St. Tropez Back to France

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The French seaside village on the Mediterranean has long inspired its visitors: in the 1890s, painter Paul Signac found his muse in the incandescent light; in the 1920s, Coco Chanel purportedly “discovered,” and quickly popularized, the suntan here; the writer Colette, who lived in a St.-Tropez villa in the 1930s, was drawn to the area’s gorgeous landscapes; and in the 1950s, Roger Vadim turned the town into a symbol of eternal youth and endless summer when he filmed And God Created Woman here. Today, St.-Tropez, with its pink stacked houses, continues to cast a powerful spell. And while its modern reputation as a jet-setter’s paradise may be well deserved, the natural beauty and simple lifestyle are still the main draws.

Cheat Sheet

  • Sleep…in a stunning clifftop suite at the über-romantic La Reserve Ramatuelle
  • Experience…the poolside scene at the Byblos
  • Splurge…on a day at Pamplonne beach and lunch at Club 55
  • Eat…home-style Provençal cuisine at Au Caprice des Deux
  • Drink…pastis or coffee at Le Sénéquier, the venerable café in the harbor
  • Savor…the family-friendly atmosphere at Plage des Jumeaux
  • Visit…the vineyards of Ramatuelle, where winning Côte de Provence are produced
  • See…where it all started at the original Nikki Beach
  • Shop…with plugged-in and fun personal shopper (Indagare knows the best)
  • Know…that Indagare members can contact our Bookings Team to arrange guides, itineraries and boat rentals

Lay of the Land

“And we laughed, because it is good to laugh, and because one laughs easily in a climate where there is a real long, hot summer with soft breezes...”
~Colette

 

In town, the Place des Lices, St. Tropez’s central square where old-timers play pétanque and the bi-weekly outdoor market is held, is the place to orient yourself. It continues to a row of cafés on the quay of the Old Port, where the mega-yachts are moored, and near the harbor, a maze of streets lined with designer boutiques snakes its way to a 16th-century citadel on a hill. In neighboring Ramatuelle, the beaches of Pampelonne occupy a wide swath of coastline for some five and a half miles.

How to Get There

Nice has the closest major international airport to St. Tropez; Delta flies nonstop here from New York’s John F. Kennedy Airport, as do carriers from most major European cities. If you’re renting a car at the airport in Nice and driving to St.-Tropez, it generally takes an hour and a half on route A8 (exit Le Muy), but it can be much longer during the summer. The notoriously traffic-clogged RN98 down to the peninsula of St.-Tropez may be less busy early in the morning or late at night. At the height of the season, avoid the RN98, the single-lane road that leads to St.-Tropez from Ste.-Maxime, by taking A57, which merges with A8. Exit at La Garde Freinet and follow the signs to St.-Tropez. This route is longer, but there’s little traffic and it’s a beautiful mountain drive.

VIPs looking to avoid traffic entirely usually book a helicopter service, which departs from the Nice airport and arrives in St.-Tropez or in the nearby village of Grimaud. Be aware that weight limits usually mean your luggage can’t travel with you, but a driver can deliver those directly to your hotel. Alternatively, flights from Orly can land at Toulon, which is a more scenic forty-five minute drive from St. Tropez.

When to Go

St. Tropez becomes a jet set playground in July and August, but the best months to go are May, June and September, which have lovely weather and few crowds.

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Beyond… St. Tropez

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