, the Cap d’Antibes can be seen.
- Plage de la Garoupe
- Beach des Milliardiers
This beach is surrounded by thick forest, ragged rocks, and expansive villas owned by wealthy people who live elsewhere.
For them, these are their holiday homes.
- Plage de Ponteil
- Beach de la Galice
I believe some beaches are secluded and from the look of lack of crowds, they must be paid beaches.
As many as 48 beaches dot the 25 km of Mediterranean coast in Antibes.
Marinaland is one of the biggest tourist attractions in Antibes. It is a place to see marine lives including the clown-like penguins.
These Antractic Penguins pull quite a large number tourist from as far as Paris and Lyon cities.
Apart from the Penguin pool, there is one similar to that, dedicated to dolphins.
Children are let free in the water theme park that offers them thrilling rides, and slides.
It is recommended for the family tourist to stay in the resort built inside the Marinaland instead of staying in a city hotel.
Penguins and dolphins apart, you can watch the sharks that are given an exclusive tunnel through which they emerge.
Finally, the marine park’s special residents are the California Sea lions.
The sea lions definitely don’t like a lion at all!.
Without going to anywhere near northpole such as Alaska, you can very well see the snow-white polar bears in Antibes. They are housed in the Marinaland marine animal park.
Marine animal parks will definitely have an aquarium. Here in the Marinaland, apart from fish species, you can also see the attractive coral reefs that only scuba divers or snorkelers can see.
Yes, these marine mammals are also housed here. I have seen them and they looked like physically handicapped creatures.
If you are lucky, during your visit to this marine zoological park, you can witness several shows that include:
- Dolphins show
- Sea lions show
- Whales show
Surely this odd looking sculpture is one of the biggest tourist attractions in Antibes. It is interesting to know the statue was made of metal.
You cannot miss it, buddy. It is clearly visible and will catch your eyes during your visit to the Port Vauban. The sitting posture of the statue, faces the Mediterranean Sea. The port-approaching yachts can spot the Le Nomade from a distance.
Drink a glass of Absinthe
I think you are more interested in this odd-shaped glass than the liquid in it.
The glass is called ‘reservoir glass’. The liquid in it is “Absinthe’. It is a kind of liqueur (flavored liquor). Absinethe is manufactured only in France and its close neighbor Switzerland.
Absinthe is manufactured from:
- Green Anise
- Sweet fennel
- Local herbs
I would like to try it because it is a green colored liqueur, and I am a big buff of colored drinks and colorful foods.
As a matter of fact, there is a museum in Antibes that is dedicated to Absinthe.
It’s a large (12 acres) public park and landscaped gardens featuring different historical and current plants, bushes, and flowering trees.
Other points of interests include a fountain, a pond, and even an artificially created small canal.
There are groves of olive, and palm. Different species of rose flowers are the star attraction in this Exflora Garden.
This beautiful garden is developed on an elevated (100 feet) land, from where, the Mediterranean Sea with its stunning blue water can be viewed.
Apart from pine and oak trees, the garden has numerous plants of spices that include thyme, lavender, and rosemary.
Every French city is known for several museums. They are created mainly to promote tourism. Their purpose was achieved until about the late 1970s.
With the advent of modern music festivals, art galleries, and cultural shows, the museums faced thin crowds.
However, the French still retain their avid interests in museums, and antiquities.
In Antibes, one can visit the following museums:
Naval musum of Napolean
You would be amazed at myriad displays that belong to the era of Nepolean Bonaparte.
You can never separate the French people and their interest in fine arts, especially the old-world paintings.
The Picasso Museum obviously displays the works of the legendary Spanish artist Pablo Picasso.
Picasso museum is an important tourist attraction in Antibes.
Don’t skip visiting the Picasso Muesum if you plan a trip to this important city in the French Riviera.
La Tour Museum
It is a museum of contemporary life in Antibes.
Have you ever heard about an entire museum that is created exclusively for a drink? Absinthe is the locally brewed green liqueur.
I feel it should be interesting, and also educative.
Buy Perfumes in Grasse
What is a trip to France without buying a few bottles of world-famous perfumes?
To buy from the place they are manufactured, you only need to travel 25 km northwest of Antibes to a place called Garsse that is proudly called the “perfume capital of the world”.
The Grasse city manufactures a mind-boggling 2000 varieties of perfumes in so many attractive and cute glass bottles.
Do you know the reason behind Grasse’s perfume industries? The city is blessed with a climate that is too good for flowers to bloom.
There are numerous flower farms in Grasse that feed to the perfume factories.
I find Antibes is as exciting as Nice, the two most beautiful attractions in the French Riviera.