South of France: Côte d'Azur

Excited to be sharing part one of our trip to the South of France!

We started our trip on the coast, staying at Les Roches Rouges, a hotel that’s been on my wishlist since it opened. Let me tell you, it did not disappoint! Every single corner of the hotel was thoughtfully designed without being pretentious—it felt like you were in someone’s home. The main attraction of Les Roches Rouges is, of course, the endless blue sea.

Our trip was mid-late May so we experienced some chillier weather and sadly only got to experience the sun & sea on our last day. In hindsight, we probably would have flipped our trip around and stayed in Provence first and then headed to the coast later in our trip. That being said, this is the second year we’ve travelled to Europe during a “shoulder season” and we really love it for beating the crowds and getting better deals on flights & hotels.

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I highly recommend renting a car if you are in the South of France so you can explore lots of the little villages and towns. One of our favorites was Saint-Paul-de-Vence. I had heard from so many people that we had to visit the famed hotel/restaurant La Colombe d’Or. We made a reservation for lunch so we could experience it in daylight and spend time exploring the property itself. It is such a special place and definitely a must visit. The hotel is covered in artwork by Alexander Calder, Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Joan Miro (to name a few) all of whom exchanged pieces of their art for a stay at the inn. It feels like you’ve stepped back in time and like you are dining in a museum.

We sadly did not make it to the Fondation Maeght, but I’ve heard incredible things and it’s on our list for when we return one day!

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Another of our favorite villages was Grimaud. We passed through here on our way to Saint Tropez and fell in love with its charm. Lots of windy streets overflowing with beautiful flowers and plants. There are also 13th century ruins of a castle and city wall, which were neat to explore.

We spent very little time in Nice - a visit to the Matisse museum (wouldn’t highly recommend), dinner at Peixes (delicious) and gelato at Fenocchio (a must).

There is so much to see and explore in this region, it deserves its own trip! If you are planning a trip and want more detailed information, I’d be happy to share my lists of recommendations with you.

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Stay tuned for the second part of our trip — Provence!