Old town Antibes or Antipolis, as the city’s founders the Greeks called the city, is known and loved around the world.
It is not without reason that Antibes is one of the favorites of the French Riviera for tourists and famous people all over the world. The city contains almost everything a modern picky tourist can expect.
Antibes is one of the most photogenic cities on the French Riviera with its cobbled streets and historic houses.
Here are enchanting bays and beaches with crystal clear bathing water as well as a very cozy urban environment – especially in the old town around Cours Masséna.
Lots of exciting museums
Here are several interesting museums such as the Picasso Museum, the Museum of History and Archeology as well as the incredibly well-kept Fort Carré.
Jazz and world-class hotels
When one says Antibes, one must also say Juan-les-Pins. Where Antibes is the city center with the old town as the focal point, Juan-les-Pins is more of a modern beach area with hotels, bars, restaurants and nightclubs that attract a younger party-minded crowd.
The world-famous jazz festival is held in Juan-les-Pins, and it houses some of the largest palaces in the world, such as the famous Eden Roc hotel or the Belles Rives hotel, which Ernest Hemingway and F. Scott Fitzgerald greatly appreciated.
Antibes and Juan-les-Pins are located on opposite sides of the Cap d’Antibes peninsula.
In itself, Cap d’Antibes is an extremely exciting acquaintance. Here you can, among other things, walk around the long coastline on a well-laid path called Sentier de Tirepoil.
Here is also a small pine forest on a plateau in Garoupe. At the top of this plateau you will find one of the best located chapels on the Riviera, overlooking Nice on one side and Juan-les-Pins Bay on the other as well as the mountains with their sometimes snow-capped peaks to the north.
Cap d’Antibes is enriched with several bays and small secret beaches, which can be experienced along the path Sentier de Tirepoil.
Here is also one of the best beaches in the area – La Garoupe beach. It is supervised in season and offers many facilities; sanitary facilities, shower, deck chair rental, restaurants, etc. And not least, good parking conditions along Avenue André Sella.
The city has the largest marina in the Mediterranean and an ideal geographical location between Cannes and Nice. The harbor is nicely located between the old town and Fort Carré and houses good parking conditions.
Most recently, the new sculpture “Le Nomade” has been added which adorns the waterfront facing the Mediterranean with its enormous dimensions.
Picasso & Fort Grimaldi
The coveted Picasso museum is located in the ancient Grimaldi castle, which dates from the 14th century, then owned by the Grimaldi family.
The museum is beautifully situated right next to the sea and next door to the cathedral. The museum also houses an outdoor area where both the view of the Mediterranean and several sculptures can be enjoyed.
Fort Carré is located on the small peninsula Saint-Roch 26 meters above sea level. It was opened to the public in 1998.
The fort was built by King Henry II, both as a defense bastion and prison. It consists of four bastions, named after the directions they point in: Antibes, Nice, France and Corsica.
The place offers a breathtaking view of the harbor, the old town and the sea.
Beaches and water activities
Here are a myriad of beaches and opportunities for water sports in all different directions.
You can indulge in stand up paddling, windsurfing, jet skiing, parasailing, scuba diving, deep sea fishing, renting a pedal boat, a kayak or a canoe for an excursion at sea alone, as a couple, with family or friends.
The beaches are famous for the quality of their bathing water and most have lifeguard stations, showers and toilets. The best known beaches are: Garoupe, Gravette, Salis, Ponteil and Juan-les-Pins, where water sports of various kinds are offered – or you can just swim and sunbathe!
Historic wing buzz
All the great Mediterranean civilizations left their mark on Antibes, beginning with the Greeks who arrived in the 4th century BC, followed by the Romans in the Flavian era. The Romans went to great lengths to fetch the necessary water to the city using the two aqueducts, Fontvielle and Bouillide.
Traces of these aqueducts are now rare, but some are still there.
A visit to the Museum of History and Archeology is definitely worth a visit if one is interested in this area.
Tip: The best parking options are along the harbor at port Vauban.
By Tommy Sverre – 2022