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French Riviera Cruise Vacations                                              
 
 

 

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French Riviera Cruise Vacations

A memorable European vacation would be a French Riviera cruise, or Mediterranean cruise that includes ports of call on the French Riviera. With ports like Nice, Cannes, Villefranche-sur-Mer and Monaco being offered by various cruise lines, sightseers are able to go directly to the heart of shopping and areas of interest. Along the French Riviera coastline there are more than thirty harbors for small pleasure boats and luxury yachts, which add to the Riviera flavor.

The scenes from the magnificent cruise ships can be spell binding as you cruise into port. Each port has a little something that the others won't have. What they all do have is access to one of the world's most famous playgrounds for the 'rich and famous'.

 

Nice


A favorite resort town in the French Riviera is Nice. Sitting on a natural amphitheatre on the Baie de Anges, Nice offers visitors the opportunity to browse through the shops or enjoy the café's in the old town. Climbing up to the Castle Hill Park, one can enjoy the panoramic views of the city and of the bay.



Cannes


For years, artistic masters, Picasso and Monet included, have been attracted to the French Riviera with its fresh air, quality of light and its incredible scenery. Cannes is no exception to these characteristics. The palm lined main boulevard, stretching for two miles along the sandy beaches and public gardens is perfect for leisurely strolls. Movie stars are attracted to this area by the Palais des Festival which plays host to the international Cannes Film Festival.

 

Monte Carlo


The tiny sovereign state offers visitors some of the most compelling 'drawing cards' in the French Riviera. Of course, one of theses 'draws' is the world-renowned Casino. This magnificent structure was designed in 1878 by the same designer as the Paris Opera House, Charles Garnier. Visitors can witness the changing of the guard at 11:55 a.m. at the Royal Palace. In Monaco, Prince Ranier and his 'Cinderella' bride Princess Grace (Kelly) are interred in the thirteenth century St. Nicholas Cathedral.

 

St. Paul de Vence


There are French Riviera charms that are not on the coast. One of France's best preserved medieval towns is found on a craggy hilltop. This walled town has changed little over the centuries. Cruise visitors can browse through the shops and galleries or enjoy the picturesque building while wandering the narrow, cobbled streets.

 

Antibes


Another medieval town is Antibes. Huddled behind ramparts and fortified towers, visitors can tour the narrow streets passing by the Picasso Museum and a Romanesque cathedral.

 

Vallauris


Surrounded by orange groves and mimosa trees, cruise guests can find Vallauris. This small village is a haven for artists. From 1947 until his death, this small town was home to Pablo Picasso. Riviera cruise guests can visit the thirteenth century Vallauris Castle which now houses the National Picasso Museum.

 

St. Tropez


Traveling the famed coastal road, Golden Corniche, and along the Cote d'Azur, cruise guests can arrive at the enormously popular resort of St. Tropez by ferry from Ste. Maxime. The sheltered harbor is laden with luxury yachts on one of the French Riviera's most beautiful bays.

 

St. Raphael


A drive along the Golden Corniche brings cruisers to the charming seaside town of St. Raphael. Another fashionable resort, Raphael offers visitors the old harbor with café's, shops and boutiques. One can experience breath-taking views of the rocky Esteral Hills and of the sea. This area as well is home of a D-Day Memorial tablet commemorating the landing of the U.S. Army's 36th Division in August of 1944.


There are of course many other quaint and fashionable towns, villages and resorts that cruise excursionists can experience. Many of the cruise lines offer pre-organized excursions to the areas mentioned above as well as various other venues.

Experienced cruise travel passengers can of course experience the charms of the Riviera by themselves. Caution should be taken as with any travel location, domestic or foreign. It is advisable to have Euros as your currency when traveling the Riviera.

For information on the 'other' Rivieras, see our article Riviera Cruise Vacations - Which one is for you?



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