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Anne Nichols Travel Guide

The South of France: A Magical Place


South of France is such a magical destination to visit! During my time here, I came across quite a few fascinating places. Some of these places are well-known tourist destinations, while others are hidden gems that can often be overlooked.


From the famous Sénéquier in Saint-Tropez to local shops like Les Bonbons Du Piráte in Port Grimaud, the South of France has so much to offer every traveler. I'll share some of my favorite places in the South of France. You can visit them for yourself during your next trip!



Visit the Famous Café Sénéquier


If you're a foodie, don't miss making a reservation at Café Sénéquier in St. Tropez. This chic restaurant gained fame after its appearance in the 1957 film "And God Created Woman" starring Brigitte Bardot. It's easily recognizable with its vibrant red awnings and matching interior decor. Many patrons come here to savor delicious treats like fresh croissants and homemade desserts.


I had the pleasure of visiting Café Sénéquier after a day of swimming, still dressed in my beach attire – a stylish black Balenciaga fishnet cover-up over my Kinni bathing suit, paired with Stubbs and Wootton Miles slides. We chose to sit outside, where my beach outfit felt perfectly appropriate.


The outdoor seating is delightful, providing a view of yachts sailing across the sea and crews working on their boats in the harbor. I highly recommend indulging in an exquisite pairing of salmon and white wine (saumon et vin blanc in French), making it the perfect way to spend your afternoon in St. Tropez!"




Indulge in Sweet Delights at Les Bonbons Du Piráte


Exploring local shops in Saint-Tropez is a must when visiting. The charming streets are lined with adorable boutiques. One of my absolute favorites is Les Bonbons Du Piráte, a delightful candy store located in Port Grimaud, just seven and a half kilometers away from Sénéquier.


Step inside this open-air store, where you'll find an array of candy bins, each brimming with different sweet treats. It's a fun place to visit, especially if you have kids who are excited about candy, as they'll be running all around, marveling at the delightful selection."



Strolling Down Le Ponche


Le Ponche, also known as Old Town, is one of the most popular areas to visit in St. Tropez. This picturesque boardwalk invites you to take leisurely strolls while exploring local shops and trying out new restaurants.


Old Town holds the distinction of being the oldest district in Saint-Tropez. Here, you can admire the quaint fisherman's houses and wander through its narrow, winding streets. I recommend visiting during sunset when the sun descends along the water, and the yachts sail by, creating a magical atmosphere."


Exploring the Elegance of the Mistralée Mansion


The architecture in Saint-Tropez is truly one-of-a-kind, and the Mistralée Mansion is a historical gem transformed into a luxurious Chanel boutique. This upscale shop offers a wide range of designer staples, including ready-to-wear collections, leather goods, accessories, jewelry, watches, and perfumes.


The architectural design of the boutique is a tribute to Aubazine Abbey, where Gabrielle Chanel spent part of her childhood. Upon entering, you'll be greeted by a grand hall with a stunning stained-glass window. The boutique also boasts a charming balcony with clay, scallop-shaped openings in the barrier, complemented by lush greenery.


Its provincial architecture, adorned in muted colors that harmonize with the surrounding landscape, exudes classic romantic Chanel charm. A visit to the Mistralée Mansion is a must during your trip to St. Tropez.


A Day of Seaside Elegance at Le Club 55

Nestled on Pampelonne Beach, Le Club 55 is an iconic destination that promises an unforgettable experience. Our visit here was truly remarkable, thanks to the breathtaking ocean views and the charming blue and white boho decor that perfectly complements the natural beauty of the surroundings. Le Club 55 is the ultimate choice for those seeking seaside elegance and exceptional cuisine.


Upon arrival at the restaurant, valet service is available for your convenience, ensuring a prompt start to your dining experience. However, if you prefer to forgo the valet, paid parking is conveniently located just across the street.


You can also choose to take a leisurely stroll to the restaurant, as it is conveniently located near the boardwalk, accessible through a picturesque palm-covered walkway. This walk provides an opportunity to enjoy the stunning sunset over the docks while admiring the yachts anchored in the harbor.


Le Club 55 is a casual French beach club that attracts diners throughout the day. During the summer, it can get quite busy, but the diverse and delicious menu caters to various budgets, making it a must-visit for all.


During our visit, we opted for a leisurely long lunch. We even had the pleasure of spotting the owner of Love Shack. We savored a selection of crudités, featuring the most exquisite tomatoes and mushrooms, some of the best we've ever tasted. The mushrooms were so unique they resembled marshmallows! It's safe to say these were the most delicious veggies we've ever had. Buckets of rosé and champagne complemented our meal perfectly, creating a delightful combination.


With the soothing melodies of French Blues playing in the background and the warm sun gracing our table, Le Club 55 offered the ideal conclusion to our day. The ambiance even allowed us to enjoy American classics like 'Sweet Caroline.'


I highly recommend making a reservation in advance, as this spot tends to fill up quickly. We were fortunate to secure a last-minute spot, thanks to the accommodating manager.


Shop at the Beach Bazaar


Whether you're dining at Le Club 55 or simply enjoying a day on the beach in front of it, don't miss the Beach Bazaar. This delightful spot features vendors right on the beach, showcasing their homemade or beach-themed items.


At the Beach Bazaar, you'll find an array of options to choose from, including sexy boho chic cover ups that perfectly complement the St Tropez style. Explore wicker bags, straw bags, and a vast selection of cotton and linen caftans and wraps. The choices are as diverse as they are colorful, ranging from turquoise to pastel pinks. And here's a delightful surprise – the Bazaar even offers wraps that match the blue and white decor of Le Club 55. I couldn't resist getting one for myself!


Indulge in Lunch at La Serena Beach Club


Another fantastic beach club to explore is La Serena. This legendary beach club, nestled along the shores of the Bay of Pampelonne, offers stunning views that you can savor while relaxing on their inviting deckchairs.


La Serena prides itself on using fresh ingredients, many sourced right from the sea. Their menu is a testament to their commitment to quality. Enjoy a delightful lunch, or for a truly magical experience, opt for dinner under the stars.


The cuisine at La Serena features a delectable array of options, with a focus on fresh seafood and handcrafted cocktails that incorporate fresh juices. Be sure to indulge in their cocktails and savor the fresh seafood while admiring the serene sea views!




Relax at Byblos Beach Ramatuelle


Another must-visit beach club during your St. Tropez trip is Byblos Beach in Ramatuelle. Situated right on the famous Pampelonne Beach, it's one of the most popular beach destinations in the area.


Relax on the generously proportioned wooden sunbeds that come with dual headrests and plush mattresses. It's the ideal spot to savor a glass of champagne while the soothing ocean waves provide the soundtrack to your relaxation.


Byblos Beach is a paradise for food lovers as well. The beach club's restaurant specializes in Mediterranean cuisine, crafting each dish from quality ingredients sourced from local farms and their very own Byblos kitchen garden. Every bite promises to be a delightful culinary experience!




Explore the Scenic Hiking Trails of Cap-Ferrat

While St. Tropez is renowned for its beach clubs and sandy shores, it's worth knowing that the area also offers various hiking opportunities, and one gem stands out: Cap-Ferrat. This picturesque hiking experience begins with a short walk from the designated parking area and takes you through Bougainvillea Street, where charming mauve-painted apartments line the way.


As you embark on the hike, you'll pass by graffiti-adorned buildings, some showcasing the allure of age and rustic charm. The trail is a visual treat, featuring boats gently drifting by, rolling hills, and the soothing sound of the sea. Throughout your journey there are many natural and hand-made access points that will invite you to climb down to the sea for a dip.


Cap-Ferrat isn’t crowded or touristy. It’s calm and peaceful. It was one of the most beautiful places I’ve been to. I’ll always be fond of this place and cherish my time here.


My Unforgettable Adventures in the South of France

In a nutshell, south France is an amazingly beautiful place full of amazing eateries, architecture, and treats. Sénequier gave me the 1957 charm the restaurant is known for, while Chanel gave me a taste of Saint-Tropez architecture.


I enjoyed some homemade candy at Les Bonbons Du Piráte, got to sit in the famous Le Club 55 for a long lunch, and went for a beautiful hike in Cap-Ferrat. There are so many other things one can do in south France but they were my favorite! I hope you are able to enjoy them for yourself during your next visit to St Tropez.


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