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15 Top-Rated Tourist Attractions & Things to Do in Cannes

Written by Lisa Alexander Updated Dec 28, 2023 We may earn a commission from affiliate links ( )

Basking in the sun of the French Riviera, Cannes sparkles with glamour and exclusivity. This legendary seaside resort has all the glitz and allure of the Côte d'Azur : private beaches, marinas filled with luxury yachts, stylish boulevards, elegant Belle Epoque hotels, and fashionable restaurants.

Nestled in an enchanting corner of the Golfe de la Napoule bay, Cannes is blessed with a balmy Mediterranean climate. The weather is mild year-round and perfect for sunbathing by the beach from May through October. Leafy palm trees grace the streets of Cannes, and subtropical flowers flourish throughout the city, giving visitors the impression of being in paradise.

The prestigious Film Festival of Cannes has been an important event since it began in 1946. Drawing famous movie stars from around the world, this annual red-carpet gala has earned an international reputation for promoting the art of filmmaking.

For those with more time, Cannes is an excellent base for a vacation in the South of France . Discover the best places to visit in this fashionable resort town on the Côte d'Azur with our list of the top attractions and things to do in Cannes.

See also: Where to Stay in Cannes

1. Boulevard de la Croisette

2. le suquet (old town), 3. festival de cannes (film festival) in may, 4. palais des festivals et des congrès, 5. eglise notre-dame de l'espérance, 6. musée des explorations du monde, 7. public beaches in cannes, 8. exclusive private beach clubs, 9. vieux port (old port), 10. la californie, 11. chapelle bellini, 12. le centre d'art la malmaison, 13. parc naturel forestier de la croix-des-gardes, 14. fireworks festival in july and august, 15. les nuits musicales du suquet (music festival) in july, where to stay in cannes for sightseeing, tips and tours: how to make the most of your visit to cannes, map of tourist attractions & things to do in cannes, cannes, france - climate chart.

La Croisette

One of the most fashionable streets on the French Riviera, this palm-lined boulevard is the center of tourist activity in Cannes. The Boulevard de la Croisette is lined with opulent villas, upscale boutiques and lavish Belle Epoque hotels, such as the legendary Carlton Cannes , a masterpiece of Art Nouveau architecture designed by Charles Dalmas.

The boulevard extends from the Palais des Festivals to the lovely La Roseraie (Rose Garden) at the Square du 8 Mai 1945. Along this two-kilometer stretch, the beachfront promenade is a great place for strolling, people-watching, and admiring the magnificent sea views. One thing to keep in mind: Many beaches along this stretch are private.

Beyond La Roseraie park is the idyllic Port Pierre Canto , with its rows of luxury yachts docked at the harbor. Also within walking distance is another harbor, the Port de la Pointe Croisette , the departure point for regattas organized by the Yacht Club of Cannes.

Another spot for water sports enthusiasts and sunbathers is the nearby Port Palm Beach . This quiet public beach on the western side of Pointe Croisette has a snack bar and restroom facilities.

Le Suquet (Old Town)

Perched on the slopes of Mont Chevalier above the bay, the Old Town (Le Suquet) represents the original fishing village. In a picturesque hillside setting, this area offers exceptional views, as well as old-world charm. This traffic-free quarter features narrow cobblestone alleyways, pedestrian staircases, and interesting historic remnants such as the city's ancient walls.

At the heart of Le Suquet, the 15th-century church, Eglise Notre-Dame d'Espérance , and the 11th-century Tour du Mont Chevalier watchtower dominate the skyline. From the top of the watchtower, there is a wonderful panoramic outlook onto the beach and the bay all the way out to the Lérins Islands. Another joy of visiting Le Suquet is wandering the quaint old streets.

One of the old town's main shopping streets is the Rue Meynadier. This bustling pedestrian street is renowned for its specialty gourmet boutiques. Another important commercial street a few blocks away at the edge of Le Suquet is the Rue d'Antibes .

A shopping destination for French Riviera fashions, the Rue d'Antibes is lined with designer prêt-à-porter clothing boutiques, perfume stores, and jewelry shops. This fashionable street is also home to the outposts of two fancy Parisian-based pâtisserie establishments: Lenôtre (63 Rue d'Antibes) and Ladurée (79 Rue d'Antibes). Ladurée is famous for its colorful macarons, available in an assortment of flavors, as well as its refined ambience and enticing array of French cakes, cream puffs, and éclairs.

Cannes Film Festival Red Carpet

Of all the things to do on the French Riviera, the Festival de Cannes is the most exciting. This prestigious red-carpet event is definitely one of the biggest moments of the year in Cannes.

The festival draws movie stars and filmmakers from all over the world, as well as crowds of fans and journalists. Originally, the Festival de Cannes was established to rival the Venice Film Festival. Since its first edition in 1946, the festival has earned an international reputation for discovering, supporting, and promoting excellent films.

Address: Palais des Festivals et des Congrès, 1 Boulevard de la Croisette, Cannes

Official site: https://www.festival-cannes.com/en/

Palais des Festivals et des Congrès

The Palais des Festivals et des Congrès is the venue for the Cannes Film Festival. Designed by the architects Bennett and Druet, the building was completed in 1982 and is used for events, conferences, music concerts, and festivals throughout the year.

The Palais des Festivals is an impressive complex of buildings, including numerous auditoriums with state-of-the-art sound and lighting systems. A modernization project was completed in 2015, which included enhancements to the famous entrance staircase and the seating of the Grand Auditorium Louis Lumiere. The foyer was also renovated; it is now brighter and more spacious.

Address: 1 Boulevard de la Croisette, Cannes

Notre-Dame de l'Espérance

Built on the summit of Le Suquet, which dazzles with its dreamy views of the city, the Eglise Notre-Dame de l'Espérance is the most important church in Cannes. The late-Gothic edifice dates to the 16th century and has a notable 17th-century Madonna on the high altar.

When entering the church, visitors are struck by the peaceful interior and the inspiring heights of its Gothic vaulting. The church also features a mix of architectural styles, including a Renaissance porch plus an organ that was installed in 1857 and has been recently renovated. There is also an old cemetery that dates back to the 16th century.

During the Second World War, the church was temporarily used as a hospital. Today, the church is still a place of religious worship.

In July, the square in front of the church is illuminated and becomes a magical outdoor venue for Les Nuits Musicales du Suquet , a classical musical festival featuring one week of performances under the stars.

Address: 1 Place de la Castre, Cannes

Musée des Explorations du Monde

On a hill overlooking the Bay of Cannes, the Musée des Explorations du Monde in Le Suquet occupies a classified Historical Monument, a medieval castle that was formerly the monastery of Lérins monks, and a Romanesque chapel (the 13th-century Chapelle Sainte-Anne). Surrounded by a Mediterranean garden, the site boasts exceptional views of the coastline and sea.

The Musée des Explorations du Monde has a superb collection of antiquities from Mediterranean civilizations, pre-Columbian primitive art, and 19th-century Provençal landscape paintings. Several small rooms feature exotic art objects from Oceania and the Himalayas. There is also an extensive collection of musical instruments from around the world.

Visitors can climb to the top of the building's 12th-century tower. This vantage point offers breathtaking 360-degree panoramas of Cannes and its surroundings.

Address: Place de la Castre, Le Suquet, Cannes

Busy public beach in Cannes

Cannes is famous for its fine sandy beaches, with gorgeous views and calm Mediterranean waters ideal for bathing. Including the nearby îles de Lérin and Estérel coastline, there are seven kilometers of beach property in Cannes. With so many options, there is something for every visitor.

While many of the beaches in Cannes are private property owned by hotels, several beaches are open to the public, and these are some of the best beaches in the South of France . These include the Plage Macé and the Plage Zamenhof , located off the Boulevard de la Croisette. These beaches charge a small fee for use of the lounge chairs and parasols.

Also available for public use (and free of charge) are the Plage du Casino , a golden-sand beach along the Boulevard de la Croisette; Plage de la Bocca , a quiet beach with gorgeous views and golden sand; the Plage du Midi , a long sandy beach near the center of Cannes; and Plage du Mouré Rouge , a great beach for water sports (paddleboarding, windsurfing, and kayaking) near the fishing ports. The lesser-known Plage des Rochers is the best beach for snorkeling.

Private beach in Cannes

Fashionable private beaches (that require entrance fees) along the Boulevard de la Croisette include the Croisette Beach , with a trendy "bistronomic" restaurant that serves Mediterranean cuisine prepared from local seasonal ingredients; and CBeach , which has a stylish restaurant, showers, and changing rooms.

Tucked away in a quiet environment near the Port Pierre Canto, the family-friendly private beach club at Bijou Plage has a gourmet restaurant that offers cuisine of the French and Italian Rivieras. The restaurant's beachfront terrace features amazing sea views. Sheltered within two coves, the sandy shoreline of Bijou Plage is lapped by gentle waves. The calm waters are safe for children to swim and splash around.

Maema Plage du Midi , on the Boulevard du Midi Jean Hibert, offers outdoor seaside dining with musical entertainment in the evenings. The beach is outfitted with sun beds and exotic bamboo sun umbrellas.

All the private beach clubs have excellent facilities, as well as lounge chairs and parasols available for rent, allowing sunbathers to enjoy a pampering and relaxing experience.

Vieux Port

Emblematic of Cannes' Mediterranean scenery, the Vieux Port (Old Port) lies below the historic Le Suquet quarter. The Vieux Port, also known as Port Cannes I, is located near the Gare Maritime (Marine Railway Station), which was built in 1957. Besides its use as a dock for yachts and other sailboats, the Vieux Port is the launching point for the Royal Regatta.

North of the port are the picturesque Allées de la Liberté , ancient alleyways lined with shady plane trees. Every Saturday and Sunday from 8am until 1pm, the colorful Marché aux Fleurs (Flower Market) is held here.

Eglise Russe

This lovely district of Cannes exemplifies glamorous French Riviera scenery. Gorgeous vacation villas are surrounded by lush gardens and palm trees. This charming area is a wonderful place for a relaxing afternoon stroll.

Drawn by its beauty, Picasso lived in this neighborhood for a short while. It's easy to understand how the exquisite buildings and vibrant landscape would inspire an artist. Also worth a visit in this neighborhood is the Eglise Russe (Russian Church) on the Boulevard Alexandre III.

Built in 1894 by the Count Vitali, the Chapelle Bellini was once part of a Florentine-style villa and is set in a beautiful park. Identified by the arms of the Count, the chapel features an Italian Baroque design with an impressive clock tower and an interesting wooden staircase inside.

The chapel was bought by the artist Emmanuel Bellini in 1953 and then used as his atelier. The Bellini Chapel is now a museum dedicated to the artist's works shown in his own studio space.

Address: Parc Fiorentina - 67 Avenue de Vallauris, Cannes

Le Centre d'Art La Malmaison

Le Centre d'Art La Malmaison occupies the game room, tea room, and a pavilion of the former Grand Hôtel, built in 1863. These rooms were used for art exhibitions organized by Aimé Maeght in 1945 and were converted by the city of Cannes to a museum in 1983. Today, the building is a center dedicated to contemporary art.

The museum hosts temporary expositions presenting the work of famous 20th- and 21st-century artists, including Picasso , Matisse , and Ozenfant , who found inspiration on the Côte d'Azur . Other internationally renowned artists whose works have been featured in the museum's exhibitions are César , Miró, and Masson .

Address: 47 Boulevard de la Croisette, Cannes

View from Parc Naturel Forestier de la Croix-des-Gardes

For stunning views of the Cannes coastline, La Croix-des-Gardes Nature Park is the place to go. This 80-hectare forest, classified as a Sensitive Nature Site ( Espace Naturel Sensible ), stands on a hillside above the Golfe de la Napoule. Within the park, five viewpoints afford 360-degree vistas of the bay, the sea, the Lérins Islands in the distance, and the Alpes d'Azur foothills.

Hiking trails within the Parc Naturel Forestier de la Croix-des-Gardes wind through the forest (the viewpoints are found along the way). There are also trails that traverse an arboretum, where over 40 varieties of mimosa flourish.

Sporty types will appreciate the park's 1.2-kilometer fitness trail that includes exercise equipment.

Address: Avenue de la Croix des Gardes (at Avenue Jean de Noailles), Cannes

Fireworks in Cannes

For several nights every summer in July and August, the Bay of Cannes lights up with its renowned Festival International d'Art Pyrotechnique (Fireworks Festival). This unique international event brings together the best fireworks designers from all over the world.

The festival began in 1967 and continues annually, drawing thousands of spectators along the beaches of Cannes. Each night of the festival offers excitement and an array of dazzling fireworks.

The top pyrotechnic team receives the Vestale d'Or prize at the end of the fireworks competition. The audience can vote during the competition for their favorite fireworks, and winners are awarded the Prix du Public (Public Prize) along with prizes to stay at luxury hotels. Fireworks programs begin at 11pm and are open to the public for free viewing.

Official site: http://www.festival-pyrotechnique-cannes.com/en

Les Nuits Musicales du Suquet is an annual classical music festival that runs for one week in July. Taking advantage of the balmy Côte d'Azur weather, the open-air event is held outside in the courtyard of the Eglise Notre-Dame d'Espérance .

This world-class festival stages large symphonic concerts, as well as solo performances by violinists, pianists, and vocalists. The festival presents a varied program of classical music, with performances ranging from Chopin piano concertos to Mozart orchestra pieces.

Address: Parvis de L'Eglise Notre-Dame d'Espérance & 1 Place de la Castre (courtyard of the Musée de la Castre), Le Suquet, Cannes

Belle Epoque hotels and villas line the beachfront Boulevard de la Croisette, and smaller hotels dot the streets on the hillside above, off the fashionable shopping street of Rue d'Antibes. Larger hotels have their own sections of the beach, but there is plenty of public sand and sea within an easy walk of any of these highly rated hotels in Cannes:

Luxury Hotels :

  • The five-star Hôtel Barrière Le Majestic Cannes , opposite the Palais des Festivals, boasts Belle Epoque elegance and top-notch service. Amenities include a concierge, fitness center, spa, sauna, and private beach. This high-end resort hotel also has two fine-dining restaurants and two stylish yet casual restaurants. A breakfast buffet is available.
  • One block off Boulevard de la Croisette, the boutique Five Seas Hotel Cannes features beautifully furnished rooms and a rooftop infinity pool. This five-star resort hotel also provides concierge services; an upscale spa with sauna and hammam; fitness center; private beach; and a breakfast buffet. Dining options are available on the rooftop terrace.
  • Currently under renovation and set to reopen in 2023, the five-star Carlton Cannes , overlooks the beach on Boulevard de la Croisette. This historic hotel dates back to 1913 and is known as the " Grande Dame ."

Mid-Range Hotels:

  • About 300 meters from the beachfront Boulevard de la Croisette, the three-star Hôtel de Provence has balconies, a garden, and a rooftop terrace.
  • The boutique four-star Hôtel America is one block off Boulevard de la Croisette and less than five minutes from the Palais des Festival and Rue d'Antibes shops.

Budget Hotels:

  • On the hill above the old town, a 15-minute walk to the center shops, restaurants, and beaches, the three-star Idéal Séjour hotel offers a beautiful garden; fresh baked croissants every morning; and creative, well-designed rooms with literary themes.
  • With small rooms and excellent service, the three-star Hotel des Congres et Festivals is a short block off Rue d'Antibes, close to both the beach and train station.
  • Also a short walk to the beach and train station, the three-star ibis Cannes Centre hotel offers contemporary-style accommodations a block off Rue d'Antibes.

An organized day trip tour is a great way to see the highlights around Cannes without the hassle of driving and navigating along the narrow streets. Instead, you can soak up the spectacular scenery while you listen to interesting tips and stories from your experienced guide. These tours include convenient pickup and drop-off at centrally located Cannes hotels. Below are some fun day trip tours that guarantee the lowest price:

  • Monaco and Eze Day Trip: The Monaco and Eze Small Group Day Trip from Cannes covers the highlights of the French Riviera. You will visit the medieval hilltop village of Eze, where you can tour a perfumery. After strolling around this delightful village, you head to Monte Carlo for a spin on the Formula One Grand Prix circuit and a palace visit. This full-day tour is limited to eight people.
  • Provence Countryside Day Trip: If you want to focus on the quaint villages of Provence, the Provence Countryside Small-Group Day Trip from Cannes is an excellent choice. Highlights of this tour include a visit to the medieval perched hilltop village of Saint-Paul de Vence; the hilltop town of Gourdon; a perfumery tour in Grasse; and a drive along the scenic Loup Gorges, past other quaint villages. This full-day tour is also limited to small groups to maximize personal attention.

More Related Articles on PlanetWare.com

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Cultured Cities and Charming Towns : The stylish city of Nice is about 30 minutes by train or 45 minutes by car. The regal city-state of Monaco is one hour away by train or car. To further discover the beauty and charm of the Côte d'Azur, travelers can take day trips from Cannes to see smaller seaside villages like Eze, Beaulieu-sur-Mer, Fréjus and Saint-Raphaël.

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The Picturesque Provence Region : For those interested in experiencing the unspoiled nature and pastoral ambience of Provence , it's worth taking a trip to the dramatic Estérel Mountains (a 45-minute drive) for breathtaking views. There are also many attractions around Nice , including the traditional Provençal town of Grasse (the perfume capital of France) an hour drive north of Cannes.

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Visit Cannes: Top 20 Things To Do and Must-See Attractions

Things to do in cannes: the 20 best places to visit and highlights.

You’re planning to visit Cannes during your stay on the French Riviera ?

Great idea!

In order to help you plan your stay, I have written this guide of the 20 best things to do in Cannes , with all must-see attractions and points of interest.

In this article, you will find all the best places to visit such as La Croisette or the Palais des Festivals, as well as lesser known attractions known only by locals.

And at the end of the article, you will also find itineraries to visit Cannes in 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5 days (or more!) as well as my selection of the best hotels depending on your budget.

So, what are the best things to do in Cannes? Where to stay?

Let’s find out!

1. Croisette

2. the palais des festivals of cannes, 3. the legendary luxury hotels in cannes, 4. le suquet, 5. forville market, 6. the painted walls of cannes, 7. the old port, 8. the lérins islands, 9. cruise from cannes, 10. shopping in cannes, 11. la croix-des-gardes, 12. flight over cannes, 13. take a private boat trip from cannes, 14. the beaches of cannes, 15. les allées de la liberté, 16. antibes, 20. saint-tropez, 21. other organised trips from cannes, how many days to visit cannes, visit cannes in 1 day, visit cannes in 2 days, visit cannes in 3 days, where to stay in cannes, where to stay in nice, where to eat in cannes, how to get to cannes, rent a boat in cannes, tourist map of cannes, when to go to cannes, what are the things to do in cannes when it rains, what are the things to do in cannes with your family, what are the things to do in cannes in the evening, you’re traveling in france these articles will help you, visit cannes: 20 must-see attractions.

This is the emblematic landmark in Cannes: la Croisette.

This long seafront promenade is lined with pine and palm trees, luxury shops and legendary hotels. It’s, with the Promenade des Anglais in Nice , one of the most famous boulevards of the French Riviera and the world.

Well developed and maintained, you will also find beautiful sandy beaches, ideal for sunbathing, swimming and having a drink on the terrace of one of the trendy establishments located there.

And if you want to try out some water activities during your stay in Cannes , you can choose between (click on the links to book):

  • A wakeboard session 
  • Wakesurfing, a new trendy activity involving surfing on a wave created by a boat
  • Flyboarding to try some acrobatics above the water
  • A jet ski ride lasting 30 minutes to 2 hours to discover the Lérins islands for example.

Before going to Cannes , you must book your “Côte d’Azur France Pass”. It offers access to 3 or 5 activities from a list of more than 100 attractions in the entire region (Nice, Monaco, Antibes…).

In Cannes, the interesting thing is that the pass includes the boat crossing to the Lérins islands or the small train tour that leaves from la Croisette.

Book your pass to visit Cannes and the French Riviera by clicking on the green button below:

La Croisette, à Cannes

A visit to the Palais des Festivals is unmissable experience in Cannes. 

This is where the Cannes Festival, the world’s largest film festival, takes place every May. . It awards the best films with the prestigious Palme d’Or trophy .

The event is a meeting place for the biggest international stars and celebrities , for whom the climb up the steps under the flashes of the photographers, is considered a consecration. Designer dresses and jewellery made by the greatest jewellers are of course on full display!

These steps have become a myth in Cannes , and you will certainly think of yourself as Angelina Jolie or Leonardo di Caprio by posing for a quick souvenir photo at the top of the steps.

Just like the “Walk of Fame” in Los Angeles , Cannes has its “Chemin des Etoiles.”

The greatest filmmakers, actors and celebrities have left their hand-prints on slabs placed on the ground. They are located on the forecourt of the Palais des Festivals and along the Georges Pompidou esplanade.

Have fun looking for those of Nicole Kidman, Quentin Tarantino or Johnny Hallyday.

The Cannes tourism office is also located in the Palais des Festivals, so take the opportunity to get a map of the city.

Palais des festivals Cannes

On your walk along la Croisette , be sure to admire the magnificent façades of the emblematic 5-star hotels in Cannes.

Who knows, you might catch a glimpse of one of your favourite actors or singers having breakfast on the balcony!

The most famous luxury hotels in Cannes include:

  • The Majestic Barrière Hotel, which has a style characteristic to the 1920s, has a heated swimming pool, a spa, restaurants and luxury boutiques. You can book a night at the Majestic in Cannes by clicking here.
  • The Martinez hotel was built in the 1930s and was the largest hotel in the region. If you want to spend a night in this beautiful hotel during your trip to Cannes, book here!
  • The Intercontinental Carlton Cannes , built in 1909, is one of the most renowned hotels in France. To stay in this mythical luxury hotel, click here!

To explore la Croisette and discover the other districts of Cannes , you can also choose a very nice and trendy activity: a segway ride.

For 1 or 2 hours you can explore Cannes with your guide. He’s very nice and knows every corner of the city!

Book your Cannes Segway tour by clicking on the button below:

Carlton Cannes

You must continue this guide to Cannes by visiting the Le Suquet district.

Le Suquet is the oldest district in Cannes . Built on a hill, the old town of Cannes offers a nice view of the bay and la Croisette .

You can also stroll through the steep medieval streets and enjoy the authentic atmosphere, shops and restaurants.

Things worth seeing le Suquet during your tour in Cannes:

  • The Castre museum, which is located in the ancient castle built by the monks of the Abbaye Saint-Honorat. The site, listed as a Historical Monument, has collections of Provencal paintings, Mediterranean antiquities, primitive art and musical instruments from all over the world.
  •  The square tower, where you can climb to the top to admire the 360° panorama
  • The Notre-Dame de l’Espérance (Church of Our Lady of Hope) , at Castre Square, a 17th century Gothic building
  • The tour du masque de fer (iron mask tower), where, according to legend, the man in the iron mask took refuge after his escape from Sainte-Marguerite island
  • Rue Saint-Antoine, with its shops and restaurants

To visit le Suquet without tiring yourself out, and also la Croisette during your holidays in Cannes, you must do this tour on an electric bicycle .

Your local guide will take you to all the tourist sites of Cannes and show you the places where you can click the most beautiful photos. Tour available in English or French, click here to book:

And if you don’t feel like taking a guided tour, you can simply rent a bike in Cannes by clicking here!

Suquet Cannes

The Forville market has now become a real tourist attraction in Cannes.

Every morning, from Tuesday to Sunday, you can walk the paths of this covered market and discover the stalls of market gardeners, cheese makers and fishmongers . High quality local products are on offer!

The Forville Market is located at the foot of le Suquet Hill, behind the Cannes Town Hall, not far from the Old Port.

Need a small respite? You must try the socca sold at one of the market stands.

Being from Nice, I have to recommend this speciality of Nice : a very fine pancake made from chickpea flour, which is eaten just sprinkled with pepper.

marché Forville Cannes

The painted walls tour of Cannes depicts the city’s cinematic history.

Several facades and walls display beautiful frescoes dedicated to the seventh art. There are 16 of them spread throughout all the districts of Cannes.

You can admire:

  • “Hotel de la Plage” , at 7 rue Saint-Dizier
  • “Charlie Chaplin” , 10 Boulevard Vallombrosa
  • “Cinéma Cannes” , at the Cornut Gentile Square
  • “Plein Soleil Alain Delon” , Avenue Francis Tonner
  • “Marylin Monroe” , at 16 Boulevard d’Alsace.

All the painted walls and their location can be found here.

You’re going to Cannes?

You probably know it: the hardest part of planning your trip is to find an hotel offering a good value for money!

The closer you get to your travel dates, the harder it will be to get a good deal. Lots of people will be visiting Cannes on the same dates as you , so you can be sure that the best deals are booked extremely quickly!

Hopefully, there is a pretty simple solution to this problem: do like me and book your hotel as early as possible!

So, my best advice is to take 5 minutes (now) to have a look at the list of travelers’ favorite hotels in Cannes.

And if you see a good offer, book it!

Most hotels offer free cancellation, so it’s quick, easy, and you will avoid the the inconvenience of finding nothing but mediocre rooms at exorbitant prices.

To check the current best deals for your hotel in Cannes, simply click on the green button below 😎:

Once you’ve booked your hotel, it will be time to continue reading this guide and find out more about the best things to do in Cannes!

murs peints de Cannes

To continue with this list of things to do in Cannes, you must go on a short trip to the Old Port and the Quai Saint-Pierre.

Here you can admire some of the moored luxury yachts . The Old Port area also has good fish and seafood restaurants.

Throughout the year, the Old Port comes alive through festivals such as the famous “Régates Royales” where exceptional sailboats compete in a race in the Bay of Cannes.

Just before the regattas, there is also the International Pleasure Festival where the curious crowd comes to admire hundreds of boats.

One of the most beautiful rooftop spots in Cannes is located at the end of the Quai Saint-Pierre .

The terrace of the Radisson Blu Hotel Thalasso is the ideal place to have a drink in Cannes at the end of the day. Sit back in the comfortable armchairs and enjoy a moment of relaxation watching the sun set over the Old Port, the Lérins Islands and la Croisette. 

The Radisson is also a very good choice of hotel to stay in Cannes . You can check the rates and make your reservation by clicking here.

vieux-port Cannes

If you are out of things to do in Cannes , you must visit the Lérins islands.

Reachable in just 15 to 20 minutes by boat from Cannes, the Lérins Islands are the ideal destination for enjoying nature and swimming close to the city.

They are also very popular with families, as they are well equipped for picnicking and cars are not allowed. You can therefore walk safely and quietly .

The Lérins Islands archipelago is made up of 2 islands:

1) Sainte-Marguerite Island is the largest of the 2.

An 8 km path, on the seafront and under the pine forest, allows you to walk all around the island. There are also spots for swimming in several places . It takes about 3 hours to go round the whole island on foot and more if you count picnics and photo breaks.

On the island, you can also visit the Royal Fort for €6 . This former prison where the intriguing man with the iron mask was imprisoned, now houses the Sea Museum. 

Finally, the island has a mini village with a few restaurants.

2) Saint-Honorat Island is the smallest of the Lérins Islands.

There is an abbey founded by Cistercian monks in the 5th century and still occupied by the community. You can visit the chapels, the abbey, the abbey church or the Monastery Tower.

The monks also have an ancestral vineyard, producing excellent wine . You can get it at the shop next to the pier.

You must explore the island on foot , as it can be done in just an hour.

There is also a restaurant and snack bar on the island.

To go all around Lérins islands during the day, you can also rent a kayak. You will be able to walk peacefully near the water and stop to swim whenever you want.

To rent a kayak, just click on the following button:

To go to the Lérins Islands from Cannes , the boat can be taken at the very end of the Saint-Pierre quay (follow the clearly marked signs). There is a shuttle to Sainte-Marguerite Island and a shuttle to Saint-Honorat Island.

There’s no means of transport between the 2 islands .

If you want to visit the both islands, you will have to return to Cannes after the first island and take the boat for the second. This isn’ t really feasible during the day as the boats only make the crossing every hour.

So you must decide beforehand which island you want to go to. In any case, for me, the most interesting of the 2 islands to visit is Sainte-Marguerite .

As there are always a lot of people at the ticket office, you must absolutely buy your tickets in advance here (it’s the same price as on site). At least you’ll be sure to have a seat at the time you want!

The crossing is included with the Côte d’Azur France Pass .

Iles de Lérins

Another nice activity to do during your stay in Cannes: a mini-cruise.

From Cannes, you can choose between (click on the orange links or the green button to book):

1) A guided cruise of La Corniche d’Or to discover the red rocks of the Massif de l’Esterel plunging directly into the sea.

Information and reservations on the official website.

2) A combined cruise on Sainte-Marguerite Island (with stopover) + exploring the Corniche d’Or

3) A return cruise to Monaco with a stopover time of 5 hours to visit the city

4) A sea shuttle to Saint-Tropez (Book here!) and take a stroll for a few hours around the city before returning to Cannes.

You can also opt for a zodiac shuttle to go faster. 

5) A catamaran cruise with lunch and a swimming break around the Lérins islands.

You will find all the information about this cruise and you can book it by clicking on the button below:

The catamaran cruise is also available without lunch, click here to book! 

6) A trip in a zodiac boat in the calanques de l’Esterel + swimming stop.

7) A zodiac boat trip at sunset with snorkelling at the Lérins island ecomuseum which consists of 6 submerged statues between 3 to 5 metres underwater.

It’s really a great idea for an unusual activity at Cannes.

To book, click the green button below:

croisière Cannes

If you want to enjoy your trip to Cannes by whipping out your bank card, here are the best places to shop:

  • Along la Croisette and rue des Etats-Unis, if you’re more of a luxury boutique person and haute couture house person like Chanel and Dior
  • Rue d’ Antibes for more affordable fashion boutiques such as Zara or designer brands
  • Le Carré d’Or (between la Croisette and rue d’Antibes), rue du Commandant André, for jewellery shops
  • Meynadier street, a pedestrian street with numerous shops and souvenir shops.

During your visit to Cannes , you must take a little climb and go to the Croix-des-Gardes.

This 80-hectare natural park has a path fitted out with gazebos where you can walk peacefully with beautiful views of Cannes, the Lérins Islands and the Esterel massif. 

Croix des Gardes Cannes

To discover Cannes, you can also opt for a flight over the city on a small private plane.

This unique experience allows you to enjoy panoramic views of the whole city and the surroundings. The pilot is ultra-professional and will even explain the different controls of the aircraft in addition to giving you explanations about the places you see.

To book your Cannes flight, just click on the button below:

These flights over Cannes are also available in a helicopter. You will have several options. Just click on the links to get details and book:

  • A shared panoramic flight in a helicopter. Several circuits are available: flight over la Croisette, over the Esterel massif, flight to Monaco or flight over Saint-Tropez.
  • A private helicopter flight . Here too, you can choose your tour.
  • An introductory flight where you will have a theoretical course to learn how the aircraft works and then fly the helicopter in tandem with your instructor!

In the surroundings of Cannes, you can also go on a paragliding experience, allowing you to fly over the regional park of the French Riviera and admire the coast from the sky.

You can choose the duration of your flight and there is even a special flight for children under 12 years. 

Book your paragliding experience in Cannes right here:

survol Cannes avion

In addition to the various boat trips I mentioned above, there are 2 other options that will allow you to discover the surroundings of Cannes by boat, away from other tourists.

To enjoy a VIP experience, you can:

1) Book a private boat trip from Cannes

I think this is the best way to make the most of your day at sea in Cannes!

You rent a boat with a captain , and he will take you to the most beautiful corners of the French Riviera .

Motor boat, sail boat, catamaran or even a yacht : you can choose the right boat for a dream day!

You must rent your boat with captain as early as possible , as you can imagine that this type of VIP day at sea is very much in demand, and it would be a shame if none are available!

You will find all the boats with captain in Cannes by clicking on the button below:

2) Rent a boat to discover the surroundings of Cannes

If you have a boat licence, the 2nd solution for a great day at sea is simply to rent a boat!

Simply click on the button below and book your boat immediately:

louer un bateau

It’s impossible to visit Cannes without going for a walk on the beach!

Cannes and its coastline is home to nearly 8 km of beaches, so you have a wide variety of choices.

There are many private beaches in Cannes , most of which are located between the Cannes Palais des Festivals and the Cap de la Croisette (Palm Beach).

All of the most beautiful luxury hotels in Cannes , such as the Martinez or the Carlton , have chic and trendy Beach Club hotels. However, it costs at least €80 a day just for a deckchair.

If you just want to lay down your towel and enjoy a more relaxed atmosphere, you must go to one of Cannes’ public beaches. There are only 2 public beaches on la Croisette (the beach of the Palais des Festivals and that of la Croisette Est).

The others are located after the Cap de la Croisette (towards Juan-les-Pins) or after the port of Cannes, towards Boulevard du Midi and towards Mandelieu.

To finish this tour of Cannes, you must take a walk along the Allées de la Liberté , a shaded and pedestrian square where the people of Cannes engage in ultra-competitive boules games.

Several markets are held there:

  • The Cannes flower market: every morning of the year except Mondays
  • The crafts market, which is organised every weekend and where you will find local artisans: jewels, paintings, sculptures…
  • The second-hand goods market: every Saturday / the first Sunday and the third Sunday of the month.

What are the things to do around Cannes?

If you have decided to visit Cannes for a few days , in addition to your visit to the city, you will have time to go and discover the surroundings.

Here is my list of the best places to visit in the vicinity of Cannes . I’ve selected 5 of them, all easily accessible by train, car or during organised day trips.

Antibes is an excellent choice for a day around Cannes.

The city can be reached in 25 minutes by car or in 15 minutes by train for a round-trip costing less than €10 ( information and reservations here ).

What are the things to do in Antibes?

  • A walk in the old town , excellent experience with lots of restaurants and small shops
  • Abundant local products at the Provencal market
  • Visit the city’s museums: the Peynet museum, the Picasso museum or the archaeology museum
  • Enjoy the beaches
  • Walk around the Cap d’Antibes
  • Go to Marineland in Antibes.

To visit Antibes, you must read my dedicated article right here: The 20 Best Things to Do in Antibes .

Antibes

Among the cities to see absolutely around Cannes , there is of course, Nice!

These two emblematic towns of the French Riviera are just 45 minutes away by car or 35 minutes away by train .

In Nice, you must absolutely see:

  • The Promenade des Anglais for a walk on the legendary avenue
  • Old Nice with its colourful façades and numerous shops/restaurants
  • The castle hill for a beautiful view of the city.

And as there are many other things to do in Nice, read my dedicated article: The 17 best things to do in Nice .

If you would like to organise a short stay to visit several towns on the French Riviera (Nice, Antibes, Cannes, etc.), you must also read my article: One-week itinerary on the French Riviera.

Vue sur Nice depuis le Mont Boron

Still near Cannes , you must visit another unmissable city of the French Riviera: Monaco.

You can reach it in 1 hour by car or train.

Places of interest to see in Monaco:

  • Le Rocher and the Prince’s Palace
  • The Oceanographic Museum – Ticket for sale here!
  • The Monte-Carlo district and its famous Casino
  • Monaco’s exotic garden

Want to know more about Monaco? I’ve written a detailed article: Monaco: the definitive guide.

Do you want to take a guided tour of Monaco ? You don’t want to bother with organisational matters?

You must book a day trip from Cannes. Transportation , guide and pick- up from your hotel in Cannes are included.

There are 2 types of trips:

  • Half a day in Monaco + a visit to the charming village of Eze
  • An evening in Monaco in small groups to enjoy the lively atmosphere of the place du Casino where you can try your luck with the slot machines.

Rocher Monaco

Towards Cannes , about 35 minutes away by car, lies the town of Grasse.

Grasse is considered to be the global perfume capital and has several renowned perfumeries such as Fragonard, Molinard and Galimard . Most of them are open to the public where you can learn all about the manufacturing of perfumes and even create your own and take it with you.

And to learn more about the history of this very specific industry, you can also visit the International Perfume Museum.

If you don’t have a car, you must take a day trip from Cannes with transport and guide included.

The trip includes not only the visit to Grasse and the Fragornard perfumery factory, but also a visit to the mediaeval village of Valbonne and the fortress of Gourdon . All this will end with a small wine tasting!

Book your trip to Grasse now right here:

Grasse

Let’s conclude my selection of unmissable places near Cannes with the mythical city of Saint-Tropez.

It is located an hour and a half’s drive from Cannes and is therefore the ideal place to visit for a weekend in PACA , for example.

A small coastal town on the French Riviera, Saint-Tropez is known for attracting the international jet set and for its lively nightlife.

As you go on your stroll, you’ll be able to explore its citadel and its museum and then stop off to swim on the city’s trendiest beach: Pampelonne beach.

If you don’t have a car, you can easily get to Saint-Tropez from Cannes by taking the sea shuttle. This will allow you to enjoy a small, pleasant cruise.

The round trip can be booked here:

St-Tropez

In addition to these very famous cities to see around Cannes, I have selected 2 really nice organised trips:

1) A day to visit the wine estates around Cannes.

You can discover the best wines of Provence by visiting the cellars of the Château Saint-Martin, the Château Font du Broc that produces the famous Côtes de Provence and finally the Château Sainte-Roselyne.

And of course wine tasting is included in the schedule!

Book this trip in Provence by clicking on the green button below:

2) A trip to discover the Italian Riviera.

Your guide will take you to Sanremo and Bordighera , with their famous markets, and to the charming village of Dolceacqua.

Click here to book:

One day is enough to visit Cannes and walk around the city.

On a weekend in Cannes , you can enjoy day trips to nearby towns.

Here’s the itinerary to visit Cannes in 1 or 2 days :

Here is the itinerary you must follow if you have chosen to spend a day in Cannes:

  • A walk along la Croisette where you can enjoy the seafront and admire the luxury hotels
  • Picture at the top of the red carpet of the Palais des Festivals
  • Visit to the Old Port
  • Lunch at Forville or the Old Port
  • See the “Cinema Cannes” painted wall
  • Explore the Suquet district
  • Climb to the Croix-des-Gardes or shopping

Cannes port

For a 2-day stay in Cannes , continue from the day 1 itinerary.

On day 2, you have several choices:

  • Trip to one of the Lérins islands to walk, have a picnic and swim
  • A mini-cruise
  • A visit to the surrounding towns: Antibes, Nice, Monaco, Grasse or Saint-Tropez.

If you have decided to go 3 days or more to Cannes , you won’t even have to choose. All you need to do is spend a day on each trip I’ve discussed in this guide.

Here is my list of the best hotels to stay in Cannes according to your budget. Just below, I’ll also give you the best hotels in Nice if you would prefer to stay in the city and visit Cannes from there.

  • Hôtel La Villa Tosca: located 5 minutes on foot from la Croisette. Recently renovated double room from €70, breakfast at €13. Strong points: location in the city centre, proximity to the train station, warm welcome.
  • Best Western Premier Mondial: located on Rue d’Antibes. Warm and comfortable double room from €110, breakfast €20. Strong points: excellent breakfast, comfortable beds. It’s my favorite for its excellent value for money in Cannes!
  • Hôtel Le Canberra: located on Rue d’Antibes, 5 minutes from the beach. Bright and spacious double room with garden view from €160, breakfast at €22. Strong points: swimming pool, comfort, location.
  • Radisson Blu 1835 Hotel & Thalasso, Cannes: located in the Old Port, on the edge of the pier. Double room with elegant decor overlooking the old town or the sea and free access to the Spa, from €170, breakfast €35. Strong points: the rooftop with a magnificent view, spa, swimming pool. One of the best places to stay in Cannes.

For a higher budget, here are the most beautiful 5* hotels in Cannes:

  • Five Seas Hotel: located 100 metres from the Palais des Festivals. Double room and suites with contemporary decor from €235, breakfast included. Strong points: roof-top swimming pool, spa, extremely friendly staff.
  • Hotel Martinez – in the Unbound Collection by Hyatt: located on the Boulevard de la Croisette, this emblematic luxury hotel offers contemporary Art Deco-style rooms with a lounge area from €270, breakfast €42. Strong points: private beach, the gourmet restaurant (2* in the Michelin Guide), calm atmosphere, professionalism of the staff. This is our recommendation for a luxury stay in Cannes.
  • InterContinental Carlton Cannes: also located on la Croisette, this legendary 5* hotel in Cannes offers elegant and bright rooms starting at €275, including breakfast. Strong points: private beach, breakfast on the terrace, comfortable beds.
  • Hôtel Barrière Le Majestic Cannes: this splendid luxury hotel is located on la Croisette. Spacious double room with panoramic view of Cannes or the sea from €350, breakfast included. Strong points: free private beach, wellness centre, delicious breakfast. One of the most beautiful palaces to stay in Cannes.

Cannes

  • Hôtel Ozz by Happyculture : Located about 15 minutes from the beach on foot. Nice place, very friendly staff, great location and comfortable beds. Only 20€ per night in dormitory. Double room at 55€. This is the best hostel for a budget stay in Nice!
  • Hôtel Brice Garden : Located in the hear of Nice, 5 minutes walk from the beach and Promenade des Anglais. Very well furnished and clean room from 80€ per night. Excellent value for money. Friendly and welcoming staff. The best value hotel if you want to stay in the city center! Needs to be booked as soon as possible, lots of demand.
  • Hôtel le Saint Paul : Located 50 meters from the Nice harbor, in a quiet area, with an amazing sea view. Large bright room from 95€ per night, buffet breakfast for 12€. Plus: free private parking. My favorite in Nice!
  • Hôtel Le Royal Promenade des Anglais : Located right on the Promenade des Anglais in a historic building. Prestigious room decorated in a classic style, very bright, from 135€ per night, breakfast at 15€.
  • Hôtel Negresco: Located on the Promenade des Anglais, this exceptional hotel is simply the best in Nice. The rooms are magnificent, the view is stunning, the staff is amazing and the restaurant is one of the best in town. It’s the best choice for a luxury stay in Nice!
  • The restaurant “La Palme d’Or”: the restaurant of the hôtel Martinez has been awarded 2 Michelin stars, it is considered the most prestigious places in Cannes.
  • Le troquet à Soupes: located at Rue Meynadier. This tiny restaurant offers excellent homemade dishes made with quality products. Special items include homemade soups in winter and gaspacho/salads in summer.
  • La brouette de Grand-Mère: the place to go if you want to enjoy authentic homemade local cuisine. €49 flat rate with all-you-can-eat appetisers, main course + dessert + water + 1/2 bottle of wine. Reservation recommended.

petit train touristique Cannes

Cannes has an airport but is more focused towards business aviation, so you will have to land at Nice airport.

Since flight prices for Nice vary greatly, it is a good idea to compare them as soon as possible. To do this, you can use our flight comparison tool, in partnership with Skyscanner. You can rest assured that you will get the best rates.

  Here are the options to go to Cannes from Nice:

1) Private transport from Nice airport. Reservations must be made in advance by clicking here:

2) Bus: take the 200 line which goes directly to Nice airport.

3) Train: it takes only 35 minutes to get from the Nice station to Cannes.

You must check the train schedules and fares and can book your tickets here:

It might be worth renting a car when you arrive in Nice and keeping it for the duration of your stay on the French Riviera. 

The most reliable way to compare prices and see all available offers is through Booking.com Cars .

Compare car rental prices in Nice and Cannes now:

If you want to rent a boat for a nice day at sea during your stay in Cannes, you should book it with Samboat.

Motorboats, sailboats, yachts, small boats without a license, with or without a skipper: they simply have the most complete offer for boat rental!

So, what are you waiting for to book your boat trip in Cannes? 😊

To help you visualise the city a bit better, I have created this tourist map of Cannes , with all the best places to visit and things to do in Cannes and its surroundings.

You can display the map legend by clicking on the top left button, the one with a small arrow on it.

FAQ – I’ll answer your questions about Cannes

You can visit Cannes all year round. 

All things to see, activities (except water sports) and even boats for the Lérins islands are available at any time.

If you want to go to Cannes to enjoy the beaches, the best option is to go there between June and September.

Here are some ideas for activities in case of rain during your stay in Cannes:

  • Visit the Castre museum or the La Malmaison art centre
  • An introduction to wine tasting
  • A cinema session in one of the 3 cinemas halls of the city

If you are visiting Cannes with children, you must really visit the Lérins islands. The kids will be delighted to go for a walk , swim and have picnics.

You can also take them to Fun City , a huge indoor playground with a ball pool, slides, zip line, trampoline and even a mini-karting track.

If you feel like partying during your stay, there are many bars, nightclubs and even casinos.

The places to go in Cannes:

  • The Radisson Blu Hotel’s “360” lounge-bar restaurant, which I mentioned in my article
  • The Fouquet’s gallery bar for its excellent cocktails
  • The Martinez bar, considered a real institution of the city
  • The Gotha Club , which hosts some of the world’s biggest DJs and is a place where you may come across international stars
  • The Bâoli , to party with the glitterati
  • The Casino Barrière Les Princes or the Casino Barrière Croisette.

If you need help planning your stay in Cannes, don’t hesitate to ask me your questions in the comments section below.

France travel Guides

  • Buy the Lonely Planet France guide on Amazon.com or on Amazon.co.uk
  • Buy the Rick Steves France guide on Amazon.com or on Amazon.co.uk

Discover all our articles about France: All Voyage Tips articles about France are listed here.

French Riviera

  • French Riviera: Top 25 best places to visit and activities
  • Itinerary: 1 Week in French Riviera – the definitive guide for your 7-8 days trip
  • Antibes: Top 20 best places to visit
  • Cannes: The 20 best things to do and activities
  • Monaco: 25 Best places to visit
  • Nice: 15 things you must do and see

Other French Cities

  • Annecy: 12 things to do and see
  • Honfleur: Top 15 things to discover
  • La Rochelle: Top 15 things to do and must-see attractions
  • Lyon: 21 Best things to do
  • Marseille: Top 33 best things to do and see
  • Nantes: The 15 best things to do
  • Reims: Top 15 things to do and see
  • Rennes: The 15 things you must do!
  • Strasbourg: The 25 must-see attractions

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Best places to visit in Cannes

Creator of the Voyage Tips blog, travel and photography lover. I give you all my best tips to plan your next trip.

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Home » Travel Guides » France » 15 Best Things to Do in Cannes (France)

15 Best Things to Do in Cannes (France)

Life in Cannes is turned on its head during those two weeks in May, when scores of paparazzi, industry bigwigs and the world’s biggest stars are in town for the famous film festival. The remainder of the year it’s a sleek pleasure garden for the world’s wealthiest people, and a honeypot for people seduced by the glamour.

Check the prices on Boulevard de la Croisette, sashay up the red carpet at the Palais des Festivales and see if you can get in touch with the real Cannes, at the Marché Forville and the old quarter around Le Suquet.

Lets explore the best things to do in Cannes :

1. Le Suquet

Le Suquet

West of the harbour is Cannes’ original hillside settlement, where the pattern of the scurrying little streets hasn’t changed in hundreds of years.

If you’re out to dinner in the evening chances are you’ll spend at least some time on Rue Sainte-Antoine, which twists its way up the hill between old fisherman’s houses.

You can let your curiosity take over and climb the stairways, slowly making your way up past ochre-painted walls and bougainvillea blossoms, until you get to Place de la Castre.

There you can stand at the terraced garden next to Notre-Dame d’Espérance and see the harbour, the Palais des Festivals and the arc of La Croisette all below.

2. La Croisette

La Croisette

Call it a cliché but this beach and promenade is the place to see and be seen.

It’s about as posh as it gets; across the Boulevard de la Croisette the luxury fashion houses line up to be counted, and on the shore is a chain of private beaches with fine golden sands.

The public beach is furthest to the west, near the Palais des Festivals, and like all of the shore can be heaving with people in mid-summer.

But it’s a small price to pay (or a big one, if you’re on a private beach!) for an unadulterated dose or Riviera glamour.

3. Palais des Festivales

Palais des Festivales

The venue of the Cannes Film Festival has been photographed so many times that it’s taken on a kind of universal recognition.

You can go on a tour around the Grand Auditorium, following in the footsteps of the world’s most famous personalities and where some landmarks in recent movie history have taken place.

Naturally you’ll have the chance to walk the red carpet on the stairs that lead up to the Gran Auditorium by the Promenande de la Croisette.

There won’t be any paparazzi around but maybe you can ask a loved one, or even a passer-by to take your photo on these famous steps.

4. Film Festival

Film Festival

In mid-May the world’s most famous film festival transforms Cannes and brings the great and the good to the city, as upcoming releases are judged and the famous Palme d’Or awarded to the best.

It runs at the same time as the Marché du Film, described as the world’s largest film market, where thousands of filmmakers, distributors and other industry professionals rub shoulders and make contacts.

What does it mean for us mere mortals if we don’t have accreditation? Well, for two weeks there’s a special buzz around the place, and you’ve got a great chance of spotting celebrities.

If you’re all about the movies then there are also fee screenings of former Palme d’Or Winners on La Croisette in the evenings.

5. Marché Forville

Marché Forville

Every morning you can go on a journey through Provence without ever leaving Cannes.

All you have to do is visit this covered market, where seasonal produce and regional flavours are sourced from around the south of France.

It’s also favoured by locals, which is grand because glimpses of real everyday life can be rare in this ritzy city.

What’s on offer can range from fruit, veg, flowers and fragrant herbs right up to exquisite hand-crafted confectionery, truffles and gourmet olive oils.

And you can round it off with a glass of wine from one of the bars just outside, while there’s also live music on Saturdays and Sundays.

The food market sets up daily, except on Mondays when there’s a flea market instead.

6. Île Sainte-Marguerite

Île Sainte-Marguerite

Just 15 minutes by ferry from Cannes’ old port, Île Sainte-Marguerite is the closest of the two Lérins Islands to the mainland.

It’s the perfect option if the beaches and streets of Cannes get a bit much: The island has deep, aromatic forest with stone pines and eucalyptus trees, and even on busy days you can get a little solitude.

There’s historical interest here too: On the north coast is the star-shaped 17th-century Fort Royal, which kept prisoners like the mystery Man in the Iron Mask.

These days it’s a diverting maritime museum with items retrieved from local Roman and Moorish shipwrecks.

7. Île Saint-Honorat

Île Saint-Honorat

Île Sainte-Marguerite’s neighbour has a different flavour, and has been a pilgrimage site for 1,600 years.

A monastery was founded on the island in 410 by St.

Honoratus, and a monastic community soon formed around him.

There have been deadly raids and expulsions since then, but today there’s still a significant Cistercian community, making a living selling homemade honey and wine.

On a walking tour you can see the picturesque ruins of various abandoned chapels, as well as the ruins of a cannonball oven from the Napoleonic period.

If you have time, nip inside Lérins Abbey and the dramatic 15th-century fortified monastery on the south coast.

8. Musée de la Castre

Musée de la Castre

After struggling up the hill in Le Suquet you can step inside this museum, which is in one of Cannes’ few medieval buildings, a fort built in the 11th century to defend the bay.

On display are the city’s public collections, and they’re as diverse as you can imagine, with primitive art from pre-Colombian America, Oceania the Himalayas and the Arctic; ancient artefacts from the Mediterranean, musical instruments from around the world and three rooms dealing with 19th-century French landscape paintings around Cannes and the Riviera.

At the end of the tour you can climb 109 steps the to the top of the square tower to improve on that view of the bay from the terrace.

9. Église Notre-Dame-de-l’Espérance

Église Notre-Dame-de-l'Espérance

Next to the old fortress you can also beat the heat for a few minutes in this solemn gothic and renaissance church, constructed in the 1500s.

It’s an austere-looking building from the outside, but there are some things to pique your interest inside.

In the Chapelle des Baptêmes there’s a 16th-century sculpture from Burgundy depicting St.

Anne, the Virgin and child.

And above the entrance is a cute Pavia organ added in the 19th century.

Time your visit for Christmas and you can bring the little guys to see the musical nativity scene, which was crafted in the 1920s and has some 200 figures, some of which are mechanical.

10. Villa Domergue

In the quiet hills behind Cannes is an art deco mansion that does the neat trick of looking modern and ancient all at once.

That’s because it was inspired by Venetian palaces, but was built by the painter Jean-Gabriel Domergue in 1934. His sculptor wife, Odette Maugendre designed the beautiful Mediterranean-style terraced gardens, and the whole property was the venue for some legendary Riviera parties.

It was bequeathed to the city in the 70s and is now a sophisticated location for music events like Jazz à Domergue, and where the Cannes Festival jury retires for its deliberations.

Take a tour of the villa and see the Bay of Cannes from the exquisite balustrades on the terraces.

11. Luxury Shopping

Luxury Shopping

Beginning at La Croisette is a shopping area that has pretty much every high-end brand you can name.

It’s impossible not to feel a little underdressed as you shuffle by branches of Dior, Chanel, Gucci , Miu Miu, Bulgari and Prada.

In fact you could walk for an hour or so and pass nothing but luxury boutiques.

Unless you have expensive habits or happen to be extremely wealthy you’ll mostly be doing window shopping in this part of Cannes, but it’s an education to see how the other half lives.

This is especially true of the Carré d’Or, between La Croisette and Rue d’Antibes, where glitzy jewellery shops rub shoulders with the most select bars in the city.

12. Rue d’Antibes

Rue d'Antibes

A few streets in from the La Croisette and parallel to the bay, Rue d’Antibes is a lengthy shopping artery with international high-street brands like Desigual , Lacoste, Mango and Sephora, alongside all the French favourites such as Fnac and Devernois.

So you can go on that Cannes shopping trip without breaking the bank or being turned away before you can even step inside the shop! The incomparably chic location will make your outing feel that little more special too.

And interspersing the stores are luxury bakers and chocolatiers, for a bit of extra indulgence.

13. Painted Walls

Painted Walls

Since 2002 the city has started embracing its position in world cinema by putting up large murals showing iconic actors, characters and scenes from cherished movies.

So on Boulevard Vallombrossa there’s a painting of Charlie Chaplin and “The Kid” on a strip of celluloid.

There’s a touch of trompe-l’oeil to many of these, like the painting of Harold Lloyd on Louis Braille, which shows the silent star hanging from the clock hands, as in Safety Last from 1923. If you know your movie cars, you’ll appreciate the fresco at the Berthelot-ex Diabolika car park where there’s the Batmobile, Travis Bickle’s Taxi and Starsky and Hutch’s Gran Torino.

14. Cap d’Antibes Sentier du Littoral

Cap d'Antibes Sentier du Littoral

Here’s another way to retreat from the commotion of Cannes for blissful privacy, in a wonderful natural setting.

The coastal walk on the lower reaches of Cap d’Antibes hugs the steep and rocky shoreline.

In places the walk is so open to the elements that the path is occasionally closed off when the winds are up, but towards the east side of the cape things are calmer, and you’ll find spots where you can sunbathe on the rocks and take a dip in gleaming waters.

So in the summer two things are essential: Good walking shoes, and swimwear, because the sea will be very enticing on a hot day.

15. Le Nomade and Port Vauban

Le Nomade and Port Vauban

The wealth on show at the port in Antibes will take your breath away.

This is one of the most expensive places in the world to moor your boat, with rates exceeding a million Euros.

And some of the vessels will have you rubbing your eyes; they look more like ocean liners than private yachts and are owned by the very richest people in the world.

The best view is from the aptly-named Quai des Milliardaires, but there’s also an enthralling piece of public art to investigate.

Le Nomade is the giant figure of a person looking out at the Mediterranean, and consisting of hundreds of white letters.

It ‘s the work of the Catalan artist Jaume Plensa, and is magical at night when lit up from within.

15 Best Things to Do in Cannes (France):

  • La Croisette
  • Palais des Festivales
  • Film Festival
  • Marché Forville
  • Île Sainte-Marguerite
  • Île Saint-Honorat
  • Musée de la Castre
  • Église Notre-Dame-de-l'Espérance
  • Villa Domergue
  • Luxury Shopping
  • Rue d'Antibes
  • Painted Walls
  • Cap d'Antibes Sentier du Littoral
  • Le Nomade and Port Vauban

Best Things to Do in Cannes, France

Article written by Elisa - Travel Writer & Local in France This article may contain compensated links. Please read disclaimer for more info.

Visit Cannes, French Riviera

Known for its luxurious accommodations, shopping, and world-famous film festival, Cannes is one of the most popular places to visit on the French Riviera and a dream destination for many travelers. With its stunning beaches, warm weather, and convenient location close to Nice , this is where the stars go for a holiday in Southern France.

Cannes is the kind of destination you visit when you want to relax and enjoy some luxury. The city is a must-stop on any French Riviera road trip , and its charm and beauty will make you eager to visit more than once!

If you’re ready to party, relax, eat, and shop like the stars, then here’s a list of the best things to do in Cannes, France. 

tourist center cannes

Are you planning a holiday to Cannes last minute?

Below are some of the best Cannes tours, hotels, and more!

  • Trains to Cannes
  • How to travel from Nice to Cannes
  • How to go from Marseille to Cannes

Top Experiences and Tours in Cannes

  • Cannes Sightseeing Tour by Vespa
  • Round Trip Ferry Ticket to Ste Marguerite Island
  • Half Day Catamaran Tour with Lunch

Top Cannes Accommodation and Lodging

Hotel Croisette Beach Cannes Mc Gallery  (top suggestion),  Hotel Martinez (luxury),  Hotel Verlaine  (mid-range),  Hotel Brimer Cannes   (budget), Residence Carlton Riviera (apartment).

Don’t leave for Cannes without travel insurance!

  • SafetyWing , our trusted travel insurance policy for long and short trips (starting with a minimum of 5 days), covers COVID-19 for new policies purchased, and since April 2021, unplanned quarantine is covered, too. 

What to Do in Cannes

The list of things to see in Cannes is long! Here are our favorite Cannes attractions and things to do for your next holiday to Cannes.

1. Explore Le Suquet

tourist center cannes

Most of Cannes is sleek and modern, but Le Suquet is another story. Le Suquet is Cannes’ oldest neighborhood and one of the most beautiful places to visit in Cannes. Looming above the city, you can wander through the streets enjoying the pastel-colored buildings that have stood since the 18th and 19th centuries.

Originally a Roman settlement, Le Suquet is today a maze of narrow, ascending streets, underground bars, and family restaurants, so take the time to wander and explore this lovely neighborhood. Here, you will also find a medieval castle, one of Cannes’ tourist attractions, and home to the Musée de la Castre .

2. Take a Stroll along La Croisette

tourist center cannes

La Croisette Walkway is one of the most popular streets in the city and all of France. It runs along Cannes’ seafront, and a stroll along this iconic street is one of the best things to do in Cannes.

This walkway not only has all the charm and beauty of the beach close by, but it’s also filled with the best shops, restaurants, and casinos in the entire city. You could spend hours exploring the designer boutiques along this walkway, which would make for a delightful afternoon.

3. Visit the Old Port

tourist center cannes

The Old Port is an area that perfectly mixes the old and the new, making it one of the top Cannes attractions. It’s located at the foot of the Le Suquet neighborhood and overlooked by the charm of a medieval castle, which makes it a curious sight compared to the luxury yachts that crowd the port.

This is where the rich come to moor up and enjoy the charms of Cannes as it offers beautiful sunrise and sunset views. There are also a number of chic bars and restaurants along the Quai Saint-Pierre, so choose one and settle in to enjoy the atmosphere.

In September, the Old Port hosts the Cannes Yachting Festival , one of the largest boat shows in Europe and one of the best things to do in Cannes for boat lovers.

4. A Lazy Day on the Beach

tourist center cannes

If you’re trying to decide what to do in Cannes, why not just hang out on the beach? Cannes has some of the best beaches on the French Riviera , and they’re definitely the place to see and be seen, making them one of the top things to do in Cannes.

Cannes has both private and public beaches. The private ones are closer to the main street and can be expensive, while the public ones are more natural and have fewer amenities. Check out Carlton Beach for waiter service while you enjoy the sun, Long Beach for events, or Plage de la Bocca for a glimpse of everyday life in Cannes.

5. Admire the View from La Croix des Gardes

tourist center cannes

Located on a hill overlooking the city behind the Suquet neighborhood, La Croix des Gardes is a Sensitive Natural Space nicknamed the ‘green lung’ of Cannes. Indeed, the large forest park of the Croix des Gardes constitutes a unique reserve for the fauna and flora of Provence and a great place for short hikes or to enjoy the view.

6. Visit Villa Rothschild

tourist center cannes

Located in the La Croix-des-Gardes neighborhood, Villa Rothschild is a historic mansion built in 1881 for Betty Rothschild, the widow of James Mayer de Rothschild. This stately old building, designed in neo-classic style, is surrounded by stunning English-style gardens filled with exotic species like palm trees and blue cedars.

When you’re looking for things to see in Cannes, make sure you take a walking tour through the villa to enjoy the amazing architecture and the sheer luxury that went into every stone of its construction. Both the mansion and the surrounding gardens are listed as historical monuments.

7. Take a Catamaran Tour

tourist center cannes

Some of the best things to do in Cannes aren’t actually in the city itself. Cannes is located right on the coast of the Mediterranean, and it can also be explored from the sea. That’s why there are numerous catamaran tours on offer.

You can choose a full-day tour or a half-day tour. Top up your tan as you relax onboard, and enjoy some time to swim and snorkel in the gorgeous waters of the Mediterranean. You can also sail to the Calanques of the Esterel Natural Park or to Saint-Tropez from Cannes. Who could resist that?

Most popular catamaran tours from Cannes:

  • Sunset boat tour (1.5 hrs)
  • Half-day catamaran cruise (3 hrs)
  • Half-day catamaran cruise with lunch (4 hrs)
  • Discover the Calanques of the Esterel (2.5 hrs)
  • Full day catamaran cruise with lunch
  • Discover St. Tropez by boat (full day)

8. Taste Local Food at Marché Forville

tourist center cannes

When you visit Cannes, don’t miss the opportunity to taste the local food. The Marché Forville is one of the best places to visit in Cannes to taste Provencal specialties, including the famous socca. The socca is a Cannes staple which consists of a thin pancake made from chickpea flour, water, salt, and olive oil cooked over a wood fire and seasoned with pepper. The socca is eaten hot, right out of the oven.

This covered market has a great atmosphere and is a real invitation to a gourmet trip to Provence with seasonal products, local fishing, and flowers. You can also explore the many shops and terraces that surround it. The Marché Forville is held in the heart of Cannes and is open every morning, except Monday.

9. Cannes’ Palais des Festivals & Walk of Stars

tourist center cannes

The Palais des Festivals et des Congrès (the full name) is a cultural and congress center famous for hosting the world-famous Cannes Film Festival every May. Even if you visit Cannes outside of the festival dates, you can have your photo taken on the red-carpeted steps, which have become a hallmark of the festival. You can also attend one of the many cultural performances that take place there, whether it is concerts, plays, ballets or comedy shows.

Cannes’s Walk of Stars ( Chemin des Étoiles ) is a copy of the Hollywood Walk of Fame with a unique local twist. Instead of having stars with signatures, the Walk of Stars in Cannes has palm prints and signatures.

There are over 150 handprints in the Cannes Walk of Stars, and they’re located in front of the Palais des Festivals on Esplanade Pompidou and the surrounding parks. In this famous walk, some of the handprints you’ll see belong to Meryl Streep, Julie Andrews, and Sylvester Stallone.

10. Day Trip to the Lérins Islands

tourist center cannes

The Lérins Islands are a group of four islands located just 20 minutes across the bay from Cannes. The islands have been inhabited since Roman times, but only two larger islands are popular tourist spots today.

If you are wondering what to see in Cannes out of the beaten path, one of the Lérins Islands is always a good option. Île Sainte-Marguerite is the first of the larger islands. It’s easy to access by ferry and has amazing beaches and a quiet vibe that makes it a good choice if you want some peace away from Cannes. It’s also the location of the Fort of St. Marguerite, where the famous Man in the Iron Mask was once held prisoner – Click here to book your ferry tickets to Sainte-Marguerite Island

The second island, Île Saint-Honorat , is also accessible from Cannes by boat, run by the monks who live on the island. Here, the 11th-century monastery and the church on the island are worth visiting.

And there you have it, the best things to do in Cannes France, and our top recommendations on tours, hotels, and more for the perfect holiday to Cannes.

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17 Best Things to do in Cannes, France

By Spencer Leasca · Last updated on May 3, 2024

Cannes is undoubtedly one of France’s most alluring travel destinations. A picturesque gem nestled on the enchanting French Riviera, the city is renowned for its glamor and charm. With its sun-kissed beaches, opulent boutiques, and world-famous film festival, this coastal city embodies sophistication, elegance and luxury.

Cannes is best known for its iconic Cannes Film Festival, an annual event that transforms the city into a global hub for the film industry. Movie stars, directors, and cinephiles flock to its shores to witness the unveiling of cinematic masterpieces and partake in the electric atmosphere that envelops the city during this time.

Map of Cannes

Cannes Map

Beyond the glitz of the festival, there are several other fun things to do in Cannes, which boast a rich history and captivating architecture. This is evident from the medieval Le Suquet quarter with its charming streets to the modern elegance of La Croisette Boulevard. The resort town also has a laid-back nature (outside of the festival) and a subtropical Mediterranean climate, which makes it a terrific destination to visit all year round.

17. Vieux Port

Vieux Port

The Vieux Port (Old Port) is a captivating reflection of the city’s maritime heritage and charm. Steeped in history, this port has been a vital hub since ancient times, evolving from a small fishing village to a renowned Mediterranean tourist destination.

Filled with colorful fishing boats, yachts, and sailboats, it is an idyllic fusion of tradition and modernity. Historic buildings line the waterfront, where local fishermen haul their daily catch – like many have done for centuries, providing an authentic glimpse into Cannes’ maritime legacy.

Visitors can stroll along the promenade, capturing breathtaking views of the sea and the iconic Cannes skyline. You also have your choice of plenty of delicious traditional seafood dishes that are available at the bustling cafes dotted around the perimeter.

16. Musée Des Explorations Du Monde

Musée Des Explorations Du Monde

Located on Rue de la Castre, The Musée des Explorations du Monde is a captivating museum that celebrates the spirit of adventure and exploration.

Founded in 1974, the museum showcases a diverse collection of rare artifacts, documents and interactive displays spanning various cultures, continents and historical periods.

Visitors can immerse themselves in the tales of explorers who ventured into uncharted territories, bringing their courage and curiosity to life. The collection includes maps, navigational instruments, ethnographic objects and multimedia installations, paying homage to the intrepid explorers and their remarkable voyages.

The museum aims to foster an appreciation for the world’s diverse societies and histories. So it is an engaging place to visit for those wanting to learn about other cultures and their way of life.

15. Walk of Fame

Walk of Fame

Like Hollywood, Cannes has its own ‘Walk of Fame’ or Chemin des Etoiles as it is known locally. Providing a prestigious tribute to international film icons who have graced the Cannes Film Festival with their presence, the homage lines the promenade along the Palais des Festivals.

Instead of stars, the Cannes Walk of Fame immortalizes the handprints of renowned actors, directors and industry figures on the pavement. Each imprinted plaque showcases the individual’s contribution to the world of cinema and their enduring connection to the Cannes Film Festival.

If you love films, strolling along the Walk of Fame allows you to connect with the legacies of your favorite actors and actresses. They include Penélope Cruz, Leonardo Dicaprio, Cameron Diaz, Sylvester Stallone, Angelina Jolie and Quentin Tarantino, who are all featured.

14. Casino Barrière Le Croisette

Casino Barrière Le Croisette

The Casino Barrière Le Croisette is the kind of elegant and sophisticated venue you could imagine James Bond going to.

Located on the famous Boulevard de la Croisette, the casino is a centerpiece of the city’s evening scene, seamlessly blending luxury with entertainment and gaming.

The casino’s modern interior exudes sophistication, complemented by stunning views of the Mediterranean Sea. Inside, it boasts diverse gaming options, including slot machines, poker tables, roulette and blackjack to satisfy all types of flutter preferences.

Beyond gaming, the establishment offers fine dining experiences at its restaurants, as well as live entertainment and shows. Overall, if you want a taste of the high life, the glamorous setting and bustling ambiance of the Casino Barrière Le Croisette will provide you with a healthy slice.

13. La Croix-des-Gardes

La Croix-des-Gardes

La Croix-des-Gardes is an enchanting natural sanctuary that offers a serene contrast from the bustling city. This scenic hilltop area is steeped in history and boasts breathtaking vistas. It was once a refuge for monks and later a vantage point for military observation but has now transformed into an attractive public recreational space.

The area’s most prominent feature is the Croix des Gardes, a cross erected in 1860 to commemorate the visit of Queen Victoria. The cross symbolizes historical significance and offers panoramic views of Cannes, the Mediterranean Sea, and the surrounding landscapes.

The park is popular with hikers and joggers who use its well-maintained trails for exercise. Its diverse flora and fauna, including stunning umbrella pines and Aleppo pines, provide a beautiful backdrop for picnics and photography.

12. Notre-Dame d’Espérance

Notre-Dame d’Espérance

Notre-Dame d’Esperance is a magnificent church that dates back to the 17th century.

A beautiful blend of three different architectural styles – Gothic, Romanesque, and Baroque – the church sits majestically atop a hill, providing stunning views of the Le Suquet district.

Also known as Our Lady of Hope, it is renowned for its striking façade adorned with intricate carvings and sculptures. Its bell tower, crowned with a wrought-iron campanile, is a significant landmark on the Cannes skyline.

As you step inside, the church’s exquisite stained glass windows and delicate frescoes will captivate your senses, creating a serene ambiance that invites contemplation and reflection.

In addition to regular services, the church holds a notable annual, week-long festival called the Musical Nights of Le Suquet in July.

11. Iles de Lerins

Iles de Lerins

The Iles de Lerins near Cannes are a pair of stunning inhabited islands renowned for their natural beauty and historical intrigue.

Inhabited since ancient times, they comprise Saint-Honorat and Sainte-Marguerite, offering distinct experiences.

Saint-Honorat is home to a monastery where Cistercian monks have resided since the 5th century. Its lush vineyards produce renowned wines, which visitors can explore along with the rest of the monastery’s peaceful surroundings.

Sainte-Marguerite is the larger island of the two and hosts the iconic Fort Royal, which famously housed the enigmatic ‘Man in the Iron Mask.’ Fragrant pine forests, coves and pristine beaches define the island, accentuating its natural beauty.

There are several sail and boat tours available. Alternatively ferries depart every hour from Cannes to the islands.

10. Palais des Festivals et des Congrès

Palais des Festivals et des Congrès

The Palais des Festivals et des Congrès is a modernist building established in 1949. It is best known as the iconic venue that hosts the Cannes Film Festival’s prestigious red-carpet events.

However, it also holds the NRJ Music Awards, the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, international conferences, trade shows, and other cultural events. In the past, it has hosted the Eurovision Song Contest twice as well.

The Palais is located on the Boulevard de la Croisette, providing stunning views of the Mediterranean Sea. It features state-of-the-art facilities, including theaters, exhibition spaces and conference rooms, which you can see on guided tours or by attending a show or event.

A landmark structure, the Palais encapsulates Cannes’ cultural heritage while being a dynamic hub for creativity, entertainment, and international collaboration.

9. Rue Meynadier

Rue Meynadier

Rue Meynadier is a lively thoroughfare dating back to Roman times that has evolved into a vibrant hub for shopping and local culture. It features various shops, boutiques, cafés, and eateries, selling everything from traditional Provençal products to modern fashion and cutting-edge gastronomy.

The street itself provides a captivating blend of old-world charm and contemporary allure. Wandering through it allows you to experience the vibe of everyday life in Cannes, away from the glamour of the film festival and high-end boutiques.

The street’s picturesque architecture, cobblestone paths, and charming ambiance make it a favorite among locals and tourists. Come here for a more authentic and down-to-earth perspective of the city’s character, which you won’t get in other parts of Cannes.

8. Les Murs Peints

Les Murs Peints

If you love art, you’ll want to check out Les Murs Peints in Cannes. The project features a series of large-scale murals created by renowned international artists, bringing art to the public space while creatively enhancing the urban landscape.

These murals depict diverse themes, from historical events to whimsical scenes, and often reflect the cultural richness of Cannes and its surroundings.

One of the most notable is the depiction of 100 years of cinema stars. Located near City Hall, next to the bus station, it features cinematic greats like Alfred Hitchcock, Charlie Chaplin, Marilyn Monroe and James Dean.

Wandering through the streets to discover these murals is an engaging and enriching experience. Each artwork adds a touch of color and narrative to the city’s fabric, turning everyday walks into immersive art tours.

7. Go to the Beach

Cannes beach

Going to the beach is a quintessential experience while in Cannes.

The city’s beach culture has deep roots, dating back to the 19th century when Cannes began attracting aristocrats and celebrities seeking relaxation by the Mediterranean Sea.

The most famous beach, Plage de la Croisette, offers a stunning backdrop of the Palais des Festivals and luxurious hotels. Elsewhere, the Plage du Midi provides a quieter escape with golden sands and a more serene vibe.

Many Cannes beaches offer beach clubs where you can rent sunbeds, umbrellas and enjoy beachside dining. They can be expensive. However, they expose you to the essence of the French Riviera’s coastal lifestyle.

If you intend to visit the beach, remember the city has a subtropical Mediterranean climate, so wear a hat, sunglasses and plenty of sunscreen.

6. Rue d’Antibes

Rue d'Antibes

Shopping is a big part of the Cannes experience, and one of the best places to do this is at Rue d’Antibes. With a history dating back to the 19th century, the street is now a premier shopping destination renowned for its high-end boutiques, fashion houses and exquisite finds.

Starting from the Palais des Festivals, the Rue d’Antibes extends to the Place Gambetta. The street offers diverse shopping experiences, from internationally recognized brands to local artisanal shops. Some of the most prestigious places to visit include Mes Demoiselles, sud express and the Tara Jarmon Cannes Boutique.

Beyond shopping, the street features several cafes, bistros and restaurants serving local specialities like Pissaladière, Daube provençale, Fougasse and Pistou soup. Plan to spend at least a complete day at Rue d’Antibes to immerse yourself in its experience fully.

5. Le Suquet

Le Suquet

Le Suquet is a historic district that showcases the city’s medieval origins. Perched on a hill overlooking the city, this charming quarter dates back to the 11th century, serving as the original settlement of Cannes.

The district exudes Provençal charm, accommodating quaint houses with colorful shutters and flowering plants. Its cobblestone streets eventually lead to the picturesque Église Notre-Dame-de-l’Espérance, a church with stunning views from its bell tower.

The Marché Forville is a highlight of any visit to the area, offering a vibrant local market where fresh produce, artisanal products and local delicacies are readily available. Additionally, you will find several delightful cafes and eateries championing local delicacies. At the same time, Le Suquet is home to some fascinating art galleries, museums and boutiques showcasing an impressive cultural side.

4. Île Sainte-Marguerite

Île Sainte-Marguerite

As previously mentioned, Ile Sainte-Marguerite is the larger of the two inhabited islands in the Iles de Lerins.

The island brims with historical intrigue, as it is most famous for hosting the enigmatic Fort Royal, where the mysterious ‘Man in the Iron Mask’ was held captive. Today, visitors can explore the fort’s remains, which give insights into its storied past.

In addition to its historical allure, Île Sainte-Marguerite offers a tranquil escape from the mainland’s glitz and glamor. The island’s natural beauty, featuring pine forests, coves, and crystalline waters, provides an idyllic setting for leisurely walks and picnics.

Photographers and nature lovers can revel in the island’s diverse flora and fauna while beachgoers enjoy its pristine, uncrowded shores.

3. Marché Forville

Marché Forville

Established over a century ago, the Marché Forville is a vibrant market that embodies the city’s culinary and cultural richness.

Located near the historic district of Le Suquet, the market is a cherished local institution, offering an array of fresh produce, gourmet delights and artisanal crafts.

From colorful fruits and vegetables to aromatic cheeses, spices and flowers, Marché Forville tantalizes the senses with its fantastic offerings.

The market’s atmosphere is a delightful fusion of Provençal charm and cosmopolitan vibrancy, creating a space where locals and visitors harmoniously intermingle.

The market is a must-visit destination for those seeking an authentic taste of local produce. It is the perfect place to pick up some items for a picnic or a self-catered dinner at prices that should be manageable for most budgets.

2. Festival de Cannes

Festival de Cannes

The Festival de Cannes is one of the most prestigious and iconic film festivals worldwide. The annual festival, founded in 1946, has evolved into a global cinematic extravaganza, showcasing groundbreaking films and celebrating artistic excellence.

The festival’s main event is at the Palais des Festivals, featuring red carpet premieres, press conferences and awards ceremonies. The coveted Palme d’Or is the festival’s highest honor, awarded to the best film in the competition.

Beyond film screenings, the Festival de Cannes brings together international filmmakers, industry professionals and celebrities, fostering networking and collaboration. It also includes parallel sections

like Directors’ Fortnight and Critics’ Week, providing platforms for diverse cinematic voices.

While this event is exclusive, if you are in Cannes during the time it is on, you have plenty of opportunity to spot a celebrity or two.

1. Boulevard de la Croisette

Boulevard de la Croisette

The Boulevard de la Croisette is one of the most famous roads in France.

Stretching along the Mediterranean shoreline, it has a storied history dating back to the 19th century when Cannes transformed into an aristocratic retreat.

Epitomizing luxury, glamour and coastal beauty, the road is lined with high-end boutiques, grand hotels, and palm-lined promenades. All of which contribute to its elegance and sophistication. Its wide walkways and pristine beaches offer breathtaking views of the sea and the Iles de Lerins islands.

The boulevard is synonymous with the Cannes Film Festival, as the Palais des Festivals is nestled along its length. It is the type of place you can traverse several times a day and always see something you had never previously noticed.

Where to Stay in Cannes

Cannes

When it comes to finding accommodation, Cannes has several charming neighborhoods you can choose to stay in. But for a quintessential experience, consider the iconic La Croisette boulevard.

This bustling promenade is lined with luxury boutiques and exquisite restaurants and offers easy access to the city’s pristine beaches. Another excellent option is the Le Suquet quarter, known for its medieval charm, cobblestone streets and tremendous city views.

Two notable accommodations in Cannes are the Hotel Splendid and Hotel Molière. Hotel Splendid , near La Croisette, combines old-world elegance with modern comforts. Its rooftop pool and bar provide stunning vistas of the Mediterranean, while the refined interior exudes luxury.

On the other hand, Hotel Molière , nestled in the heart of Le Suquet, offers a more intimate experience. Its Provençal-style architecture and cozy rooms provide a charming place to base yourself. This hotel is also an excellent place for those wanting to self-cater, as it is near the Marché Forville.

How to get there

Cannes Train Station

Cannes is accessible from many parts of Europe and beyond.

If arriving internationally, the nearest major airport is Nice Côte d’Azur Airport, around 27 kilometers away. You can take a direct train from the airport to Cannes, which is around a 30 minute journey. Additionally, for those intending to drive, the A8 highway connects Cannes to other regions in the country.

The city is also well-connected by France’s efficient train system, making it easy to reach from major cities like Paris and Marseille . The main train station, Gare de Cannes is located on Place de la Gare in the heart of the city center. It is approximately a 10-minute walk to some of the best known tourist attractions in Cannes such as the Palais des Festivals and La Croisette.

Approximate travel times:

  • Nice – 30 minutes by car, 20 minutes by train
  • Monaco – 1 hour by car, 50 minutes by train
  • Antibes – 15 minutes by car, 10 minutes by train
  • St. Tropez – 1.5 hours by car, 2 hours by bus
  • Marseille – 2 hours by car, 2 hours 30 minutes by train
  • Aix-en-Provence – 1.5 hours by car, 2 hours by train
  • Avignon – 2.5 hours by car, 2 hours 30 minutes by train
  • Paris – 8 hours by car, 5 hours 30 minutes by train

Best Time to Visit Cannes

Cannes, like the rest of the French Riviera, attracts the most visitors in July and August. Average temperatures of 26 and 27°C (79 to 80°F) are ideal for sunbathing, swimming and strolling about its center.

Prices are at their highest during the summer months with most restaurants and hotels packed with holidaymakers. Countless concerts are held at Le Palais des Festivals with this period perfect for enjoying sightseeing cruises along the Cote d’Azur or watersports in the Med.

Either side of summer, the water is still warm enough to swim in with the crowds having dissipated slightly. Both sightseeing and outdoor activities are much more enjoyable due to the slightly cooler temperature.

From October to March, the city hibernates with not much going on. As it is warmer than many other places in winter, some people do still visit in December for the Christmas holidays.

One of the most popular times to visit is in April and May when the weather starts to warm up again. The latter also sees the renowned Cannes Film Festival take place and thousands of celebrities, movie stars and critics jet in from all around the world.

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Where to Eat, Stay, and Play in Cannes

By Caitlin Gunther

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Well before Cannes became synonymous with red carpets, the Côte d'Azur city was a destination for refuge and recovery. The buzz began in the early 19th century. Legend has it that a British lord en route to Italy with his ailing daughter was derailed by a pandemic and stopped off in a sleepy fishing village. Captivated by the light and the landscape dotted with olive, orange, and fig trees, he decided to build a villa in the hills of Cannes and a wave of aristocrats followed suit.

Then, in the 1920s, an American literary celebrity decamped to the French Riviera to soak in the sunshine and finish penning The Great Gatsby : F. Scott Fitzgerald’s sejour in the “the hot sweet South'' (his words) would provide a backdrop for his later work, “Tender Is the Night.” From a vantage point of nearby Antibes, Fitzgerald wrote, “In the early morning the distant image of Cannes, the pink and cream of old fortifications, the purple Alp that bounded Italy, were cast across the water and lay quavering in the ripples and rings sent up by sea-plants through the clear shallows.” Today, sherbet-hued structures still shimmer on the sea. The sun shines bright as ever 300 days annually.

While the city is best known for its star-studded film Festival de Cannes and palatial hotels, like the art deco Martinez and the belle époque Intercontinental Carlton , newer arrivals are infusing the scene with fresh energy—like the revitalized 17th-century Château de Théoule and the California-cool Maison Carla Rosa , as well as revamped iconic landmarks like Palm Beach , a Jazz Age members’ club once frequented by the Duke and Duchess of Windsor. It’s the new golden age of Cannes, and the options for staying and playing are better than ever.

Whether you’re after a restorative retreat, a raucous Riviera-style party, or a sun-soaked destination to compose the next great American novel, there are so many reasons to visit. Here are the best things to do in Cannes.

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Speed boats and yachts dock alongside Ile Sainte-Marguerite for La Guérite Cannes.

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The seaside restaurant has been an institution since 1902.

Where to eat

A rule of thumb when traveling: food markets tend to be flanked by simple, straightforward spots frequented by locals. In the heart of Cannes, just off the Marché Forville, you’ll find Poissonnerie Forville, where the Cannois crowd sips crisp whites or Provençal rosés and grazes on briny oysters and platters of fruits de mer . At nearby Da Laura , an Italian trattoria, the decor is eclectic (flamingo pink walls, verdant plant ceiling, mismatched chairs) and the housemade pasta is perfectly al dente. Swing by Il Labo next door to pick up a bag of dry pasta and recreate their trofie with pesto or spicy penne arrabbiata at home. For a simple, sublime Italian dessert, Niva gelateria is a five-minute stroll away. There, the expert gelato makers use milk sourced from Italian Alps pastures, enriched with artisanal ingredients like Piedmontese hazelnut or hand-crushed dark chocolate.

On the rooftop of Hotel Belle Plage, Bella serves Mediterranean dishes that vary with the season and the chef’s daily market finds. Plates like whole sea bream with roasted tomatoes and lemons, and beef carpaccio with pine nuts and crushed pepper are meant to be shared. France may not be known for brunch, but Bella makes a case for it—late Sunday morning, the rooftop restaurant becomes a hotspot. Diners come for the crepe station and the homemade pastries and linger for the stunning sea views.

At Fred l’Écailler , a seaside restaurant in the quieter Pointe Croisette neighborhood, owner Fred Garbellini (ever sporting his signature red beanie) is onsite to scale (or écailler , in French) and serve the daily catches, plus shellfish, oysters, crustaceans, scallops, langoustines, and more. The sun-splashed terrace is prime real estate for polishing off a plate of crispy calamari or buttery ray with fatted capers.

Just off the Croisette Beach, Le Fouquet’s , from Michelin-starred chef Pierre Gagnaire, serves reimagined brasserie classics like “terre et mer” (essentially, surf and turf) tartare—an umami-rich marriage of finely chopped raw steak, smoked herring, red tuna, and Beaufort cheese. It would be a sin to skip the profiteroles, the molten chocolate poured tableside, as it should be.

From April to October, speed boats and yachts dock alongside Ile Sainte-Marguerite for La Guerite , an institution since 1902. Surrounded by Aleppo pine and eucalyptus trees, with jasmine-line paths and blond wooden tables and coco net shades, you might think you’ve arrived at a sleepy, rustic restaurant—a bait-and-switch for the party that awaits. On Athens-born Chef Yiannis Kioroglou’s menu, carefully selected products shine, with starters like seared octopus topped with flaky salt from Camargue and Greek salad with hunks of spiced feta, and mains like spiny lobster dusted with chopped chives. The DJ spins dance tracks, from La Bamba to Like a Prayer, to accompany the family style feasts. By the end of a meal, you might find yourself dancing on banquettes and raising Ouzo shots with a neighboring table of Los Angelinos, while an excited 30-something whispers his plan to propose to the girl next to him. The vibe is decidedly celebratory.

Opening in May 2024, just in time for the film festival, Palm Beach is setting out to transform Cannes into a culinary destination. The sprawling 23,000 square meter members club underwent a four-year renovation helmed by French Riviera architect, Caprini Pellerin, who restored the property’s Côte d'Azur glamor and revived its Hispano-Mauresque origins, with sand-tinted facades, French Comblanchien stone, bronze-coated finishes, and plenty of marble. In addition to La Petite Maison Cannes , where Chef Kioroglou’s menu features bright Riviera specialties like grilled eggplants with pistou and roasted baby chicken with lemon confit, the roster will include France’s first Nammos Beach Club , a Mykonos-born restaurant group known for its exquisite seafood and delicious parties, and Zuma , a contemporary take on Japanese Izakaya style dining.

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Spa Villa Belle Plage was designed by Paris-based, Jerusalem-born Raphael Navot

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The sleek sauna at the spa, which offers everything from facials to Watsu water massages

The best things to do in Cannes

Hit the Forville Market, a bustling marché with local specialties like black olive tapenade and still-warm socca, the Niçoise crispy chickpea flatbread, and a technicolor flower market, open daily before 1pm. Then, get lost in the hilly, cobblestone streets of La Suquet, Cannes’ millennium-old old town, where you’ll find pocket-sized bars, boutiques, and family-owned restaurants serving typical Provençal dishes like foie gras maison and grilled lamb with thyme.

The Lerins Islands, named after the eponymous monks who took control of Cannes in the 4th century AD, are just a 15-minute boat ride from Cannes’ center. Visitors can explore the monastery on Saint-Honorat Island, where monks still live (and produce a Chartreuse-like liqueur called Lerina), or hike around the forest of eucalyptus and Aleppo pine trees on neighboring Sainte-Marguerite Island. Several companies provide transportation to the islands and boats depart in both directions regularly.

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For hitting reset, Cannes has several spas to choose from. Opened in October of 2022, Spa Villa Belle Plage takes a holistic approach to wellness, offering tailored programs to deliver benefits that linger well beyond your visit. Designed by Paris-based, Jerusalem-born Raphael Navot (the eye behind Hôtel National des Arts et Métiers, Le 39V, and Silencio), the space feels serene and organic, with mineral materials inspired by natural caves. Spa experts offer everything from HydraFacials© to Watsu water massages to sports concierge services. “We take care of everything—energy, muscles, and mind,” Hôtel Belle Plage director Jad Aboukhater told CNT. Be sure to book a sweat session in the sauna, outfitted with a pink Himalayan salt wall to help purge the body’s toxins while restoring its naturally occurring minerals.

At the Spa Diane Barrière , guests have a lengthy menu of signature treatments from Paris-based brands Codage (like a gentle peeling treatment and a radiance boost facial) and THÉMAÉ (including an anti-age lift treatment, a purity and radiance facial). The spa also offers traditional body massages, gommages (scrubs), hydro-massage jacuzzi treatments, and more. In the same space you’ll also find a full fitness studio with personal training available by appointment.

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The 45-room Hôtel Belle Plage opened June 2022 on the gentle slopes of the historic Suquet district

Designer Raphael Navots interiors feature terrazzo surfaces and pastel accents

Designer Raphael Navot’s interiors feature terrazzo surfaces and pastel accents

Where to stay

In a city where grand hotels loom large in the visual landscape, smaller, independent properties are a welcome and much-needed addition, offering discerning travelers a stylish alternative. Opened in April of 2023, Maison Carla Rosa is a powder pink boutique hotel with a California-meets-Côte d’Azur aesthetic, set in the sleepier Californie neighborhood that was once home to Picasso. According to the owners, the warm color palette adheres to local building codes while capturing the breezy, west coast vibe they were after. The property features 12 one or two-bedroom apartments, each outfitted with a terrace and all but two with full kitchens. The owners chose artisans from around the world to handcraft the furniture and decor items, from the sleek rattan chairs to reclaimed wood side tables. Lined with tall cacti and shady palm trees and white midcentury loungers, the kidney shaped pool feels straight out of Palm Springs—ideal for escaping the heat and the high-season crowds on le plage.

A former 17th-century soap factory is home to one of 2024’s most anticipated openings on the French Riviera, Château de Théoule . Opened in March, the hotel features 34 rooms and 10 suites spread across a turreted castle, a modern Art Deco villa, and a charming fisherman’s villa. Just 20 minutes from Cannes by car or boat, guests will appreciate the chateau’s relatively remote location (a definite selling point when tourism swells in the warmer months), the private La Plage Blanche beach, and the boho-chic seaside spa with products from MyBlend by Clarins and KOS Paris. Rooms are decorated with a delicate touch, with velvet seating and custom linen curtains from Maison de Vacances, as well as unique antique furniture finds. At the hotel restaurant Mareluna, guests can dine en terrace overlooking the Bay of Cannes on dishes like wild turbot with palourde clams or Provençal escargot with fresh saltwort.

Hôtel Belle Plage has been drawing travelers to the gentle slopes of the historic Suquet district since its opening in June 2022. With sweeping views of the sea and the Esterel mountains, the cream-colored undulating building feels like a Greek island hideaway. The hotel has 45 rooms as well as eight apartments imagined as longer-term pied-à-terres (including a nearly 1200-square-foot penthouse) outfitted with fully equipped kitchens, coffee machines, and baby equipment (cots, highchairs, etc.) on request. Designer Raphael Navot’s interiors feature cool stone floors, terrazzo surfaces, smooth Scandinavian furniture, and pastel accents, like light matcha sofas and pale peach ottomans.

When it opened in 1913, the Carlton helped usher in the era of lux tourism for the little city on the Riviera. In 2023, the famed hotel reopened its rosy-marble-column-framed doors after extensive renovations led by Cannes-born interior designer Tristan Auer, known for his restoration of the Hotel de Crillon in Paris . Auer maintained the property’s Belle Epoque soul and paid homage to its history, while enhancing the modern amenities. The fitness center even has a full-size boxing ring where a champion pugilist offers private lessons. Rooms and suites are cast in bright- and off-white, refracting the luminosity that pours through the tall French windows. All told, the Carlton is one of the chicest addresses along La Croisette beach, not to mention, a celebrity favorite during the annual film festival.

Opened in 1926, the Hotel Barrière Le Majestic Cannes is perched between the Croisette Beach and the Palais des Festivals et des Congrès. The lobby hints at the property’s history, with soaring ceilings and gilded sculptures and cascading art deco light fixtures. Rooms feel more modern, outfitted in shades of cream and taupe, with sweeping bay views. Le Majestic re-opened 60 of its rooms in early 2024 after total renovations. The hotel also offers ultra-luxe suites, each with a distinct design theme (like Riviera and Christian Dior), and a penthouse suite with a heated rooftop pool and 360-degree views of Cannes, from the hills to the sea stretching across the horizon. The bar at Fouquet’s is buzzy year-round, with a thoughtful drink menu from veteran mixologist Emanuele Balestra. Onsite restaurants include Fouquet’s and Paradiso, a Mediterranean brasserie that opens during the warmer seasons.

The inspiration for Gausse’s Hôtel des Étrangers in Fitzgerald’s “Tender Is the Night,” Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc has welcomed cultural and literary elite—and the fashionable set more generally—since 1870. Picasso, Chagall, Elizabeth Taylor, the Kennedys—they’ve all called this secluded retreat their temporary abode. For today’s traveler, hotel highlights include restaurants led by Executive Chef Sébastien Broda, the Dior Spa Eden Roc, and private villa rentals. Understandably, it remains a celebrity favorite when the droves descend on Cannes each May for the film festival. Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc holds a certain allure, hearkening back to another golden age of Cannes while staying relevant and ever-chic for its future.

tourist center cannes

Recommended

The Carlton Cannes, a Regent Hotel

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  • 1 Understand
  • 2.2 By train
  • 2.3 By plane
  • 2.4 By taxi
  • 3.1 On foot
  • 3.3 By taxi

tourist center cannes

Once a small fishing village on the French Riviera , Cannes is now a glamorous and expensive seaside town of 73,000 people (2021) considered to be one of the social hubs of Europe.

Cannes' moment to shine arrives in May as the venue for the Cannes Film Festival, entertaining the rich and famous. During the festival, fans can see actors, celebrities, and directors up close and in person on the famous steps of the Palais des Festivals at the end of La Croisette. Although its nightlife, casinos and high end restaurants give Cannes a feel of exclusivity, Cannes does have alternatives to suit all types of budgets. Tourists can check out the beauty and architecture of Le Suquet, with its cobbled streets and breathtaking views, or sit at street side tables and enjoy the favoured hobby of people watching up and down the lovely marina.

During peak season (August) transportation should be booked in advance, as it will sell out.

If travelling by public transit, two weeks before or after August, also be aware of the possibility of labour strikes. Strikes are common, anticipated, and highly publicised. Check the French newspapers or news websites before purchasing your tickets.

Most people will recommend to you to use the train. But if you are at unease dropping money like a millionaire, you might as well just opt for one of the several buses.

  • Nice – Buses leave from Nice Gare SNCF at 05:22, 06:23, 08:13, 11:23, 14:23, 15:12, 16:23, 17:40, 18:13, and 19:13, often daily. They take 30 min and continue to Marseille , €33 for the full distance, but Nice-Cannes should be less than €5.
  • Marseille – Buses leave from Marseille Saint-Charles at 05:58, 06:58, 07:58, 09:58, 11:58, 13:58, 16:56, and 18:58, often daily. They take about 2½ hr and continue to Nice , €33 for the full distance, but Marseille-Cannes should be around €25-30.
  • Aix-en-Provence – Does not seem to be served equally convenient.
  • Coaches (Express) run from Nice to Cannes centre via the A8 motorway at a cost of around €17, every 30 min, 45 min trip duration, no view.

Trains between Nice and Cannes run every 30 min to 1 hr, with 30 min duration, and costs of €7.20. Not the mention the views are amazing, in comparison to the coaches, as the train runs adjacent the beach. You can buy your ticket at one of the many machines in the station. Sometimes on-board staff will take the time to help people with buying tickets while they are waiting for the next train. Although on-board ticketing staff are rare, the fine is stiff (minimum €100-300).

Most visitors bound for Cannes will arrive first at Nice's Côte d'Azur International Airport ( NCE  IATA ).

Marseille Provence Airport ( MRS  IATA ) is 2 hr away by bus and train.

Taxi services from the airports are convenient, but at an astronomical price of €80 minimum; or more, if they take the scenic route.

tourist center cannes

As with Antibes , Monaco and other towns on the French Riviera , access by road at popular times can be slow and frustrating. The coast roads are generally packed, and there are few ways to descend from inland. Locals do have some tricks, like the one described below, but they are complex and do not always work. Using the train to get in is probably better. You can park in Mougins or Mouans Sartoux and take the train to Cannes.

The obvious way to Cannes from the A8 Cannes/Grasse exit is often extremely slow; you end up descending the Boulevard Carnot, which has an endless stream of traffic lights. The simplest way to avoid this congestion is to bear right immediately after you have left the A8 at the first traffic light. Then, once you are off the main road, get into the right hand lane and stay there as the road turns into a normal two-way road.

After a sharp bend there is a traffic light. Continue straight on at the light. At the next major intersection (about 1 km further), turn left following signs to Cannes.

You are now on the N85; you should stay on it, and not follow misleading signs to other bits of Cannes until you are at the bottom (a T junction with a French Telecom building on your left). Probably the easiest thing to do at this point is to turn left at this T junction and almost immediately left again. Then go into the first parking garage you can (Parking Fontville).

Another way down to the coast (this works for both Cannes and Juan les Pins/Antibes) is to go to Vallauris and descend to the coast on the D135 and then turn right (for Cannes) or left (for Antibes) when you get to the N7.

Map

Walking can quite often be the fastest mode of transport in Cannes. It also gives you the chance to stumble upon hidden sights that you may miss otherwise.

Getting around Cannes is not a problem at all. The city is well equipped with an efficient bus system (the only public transportation available in town) that provides service not only in the city but also to neighboring La Bocca, Le Cannet and Mandelieu-La Napoule. The bus companies include STU de Cannes Bus Azur, Bus Azur, CTM Cannes La Bocca and Beltrame. They all have scheduled services with a frequency of a bus every 15 min. Tickets can be purchased on the bus or at the bus stations and cost €1.50 per ride or you can purchase a Carte 10 which gives you 10 reduced-rate tickets at the bus office. Be careful which fare you buy as buses in Cannes can be very expensive.

  • Taxis de Cannes , ☏ +33 4 929 9272 . Taxis can be hailed on the street or you can order them by phone or internet. Fares are pre-established with an opening charge of €3.50 and subsequent charges of €1.06-2.90/km . ( updated Aug 2019 )

Cannes has all the usual hire car rental establishments (Hertz, Avis, Budget) where you can rent a car if you wish. Parking is generally not an issue. Although you will have to pay, it is recommended that you use one of the off street parking garages as this is far better than searching fruitlessly for a parking lot on the street. Moreover Cannes has a truly horrible one-way system and it is much easier to walk. The Fontville parking gives good access to the port and old town.

If you are more interested in the Croisette and/or dislike walking, then there are other parking garages that are available, like the one by the station: one of the best is the one underneath the Palais des Festivales, and the one under the Grey d'Albion hotel in Rue des Serbes.

tourist center cannes

  • Old town — The usual narrow winding streets filled with restaurants and souvenir shops. The view from the castle ruins at the top is excellent.
  • Covered Market (Marché Forville) — For a spectacular eating and viewing food experience, no other market in Cannes beats this for scale and variety. The market itself is at the west end of rue Meynardiers, one of the Cote's best gourmand streets.
  • Palais des Festivals — Down La Croisette is the famous Palais des Festivals, where stars of the screen gather and watch films screened during the festival. Irresistible not to pose for a photograph on the 22 steps leading up to the entrance.
  • Hands of the stars — Just in front of the Palais you will find a line of dozens of hand prints of famous stars and actors. Similar to the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
  • Murs Peints — Several houses in Cannes are painted with overly large portraits of stars and movies themes. Checkout OpenStreetMap to find them.
  • Suquet — A quarter with a great view over the city.
  • Port — Admire the yachts of the rich and possibly famous - though true mega-yachts will be found at the International Yacht Club down the coast in Antibes.
  • La Croisette — Cannes catwalk beside the sea, it is the center of the city's tourist activity and known for its luxury hotels and boutique shops.
  • Beaches — The beaches are mostly private and cost up to €30 for a day's use (including sunbed and shade). The public beaches are crowded, and are found at the far east and west of town. If you want a quieter beach, a better option is to go to the Îles de Lérins , see below. At night the beaches can be tranquil, but watch out for spectacular fireworks displays (see posters/ask at tourist info) in the bay, get to the beach early to get a good spot!
  • Îles de Lérins — Two islands in the bay that are definitely worth visiting. The smaller is St Honorat, which has a monastery and ruined castle. The monks sell monastery-made food/drink products like wine which make unique souvenirs. The larger island is Ste Marguerite which also has a castle, shops, bars, and restaurants. Find a quiet cove, some shade from palm trees, and a cheap snorkel before you swim around the rocky coves. A return ticket to Ste Marguerite is €11 with ferries departing every hour roughly from 7 in the morning until about 05:30 at night - ask for a timetable. The ticket to St Honorat costs €13, and visiting the fortified monastery costs €3/pax. The timetable and information is also available in a brochure kept in most hotel lobbies.

tourist center cannes

  • Festival de Cannes . The most famous film festival in the world takes place in mid-May every year. The world's biggest celebrities are on hand to walk the red carpet, and thousands of international films are screened in the festival and the Marché du Film, the world's biggest film market.  
  • Notre-Dame d'Esperance , Place de la Castre . Provençal Gothic church with wood paneling dating back to the 14th and 15th century. Also worth a look is the collection of 19th century paintings, which includes a fresco by George Roux that portrays the baptism of Christ. The church is situated on top of Suquet hill in old Cannes, the church offers visitors a fabulous view of the town and its bay.  
  • Croix des gardes . Natural parc area, trails and vistas  
  • Tour du Masque , 9, rue du Mont Chevalier, Cannes 06401 . A popular attraction for history and literary buffs, the Tour du Masque is said to be haunted by the ghost of the mythical,mysterious figure known as the "Man in the Iron Mask."  
  • Molinard , 60, boulevard Victor-Hugo, Grasse 06130 , ☏ +33 4 9336-0162 . Follow your nose down this flower-strewn villa to learn how perfume is made and manufactured. It's an olfactory and visual feast, as well as smelling some of the world's finest perfumes. Famous perfume bottles are also on display.  
  • Musée d'Art et d'Histoire de Provence , 2 rue Mirabeau , ☏ +33 4 9705 5800 . The museum retraces everyday life in Provence from prehistoric times to the present day. The Provençal way of life is illustrated through furniture, pottery, paintings, traditional costumes and santons (Christmas crib figures). There's also an authentic formal garden for you to enjoy.  
  • French Riviera , CMC Cannes Riviera Gastronomie Maritime, Gare Maritime, jet Albert-Edouard, Cannes 06400 , ☏ +33 4 9368-9898 . Enjoy the view of Cannes from this luxury ship. You can choose to do either a lunch tour or an evening dinner tour. For a one flat fee you receive lunch or dinner and a tour whilst enjoying live music. The tours run daily from 12:30-15:00, 20:30-23:30.  

Residential camps for teens in Cannes (vacation courses) are proposed by ESL-Ecole Suisse de Langues during the Summer. International students from 14 to 17 years follow sessions of 1 to 5 weeks.

tourist center cannes

Cannes is renowned for its luxury boutiques and designer fashion.

The shops in Cannes are concentrated between La Croisette and rue d'Antibes - a distance easily covered on foot. Here you'll find all the luxury boutiques you could possibly desire as well as other shops selling products at a more affordable price range. The old town has any number of shops selling souvenirs as well.

Stroll, or stop by, the wide array of international designer shops that line La Croisette, which include Chanel, Dior, and Gucci. Check out the l`enfant terrible of French fashion, Jean Paul Gaultier in the Gray d'Albion arcade at number 17.

  • Chez Bruno , 51 rue d'Antibes . crystallised fruit and marrons glacés  
  • Maiffret , 31 rue d'Antibes . Chocolates made on the premises  
  • Cannes English Bookshop , 11 rue Bivouac Napoléon ( just by the Palais des Festivals ), ☏ +33 4 9399-4008 . If you are getting desperate to read something in English  

A great street to grab yourself a bargain is on the Rue Meynadier, with a vibrant market atmosphere. Taste some sharp cheese at Ceneri, on 22 rue Meynadier, while quality wines are found at La Cave Forville, at 3 Forville Market.

A souvenir from the monastery on Ste Honorat is a good way to distinguish yourself from the other tourists toting bags of the same souvenirs.

Standard shopping hours are Monday to Saturday 10:00-12:00 and 14:30–19:30. In high season, many shops do not close for lunch. Sales tax varies between 5.5% (food) to 19.6% (luxury goods).

Although it tends to get pretty pricey to eat out in Cannes, it is possible to get a delicious meal incorporating the mouth-watering, fresh regional produce sourced from the markets.

The most popular restaurants to eat at are all along the riverfront, although they are they are not particularly value for money. While the food is ok, it's overpriced, however the people watching and posing-potential is an important compensation.

The best areas for dining are the rue Meynadier, in the beautiful old district of Le Suquet, where you can dine outdoors with a stunning view of the town below, and in the back streets of the Rue de Antibes, you can find some reasonable dining options.

Vegetarians have a bit of a rough time in France generally, in that most menus classify things as fish, meat and nothing else, and the French pride themselves in eating some fairly esoteric parts of animals not found in supermarkets back home - "testicules de mouton" for example. Traditional French cuisine is expensive at best, you could consider eating in some of the more Italian places.

The most romantic setting for dining in Cannes is away from the conference/ expense account circuit of central Cannes, in the historic quarter of Le Cannet, a northern suburb of Cannes some two kilometers away. Accessible by taxi or local buses, Vieux Le Cannet looks down over Cannes, and at its best vantage point is the large tree lined open square of Place Bellvue, tables alfresco, bounded by four or five quality restaurants patronized mainly by French "in the know". The Place Bellvue is on the main street rue St Sauver, home to artists ateliers and picture-postcard old French scenes. Well worth the extra effort.

  • 43.55107 7.01386 1 Philcat . Sells Pan Bagnat, but quite expensive for €6. ( updated Apr 2019 )
  • 24 Suquet Restaurant , 24 rue du Suquet , ☏ +33 4 9338 7522 . Located in the old town of Cannes, this chic and cosy restaurant serves fine Provincial cuisine in an atmosphere that is as welcoming as it is becoming.  
  • Le Caveau 30 , 45 rue Félix Faure , ☏ +33 4 9339 0633 . Fresh seafood and produce worth coming back for, at this upscale restaurant that tends to get quite crowded in the summer months. Impressive wine list to go with the varied menu options and the staff are always attentive and professional.  
  • Palm Square , 1 allées de la Liberté , ☏ +33 4 9306 7827 . Chic and ultra trendy, the Palm Square is the place to eat tasty food surrounded by a group of friends, in a gorgeous setting. Cuisine is mostly modern French, although the chef does mix it up with splashes of Indian or Thai flavorings.  
  • La Palme d'Or , Hôtel Martinez, 73 boulevard de la Croisette . Great location overlooking the bay of Cannes. Food is of an extremely high standard, the stylish and contemporary decor impresses, and the service is impeccable. Two Michelin stars have been awarded to this restaurant.  
  • Le Restaurant Arménien , 82 boulevard de la Croisette , ☏ +33 4 9394 0058 . For genuine Armenian food served in a charming and atmospheric setting. Popular restaurant that also offers Mediterranean inspired alternatives.  
  • Authentic , 92, Ave Francis Tonner, Cannes La Bocca ( traveling west from Cannes, pass the market in La Bocca & it's on your right, one block further. ), ☏ +33 4 9348 3406 . No view (location isn't great), but this resto itself is simple but lovely. Even better, the food. For a really wonderful meal at 30% or less of prices in Cannes itself, check out this great little secret. The meal always begins with a little complimentary tasting. Very popular at noon, so make a reservation during August for lunch or dinner. The chef is from Alsace, but uses local fare superbly, too. menus start under €20 for dinner .  
  • Sombraro X-press , 25 rue suquet , ☏ +33 505 988-7412 . 24/7 . Wholesome Mexican food at a great price. Menu includes light choices for watchful eaters. cheap .  
  • 43.553073 7.016222 2 Bella Pizza , 9 rue du maréchal Joffre , ☏ +33 4 93992510 . Reported as a very good pizza in Cannes, with extremely nice owners. €12 for a pizza . ( updated Jun 2020 )
  • Villa La Contemporaine de Cannes . Modern Cannes luxury villa rental located in the exclusive area of La Californie above Cannes.  
  • Citadines Croisette Cannes , 1, rue le Poussin , ☏ +33 4 97 06 92 00 , fax : +33 4 93 38 84 09 , [email protected] . This 3-star establishment with an indoor garden and a solarium offers 58 flats in 2 wings of 3 and 5 floors, ranging from studios to one-bedroom apartments. From April to September, residents can have access to a private beach. All studios and apartments are fully air-conditioned and have a bathroom with separate toilet and a fully-equipped separate kitchen area. Some studios are equipped for people with reduced mobility.  
  • Hôtel Alnea , 20 rue Jean de Riouffe , ☏ +33 4 9368 7777 . Comfortable hotel that has basic features, with satellite TV, telephone with internet connection and WiFi. Near the Palais des Festivals.  
  • Hôtel America Cannes , 13 rue Saint Honoré , ☏ +33 4 9306 7575 . 28 rooms, including 4 junior suites, just behind the Majestic Hotel, 60 m from the Congress Centre. Very clean and comfortable. All rooms have flat-screen TV, high speed wireless internet connection. Laundry, wake-up call services, concierge services. No restaurant, only buffet breakfast or in-room breakfast.  
  • Palais Stephanie Beach ( Palais Beach ), ☏ +33 04 92 99 52 82 , [email protected] . Unique business & leisure property with 234 rooms including 47 suites, 16 meeting rooms and a 820-seat auditorium (formerly Noga Hilton). ( updated Dec 2020 )
  • Claremont Hotel , 13 Rue Du Août . This quaint and charming hotel offers comfortable rooms for single or sharing occupancy. It provides breakfast, laundry and wakeup-call services, and transfers to and from the airport, and other towns along the Riviera.  
  • 3.14 hotel , 5 rue François Einessy , ☏ +3304 9299 7200 . Unique hotel with rooms designed from five continents, with each floor representing a continent, such as vibrant Asia or cultural Europe. All rooms have flat-screen TV, DVD player, broadband internet connection and WiFi access and the hotel even has its own private beach on La Croisette.  
  • Le Mistral , 13 rue des Belges . Modern boutique hotel with art works on display in each of the rooms. The rooms are soundproofed and air conditioned and feature free Wi-Fi access, cable TV and direct phones.  
  • Suitehotel Cannes Centre , 46 bis boulevard . Carnot. 10 minutes from the railway station, all rooms have separate bathrooms and toilets, a small kitchenette, large working spaces and flat screen TVs.  
  • The InterContinental Carlton , 58 boulevard de la Croisette , ☏ +33 4 9306 4006 . With a private beach, the InterContinental offers guests comfort and convenience with two restaurants, two bars and a health club on site.  
  • Hotel Martinez , 73 boulevard de la Croisette , ☏ +33 4 9298 7300 . The place where A-list celebrities like visiting presidents or royalty stay, the Hotel Martinez is one of the Riviera's grand dames, with its own private beach and pool, a spa and fitness center, grand apartments, suites and pretty rooms. It also plays host to the Michelin awarded restaurant, La Palme d'Or (see "Eat").  
  • Résidence Pierre & Vacances Cannes Beach ( Cannes-La-Bocca shopping quarter ). In the spirit of Cannes, the 7- to 8-floor residence is shaped like a “P” and spread out around a large patio with exotic vegetation. The apartments are equipped with terraces or balconies. It has a fitness room and a restaurant. If you get tired of your private beach (unlikely) then the public sand beach is a 50-m walk away.  
  • Croisette Beach Hotel , 13 rue du Canada , ☏ +33 4 92 18 88 00 . Located in the Golden Square of Cannes, on a quiet street between the bustle of the Croisette and the luxury stores on the Rue d'Antibes. €110-210 .  
  • 43.55619 7.02345 1 Boîte d'Amour , ☏ +39 3454540697 , [email protected] . Italian-style accommodation with big terrace. ( updated Nov 2019 )

Check out Carrefour, most of them have free Wi-Fi.

If you fancy a change of scenery from Cannes or just want to make the most of its location then you can make a day trip to other beautiful and famous cities. A few to note are:

  • Aix-en-Provence is 1½ hr west by car.
  • Monaco is 45 min northeast by car.
  • Nice is 30 min northeast by car.
  • Saint-Tropez is 1¼ hr southwest by car.

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Best Things To Do in Cannes, French Riviera, France

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On the Côte d’Azur in France, Cannes is definitely a place you have to visit. This city, famous for its film festival, will surprise you with its history and historic center on the side of a hill.

In addition, the port with luxury yachts, the promenade full of glamorous hotels, and haute couture boutiques will make your trip an unforgettable experience.

In this post, I’ll tell you all the places you must visit on your Cannes trip.

  • Recommended: Guide to the French Riviera
  • More Info: Best Beaches of Cannes

Le Suquet: Museum and Castle of the Castre

Le Suquet is the medieval district of Cannes. On the hillside, you can see the original settlement of the city. It is full of alleys created hundreds of years ago that wind through the hill.

When dining out in the evening, stroll down Rue Sainte-Antoine, which winds its way up the hill between old fishers’ houses.

Let your curiosity take over and climb the stairs slowly between ocher-painted walls and bougainvillea flowers until you reach the Place de la Castre.

You can rest in the garden next to Notre-Dame d’Espérance and see the port, the Palais des Festivals, and La Croisette’s arch below.

tourist center cannes

When you visit the Museum, you can take an ethnographic journey to the heart of ancient civilizations in Asia, Africa, the East, America, and Oceania.

Surprisingly, they have a room dedicated to the Inuit. And others to renowned painters of the 19th century. So without a doubt, it is worth paying a visit to this museum.

In addition, you will enjoy beautiful views of the port, the city, and the Mediterranean.

  • La Croisette

La Croisette is one of the most emblematic streets in France: without a doubt, it is an essential place in Cannes that you have to visit. Walk the seafront promenade for almost 3 kilometers.

This beautiful and elegant promenade is dotted with high-end designer boutiques, haute couture, palm trees, and casinos; it is here that you will find the most lavish hotels, many of which have their own private beaches.

You can pay for a sun lounger on one of the private beaches or sit on one of the public benches that you will find along La Croisette.

tourist center cannes

Palais des Festivals

The Palais des Festivals et des Congrès is the main economic engine of the city.

And it is the home of the Cannes Film Festival, which has been photographed so many times that it has acquired a kind of universal recognition.

You can take a tour of the Great Auditorium, following in the footsteps of the most famous personalities in the world and where some milestones in the recent history of cinema have been produced.

Naturally, you’ll have the chance to walk the red carpet on the stairs leading to the Grand Auditorium along the Promenade de la Croisette.

If you don’t go during the days of the Cannes festival, you won’t find paparazzi around, but you can take a picture like a celebrity!

  • Best Things to do in St-Tropez

Vero Film Festival

Cannes Film Festival

This year (2022), in mid-May, the 75th anniversary of the Cannes International Film Festival is celebrated. It is one of the most important media events in the world.

It attracts visitors and celebrities from all over the world who want to know who will be the winner of the famous Palme d’Or.

With this festival, moviegoers have the opportunity to discover cinema in another way. Since there are masterclasses, tributes, and exhibitions.

If you travel to Cannes on the festival’s dates, you will have the possibility to see celebrities. But, of course, make your reservations in advance, as it fills up quickly and prices go up.

Enjoy Cannes from the sky with this plane Ride

Marché Provencal Forville

The fully covered Forville Provençal market is open every morning in the summer (and from Tuesday to Sunday for the rest of the year).

This market is a place for encounters and discoveries; it is full of local products grown by horticulturists from the Cannes area. Not forgetting the fishers who stock the stalls with fresh produce caught in the Bay of Cannes.

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It is an essential place to visit to taste the local delicacies and see how the locals live.

Address: Rue du marché Forville, Cannes.

READ: French Riviera in Winter, what to do?

Ile Sainte-Marguerite (Day Trip)

Opposite Cannes, away from the hustle and bustle of the Croisette, the Lérins Islands are a natural site of exceptional richness. To the south, the tiny island of Saint-Honorat is home to a community of monks and a sumptuous abbey lined with vineyards.

To the north, the imposing Île Sainte-Marguerite is famous for its fort, which is said to have housed the Man in the Iron Mask.

Both turn out to be essential destinations during your trip to the Côte d’Azur.

To get to these islands, you have to go by boat. The journey takes about 15 minutes, departing from Cannes. The ticket price per adult is around €15. There are special rates for children, large families, students, etc.

tourist center cannes

Another way to get to the island is by renting your own boat. Here prices vary depending on the ship you choose. But you can get one without a driver, for €200 for a full day.

One of my favorite activities is renting a kayak to go around the island. If not, you can walk it.

Sainte Marguerite Island is a paradise for lovers of hiking. There are 21 kilometers of trails to explore the island at your own pace.

Some of the essentials are:

  • The town and its magnificent fishers’ houses;
  • The Batéguier pond and its numerous species of migratory birds;
  • The Pointe du Dragon and the Pointe de la Convention
  • The Fort Royal, which houses the Museum of the Sea;
  • The communal cemetery and the Muslim cemetery;
  • The different viewpoints to see the Île Saint-Honorat, the Bay of Cannes, and the Estérel.
  • 20 Top Visits in Monaco MonteCarlo

Ile Saint-Honorat

In an area of 40 hectares, you can alternate the pleasures of the sea and historical visits.

A sunny paradise, a jewel of greenery, freshness, and an oasis of silence. The island of Saint-Honorat is a private island belonging to the monks of the Abbey of Lérins.

Visit the island of Saint-Honorat and have an unforgettable day. The island is full of activities to please all types of travelers.

You will be able to walk around this wooded island along paths bordered by turquoise waters.

You can visit many monuments for free. The island of Saint-Honorat has five historical monuments that you have to visit:

  • the tower-monastery (first listed in 1840 in the Maritime Alps);
  • the chapel of Saint-Sauveur (1886);
  • the Chapel of the Trinity (1886);
  • Two Napoleonic ball ovens (1908).

Discover the wines of the Abbey of Lérins. The 8 hectares of the Saint Honorat vineyard are cultivated by the monks of the Abbey of Lerins. They make this wine in an ancestral way.

Discover its white wine made from the Clairette (Saint Pierre), Chardonnay (Saint Césaire), and Viognier (Saint Cyprien) grape varieties, as well as red wines made from Syrah (Saint Honorat & Saint Sauveur), Mourvèdre (Saint-Lambert) and Pinot Noir (San Salonio).

Don’t Forget Travel Insurance

Do not forget to buy travel insurance when you plan your trips. Hopefully, you don’t need to use it, but it is better to be prepared for any eventuality or emergency. At least, check out the Cancellation Trip. In my case, I use Mondo Insurance, with worldwide medical assistance and coverage of $ 10,000,000. Also, you have 5% OFF using this link  on Hey Mondo Insurance.

Eglise Notre-Dame-de-l’Esperance

The construction of the Notre-Dame d’Espérance church dates back to the beginning of the 16th century. It is a catholic church in Cannes.

The population of Cannes increased to such an extent that the church of Notre-Dame du Puy (Romanesque chapel, place de la Castre) could not accommodate all the faithful.

In addition, this church had significant drawbacks: it also served as the castle chapel, forcing the faithful to pray under the gaze of the Lord, who had a platform reserved for him.

The defensive function of this chapel was an obstacle to parish life.

The church is in the Gothic style, the porch is in the Renaissance style, and it has a Romanesque style bell tower. Without a doubt, an essential place to visit on your visit to Cannes.

Villa Domergue

Formerly villa Fiesole. Built in 1934 on land purchased by Jean-Gabriel Domergue, the architecture of the villa and gardens are heavily influenced by the Italian style.

Painter Jean-Gabriel Domergue designs the building and décor down to the finest detail, while his wife, a sculptor, creates the terraced gardens, complete with ponds and waterfalls.

Jean-Gabriel Domergue died in 1962, and Odette Maudrange-Domergue bequeathed the property to the city of Cannes in 1973.

This magical place is open to the public during temporary exhibitions or prestigious events that usually take place in the summer.

This house has been listed in the inventory of historical monuments since 1990.

Luxury shopping in Cannes

They take luxury in Cannes so seriously that they even have a festival called “Cannes Shopping Festival.”

This small town has the best and most prestigious haute couture boutiques. So if you feel like doing a bit of shopping, here are the best places in Cannes to do it.

  • Rue D’Antibes
  • Rue Meynadier
  • Forville Market
  • Gambetta Market
  • Galleries Lafayette

Outfit Planner

EXTRA TIP : plan what you will wear in advance so you take everything you need and do not have to make extra expenses at the destination. You can download the PDF here; the price is up to you!

Outfit planner PDF

Rue d’Antibes

The Rue d’Antibes runs parallel to the Croisette and is a mix of family-run designers, cafes, super chic decor shops, and haute couture. You can spend the whole day going from one boutique to another without getting bored.

Painted Walls

Discover an authentic open-air museum strolling down an avenue, a street, or a square. Inspired by the Seventh Art and the very essence of the Cannes Film Festival, these painted walls portray cinema’s main stars and scenes.

Revel in the surprise of coming face to face with Buster Keaton, Marilyn Monroe, or Alain Delon.

A different way to explore the architectural heritage of Cannes. Click on the link ; you will find all the paintings in Cannes and a map to make the route on your own.

tourist center cannes

Cap d’Antibes Coastal Path

It is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful and popular trails on the Côte d’Azur. Located less than thirty minutes from Cannes.

Here, in Cap d’Antibes, the most sumptuous villas of the planet’s billionaires are concentrated. Hidden in lush vegetation and highly protected, you can only catch a glimpse of them when you see an open gate.

The walk is not challenging, and as I said, the path is very well laid out. Meandering between the white limestone rocks where the vegetation grows peacefully.

In some places, stairs have been set up to facilitate the passage from stream to stream.

In the limits of these enchanting places, the white limestone cliffs and the deep coves of the coastal strip draw a wild landscape whose wildness surprises the visitor.

The narrowness of the path, the unevenness of the surface, and, in mistral weather, the sudden and formidable waves characterize a route that, despite the heavy tourist traffic, has a reasonably sporty profile.

A visit to Villa Eilenroc and its idyllic gardens brings this long sea voyage to an end before the easy return to La Garoupe via the small inland roads of Cap d’Antibes.

Le Nomade and Port Vauban

With its 1,500 berths, modernized infrastructure, and capacity to accommodate boats up to 160 meters, Port Vauban is the mecca of yachting in the Mediterranean.

Vauban is a port of contrasts that cultivates multiple assets. Once authentic and utterly oriented towards the third millennium, it combines modernity and heritage.

It is attractive and human; it offers its clients and visitors a unique quality of stay in an exceptional setting.

The wealth on display in the port of Antibes will take your breath away.

This is one of the most expensive places in the world to moor your boat, with fees exceeding one million euros.

Le Nomade is the giant figure of a person looking at the Mediterranean consisting of hundreds of white letters.

tourist center cannes

Cannes Yachting Festival

Each year the Yachting Festival hosts an eclectic range of boats from 3 to 50 meters afloat and less than 10 meters on land. These boats are sailing or motor, monohull or multihull, hard or semi-rigid hull.

Get to know the biggest names in the nautical industry and their latest innovations in unparalleled visiting conditions!

Walk the Croix-des-Gardes and Enjoy the Views

A true green lung of Cannes, the Croix-des-Gardes Natural Forest Park is classified as a sensitive natural area.

Its 80 hectares of Mediterranean vegetation, mostly owned by the Conservatoire du littoral, are managed by an ecoguard of the city of Cannes, which has developed 20 km of trails, a fitness trail, and six viewpoints offering a 360-degree panorama.

Amid a thousand scents, numerous routes will allow you to reach the top of the hill, where a large cross now resides, made in 1990 by the artist Jean-Yves Lechevallier.

Cannes Town Hall

The Cannes Town Hall, located at 1 place Bernard-Cornut-Gentille in Cannes, was built in 1876 by the city architect Louis Hourlier and houses the mayor’s office and part of the municipal services.

The town hall is built in an eclectic style with a classicist tendency, in limestone and masonry, on a tripartite rectangular and homogeneous plan with a crossed axis of symmetry used as a vestibule.

An exciting place to visit in Cannes.

The Old Port

The Old Port of Cannes is one of the oldest ports on the Côte d’Azur.

Bordering an idyllic seaside promenade and at the foot of Le Suquet, it enjoys a privileged location in the heart of the city of Cannes. The picture would not be complete without the Lérins Islands in front of it.

The port is bordered to the west by the islands embarkation pier and to the east by the famous Albert-Edouard wharf, which borders the Palais des Festivals and offers more than half a kilometer of quayside in the harbor to accommodate major yachts.

In 2021, the Old Port welcomed 480 prestigious motor units, from 3 to 50 meters, brand new and presented by the largest shipyards in the world.

The Old Port is also the setting for the Luxury Gallery, a sector dedicated to luxury and the art of living.

Sailing the French Riviera

Discover the French Riviera on a boat tour of the Bay of Cannes . With this tour, you will see the Leris Islands up close and enjoy the flora and fauna of this beautiful natural environment.

Visit the Center d’Art La Malmaison

The beating heart of Contemporary Art in Cannes aims to present monographic exhibitions of artists from the 20th and 21st centuries.

This museum is located on La Croisette and has 3 major exhibitions a year.

Open from Tuesday to Sunday.

Palm Beach and other beaches

The beaches in Cannes can be divided into public and private, and both are charming in their own way.

Private beaches have plenty of amenities (lockers, sun loungers, waiter service) and are closer to La Croisette, the city’s main boulevard. However, you have to pay to access them.

The public beaches are natural and minimalist, but some also have showers and restaurants nearby.

Here is our selection of the best beaches in Cannes:

  • Carlton Beach (Private)
  • Long Beach (Private)
  • La Bocca Beach (Public)
  • Midi Beach (Public)
  • Palm Beach (Public)
  • Gazagnaire Beach (Public)
  • The Beaches of Marguerite Island

Visit the Villa Rothschild

Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild is located between the Bay of Villefranche and Beaulieu. About 10 kilometers from Nice and Monaco .

The villa now houses the Noailles Mediatheque. The building and its garden, both classified as historical monuments, have a rich history and bear witness to the splendor of the holiday Cannes at the dawn of the last century.

The municipality has designed the Cannes Jardin mobile application to better discover this Eden of Cannes and its exceptional plant heritage.

Without a doubt, it deserves a good visit on your trip to the Côte d’Azur in France.

tourist center cannes

Boat trip through the Estérel Massif

On this tour, you will cross the Mediterranean, searching for the most outstanding volcanic landscapes of the Côte d’Azur. Do you sign up?

Where to Stay in Cannes

Lion’s Room Apartment

Two minutes from the Palais des Festivals and the beaches, you have this very well-located accommodation and reasonably well priced for Cannes.

The 30-square-meter apartment has a kitchen with a coffee machine, a bathroom with a washing machine, a terrace, air conditioning, Wi-Fi, a sofa bed, and a double room.

It is very comfortable for a few days’ getaways as a couple or with friends.

Hotel Barrière Le Majestic (5 stars)

This magnificent 5-star hotel in Cannes is a wonder where you can enjoy a private beach, an intimate atmosphere, and fantastic rooms with sea views.

Let yourself be surprised and enjoy some fabulous days on the Croisette, Cannes.

Intercontinental Hotel-Carlton, Cannes

The Carlton Hotel in Cannes is probably the best in Cannes. But, unfortunately, it will be closed for the next few months for renovations.

How to Get to Cannes

Arriving by plane in cannes.

To get to Cannes by air, one has two options, get to Nice International Airport or the smaller but excellent Cannes-Mandelieu Airport (located 6 kilometers from the center of Cannes).

In fact, the latter has a rather exclusive character, being frequented mainly by private and small planes.

While Nice International Airport, although located 24 kilometers from Cannes, has the reputation of serving the entire tourist platform of the French Côte d’Azur, Monaco included.

Book your plane ticket here.

Getting to Cannes by train

The second most popular and efficient way to get to Cannes is by train. The city has three types of international trains:

  • Trains Blues,
  • TEE (Trans-Europe Express)
  • TGV (high-speed trains), it is easily accessible from Paris (about 7 hours to Cannes by train), for example from Marseille, from Basel (about 10 hours), Milan (5 hours), Venice and Rome (about 10 hours each), Brussels (about 7 hours).

Another essential aspect for those who choose the train to arrive or depart from Cannes is the fact that the Cannes main train station offers quick access to the main routes of Cannes, which is why many locals and visitors choose to travel by train.

Book your train ticket here

Getting to Cannes by car or bus

Cannes and the entire Côte d’Azur are connected to the European motorway network. Thus, Cannes is linked to Paris by the A8 Estérel motorway, a distance that can be covered in an 8-hour trip.

The same road provides access to Nice and Monaco, but the N98 represents an alternative, as far as Nice and Monaco are concerned, linking Cannes directly with Nice and Monaco.

Book your bus ticket here

Book your rental car here

Arriving by boat/ferry in Cannes

In Corsica, ferries from Bastia and Calvi arrive in Nice and pick up passengers to offer them a pleasant journey along the Mediterranean coast.

Travelers can turn to this mode of transport if they are looking for a more atypical experience. Even though ferry trips take longer, the scenery is ultimately awe-inspiring and rewarding.

Example of the duration of the ferries from Bastia: between 3 hours and 40 minutes and 4 hours and 45 minutes to cover the distance, and from 2 hours and 45 minutes to 3 hours and 45 minutes for Calvi.

Leaving aside the ferries, you can choose speedboats to cover the distance between Nice and Cannes or, for that matter, to get from one point to another on the French Riviera.

Book ferry here

Plan Your Trip to the South of France

  • Driving in the South of France
  • Road Trip through Les Corniches
  • What to see in Villefranche sur Mer
  • Top 20 things to see in Monaco
  • When is the lavender bloom in Provence
  • Visit St-Tropez, French Riviera

Best things to do in Cannes, France

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Hi there! I’m Vero! I’ve always loved traveling! I have been living in France since 2018. And traveling around this awesome country. I love road trips and traveling by van, and also, some comfy getaways :) Check out: Touristear.com

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Cannes Travel Guide: What To See

In this travel guide, you will learn why the city of Cannes in France is one of French Riviera ‘s most famous towns, and a favorite for billionaires and celebrities. Cannes is known worldwide as one of the best places to go shopping , and one of the best places to dine on the French Riviera. From high-end boutiques to indie designers, and from Michelin-star gastronomic restaurants to trendy cafes — this city has it all.

Cannes Travel Guide: What To See - cannes travel guide 1

Basking in the sun, this is a city that the rich and famous have been coming to for over 150 years. It simply sparkles with glamour, whilst the grandeur of the coastal promenade of La Croisette and the Belle Epoque buildings reflect its aristocratic history. Cannes has an aura that melds Beverly Hills and Paris with a fairy tale limestone village and a sun-splashed beach town — with more than a little bit of excess thrown in. That aura still is the allure of La Croisette.

The Palais des Festivals , where the star-studded Cannes Film Festival swirls every May, looms like an ocean liner. Take a second to imagine you are your favorite A-list actor while having your photos taken on the fabled red-carpet stairway. But there’s more to Cannes than the red carpets and celebrities that attract many to this cosmopolitan place in France. Cannes mixes tradition and modernity in a mesmerizing way that entices many, from sheiks to the nouveau-riche, to come and see its beauty.

Cannes Travel Guide: What To See - cannes travel guide5

These days, you will hear a lot of people speaking Russian along the Croisette (although, far less since the war against the Ukraine), and though many come here on their private jets, this is nothing new for Cannes. Frozen Moscovites have long sought refuge in the balmy air of the French Riviera. In 1894, Saint Michael (the Archangel Orthodox Church ) opened its doors in Cannes to a growing community of Russians so they would no longer have to traipse to Nice to attend service.

Cannes is home to the internationally wealthy who provide a ready and willing clientèle to the city’s numerous designer boutiques, swanky bars and lavish hotels. Plenty of gourmet restaurants with terraces spilling onto the pavements line the streets of Cannes. Its waterfront promenade, dotted with private beaches and swanky beach clubs, serve up delicious cocktails under the sun. No wonder Cannes has become the playground of the rich and famous.

Weather & Location

Cannes enjoys eleven hours of sunshine every day during summer. Cannes’ mild Mediterranean climate brings lush palm-tree-lined boulevards and long balmy nights in the summer, along with perfect cycling, running and sailing conditions over the winter months.

Expect mild (light jacket) weather in winter. Check out our guide to the weather and sea temperatures in Cannes .

The city of Cannes located in the south-east part of France on the Mediterranean Sea, about a 45-minute drive west of Nice (about 20 minutes past Antibes ).

Just inland from Cannes are the charming villages of Mougins (15 minute drive) and Valbonne (25 minute drive). It’s definitely worth a day trip to visit both villages.

Things to See in Cannes, France

Cannes is a small city, but there is a lot to see and do. Budget at least 5 hours to walk through the best areas, and at least two to three days if you want to get a good feel for life in Cannes. Here is a list of the highlights:

La Croisette: Beach Restaurants & Designer Shopping

Cannes Travel Guide: What To See - cannes travel guide3

The first thing you’ll want to do when visiting Cannes is to take in the famous La Croisette, the seaside walking promenade and street lined with designer boutiques and 5-star hotels. Belle Époque façades shine bright white in the summer light, as ladies of a certain age dangle designer leashes attached to miniature poodles.

Peek into the Gucci and Chanel boutiques, then head to the beach for lunch. Have a meal and one of the many beach restaurants or a drink in a lounges with sofas on the sand. Chill on the striped beach chairs, shaded by broad sun umbrellas.

Elegant hotels are sprinkled down the street, across from their respective beach clubs.

Once you’ve had your fill, turn around and take in the street side of La Croisette. Across from the beach, is the main shopping stretch, with its glamorous haute-couture boutiques. Cross the Croisette to begin window-shopping in earnest.

The strip is glamorous and unabashedly so, but it is also relaxed enough to stroll in airy linen beach clothes. The designer swag is not within reach of most mortals, but walking is free and the people-watching and luxury-lust is unmatched. All the chicest and most opulent shops and boutiques have a presence in Cannes, making shopping (and window shopping) a favorite activity.

Now would be a good time to study our complete guide to shopping in Cannes .

La Croisette is where you can enjoy watching the super-rich buy their favorite branded trinkets. This famous seaside street hosts many of the prominent French brands like Chanel, Dior, and Yves-Saint-Laurent. Out of respect for the €1000 bejeweled sandals on display, as well as a certain French sense of decorum, leave the athleisure outfit in your suitcase and dress up for this walk.

The Carlton Hotel, with its yellow and white awnings, sits sentry on the right, and a row of palm trees does duty on the left. The sun flickers through the fronds. Behind you lies the sea and the rows of beach restaurants. Beyond still, are the mysterious shapes of the Esterel mountains and the islands beyond the shoreline.

Vieux Port: Cannes’ Old Town Harbor

Cannes Travel Guide: What To See - travel guide cannes vieux port 1

In the Old Port, you’ll see men (and the occasional woman) playing petanque, spinning and tossing silver balls in the air on a dirt course separated into six or so playing fields. On the weekend, you may wander into a brocante (a street flea market ) for vintage Chanel mules, a small oil painting, or Art Deco cocktail shakers.

West of the Palais des Festivals (which serves as the center of the Cannes Film Festival ), the Old Port of Cannes is the place to see sailboats and yachts. From here you can hire a boat privately to tour the surrounding islands and other towns nearby.

Colorful buildings surround the port, as do plenty of bars and restaurants with year-round outdoor seating, serving fresh-caught seafood. There are also several markets that are held in the old port, including an art and antiques market on weekends.

Tip: Avoid Rue Meynadier which invites you in with large signs, but is a run-down tourist trap lined with no-chef cafes and shops selling cheap junk from China.

Le Suquet: The Old Town Area

Cannes Travel Guide: What To See - cannes travel guide2

Behind the glitz, there is a softer side to Cannes – the district of Le Suquet (the old town, which was a Roman outpost in ancient times) is the heart of the old town and is filled with maze of winding cobbled lanes, ancient buildings and an old harbor that is home to both traditional fishing boats and luxury yachts.

Your walk up the winding cobbled lanes to the top of Le Suquet is rewarded by:

  • A ruined 12th-century castle, now host to the Museum of La Castre . It has exhibits from archeological digs in the Mediterranean basin to ethnological finds and primitive art on all five continents.
  • The Notre Dame de l’Espérence (built in 1684) church , which has wood panels and a large 19th-century painting collection. Built on the site of an old church during the 17th century near the dunes, it is where the Cannes sailors came to ask the Virgin’s protection for a “good trip”.
  • The medieval Tour du Suquet with its eye-popping panoramic views of Cannes, the glimmering coastline, and the Îles Lerins beyond. You can see the town, the port, and the bay from the old rampart wall in front of the church. This is a very Instagrammable spot.

The Nearby Lerins Islands

Cannes Travel Guide: What To See - travel guide lerins islands cannes

Lerins Islands are two small islands just 5km off the shore of Cannes. If you’re in Cannes for more than a couple of days, take a ferry and visit some the nearby islands.

Sights on the islands include a fortress-prison for the infamous Man in the Iron Mask, whose identity remains a debate among historians. It now has a museum, Musée de la Mer, which houses discoveries from shipwrecks around the sea of the islands. You can also see an ancient abbey. Monks that are sworn to secrecy on their recipe for making Chartreuse-like liqueur called Lerina have lived here for centuries. These monks owned Cannes at the peak of their power.

Here is our complete guide to the Lerins Islands .

Cannes’ White-Sand Beaches

Cannes Travel Guide: What To See - Cannes Beach

Unlike the pebbled beaches of other neighboring places, Cannes boasts white sandy beaches. Much of the area is filled up with private beaches , but there is also an open area where you can lounge on the sand for free.

West of the old port is where you can find some of the best least-crowded beaches. Activities like canoe rides, snorkeling, stand-up paddle-boats, diving, and boat trips are available.

Plage de la Croisette is a long public stretch of sand running alongside the famous La Croisette. It’s where you can find the high-end beach clubs, which are open (and crowded) year-round.

Cannes Travel Guide: What To See - Best Beaches French Riviera Cannes

On the west part, far away from the glamorous designer boutiques, is a public beach called Plage du Midi . Midi offers chairs and umbrellas, great mountain views, with other amenities and dining (but don’t expect anything gastronomic). Working locals enjoy the family-friendly vibe of the area, which offers swimming, sunbathing, and volleyball.

Feeling hedonistic? Plage des Pierre Hautes is a public beach on Île Sainte-Marguerite where nudity is permitted, but you’ll have to hire a boat to take you there and back.

Want more details? Check out our guide to the best beaches and make sure to read the important things to know about French Riviera beaches .

The Indoor Farmer’s Market

Cannes Travel Guide: What To See - cannes travel best markets

Want to know more about the locals and how their world goes by? The markets are a sure spot, with local produce available every day. At the foot of Le Suquet, you can find the Marché Forville , which is one of the Riviera’s best local markets .

This market is where local fishermen have sold their catch for centuries. It’s open from around 8am to 12:30pm every day. Inside these old walls, you’ll find a tempting array of gourmet Mediterranean specialties, along with homemade socca (chickpea flour cakes) hot off the griddle and the cream-laden tarte Tropézienne. It is where to buy delicious fresh fruits, vegetables, cheese, meat, seafood, flowers, olive oil, and more. Many locals love to pick up some food here and have a picnic on the beach.

Where to Get Starstruck

Cannes loves movie-stars, and you can see evidence of that fact all around the city. Here are the best places to get starstruck:

Cannes Film Festival

Cannes Travel Guide: What To See - cannes film festival guide

The Cannes Film Festival celebrates mainstream and indie cinema. It happens every May, with celebrities, entertainments’ and media’s biggest names, and journalists walking their way up or down the red carpet.

The Palais des Festivals et des Congrès is the main home to the annual Cannes Film Festival. This striking building also hosts exhibitions and other events throughout the year.

Walk down the famous La Croisette boardwalk during the festival and you will definitely spot celebrities. The festival’s home is the Palais des Festivals et des Congrès, where the red carpet glamour happens in front of its Lumière Theatre.

Check out our guide to the Cannes Film Festival .

Cannes Yachting Festival

Cannes Travel Guide: What To See - cannes yachting festival

The Yachting Festival gives everyone a chance to admire luxurious yachts and other super-crafts and boats on sale. Happens in two locations the Old Port and Port Pierre Canto , the festival attracts tourists on which half coming from overseas.

During the yachting festival, don’t miss the people watching, celebrity spotting, and sight-seeing in La Croisette, Le Suquet, Le Marie (the Town Hall), and the Vieux (Old) Port.

Check out our guide to the Cannes Yachting Festival .

Feel the Glamour

Cannes Travel Guide: What To See - cannes transportation options guide

Path of the Stars: Cannes has the handprints of famous movie stars on this sidewalk, similar to Hollywood. Find it right outside the Palais des Festivals.

Cannes Film Murals: Throughout Cannes, tourists can see 15 movie-themed painted walls portraying movies. One is close to the bus station that depicts the cinema’s 100 years.

More: Check out our guide to the top spots in Cannes for film lovers .

Have a Cocktail at a 5-star Hotel

Cannes Travel Guide: What To See - supercars cannes french riviera

The detailed façade of hotel lnterContinental Carlton Cannes , the undisputed heart of the Cannes Film Festival , is breathtaking. It’s one of the first places Grace Kelly appeared publicly with her future husband, Prince Rainier of Monaco , and was a key location for Hitchcock’s classic To Catch a Thief , featuring Kelly and Cary Grant. If a potentate has not rented out the entire hotel for his daughter’s wedding, detour to the Carlton Bar for a Lady Carlton cocktail — champagne and coulis of fresh strawberries. It may put you in the mood to splurge on something to act like you belong there. Diamond-encrusted Rolex, anyone?

Of course, there are many more things to see and do in this chic city. Other things to consider, and places worth visiting, are the numerous museums , casinos, parks, and gardens that always provide enjoyable and exciting activities. Check out our one-day itinerary for more ideas.

Wondering how to get there? Check out our guide to Cannes’ transportation options .

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The 14 Best Things to Do in Cannes: Your Ultimate Guide

Estimated reading time: 13 minutes

Discover the allure of the French Riviera with our guide to the best things to do in Cannes. Maximize your time in this city with insider tips.

Graden Umbrella, Carlton Cannes, France.

Nestled along the stunning French Riviera, Cannes is a city that exudes glamor, luxury, and sophistication. From its crystal-clear waters and golden beaches to its world-renowned film festival , there’s an array of things to do in Cannes that cater to every traveler’s taste. Our ultimate guide will unveil the hidden gems of the city and help you make the most of your visit, ensuring a truly unforgettable time on the French Riviera.

What Should Be in Your List of Things to Do in Cannes?

Cannes is a vibrant and bustling destination, offering a plethora of activities to choose from. With so much going on, it can be overwhelming to decide where to start. Make sure not to miss the lively festivals that grace the city, showcasing art, music, and film. Don’t forget to explore nearby islands that await your discovery. And of course, indulge in mouthwatering local cuisine that ranges from fresh seafood to delectable Provençal dishes. To make your job easier, we’ve curated a list of must-do things in Cannes, ensuring you don’t miss out on the best experiences this captivating city has to offer.

Wake Up and Smell the Croissants

Bonjour, mes amis! Are you ready to indulge in the best breakfast and brunch spots that Cannes has to offer? From crispy croissants to creamy cappuccinos, get ready to awaken your senses with these options. Experience the epitome of French elegance at the Five Seas Hotel’s rooftop restaurant- Le Roof , where you can savor a sumptuous brunch by the pool while taking in the breathtaking views of Cannes’ rooftops and the charming Le Suquet neighborhood. Choose from a delicious buffet or à la carte options and relish the delicate flavors to your liking. Brunch is served on Saturdays and Sundays from 12:00 pm to 3:00 pm. But beware, tables at this popular spot fill up fast, especially during major events. Be sure to reserve your spot well in advance.

A box of colorful macarons with Laudree Cafe card.

And if you’re looking for a more casual experience, Ladurée Cannes is the perfect spot for sweet treats. As one of the original macaron makers and famous for their delectable desserts, this Parisian chain does not disappoint. The Cannes location lives up to its Parisian counterparts with its delightful selection of macarons and pastries. While Ladurée is known for their high-end pâtisserie, it’s also a perfect spot for a refined cup of tea or gourmet coffee with a side of decadent chocolate. Enjoy the atmosphere of this elegant establishment as you indulge in a sweet treat or sip on a hot beverage.

Stroll along the Boulevard de la Croisette

After your breakfast, immerse yourself in luxury along Boulevard de la Croisette . As the pride and joy of Cannes, this iconic promenade stretches for two kilometers along the sparkling Mediterranean sea and is lined with palm trees, luxurious hotels, and designer boutiques. Rub shoulders with Hollywood celebrities, fashion icons, and wealthy socialites as you stroll along this promenade.

People strolling along Boulevard de la Croisette

And while you’re here, don’t forget to take in the fascinating history of Boulevard de la Croisette. During World War II, it was used as a runway for British and American airplanes. In the 1950s, it became the site of the first ever Cannes Film Festival, which has since become one of the most prestigious events in the film industry.

If you’re looking for outdoor activities, the boulevard has plenty to offer too. Take a dip in the azure waters of the Mediterranean, rent a bike and pedal your way down the promenade, or try your hand at water sports like jet skiing and parasailing.

Experience the Excitement of the Festival de Cannes

The French Riviera is famous for many things, but nothing quite compares to the excitement of  the Cannes Film Festival . This glamorous red-carpet event, held in May, is the highlight of the year in Cannes. 

People gathering at des congrès de Cannes

Celebrities, filmmakers, journalists, and fans from all corners of the globe flock to the festival. Originally established in 1946 to rival the  Venice Film Festival , the Festival de Cannes has earned an international reputation for discovering, supporting, and promoting excellent films.

Although the festival takes place all over town, in every theater, cinema, and hotel, the main concentration is on the city’s most swanky street, La Croisette. Look out for world-famous actors, ultra-rich yacht owners and some amazing films.

Enjoy Movies and More at Palais des Festivals et des Congrès

Even if you’re not a film festival enthusiast, you can still indulge in some movie magic at Palais des Festivals et des Congrès . This convention center, located on La Croisette, is home to the famous Cannes Film Festival and features conference rooms, meeting rooms, and auditoriums. Inside the complex, you’ll find Cinema Le Majestic , a state-of-the-art theater with three screens and seating for almost 1,000 people.

A picture of Palais des Festivals et des Congrès in Cannes

Catch a new release or a classic film and immerse yourself in the thrill of cinema. For an even more unique experience, take a guided tour with a professional screenwriter to learn about the history and culture of Cannes’ movie industry, and even some juicy gossip. And don’t forget to strike a pose on the red carpet – it’s a must-do activity in Cannes and a fun way to get a behind-the-scenes look at the iconic Palais des Festivals.

Explore Le Suquet – The Old Town

Le Suquet is the perfect place to go if you’re looking for a break from the glitz and glamor of the Boulevard de la Croisette. This quaint neighborhood has a rich history dating back to the 11th century, when Cannes was a small fishing village and Le Suquet was the only inhabited area. During the 19th century the neighborhood became a hub for the perfume industry, with many of the world’s top perfumers setting up shop there. 

A picture of old houses in Le Suquet area of Cannes.

Today, with its narrow cobblestone streets, vibrant marketplaces, and old buildings, Le Suquet is a must-visit for any traveler looking to experience the authentic charm of Cannes. The neighborhood’s historic buildings were constructed in the 16th century, and their colorful facades and lovely balconies are a photographer’s dream come true.

Discover Cultural Gems in Musée de la Castre

If you’re eager to immerse yourself in the history and culture of Cannes, the Musée des explorations du monde is an absolute must-visit. Housed in a magnificent 12th-century castle in Le Suquet neighborhood, the Musée des explorations du monde boasts an impressive collection of art and artifacts from around the world. From ancient Mediterranean civilizations to African tribal art, the museum offers a fascinating glimpse into the cultural diversity of the region.

A view of Musée de la Castre

The museum itself also has a rich history that’s worth exploring. The castle was originally built by the monks of Lérins to protect the island from pirate attacks. Also, during the 19th century, it was the site of a famous astronomical observatory, where some of the world’s top astronomers studied the stars.

One of the highlights of the museum is its stunning views. As you climb to the top of the castle’s tower, you’ll be rewarded with panoramic views of Cannes and the Mediterranean Sea. It’s the perfect place to snap some Insta-worthy shots and take in the beauty of the Riviera.

Step Back in Time in Notre-Dame d’Espérance

While you’re still in Le Suquet, make sure to visit Notre-Dame d’Espérance , one of the many must-see attractions of Cannes. Here, you’ll find the awe-inspiring church – a true masterpiece of Gothic architecture. As you step inside this centuries-old church, you’ll be transported back in time to a world of stained glass, stone arches, and ornate carvings.

A view of Notre-Dame d’Espérance church in Cannes

The church is known for its impressive collection of artworks, including a masterful Renaissance painting of the Virgin Mary and child by the Italian artist Andrea del Sarto, and a magnificent Gothic altarpiece created by French painter Louis Bréa in the late 15th and early 16th centuries. 

As you explore the church, you’ll also discover its fascinating history as a place of great significance for the community, having hosted religious ceremonies and festivals for centuries. In fact, one of the most interesting things about Notre-Dame d’Espérance is its association with the Cannes Film Festival. Every year, the festival’s opening ceremony is held at the nearby Palais des Festivals, and a procession of celebrities makes their way to the church to attend a special mass. It’s a beautiful tradition that celebrates the intersection of art and faith, and it’s just one of the many reasons why Notre-Dame d’Espérance is such an important landmark in Cannes.

Discover Cannes’ Scenic Wilderness at La Croix-des-Gardes Nature Park

La Croix-des-Gardes Nature Park is the perfect destination to escape the hustle and bustle of Cannes. This beautiful natural oasis offers breathtaking views of the Mediterranean Sea and the surrounding mountains, making it a favorite spot for locals and visitors alike.

A view of La Croix-des-Gardes Nature Park

The park is home to a diverse range of flora and fauna, including wild olive trees, Aleppo pines, and the iconic Côte d’Azur cypress trees. You might even spot some of the park’s resident animals, such as the European green toad or the Hermann’s tortoise.

There are plenty of trails to explore in the park, ranging from easy strolls to more challenging hikes, so be sure to bring your walking shoes. And if you’re feeling adventurous, you can even try your hand at rock climbing on the park’s rugged cliffs.

Don’t Miss the Cannes Yacht Festival

Get your sea legs ready for the Cannes Yacht Festival . Held annually in September, it is a highlight on the international yachting circuit, featuring some of the most luxurious and expensive boats from around Europe.

A view of Cannes port

For those seeking a truly unique experience, you can charter a yacht for a day and explore Cannes from the water. There are several companies offering this service, allowing you to see the city from a different perspective and enjoy stunning views of the coastline.

The festival draws an international crowd, with shipbuilders showcasing their grand designs. Approximately 50% of attendees come from overseas, making it a vibrant and diverse event. The festival is held in two locations: Le Vieux Port (Old Port) and Port Pierre Canto. 

Find Tranquility and Beauty in the Lérins Islands

For those seeking a true seafaring adventure, or at the very least a brief boat ride away, the Lérins Islands make for an ideal destination. Just off the coast of Cannes, these two picturesque islands offer a unique escape from the hustle and bustle of the mainland.

Sunset in Île Sainte-Marguerite

First up is Île Sainte-Marguerite , the larger of the two islands, where you can explore the stunning Fort Royal archaeology museum and its interesting history as a former prison. You can also take a stroll through the island’s scenic nature reserve and spot some of the rare bird species that call it home.

picture of Île Saint-Honorat in Cannes

Next, hop on over to Île Saint-Honorat , where you’ll find the peaceful and serene Lérins Abbey . This medieval monastery is still home to a community of Cistercian monks who produce their own wine and liqueur, which you can sample at the onsite gift shop. You can also enjoy a range of outdoor activities such as hiking, snorkeling, and even scuba diving to explore the islands’ underwater treasures.

Time for Some Fun Under the Sun

It’s time to hit the beach, and Cannes has some of the best public beaches on the French Riviera. Our first recommendation is Plage de la Croisette, the city’s most famous beach that stretches along the Boulevard de la Croisette. This beach is a hub of activity, with everything from beach volleyball to jet skiing available for the more active beachgoers. And if you just want to relax and soak up the sun, you can rent a lounge chair and umbrella and take in the glamorous scene – this is the place to see and be seen, after all!

A view of Plage de la Croisette

If you’re looking for something a little more secluded, head over to Plage du Midi. This beach is located further away from the city center, which means it’s often less crowded and more peaceful. It’s also an ideal place for a romantic sunset stroll along the coastline. Plus, there are plenty of restaurants and cafes nearby to satisfy your hunger and thirst after a long day of beach bumming.

Last but not least, we can’t forget about Plage de Gazagnaire. This small but charming beach is located in a residential area and offers a quieter and more laid-back vibe compared to the other public beaches in Cannes. It’s the perfect spot for families with young children, as the water is shallow and calm. And if you’re a fan of snorkeling or diving, you’ll love the shimmering waters that are teeming with marine life.

Wine, Dine, and Unwind

Indulging in the local cuisine is an essential part of any trip to Cannes. Start your evening off the French way with an apéro, the French tradition of pre-dinner drinks and snacks. A popular spot for apéro in Cannes is Le Petit Majestic , a cozy bar where locals and visitors gather to enjoy aperitifs and people-watching on the outdoor terrace. 

A view of InterContinental Carlton Cannes entrance

If you’re looking for a more upscale dining experience, several of Cannes’ famous hotels offer exceptional restaurants. The Michelin-starred Palme d’Or at Hotel Martinez is a must-visit for foodies, serving up innovative French cuisine. For a more casual but still stylish option, try the terrace Restaurant Riviera at the InterContinental Carlton Cannes , which offers classic French dishes that are sure to satisfy even the most discerning foodie.

Where to Stay in Cannes

Revel in the epitome of luxury and find respite in the glamorous embrace of Cannes, where you can rest in exquisite accommodations that exude opulence and grandeur.

One iconic option is the InterContinental Carlton Cannes , a historic hotel that has played host to countless celebrities and film stars over the years. Rumor has it that Grace Kelly herself fell in love with the hotel during the filming of “To Catch a Thief,” and even had her wedding reception there when she married Prince Rainier of Monaco. With its ornate Belle Époque architecture, private beach, and opulent suites, it’s no wonder that the Carlton remains a top choice for A-listers and high rollers.

Hotel Martinez Entrance

Another popular choice is the Hotel Martinez , a grand Art Deco hotel that has been a fixture of the Cannes skyline since the 1920s. In addition to its sophisticated amenities, it boasts a palm-lined swimming pool and a swanky rooftop bar that offers panoramic views of the city and the sea. And if you’re lucky, you might even catch a glimpse of one of Martinez’s most famous guests: Brigitte Bardot, who famously stayed at the hotel during the Cannes Film Festival in 1953.

For a more modern take on luxury, check out the Five Seas Hotel , a sleek and stylish boutique hotel located just steps from the Palais des Festivals. With its contemporary design, state-of-the-art spa, and gourmet restaurant, the Five Seas offers a fresh and trendy alternative to the traditional Cannes hotel scene. Plus, with only 45 rooms, you’ll feel like you have your own private oasis in the heart of the city.

How to Get Around Between Things to Do in Cannes

Whether you’re exploring the vibrant nightlife or soaking up the sun on the beautiful beaches, there’s no shortage of things to do in Cannes. Remember in a town where importance is often placed on class and elegance,  a stylish black car service  is an ideal way to make an impact for a special occasion. And when you’re ready to elevate your experience to the next level, turn to Blacklane’s chauffeur service in Cannes . With English-speaking chauffeurs who prioritize your comfort and safety, you’ll have peace of mind knowing you’re in good hands.

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47 Fun & Unusual Things to Do in Cannes

things to do in Cannes, France

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A world-class cinema festival, glitzy hotels, fancy yachts docked in the sparkling pier, and a famous long walkway to see and be seen at – Cannes, France is a true gem of a town located on the desirable French Riviera.

Though mostly known for its riches, Cannes has much more to offer the world! Whether it’s the incredible nature or its historic landmarks,  you’re bound to fall in love with all the incredible things to do in Cannes .

Walk down the famous Boulevard de la Croisette parallel to the magnificent Mediterranean, or book a day trip to the beautiful French towns offering quaint beauty dressed in Medieval charm.

Plan some epic hikes around Île Saint-Marguerite and nearby Verdon Gorge, and of course, spend quality time in any of the 13+ public beaches around town.

Learn the history of the fascinating Chapelle Notre-Dame de Vie, its connection to Picasso, and the 10+ museums dedicated to art and the artists who were inspired by Canne’s beauty.

So, where to first? Let’s dive in and see what else you can get up to in Cannes!

1 – Fall in love with the setting of the Château de la Napoule

Château de la Napoule, Cannes

Only a 22-minute drive from Canne is the beautifully restored Château de la Napoule, a stunning 17th-century castle by the sea.

Learn about the impressive history of the art-loving American couple who decided to restore it back to its glory, which took around 17 years!

Before setting foot inside the castle, spend some time in the charming gardens, which were inspired by Venetian, Moorish, and Roman designs. Oozing romance and character, the garden also overlooks the Mediterranean.

The château is currently open, and it houses a beautiful art gallery that showcases the impressive sculpture collection of the American husband, Henry Clews, as well as other art pieces.

Walk along the seaside, where you can see the Baie de Cannes, the castle, gardens, and other remarkable buildings nearby.

Afterward, cool off in the beautiful Plage de la Raguette, a beautiful beach only 4 minutes away!

2 – Take a charming walk around Le Suquet

Le Suquet, Cannes

First off your list of things to do in Cannes has to be a walk around Le Suquet, a picturesque neighborhood decorated with cobblestoned streets, narrow alleyways, pastel-colored buildings, and a great variety of food stands.

Follow the food scents throughout Rue Meynadier and see various foods from cheese, fresh produce, bread, and prepared dishes. While you’re there, taste the traditional regional flatbread called Socca. To see all the food stalls in one place, step into Foville Market!

Consider joining a walking tour in Cannes, and exploring the Le Suquet district in more detail, learning about how Cannes grew from a small fishing village to worldwide stardom!

From the historic to the modern, on your walking tour, you’ll also see modern art exhibitions out in the open as a clear example of local creativity. From sculptures, and engravings, to collages and more!

  • walking tours in Cannes

3 – Strut your stuff on the Boulevard de la Croisette

Boulevard de la Croissete, Cannes

See and be seen walking down the beautiful Boulevard de la Croisette, a 3-kilometer-long promenade that hugs a portion of the Mediterranean!

Often the center of various events, parties, and liveliness during the summer seasons including the Cannes Film Festival, the Boulevard de la Croisette is also a hot spot for shopping and dining, of course, at a pretty penny for its location.

Check out the popular Croisette Beach on the promenade with public and private access.

The start of the famous promenade begins at the Palais des Festival all the way to the Port Canto. It is the perfect walk to take especially after a quaint dinner to catch views of large yachts, fancy hotels, a possible celebrity, or simply the beautiful sunset.

Near Port Canto is Square de Verdun, a beautiful garden to rest with a view!

4 – Get epic views of the Bay of Cannes from the Église Notre-Dame d’Espérance

Église Notre-Dame d’Espérance, Cannes

11 minutes away from the center of Cannes on a hill above La Suquet is the spectacular Église Notre-Dame d’Espérance , a church from the 1600s.

A charming church from the inside out with its impressive exterior stonework, all the way to its Renaissance interior architecture with Gothic influences, the church has evolved a bit lending itself to incredible spectacles.

The church has an outdoor venue that frequently hosts summer concerts of all sorts and hosts the music festival Nuits Musicales du Suquet in July. When the concert venue is not occupied, it’s open for the public to walk on the stage and be blessed with sprawling views of Cannes and the Mediterranean!

For those who want to experience mass inside the Catholic church, they are offered at various times, so check on their website.

The church is accessible by walking or taking public transport!

5 – Escape to Saint Tropez for the day

Saint Tropez, France

You’ve heard of Saint Tropez before, now it’s time to see it for yourself! A beautiful coastal town on the French Rivera, and only a little over 1 hour away from Cannes, hop on a day tour that will take you on a ferry to traverse the Mediterranean as part of your journey.

Known for its lavish lifestyle from beach clubs, yachts, and celebrity’s favorite holiday destination, Saint Tropez is also a historical city with cobblestone streets, ancient fortifications, and impressive coastal hikes.

When you arrive at Saint Tropez, you’ll be able to have free time to explore on your own, whether you want to dine with the rich and famous or shop like one, or you just want to roam the streets. It’s all possible on this trip!

The ferry ride is around 1.5 hours, and there is more than one departure time available.

  • Saint Tropez tours from Cannes

6 – Receive your dose of vitamin D on a boat tour

boat tour in Cannes

The best way to explore Cannes is to do it on land and water, and there’s no better way to do it than on a boat tour with bonus activities included!

Choose an incredible catamaran tour with snorkeling and diving options for the adventurous, relaxing on the deck for those ready to chill, and a mouthwatering lunch on board to seal the deal.

Want to take up it up a notch? Consider hanging out on a wooden yacht, sailing around the bay for an elegant experience. While on board, you’ll also have the chance to take a dip in the water and even do some Stand-Up Paddleboarding.

If you rather skip the boats altogether because you want to get in the water, look into the different snorkeling tours in Cannes !  Discover the beauty of the local marine life, discovering nearby islands and their pristine snorkeling waters.

  • boat tours in Cannes

7 – Explore the Bay of Cannes on a kayaking tour

kayaking tour from Cannes

Make it out to the nearby Lérin Islands to discover some of its untouched, turquoise-colored water, perfect for some quality kayaking time.

Whether you kayak all the time or it’s your first time, the experience is available to everyone interested, with the youngest guests welcomed starting at 7 years old with an adult. Kayaking on the French Riviera gives you the opportunity to take the reigns of your own exploration of the coastal beauty of Cannes.

In the supervised session, you’ll receive safety guidelines and the proper equipment (except for a swimsuit) to jet off on your own adventures in the water, steering yourself to different parts of the coast or the Lérin Islands.

As part of your journey, you’ll also receive a delicious lunch on the beach with your newfound kayaking friends!

Kayaking tours in Cannes start at $21 USD.

  • kayaking tours from Cannes

8 – Adventure to nearby Antibes for the day

Antibes, France

At only a 20-minute drive from Cannes, Antibes awaits you with a wide array of delicious and fresh produce at the Marche Provençal, a stroll through its quaint coastal historic town and beautiful culture of art and terraces.

Explore Antibes from Cannes on an easeful Antibes tour from Cannes, with other stops in other must-see coastal cities.

Choose from a tour that stops in Antibes and Saint-Paul de Vence for a total of a 4.5-hour journey if that’s all the time you have, or go bold and check out the 8-hour-long French Rivera Panorama Tour which takes you to 5 different coastal towns near Cannes!

Some tours include lunch in the price, while others don’t however finding a restaurant in Antibes certainly won’t be a problem, especially with their prominent food culture centered around fresh foods and savory flavors.

  • Antibes tours from Cannes

9 – Get your tastebuds tingling at the best markets in Cannes

best markets in Cannes

Enjoy the local flavors of Cannes at the Marché Forville, a covered market open from Tuesdays to Sundays in the summer. See the local fishermen and farmers gather every day, bringing their freshest produce located only 6 minutes away from the Boulevard de la Croisette.

Offering not only incredibly fresh produce and baked bread but also clothing and accessories, check out Marché Gambetta located in the heart of Cannes! Step in any day of the week (Tuesday-Sunday) between 7:30 AM – 1 PM. The market is completely covered.

Smell the fresh roses and flower arrangements at Le Marché aux Fleurs, a market dedicated to the art of flower arrangement. Le Marché aux Fleurs is located a little outside the city center, but is surely worth it for the fresh sights and aromantic scents!

10 – Witness the glamour of Cannes Film Festival

Cannes Film Festival

When you think of Cannes, the Cannes Film Festival may be the first thing that pops into your mind, and we don’t blame you!

The Festival de Cannes is a prestigious film event that takes place at the Palais des Festivals and screens and celebrates a wide diversity of international films while gathering international actors, film producers, and those in the world of moviemaking.

Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to be in the movie industry to get to experience this prestigious film festival!

If you’re in town when the festival is taking place (the last few weeks of May) you can check out free film screenings available to the public around Cannes. If you’re in Cannes any other time, you can still feel close to the event by visiting the Palais des Festivals and even checking out the guided tour!

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electric and foil yacht charter in Cannes

One of the best ways to experience Cannes is from the water — and you can enhance the journey on a foil boat! Designed to glide above the waters at speeds of up to 20 knots, you’ll see the French Riviera from a completely unique perspective.

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11 – Enjoy a trip to Monaco

Monaco City

Explore Monaco on a day trip from Cannes, while stopping at a few other notable cities along the coast like Eze, and Monte-Carlo.

On your Monaco tour from Cannes, you’ll see the beautiful historic old town of Monaco, and even stop by for a tour of a perfume factory! You’ll also get free time to enjoy Monaco on your own and stop by the Grand Prix circuit, the Casino Square, and of course, do some incredible shopping!

Want to explore even more? Look into the different French Riviera tours that offer extensive tours throughout France’s beautiful gold coast, that leave from Cannes and take you to Antibes, Saint-Paul de Vence, and so much more!

If you’re tight on time but want to see the splendor of the French Riviera, don’t think twice about booking this all-encompassing experience offering the highlights!

  • Monaco tours from Cannes

12 – Do some wakeboarding on the French Riviera

wakeboarding in Cannes

Venture out to the waters on a wakeboarding activity whether you’ve never done it before, or it’s your favorite sport!

Offered in both English and French, head out for the day on this up to 2.5-hour experience, getting the hang of balancing on the board, and steering yourself while being pulled by the boat.

When planning for your activity, make sure to bring your own bathing suit, towel, and SPF, and you’re all set with everything else being provided for you!

You can book a 1- 10-50 minute session, or more depending on your schedule, with different time slots available throughout the day between 9:00 AM – 7:00 PM.

  • wakeboarding in Cannes

13 – Plan a day trip to Eze

Eze, France

Tucked in between Monaco and Nice is the pristine French Riviera town of Eze, known for its impressive cliffs, views of the Mediterranean, and overall hilltop views!

The best way to see Eze from Cannes is to book a tour of Eze with a few other stops along the way. Enjoy a stroll through the stunning Botanique d’Eze for a relaxing time viewing the cactus and succulents, accompanied by incredible sea views.

Step inside the historic and oldest building in Eze, the Chapelle de la Sainte Croix, and do some incredible shopping on the main strip! Hit up Avenue Jean Medecin for tons of brand stores and beautiful restaurants and cafe terraces.

Eze tours from Cannes offer freedom with some guidance in Eze and the other quaint villages that you’ll stop by, so bring your camera to capture the photogenic cities!

  • Eze tours from Cannes

14 – Soar high above on a helicopter Tour

helicopter tour from Cannes

Enjoy a magnificent view of Cannes and the French Riviera from above on a wondrous helicopter tour that won’t soon be forgotten!

While on your 10-45 minutes helicopter tour, you’ll be able to observe some of the most impressive landscapes only possible to see from the sky, from Saint Tropez to Eze, to the red rocks from the Esterel Mountains, various vineyards, and impressive cliffs off the coast.

You may choose the route in which you’d like to cross, with over 4 different routes each focusing on a different part of the French Riviera to fly over.

If you have never flown on a helicopter ride, consider this a sign to embark on one of the most wonderful experiences on the French Riviera!

Some helicopter tours start at $142 USD.

  • helicopter tours from Cannes

15 – Browse through the books inside Médiathèque Noailles

Médiathèque Noailles, Cannes

Only a 5-minute drive from Cannes is the incredible Médiathèque Noailles , which in English is translated into The Noailles Media Library.

Located inside a historic mansion once belonging to the widow of James Mayer de Rothchild, Battery de Rothschild, a portion of the 1881 building was later on converted into a media library that houses several media resources for the public to enjoy. Its beautiful surrounding, and light and airy feel is an attraction all on it’s own, as are the stunning gardens on the property.

The Médiathèque Noailles is divided into adult and youth sections and is open from September 1 to June 30. There is also a video library and even a nightclub on the second floor!

Inside the library, you’ll see tons of magazines, and newspapers, on various topics, throughout time. Admission into the media library is free.

16 – Get the whole family out for some rafting

rafting in Cannes

Adventurers of all ages will adore this rafting trip through the magnificent Verdon gorges, where there’s plenty of action and quieter moments to enjoy!

Admire the soaring rock walls and the undulating, greenish water around you, and enjoy the thrill of bouncing through some seriously active water!

17 – Drop some cash shopping on Rue d’Antibes

Rue d’Antibes, Cannes

One of the things to do in Cannes other than what we’ve mentioned so far is shopping! You can’t leave Cannes without shopping on the famed Rue d’Antibes, filled with tons of boutique shops, many of which are local and international brands!

Check out Galeries Lafayette , offering a variety of stores under one roof, or stop by Marche Forville nearby to purchase a few locally made items, perfect for friends back home or for yourself!

Shopping on this famous road doesn’t have to mean dropping some serious cash, as you can also check out Declic Dépôt for some second-hand shopping, which in a place like Cannes, some items inside may be brand name and even with tags!

Not into shopping? Consider stepping inside for lunch or a midday coffee at one of the many bustling restaurants in between some shopping!

18 – See Cannes on two wheels on a bike tour

bike tour in Cannes

Spin your wheels around town on a fun and exciting bike tour through Cannes! Cycle your way through the numerous opulent hotels, historic mansions, and many more secret roads you may not have seen before!

Check out Boulevard de la Croisette on your bike tour, swing by a few beaches, pass fancy restaurant terraces, and so much more in a 2-3 hour long tour. The bike tours in Cannes may use e-bikes instead of the typical pedal bikes, which may actually make it easier to go up the steep hills and control the speed going downhill.

While on your bike tour, your guide will be sharing with you fun facts about the city, as well as offering local tips for you to enjoy during your stay. Plus, you’ll be able to stop at the monumental sites for awesome photo ops!

Bike tours start at $76 USD.

  • bike tours in Cannes

19 – Bound into bungee jumping

bungee jumping in Cannes

Ready for a short but memorable dive?

Then head up to Artuby Bridge for a bit of bungee !

This sport is always a fun time, and all the more so with the unique plants and rocks of the gorge laid out below you … of course, you’ll be seeing them all while dangling upside down!

20 – Pop into the historic Eglise Notre Dame de Bon Voyage

Eglise Notre Dame de Bon Voyage, Cannes

Visit the recently renovated Eglise Notre Dame de Bon Voyage, a church that began as a humble chapel for fishermen in the 15th century.

The stoned-built church has withstood the test of time, as well as endured various name changes from its original name of Notre-Dame de Bon Port to what it is today. The church was said to have been a church in which Napoleon arrived after an expedition in 1815.

The church, which is located centrally in Cannes, houses organs that date back to 1901, as well as various sculptures of St. Antoni of Padua, Saint Nicholas (the patron saint of Cannes), and Saint Rita.

Step inside to view more religious antiques and read the historical plaques to enrich your experience even further.

21 – Get caught up in the beauty of the Vieux Port de Cannes

Vieux Port de Cannes

Walk around the emblematic Vieux Port de Cannes (the old port of Cannes) to see rows and rows of boats lined against the marina on one side, and historic buildings and the other.

The port is easily found at the foot of Le Suquet Hill, it’s a common sight to see many people walk through the port, taking in a quiet stroll unless there is a celebration going on, then the ambiance isn’t too quiet.

If you visit Cannes in June/July or September, you’ll find a different scene of celebration for various events that take place at the port. From the International Yachting Festival to the Royal Regatta, a prestigious rowing competition.

Depending on the boat tour, some of them will depart from this port so it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with it!

22 – Crack the code inside Curious World – Escape Game

Curious World – Escape Game, Cannes

Gather your friends and solve puzzles inside the tricky escape games and feel like you’ve totally stepped inside an interactive video game when you check out Curious World- Escape Game .

Check out the different themed escape rooms from mystery in Las Vegas, to curiosities of the universe, and much more! Escape rooms are typically played in under 1 hour, and the way you move up to the next clue is by solving puzzles and clues together, quickly.

Once you get out, your time gets recorded on the blackboard, so make sure to go as fast as you can to go up the ranks!

To schedule your escape room fun, make sure to make your reservations online before arrival.

Pro tip: if you speak French, it will be easier to make your reservation and play some of the escape room games.

23 – Buy some perfume in Grasse

Grasse, France

A 29-minute journey north of Cannes will take you to Grasse, a quaint small town in the hills of the French Rivera, with tons to see and do!

Sign up for a Grasse tour from Cannes, and smell the fresh air of the mountains and lavender scents in this beautiful town, known for its perfume-making traditions.

On your tour, you’ll visit the famous Fragonard Factory, with years worth of perfume-making history. You’ll also get the chance to wander around the town with some free time, before making it to the next town over, Valbonne, known for its medieval characteristic and monastery.

To wrap up the trip, you’ll also get a chance to do some wine tasting at the vineyards of Bellet! This vineyard is known to produce some of France’s best wines, so be rest assured it’s going to be a luxurious day trip!

  • Grasse tours from Cannes

24 – See the different boats featured at the Cannes Yachting Festival

Cannes Yachting Festival

Taking place between September 12th-17th, you will see Cannes flooded with yacht owners showing off their large water vessels on the old marina for the Cannes Yachting Festival .

This festival showcases over 600 boats and welcomes over 50,000 visitors to Europe’s largest in-water boat show. Come take a gander at some of the different types of boats, from sailboats to multihulls, motor boats, and everything in between.

Even if boats aren’t your thing, it’s an interesting and cultural spectacle to stop by for a bit, as there are some “sea trials” where you get to see these boats in action!

The boat tour takes place at the Old Port of Cannes as well as Port Pierre Canto, and tickets are available to purchase online.

Make your plans, and ideate the possibility of day-tripping it at the Cannes Yachting Festival!

25 – Try flyboarding

flyboard in Cannes

This certainly isn’t your average water sport!

Here, you’ll stand attached to a small board, and feel the jets of water beneath propelling you up into the sky.

On this futuristic device, you’ll hover effortlessly over the sea, and maybe even pull off a neat trick or two!

  • flyboard in Cannes

26 – Book a tour of the Île Saint-Marguerite

Île Saint-Marguerite, France

Part of the Lérins Islands, Île Saint-Marguerite is a beautiful island that despite its small size, offers lots of activities to do and an opportunity to relax.

With the 15-minute ferry ride, indulge in taking a nature walk through the many trails on the island, or enjoy local cuisine at a restaurant with a terrace and an extraordinary view!

Visit the historic Museum of the Sea to learn more about the maritime history and local marine life, or learn about the local legend of The Man in the Iron Mask who was a prisoner of Fort Royal, which you can visit.

If all you seek is to relax, check out Plage des Pierres Hautes (beach) on the southeast side of the island, and enjoy the view of the flat rocks peaking out from the sea but be warned that part of the beach allows naturism.

  • île Saint-Marguerite tours from Cannes

27 – Play some Golf

Golf in Cannes

Visit Victoria Golf Club , the 9-hole course surrounded by endless green fields, shady trees, and peaceful lakes! Considered mostly an easy course, day passes are available for purchase online, so make sure to check them out!

Check for frequent offers on their website too such as women getting in to play for 28 euros every Wednesday, or if you come in with a group of 3, the 4th player plays for free.

Tucked in between Cannes and Grasse, and with sights of the sea and forests, Golf De Saint Donat is a wonderful golf course to spend a quaint afternoon at.

Take a lesson with a professional golfer if you’ve never played the sport before, or buy a day pass and sharpen your golfing practice with 24 posts.

Ensure to buy your day pass ahead of time on the website!

28 – Try out electric surfing

electric surf in Cannes

Ever heard of electric surfing? Well, now’s your chance to try out this innovative way to surf with no waves!

Essentially electric surfing is done with a specialized surfboard with a motor that can go fast and essentially surf without the need for waves. The way to control its speed is by pressing a pedal, and then you’re off!

With the capacity of 40 kilometers/hour speeds, don’t be shy if you’ve never been on one, as this activity is completely beginner friendly, and more so with a professional.

You’ll have tons of time to practice, and feel safe with the safety tips and briefing from your instructor. The activity will last for 1 hour, and you can choose your activity anywhere between 8:00 AM – 8:00 PM.

Your activity comes with an electric surfboard, a wetsuit with a life jacket, and an optional helmet.

  • electric surf in Cannes

29 – Attend a dreamy concert at the Villa Domergue

Villa Domergue, Cannes

Feel the magical vibes at Villa Domergue , a mansion built in 1926 for the painter Jean-Gabriel Domergue, which today is open for the public to explore and enjoy.

Set up on the hills, the Villa Domergue offers spanning views of Cannes as well as the sea, and beyond on a clear day. You’ll quickly notice the grandeur of the property when you’re greeted with extraordinary landscaping and the facade of the home.

Make your way around the gardens, taking in the scene of freshly manicured gardens, and even a secret monument dedicated to the painter and his wife. Climb up the steps to the terrace to get an even more expansive view of the surroundings.

The Villa is used today as a venue for all sorts of concerts, mostly jazz and classical music, so make sure to keep an eye on upcoming concert dates!

30 – Get wild on a jet ski excursion

jet ski tour from Cannes

Hop on for a ride on an exciting jet ski excursion, enjoying a day out on the water and in the sun!

Jet ski your way around the beautiful Lérins Islands and Esterel Massif, as you take in views of Cannes from the water, as well as the island’s rugged nature sights. You’ll be able to choose between 30-minute to 2-hour-long jet ski experiences, so it’s really up to you how long you want to be out in the water!

If you’re unsure if this activity is for you because you’ve never been on a jet ski before, not to worry! This jet ski excursion is very beginner friendly, and a guide will be with you to help you get the hang of the experience.

All jet ski excursions are offered in both English and French and start at $150 per person.

  • jet ski tours from Cannes

31 – Find the best beaches in Cannes

best beaches in Cannes

Centrally located in Cannes is Plage du Midi Beach, featuring over 700 meters of warm sand, dotted by numerous restaurants and cafes, and even a play area for children. Perfect for families!

For the perfect balance of peace and adventure, check out the public beach, Port Palm Beach, located west of Cannes near Pointe Croissette. Its small distance keeps this beach a hidden gem.

Rent a beach chair and set it under a palm tree at Plage Mace Beach, a public beach with nearby restaurants and cafes to buy snacks at the beach. Keep in mind only food and drinks purchased at the beach are allowed.

Tucked between St. Raphael and Cannes is Corniche Esterel Beach, a stretch of red rock, green forest, and sandy beaches like Plage Baumette and Cap Antheor, a pebbled beach. Relax on the shores, or rent a boat, another popular activity!

32 – Sip on sophisticated wines

wine tour in Cannes

Taste some of the finest French wines on a fabulous wine tour, stopping by some of the best wineries set in the most beautiful medieval towns and countryside.

When you book a wine tour you’ll travel to the Bellet Vineyards, a winery running since 1906, where you’ll sample varieties of roses, whites, and reds.

As part of your tour, you’ll stop by Grasse, where you’ll get to visit the famous perfume factory, Fragonard Perfume Factory, as well as have some free time exploring the local charm.

Next, you’ll head to another medieval town called Valbonne, getting impressive nature views of waterfalls and deep gorges.

Depending on the wine tour you choose, you’ll be able to enjoy a nice picnic lunch as part of your experience. All tours are a minimum of 8 hours long and will provide a comfortable bus and guide.

  • wine tours in cannes

33 – Learn about the fascinating history of Chapelle Notre-Dame de Vie

Chapelle Notre-Dame de Vie, Cannes

Known as a chapel where stillborn children were baptized and buried, and the house next to the chapel as one of the last residencies of Picasso, the 12th-century Chapelle Notre-Dame de Vie is a short 10-minute drive from Cannes.

Despite its slightly sonder past, today, the chapel is open for visitors to walk and enjoy its inevitable intrigue, with its towering cypress trees, and figures of bulls around the outside.

Set on the top of the hills of Cannes once again blesses with clear views of the city and sea below, making it obvious why people have always seen the property as a place to “breathe.”

Dig a bit more into the history of the property and check out the small museum on the ground floor of the house, with a few artifacts. Next stop by the chapel to see some of the religious relics inside.

34 – Fly like a bird over the Verdon Gorge

Verdon Gorge tour from Cannes

Take a journey to the beautiful site of Verdon Gorge, a canyon located on the southeastern side of France, that was created by the force of the Verdon River and its wild rapids.

With so much to do and see, from walking the hiking trails, tanning on the beaches, or getting lost in the idyllic villages nearby, one of the best things to do actually doesn’t involve any of that, but rather taking a scenic helicopter tour!

See it all, and enjoy sights that you wouldn’t imagine seeing in the French Rivera on a helicopter tour, reaching around 700 meters. Take a look at the impressive limestone cliffs, the kayakers down below in the turquoise-colored water, and various animals all in one go like the Golden Eagle and the Griffon Vulture.

Learn about the nature of the sight with your professional helicopter pilot as well.

  • Verdon Gorge tours from Cannes

35 – Look carefully at Les Murs Peints

Les Murs Peints, Cannes

You might be thinking that your eyes are playing tricks on you, but in actuality, the Les Murs Peints are one of the most famous public murals with a few optical illusions throughout Cannes.

The paintings, which started to pop up around town in 2002, have been well-received by locals and visitors alike for the freshness they add to the city as a whole.

Take the time to admire the imagery, much of which has a lot of reference to French cinema, and a few international and recognizable movie stars like Marylin Monroe and Charlie Chaplin.

There is more than one painting, so make sure to spot them around Cannes, and even take a selfie with one! Sometimes they’ll even sneak up on you if you don’t look hard enough, so make sure to keep your eyes open for the smaller ones!

36 – See the French Rivera paragliding

paragliding in Cannes

Why keep the fun tame, when you can do something fun like go paragliding on the French Riviera?

The weather and perfect winds make for an incredible paragliding playground around Cannes, especially in the center of the Préalpes d’Azur Regional Nature Park, only 45 minutes northwest of Cannes.

With sights of the rolling hills, medieval constructions on the hilltops, pastures on the fields, and more, it’s truly a sight to see!

Make sure to pack some comfortable clothing and closed-toed shoes for this experience! All other equipment plus a safety briefing will be provided as part of the paragliding experience.

Paragliding experiences near Cannes start at $90 USD.

  • paragliding in Cannes

37 – Do some museum hopping at the best Cannes museums

Cannes best Museums

Musée Bonnard is a museum dedicated to the French artist Pierre Bonnard, a famous painter and sculptor with two major exhibits in summer and in winter to check out!

Once a medieval castle that housed a monastery, the Musée des Explorations du Monde houses numerous 19th-century paintings, inside a historic and beautiful setting. Be sure to stop by the gardens for a peaceful moment!

On Lérins Island is the famous Musée du Masque de fer et du Fort Royal , where you’ll be able to see artifacts rescued from shipwrecks as well as check out the seaside prison cells.

Classical art lovers, check out the pieces inside Musée d’Art Classic de Mougins (MACM), located in Mougins only 45 minutes away.

Because Picasso spent his final days in Cannes, his Musée National Pablo Picasso, La Guerre et la Paix is a great place to check out some of his collections from ceramics to murals.

38 – Enchant your senses at the Jardins du Musée International de la Parfumerie

Jardins du Musée International de la Parfumerie, Cannes

Enjoy the aromas and sites of the roses and other botanical beauties at the Jardins du Musée International de la Parfumerie , only 24 minutes away from Cannes.

Divided based on the scent and fragrance of the flowers, the garden does a great job teaching visitors about the scents that come from different plants, and how that has impacted the perfume industry in local communities.

Come learn about scents like citrus, fruity, musky, and much more while admiring the constellation of colors from the plants.

As you pass certain gardens, you’ll be invited to touch certain trees and leaves that leave a pleasant smell, and as you move to the conservatory, you’ll learn more about scent extraction.

The garden goes above and beyond to truly show the cultivation of certain fragrances, their origins, and other uses aside from perfumes too.

For the best experience, consider a tour guide!

39 – Get some dust on your shoes with a nice hike

hiking tour in Cannes

With its impressive terrain and wide-open spaces, there’s always a good hike to be had around here… day or night!

Search the skies for vultures, trek out on distant trails to see landbound critters like ibexes or marmots, or explore canyons and caves as you soak up the wilderness.

Or come out to Mercantour National Park at night to explore the silhouettes of the landscape under a jaw-dropping blanket of stars!

40 – Catch more of Cannes on a Segway tour

segway tour in Cannes

Hop on an exciting segway tour to explore Cannes in a fun and unique way, as you follow your guide through the city’s uphills and downhill streets.

Discover hidden gems throughout the city like the Les Murs Peints, and other main landmark sites like various markets and the Boulevard de la Croisette, and the old port to see what’s up.

If you’ve never ridden on a segway, it’s basically a self-balancing motorized vehicle with two wheels, and very beginner friendly. If you can’t bike around, a segway tour is the way to go!

Some segway tours start as low as 75 euros, and the tours can go between 1-2 hours.

41 – Hop on board a sunset cruise to the Lérins Islands

Sunset Cruise to the Lérins Islands

To end the perfect day, hop on a sunset cruise to the Lérins Islands, with snorkeling, diving, and a bit of swimming as part of the fun itinerary!

Whether you’re looking for something romantic to do in Cannes, or you want to see the beautiful sunset from the boat, a sunset cruise to the Lérins Islands is a great way to get into the water without too many other boats or people out.

It’s a moment for true serenity and enjoyment, so don’t miss out.

Past visitors truly enjoyed the commentary of their boat captain, as well as their knowledge about the French Riviera, and all the natural sights on Lérins Island.

Looking for a sporty activity? Check out a kayaking adventure to the Lérins Islands instead! Kayaks are equally amazing because they allow you to get closer to the island, and the famous red rocks.

  • sunset cruises from Cannes

42 – Jump with style at the Salto Trampoline Arena

Salto Trampoline Arena, Cannes

Jump into some fun at the Salto Trampoline Arena , an indoor trampoline park where no matter your age, you’re bound to have some incredible fun!

Enjoy the 16 different sections of the trampoline arena, from the foam pit to literally bouncing off the walls in the Pro Zone, playing dodgeball, or walking and maintaining balance on the slacklining challenge.

While you’re having fun, take on the challenge of perfecting your jump, with the tips from the staff members at the park. Just ask them for an example of what the jump should look like, and off you go!

If you don’t have kids but want to go anyways, the trampoline park also offers fitness classes to burn off some calories in the most fun way, as well as parkour trampoline jump lessons.

Prices vary based on activity, so make sure to check beforehand.

43 – Spend the night in a palace like the rich and famous

spend the night in a palace in Cannes

Appreciate VIP treatment at Hôtel Barrière Le Majestic Cannes , and enjoy views of the Mediterranean as well as of the famous Boulevard de la Croisette. By night, dine at 1 of the 3 on-site restaurants offering French and Italian cuisine.

Enjoy the exclusive amenities at Hôtel Carlton Cannes like the private beach and pier and classically designed and decorated rooms with sea views, inside the 1901 historic hotel.

Set in the heart of Cannes, Hôtel Martinez is a wonderful option to rest and socialize at, from the glitzy Martinez Bar to the terrace seating at the on-sight restaurant Le Jardin du Martinez.

Rest up every night at the Five Seas Hotel Cannes by slipping into the comfortable robe and slippers, inside the modern chic rooms. If relaxation is what you’re searching for, the hotel is rated highly for its spa services and treatments fit for royalty.

44 – Satisfy your tastebuds with some fine dining

fine dining in Cannes

Try delectable dishes like lobster ravioli with tender leek or ask for the chef’s recommendations based on the season when dining at table 22 par Noël Mantel .

Dine at the Michelin-starred restaurant L’AFFABLE known for its seasonal approach to the food served and delicate presentation. The restaurant is a beautiful modern bistro, set in the heart of Cannes.

Order the “Surprise Menu” at La Table Du Chef , an offer that allows the chef to create a fully seasonal and creative menu that you’re sure to love! For 60 euros, you’ll enjoy 4 courses including dessert.

Indulge in the best of French cuisine at Aux Bons Enfants , a welcoming restaurant that offers classic French dishes, as well as a great range of desserts like parfaits and creme brulee.This is the place to go for a casual night out with high-quality food.

45 – Relax and unwind at the best beachclubs in Cannes

best beachclubs in Cannes

Be seen at the Ritzy Carlton Beach Club on the famous Boulevard de la Croisette, featuring delicious bites like grilled seafood, a few meat dishes, and of course, the perfect craft drink in hand.

If Carlton Beach Club is booked out, move next door to Annex Beach ! Rent a comfortable sun lounge chair under a big umbrella on the club’s private beach, and fall asleep to the sweet sound of the Mediterranean beside you.

On a bit more of a money-conscious note, check out La Mandala Cannes , a perfect slice of Cannes heaven with its own private beach, and a delicious restaurant with the best wine pairings!

Looking for something a bit more family friendly? Check out Vegaluna , which has entertainment for both parents and children!  The typical prices for a lounger and umbrella starts at 45 euros for the first row in the summer months.

46 – Get rich at the best casinos

casino in Cannes

Hit the slots at the best casinos in Cannes, and see if you hit a lucky strike!

Check out Casino Barrière le Croisette, set inside a historic theater! The very opulent casino will make you feel lavish with its grand aquarium, extensive wall carvings, and golden figures reminiscent of Greek mythology.

With over 245 machines, video poker machines, English roulette stations, blackjack games, and more, you’ll probably see that you’ll want to spend some time between admiring the space, to actually playing the games.

Owning equal luxury is the Casino Les Princes, featuring grand chandeliers, mirrored ceilings, fancy furniture, and mood lighting right beside the Mediterranean. This casino has over 90 different slot machines with various games like English Roulette, and Electronic Blackjack, as well as Poker and Punto Banco.

Enjoy a hearty meal at one of their exquisite restaurants or hit the bar for a refreshment.

47 – Get out and experience the nightlife

nightlife in Cannes

Have a sophisticated night out at Le Bar A Vin , an intimate space to enjoy the company of friends, new and old, as you indulge in some of the best wines of the South of France. Because of its extensive wine list, this bar offers wine by the glass, allowing you to sample more than one type of wine.

Bâoli is the perfect place to start out with drinks and stay for endless dancing moments. Typically the place where the local younger crowd goes for a night out, don’t be surprised if you see yourself dancing next to models, and even an incognito actor here and there.

Sunset, breeze, and the sea are the vibe and view at the Sunset Terrace , at the JW Marriot with pool access. Locals recommend visiting the rooftop bar during the bright fireworks display in July and August for the best views!

Looking for shore excursions in Cannes?

Check out all the different shore excursions from Cannes to nearby towns like Eze, Monte-Carlo, and Monaco for a true French Riviera tour on a world-class ship!

These experiences include a private tour guide and a stop at the numerous towns with guided sightseeing, and typically last from 6-8 hours. Plus, get toured around on a large cruise ship!

  • shore excursions in Cannes

How to get to Cannes?

The main way to get to Cannes is to fly to Nice International Airport (NCE) or Cannes-Mandelieu (CEQ), and then take an airport transfer from either airport into Cannes.

To get from the airport to Cannes, the best option is to pre-book an airport transfer, which will take anywhere between 15-25 minutes to arrive at Cannes, and your hotel.

Where to stay in Cannes?

Consider a beautiful stay at Château de Castellaras in one of the many rooms with opulent views of the hills and sea. Feel like royalty sleeping in a classically decorated room in a chateau or the chapitre.

Rest every night at Hôtel Château de la Tour , situated close to Midi Beach, and Cannes, with a pool, a deluxe buffet breakfast, and more within a chateau.  This is the perfect hotel for those wanting to peace and tranquility during their stay.

Hotel des Congres et Festivals is a spectacular choice, with its closeness to the train station and the beach. Wake up to beautiful views of Cannes narrow streets and the sea at a distance, while enjoying the quiet of a residential area.

Hotel Verlaine offers a modern option with beautiful greenery everywhere. Enjoy a delicious breakfast daily in the dining room, and by night, enjoy cocktail hour in the garden.

  • best hotels in Cannes

Visiting Cannes on a budget?

Make sure to take advantage of free walking tours in Cannes , which offer local knowledge of the main landmarks while showing you secret gems and even restaurant and bar recommendations to enjoy later!

Free walking tours are also awesome to get the lay of the land, and learn how to get around on your own for the remainder of your trip!

Where to go next?

Extend your fun, and check out the many other fun things to do near Cannes, starting with Monaco.

Experience the ruins of the Fort Antoine Theatre in Monaco , and then plan a trip to the dreamy Port de Fontvielle for some serious yacht spotting! Afterward, take a breather at the Exotic Garden of Monaco.

Feel the inspiration at Castle Hill in Nice , taking in the views of waterfalls while walking the defensive wall ruins, or take a sunny walk on the Promenade des Anglais. For those with an inner aristocrat, check out the Musée du Palais Lascaris.

Marseille will dazzle you with incredible beauty, starting with the views from the Basilique Notre-Dame de la Garde, and the beautiful Cathédrale La Major. Get all your pictures taken early at the Palais Longchamp.

Right next to Marseille, Aix-en-Provence is also a must-visit, with its natural hot springs and charming Cours Mirabeau lined with cafes and fountains. Explore its rich history at the Saint-Sauveur Cathedral and enjoy the lively markets showcasing local Provencal goods.

Finally, visit Montpellier , known for its vibrant mix of medieval and modern architecture, charming squares and vibrant cultural life.

As you can see, there are tons of amazing places to visit in France , so what are you waiting for?

Final thoughts

Did you find your favorite items to add to your things to do in Cannes bucket list? With so much glamour and beauty, it’s hard to pick between natural sights like the Île Saint-Marguerite, or visiting Boulevard de la Croisette.

We hope however that our list helped you plan out your trip to see all sides of Cannes, and enjoy it the way it deserves!

Happy travels!

  • Cannes Tourist Information Offices

Cannes

Being well oriented and informed is a prerequisite for all tourists who want to find out as much as possible about Cannes and to make the best of their stay in this city. This is why tourists are advised to refer to the tourist offices available in Cannes. These offices will be able to provide them all the information necessary in view of helping tourists decide which way their stay will be configured.

In this respect, the offices will bring forward up-to-date information on the orientation inside and around Cannes, on the main hotspots of the city, on the activities they will be able to carry out while visiting the city – sports, casinos, events, nightlife – on the entertainment and shopping opportunities, on accommodation solutions and restaurants, as well as they will present the best offers in terms of a complete vacation .

Cannes Palais des Festivals Tourist Information Office

Opening hours : July and August, daily from 9am to 8pm, September to June, Monday to Saturday from 9am to 7pm.

Cannes Train Station Tourist Information Office

Opening hours : Monday to Saturday from 9am to 7pm

La Bocca Tourist Information Office

Opening hours : Summer, daily from 9am to 7pm, Winter, Tuesday to Saturday from 9am to 12pm and 2.30pm to 8.30pm.

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Cannes   Travel Guide

tourist center cannes

Courtesy of Henryk Sadura | Getty Images

tourist center cannes

Why Go To Cannes

This sun-speckled resort town on the French Riviera is all about relaxing in style: taking leisurely walks on La Croisette promenade, sunning on the beaches, sipping French wines on the patios of en plein air (open-air) cafes, shopping the side streets, hitting the casinos and clubs – or the pillows at your luxury hotel – at night. Most pay dearly to experience Cannes' warm, sunny climate and picturesque position along the southern coast of France. The Cannes Film Festival, which arrives every May, has only increased its allure. But you shouldn't let all this exclusivity scare you from visiting: Cannes is also a truly international destination that accommodates a range of travelers looking for everything from fine restaurants and high-end shopping to fantastic films and gorgeous beaches.

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  • # 2 in Best Beaches in France
  • # 13 in Best Cheap European Honeymoon Destinations
  • # 20 in Best Places to Visit in France

Best of Cannes

Best hotels in cannes.

  • # 1 in Hotel Barriere Le Majestic Cannes
  • # 2 in Hôtel Martinez
  • # 3 in Carlton Cannes, a Regent Hotel

Hotel Barriere Le Majestic Cannes

Best Things to Do in Cannes

  • # 1 in La Croisette
  • # 2 in Marché Forville
  • # 3 in Casino Barrière Les Princes

tourist center cannes

Popular Tours

Ferry from Cannes to St Tropez

Ferry from Cannes to St Tropez

(156 reviews)

from $ 84.66

Private Customized French Riviera Tour from Port of Cannes 8H

Private Customized French Riviera Tour from Port of Cannes 8H

(52 reviews)

from $ 547.32

Discover the Lérins Islands and the Bay of Cannes by Private Boat

Discover the Lérins Islands and the Bay of Cannes by Private Boat

(55 reviews)

from $ 426.91

Cannes Travel Tips

Best months to visit.

The best time to visit Cannes is from March to May, before the annual film festival and the arrival of summer vacation crowds and hot weather. If you want to save as much money as possible, winter is a great time to visit the city as chilly temperatures in the mid-50s and high 30s yield significantly lower pricing for accommodations . However, you'll want to check that your chosen hotel hasn't closed up for the offseason. Fall is another quiet season in which hotel prices are lower than the spring and summer and the weather is mild, though rainfall is frequent.

Weather in Cannes

Data sourced from the National Climatic Data Center

What You Need to Know

  • Cannes is a walkable city Bring your walking shoes, as many areas, like its historic districts, are best explored on foot.
  • Don't visit in May It's best to skip Cannes any time near the annual film festival when tens of thousands of people visit the area.
  • Bring your wallet Cannes is a haven for upscale shopping with several streets dedicated to high-end brands and stores.

How to Save Money in Cannes

  • Buy a Cote d'Azur Card This card , which starts at 25 euros (about $27), grants holders discounted rates on cultural activities in the area, like theater, film, concerts and more.
  • Hit the beach Cannes offers several public beaches where you can soak up the sun for free.
  • Visit in the offseason A trip to Cannes during the annual film festival is sure to set you back a bundle. Head to this beautiful stretch of France December through March to save on accommodations.

Culture & Customs

Long known as a getaway for celebrities and the wealthy, many things in Cannes are upscale. The city also has a love for film and pays tribute to it around every corner. Because tens of thousands of people visit every May for the international film festival, it maintains an international feel. The town is also a fashion trendsetter and a place to see and be seen. What's more, Cannes boasts a bustling convention center and hosts business events all throughout the year.

It is polite to greet everyone you encounter with a friendly bonjour ("hello") upon arrival, and an au revoir (goodbye) when leaving. Gratuity is generally included in the bill, but it is customary to round the total up or add an extra 5% for extraordinary service. The official currency in France is the euro, and one euro is equal to approximately $1.10 but the euro to U.S. dollar rate often fluctuates, so check the  latest exchange rate  before you go. If you find yourself short on euros, almost all restaurants and hotels also accept major credit cards.

What to Eat

As a coastal town, Cannes boasts fantastic seafood. A classic Cannes dish combines the freshest seafood with vegetables from the south, all bathed in olive oil. The city counts more than 380 restaurants, ranging from hot spots for the rich and famous to brasseries and restaurants serving simpler Provençal cuisine. You'll find them in the city center, along Rue d'Antibes , La Croisette and the old town.

Located in Hôtel Martinez on the Bay of Cannes, La Palme d'Or is a great spot for a special occasion or simply a delicious meal thanks to its location overlooking La Croisette. The restaurant's Michelin-starred chef is known for serving dinner to the jury of the Cannes Film Festival, so you're likely in for a treat. Chef Christian Sinicropi is known for his innovative cuisine with options on the menu like a lamb shoulder tart and local purple asparagus. It also caters to the needs of its Hollywood clientele with vegetarian and vegan menus.

With cuisine inspired by the Mediterranean and Provence, La Môme , located in the Golden Square of Cannes, is best known for dishes like artichoke salad, braised octopus, Vitello Tonnato and ravioli stuffed with egg yolk.

For a slightly more relaxed outing, consider L'Affable Restaurant , a brasserie from Jean-Paul Battaglia just off of the Rue d'Antibes. For about 50 euros (approximately $55), choose from a menu of one appetizer, one main dish (like duck breast or candied lamb), and a dessert. The traveler-approved Bistrot Gourmand offers a similar three-course lunch for less than 30 euros (around $33). If your budget doesn't allow for Michelin-starred meals, consider dining around the Rue Commandant André, which is home to more affordable eateries like Bobo Bistro.

According to the U.S. Department of State , there continues to be credible information about the planning of terrorist attacks in Europe. As a result, you are likely to see police and military presence in public spaces. Like many destinations in Europe, most crime against tourists in Cannes is centered around theft. Pick-pocketing is common, and criminals may also break into rental cars if you leave valuables behind or within view.

Getting Around Cannes

The best way to get around Cannes is on foot and by bus. Cannes boasts a robust public transportation network. A shuttle connects City Hall with the train station and La Croisette . For quicker, but more expensive service, you can hire a taxi, or if you prefer to drive yourself, rent a car from major companies like Sixt, Hertz and Avis France. But keep in mind, you won't be able to drive a car through historic areas where getting around by foot is best. You can also use boats to reach the Lérins Islands or areas like Monaco or Saint-Tropez. Some choose to get around town by bike or Vespa, and there are numerous options to rent bikes while visiting.

There are several ways to reach Cannes, including by car, boat, train or plane. Two airports serve the area: Nice-Côte d'Azur Airport (NCE) and Cannes-Mandelieu (CEQ), both of which you can reach to and from town by shuttle, taxi or car. Cannes is also part of France's train network, and you can reach the city on TGV from Paris or on Trenitalia from Milan , Rome and Venice, Italy .

Entry & Exit Requirements

To visit France, U.S. residents must have a passport that does not expire for at least three months after your planned departure from the country; visas are not required for stays less than 90 days. You must also have at least one blank page in your passport. For more information, visit the U.S. Department of State website .

La Croisette is one of the top attractions in Cannes.

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The Republic of Rose

A California-based travel and lifestyle blog

The Ultimate Guide to Visiting Cannes, France

Ultimate Guide to Cannes, France

When most people think of Cannes, bustling beach clubs and the famous Cannes Film Festival likely come to mind. Cannes is a popular destination along the famous Cote d’Azur in the south of France, somewhere between Saint Tropez and Nice.  Known for its glamour, luxury shops, gourmet restaurants, and famous beaches, Cannes attracts visitors from all over the world.

I was lucky enough to spend a few years outside of Cannes growing up and still think of the Cote d’Azur as a home away from home. Whenever I can, I go back and visit Cannes for a couple of days to enjoy the beach and soak in the incredible south of France.

There are tons of things to do in Cannes and it’s the perfect city to get to know by wandering around.  In this guide, I’ll share all of the best things to see in Cannes to help you plan your trip.

Here’s the ultimate guide to visiting Cannes, France!

How to Get to Cannes, France

How to Get to Cannes

Cannes is located in the South of France, on the French Riviera (also known as the Cote d’Azur). The closest international airport is Nice Côte d’Azur Airport, roughly 20 miles from the center of Cannes. If you’re traveling from another country, this will likely be the easiest way to get to Cannes!

If you are visiting Cannes from another city in France, you’ll be happy to hear that the city is accessible via the SNCF train network, and the TGV runs directly from Paris to Cannes in about 5 hours.

Many people opt to road trip through southern France which is great as it gives you the flexibility to visit so many other destinations along the coast all the way from Provence to northern Italy if you like!

How Many Days Should You Spend in Cannes, France?

The Best Time to Visit Cannes

The best time to visit Cannes depends on your patience with crowds.  The French Riviera becomes very busy during festivals and the summer school holidays, which are most of July and August. Much of May is spent setting up for the Cannes Film Festival and the festival itself. Do not worry, as the entire region has almost 300 days of sunshine to enjoy throughout the year.

If you’re looking for an ideal time to visit with fewer crowds than usual, good weather, and time to enjoy all the sights, late-April to early-May is an excellent time to visit, and September to October is a great time as well.  Both these times allow for nice weather and fewer crowds.

The Best Time to Visit Cannes, France

How Many Days Should You Spend in Cannes, France?

To experience all of the great things to do in Cannes, it is recommended that you spend at least two full days in this beautiful town. This is because so many people visit Cannes in just one day, but giving yourself a full two days to see the city will allow you to walk around at your own pace and truly enjoy Cannes.

Where to Stay in Cannes, France | Le Grand Hotel Cannes

Where to Stay in Cannes

Cannes is known for its large seaside hotels along the Promenade de la Croisette, many of which are luxury stays. But if you’re looking to enjoy the glitz and glamour of Cannes on a budget, there are plenty of more affordable options as well.

  • Le Grand Hotel Cannes : This luxurious hotel has it all.  It offers a retro look with fantastic sea views, extensive gardens to enjoy, and a Michelin-starred restaurant on site. It’s located close to the beach, boasts its beach club, and is a five-minute walk away from the superb shipping of rue d’Antibes. A fantastic hotel in a prime spot!
  • Hôtel Martinez : Known for its’ Art Deco glamour, this recently renovated hotel is located directly on the beach and boasts a two-star Michelin restaurant, a beach club, and a fantastic spa. The hotel boasts 409 coastal-themed rooms, with the Premium Sea View room offering the best experience.
  • Five Seas Hotel : This boutique hotel is only steps away from La Croisette and features special access to a private stretch of sand, a fantastic spa, and a rooftop terrace that features a pool and bar.  This luxurious hotel offers 45 rooms and a comfortable stay with excellent food and drink options.
  • Hotel Verlaine : This hotel is located in the heart of Cannes and is only a few steps from Rue d’Antibes.  With a beautiful Belle époque exterior, you won’t be disappointed once you step into the vibrant interior, where you can relax in the small garden. Rooms are decorated in bold colors and designs.
  • Hôtel Barrière Le Gray d’Albion : This central Cannes hotel channels Art Deco style for the contemporary era. There are restaurants and bars to delight visitors and a beach club in the summer. Leafy La Terrasse, the hotel restaurant, features vegetarian options. The hotel rooms have recently been renovated, with new balconies and better views.
  • Villa Pruly Hotel Cannes Centre : This fashionable hotel is a converted mansion conveniently located between Rue d’Antibes and the Cannes train station.  This beautiful hotel offers several comfortable and brightly decorated rooms with amenities ranging from complimentary continental breakfast, terraces, bathtubs, and soundproofed rooms.
  • Villa Claudia Hotel Cannes : A former 19th-century home is now an 18-room hotel in a convenient location in Cannes.  The Villa Claudia Hotel Cannes is a short walk from Rue d’Antibes and a 10-minute walk from the train station. The villa grounds offer an abundance of outdoor seating, and the hotel features a complimentary breakfast in the breakfast room.
  • Hotel Alexandre III : Another fantastic hotel in a historical building, Hotel Alexandre III, is less than 1000 feet from the beach and features air-conditioned rooms, a private garden, a terrace, and free wifi. Rooms here are soundproofed and come with orthopedic mattresses, and you can reserve rooms with king-sized beds.

The Best Restaurants in Cannes, France

The Best Restaurants in Cannes

The south of France is home to some incredible cuisine and Cannes is a great showcase of that. From casual cafes to fine dining restaurants, there are plenty of different dining options in this city!

  • Fromagerie Ceneri : Fromagerie Ceneri is the only place to shop for dairy products in Cannes.  So, if you’re visiting town and looking for an authentic Fromagerie experience from a master fromager-affineur that has been in business since 1968, Fromagerie Ceneri is your place. 
  • Da Laura : Da Laura is a fantastic Italian restaurant located in the heart of Cannes that boasts a beautiful outdoor space to enjoy your authentic meal. This charming restaurant has years of great reviews on websites such as Yelp and Tripadvisor.
  • B Fire by Mauro Colagreco : Restaurant goers looking for a one-of-a-kind indoor-outdoor experience will enjoy the BFire by Mauro Colagreco restaurant on its sizeable shaded terrace. Enjoy your fantastic meal overlooking the Mediterranean with unique decor and Italian and Argentinian food.
  • La Table du Chef : Located right near Rue d’Antibes, this small restaurant is run by a chef the cooks with local produce and presents a new set menu at dinner. This restaurant is both Michelin-starred and TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice. You can’t go wrong here.
  • Table 22 par Noël Mantel : This restaurant is located in the heart of the tourist area, only a few steps away from Marché Forville.  At Table 22 par Noël Mantel the chef’s team works to produce Provençal dishes for seasonal menus. Don’t miss out on this great French restaurant featuring regional flavors.

Things to do in Cannes, France

→ Pssst! Planning to explore more of the French Riviera? Don’t miss the Ultimate Guide to the French Riviera (all the BEST French Riviera Cities to Visit!).

Things to do in Cannes

With seaside views, charming streets and a plethora of shops and restaurants, there are plenty of things to do in Cannes and its surrounding area.

Beach Club on La Croisette in Cannes, France

La Croisette

Here you’ll find the center of most of the activity in Cannes, this splendid Boulevard de la Croisette, also known as La Croisette. This palm-lined boulevard is full of crowds in the summer, but this is where you’ll find all the beach clubs and excellent views of the sea here.

Rue d’Antibes in Cannes, Francec

Rue d’Antibes

This famous road runs parallel to La Croisette, a few blocks away in the city’s heart. This is the place you want to go if you love to shop. While it’s full of shops, it’s also well known for many historic buildings from the 19th century!

Le Suquet in Cannes, France

Le Suquet is the medieval neighborhood in Cannes, or the old quarter of the town. Visitors will recognize it once they reach the winding, cobbled roads full of local restaurants. This hill is known as the birthplace of Cannes and is my favorite areas to explore!

Best Beach Clubs in Cannes, France

Spend the Day at a Beach Club

One of the best things to do in Cannes is to spend the day at the beach club. There’s nothing better than relaxing in the sun, enjoying the bar, and grabbing a bite to eat. Some of the favorites in Cannes are Hyde Beach Cannes, Palais Stéphanie Beach, and Carlton Beach Club.

Marché Forville in Cannes, France

Marché Forville

Marché Forville is Cannes’ big indoor market, located close to the famous La Croisette boardwalk. You can find all types of fresh fruits and vegetables, fish, and more here. This is one of the top Cannes places to visit as both a tourist and a local, so don’t miss out!

Visit Île Sainte-Marguerite in Cannes, France

Visit Île Sainte-Marguerite

Accessible by a 15-minute ferry ride, Île Sainte-Marguerite is easy to access from Cannes and makes for a perfect day trip. There are a few museums and forts to see on the island, as well as several beaches to relax on, or you could spend the day walking around and exploring!

Boat day in Cannes, France

Spend the day on a boat

Nothing is more quintessential in the South of France than spending a day on a boat.  Many companies offer daily and hourly charters. There are also options to join a group tour of the area for the day.

Day Trip to Mougins from Cannes, France

Day trip to Mougins

Mougins is just a 15-minute drive from Cannes and is a beautiful medieval village surrounded by rolling hills. This well-preserved village offers visitors a fantastic view of the surrounding area. As you wander through the village, you’ll learn why many famous people, including Picasso and Christian Dior, have stayed here.

Tips for Visiting Cannes, France

Tips for Visiting Cannes

  • It’s always helpful to learn a little bit of French before traveling to France. Although many locals in Cannes might know some English at the same time, it’s always good to be prepared and show respect by learning a few key phrases in French.
  • Make sure to bring your water bottle with you. Most cities in France have public water fountains where you can refill your water bottle to stay hydrated. They are located about a foot or two off the ground, so you might not notice them right away!
  • Cannes is a great city for walking around so make sure to pack some comfortable shoes.
  • If you plan to visit Cannes in the summer, be aware of their national holidays on July 14th and August 15th as it can get quite busy in the area, sometimes with festivals taking place. Bastille Day, on July 14th, often is accompanied by a fireworks show on La Croissette!

What to Wear in Cannes

The Ultimate Guide to Visiting Cannes, France

→ Planning to explore more of the French Riviera? Don’t miss the Ultimate Guide to the French Riviera (all the Best French Riviera Cities to Visit!).

How to Spend a Day at Anjuna Beach Club in Eze, France

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The World Was Here First

One Day in Cannes Itinerary: A Day Trip from Nice

Last Updated on February 15, 2024

by Neota Langley

Disclaimer: This article contains affiliate links. That means if you click a link and make a purchase, we may make a small commission. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases. For more information, see our privacy policy.

tourist center cannes

Planning out the perfect one day in Cannes itinerary is one of the highlights of visiting France’s gorgeous Côte d’Azur. The beauty of the French Riviera is that it’s convenient to visit multiple cities in one trip, whether you have your own transport or rely on the excellent public transport links.

Located in the South of France, Cannes is a city perched on the glistening Mediterranean coast. Famous for the Cannes Film Festival, held in May, this city is world-renowned for its glitz and glamour. However, Cannes is not all red carpets, celebrities, luxury yachts and designer boutiques.

It’s also home to a wide range of watersports, traditional markets, sandy beaches and incredible seafood restaurants Cannes is a destination that should be on everybody’s list.  

Table of Contents

How Many Days in Cannes?

Before we dive into the itinerary, you may be wondering how many days to spend in Cannes. The city is smaller than neighbouring Nice, but there is plenty to do. You could easily spend 2 days in Cannes at a more relaxed pace but a day trip will give you enough time to visit the main attractions.

Seeing Cannes in one day is plenty of time to enjoy the best of this vibrant city. Grab your morning coffee at the Gare de Nice-Ville train station and before you know it, the short 35-minute journey will be over.

If you are considering taking a Cannes day trip from Nice, it’s important to carefully plan your day to make the most of your time in this bustling city.

You can tick off the top spots in just one day but don’t forget to keep an eye on the train timetables, it’s easy to lose track of time in such a vibrant city.

Beautiful Cannes

Getting To & Around Cannes

Base yourself in Nice for easy access to Cannes, Antibes, Saint-Tropez and many more. For those with limited time in the South of France, the easiest city to visit as a day trip from Nice is its glamorous neighbour, Cannes.

Nice and Cannes are close neighbours, just 30 km apart, travelling between them is affordable, quick and easy. There are 4 main ways to get to Cannes from Nice, by train, bus, personal vehicle or an organised tour. 

The train is the most efficient way to get to Cannes. Taking just 35 minutes, the trains leave Gare de Nice-Ville station every 40 minutes or so. The last train back to Nice leaves at 10pm so you can really make the most of the evening in Cannes before heading back to your hotel. You can view train schedules here.

There are also direct buses that you can take from Nice to Cannes which take around 30-40 minutes. Keep in mind that this option is not as frequent as the train.  You can view bus schedules here.

If you are on a tight budget, you can take a city bus for a very low fee but be aware, it can take much longer to reach your destination due to all the stops and the traffic along the way. Allow at least an hour and a half to make this journey. 

Whilst you don’t need a car to make the most of the French Riviera, if you have one with you in Nice you can drive to Cannes in just 40 minutes.

The downside of driving your own vehicle is, of course, the parking. There are a number of enclosed multi-storey car parks around Cannes so you will be able to find a space but at €3-4 an hour, this is one of the more expensive options. You can browse rental car options here.

Although you will end up with less time to explore Cannes itself, taking an organised tour is an excellent way to see the French Riviera. One option is this full-day tour that visits Cannes along with other stops on the Cotes d’Azur, such as Èze, Monaco , Antibes and Saint-Paul de Vence

Once you have arrived in Cannes, it is easy to navigate between the main attractions on foot. For example, walking from the Croisette to Le Suquet is only 600m and the ferry across to Lérins Islands is just at the start of the iconic boulevard.

There are also dedicated cycle lanes throughout the city and hiring a bike is a popular way to get around. However, if you are only here for one day, you won’t need to venture away from the city centre so navigating on foot is the best option.

If you happen to have more time in Cannes and want to explore the outskirts of the city there is an extensive network of affordable shuttle buses. These shuttle buses cover the main hotspots in and around the city and can be an extremely affordable way to take a sightseeing tour.

There is even a convertible shuttle bus that runs along the Croisette if you want to see the sights with the wind in your hair for a low price.

Yachts in Cannes port

One-Day Cannes Itinerary

There are so many things to do in Cannes and it has something for everyone, whether you are there to soak up the glitz and glamour or enjoy the neighbouring haven of the Lérins Islands.

Promenade de la Croisette

Kick off your one day in Cannes with the iconic Promenade de la Croisette (also known as the Boulevard de la Croisette), famously home to the Palais des Festivals et des Congrès, where the Cannes Film Festival is held.

Under the shade of pine and palm trees, this boardwalk stretches for 3 km along the golden sands, coastline, Vieux Port and azure sea of the Mediterranean.

However you arrive in Cannes, the famous Promenade de la Croisette is easy to reach on foot. Cannes train station is mere 350 metres north of the iconic boulevard and there are bus stops along the seafront. The Croisette is the perfect place to soak in the atmosphere of Cannes.

The street itself is dotted with designer boutiques, chic rooftop bars, modern restaurants and hotels fit for A-list celebrities.

Of course, make sure to stop off at a local pastry shop to grab a Tarte Tropezienne, a famous pastry originating from the French Riviera. Consisting of halved brioche filled with lemon and vanilla pastry cream and topped with a generous helping of sugar. Perhaps a more decadent breakfast option but one you will certainly never forget.

If you’re a film buff, don’t miss a stop by the Palais des Festivals, which is where the Cannes Film Festival takes place every year. You can take a picture on the famous red carpet and see the handprints of movie stars outside the building. 

Boulevard de la Croisette in Cannes

Next, head into the heart of the picturesque old town of Cannes, known as Le Suquet. This historic district full of winding cobbled streets is perched on a hill with far-reaching views across the sea. You can also get a lovely view of Cannes itself here.

Wander through the local markets, nestled amongst the traditional buildings. Discover beautifully handmade crafts and souvenirs, including one of the oldest shops in Cannes, the Tesi hat shop.

There are beautiful winding streets to explore and also some interesting historic sites, such as the lovely Église Notre-Dame d’Espérance – a beautiful 17-Century church.

Le Suquet is full of charming restaurants and cafes so this is the perfect spot to stop off for some lunch. Try Le Troquet à Soupes on Rue du Marché Forville for some of the city’s best soups and light bites. This affordable lunch spot is a journey through French cuisine, the owner will happily take you through the dishes, ingredients and the story of the local ingredients used.

The French onion soup is incredibly moreish and they even do a vegan version.  

Notre-Dame de l'Esperance Church in Cannes

Museum of World Explorations

After lunch, head over to the Museum of World Explorations (formerly known as the Musée de la Castre) situated atop the Suquet hill, this museum dominates the city of Cannes.

Climbing up the mediaeval tower rewards visitors with breathtaking vistas of the bay across to the Lérins islands. A remarkable assortment of paintings, artworks, and archaeological artefacts awaits visitors inside the castle and the adjacent chapel.

The museum boasts an extensive collection of antiquities, with a particular focus on artefacts from the Mediterranean and the Middle East. Don’t miss the iconic Cannes sign for a photo as you wander back into the city.

Lérins Islands

A trip to Cannes would not be complete without a visit to the Lérins Islands. This natural oasis is an archipelago made up of 4 islands, 2 of which you can visit from Cannes.

Sainte Marguerite with a military fortress now housing a museum or Saint Honorat, home to an active 5th-century monastery where you can sample the wine and liquors produced by the monks who inhabit the island. A budget-friendly 15-minute ferry crossing will whisk you away to another world, away from the hustle and bustle. You can buy tickets here .

Sainte Marguerite is the larger of the two islands, offering meandering trails through the fragrant pine and eucalyptus forests and out to hidden rocky coves. This is the perfect place to discover your own corner of the Mediterranean for a quick dip in the glistening waters or a picnic on the rocks.

The island has a rich history to discover within Fort Royal, home to the Royal Musee de la Mer. This 17th-century fort is famous for housing the ‘Man in the Iron Mask’ – a prisoner during the time of Louis XIV. You may already know the story from the 1998 film, The Man in the Iron Mask with Leonardo Dicaprio.

Saint Honorat is the second largest island in the archipelago, inhabited for several centuries by the monks of the Lérins Abbey who devote themselves to prayer and the production of wine, liqueurs and olive oil.

You can enter the fortified monastery free of charge but it is highly recommended to take a guided tour of the vineyards and chapel ruins before participating in a wine tasting. There are 7 world-renowned wines produced here using ancient methods. It’s a wine-tasting tour unlike any other.

Fort Royal on Sainte-Marguerite Island

Evening in Cannes

After a busy day exploring the city and its surroundings, it’s time for some well-earned dinner. After alighting from the ferry, stroll back along the Croisette in the golden evening light to discover some of the fresh seafood Cannes is known for. 

Dining along the Croisette is a truly unforgettable experience. This iconic promenade is lined with some of the best restaurants in the world boasting unrivalled views across the shore of the Cotes d’Azur. 

Cannes is known for its vibrant nightlife, an energetic city that never sleeps. You can follow dinner by visiting one of the many chic rooftop bars and clubs along the Croisette before heading back to Nice.

Have 2 to 3 days in Cannes?

If you are lucky enough to have more time in Cannes, you can soak in this city at a more relaxed pace. Although we have covered the highlights in just one day, with extra time you will be able to enjoy the hidden gems as well as the must see attractions.

Marché Forville, Cannes’ large covered produce market is just a stone’s throw from the Croisette boulevard. The sights and smells alone are a sensory adventure. You can find fresh fruits and vegetables, locally caught fish and of course, pop up vendors selling delightful street food.

Take a beach day, relax beside the sea with a good book and a glass of rosé. There are two options for lounging on the beach along the Croisette, find one of the public beaches in Cannes or visit a private beach club (such as the Carlton Beach Club).

Both have their own pros and cons but if you really want to experience Cannes, you can rent a sunlounger, towel and an umbrella from a beach club for €30-€40 per day. Although this may seem like an unnecessary expense, it comes with the added benefit of the beach club food and drinks brought directly to you.

All you need to do is soak in the golden sunshine, take a dip in the Mediterranean sea and unwind.

You could also give watersports a go. There are plenty of options for watersports along the beachfront, from kayaking and paddleboarding to jet skiing and snorkelling. Hire a boat for the day to explore the hidden coves and sandy beaches along the coast or get the adrenaline pumping and try out parasailing.

Activities range from full-day excursions to hire by the hour so there is something to suit every budget.  

It comes as no surprise that Cannes is known for its theatre scene. Visit Les Arcades Cinema or Cinema Olympia to catch the latest Hollywood blockbuster or perhaps enjoy an independent French film.     

Sandy beaches in Cannes

Where to Stay in Cannes

Villa Claudia Hotel Cannes – Located in the centre of Cannes, this 3-star hotel is an excellent place to stay in this coastal French town. There are several rooms of varying sizes available, daily breakfast and a gorgeous private garden to enjoy.

Hotel Splendid – This upmarket hotel is an excellent choice for those who are looking for a luxury stay in Cannes and aren’t too concerned about their budget. There are a number of lovely rooms to choose from along with all of the amenities you would expect from this type of hotel.

La Bastide de l’Oliveraie – This is another excellent luxury option in Cannes, particularly if you’re looking to stay in a suite rather than a standard room. There are lots of choices of rooms and suites which all come with spa access.

Not quite what you’re looking for? Click here to browse more Cannes hotels!

Cannes offers something entirely different to Nice whether that is for a day trip or a long weekend. If you can visit both cities during one trip, you will gain an entirely new perspective of the incredibly varied, Côtes d’Azur. 

Are you planning to visit Cannes? Have any questions about this itinerary? Let us know in the comments!

tourist center cannes

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Neota Langley

About Neota Langley

Neota is a writer for The World Was Here First. Born and bred in Cornwall, she can usually be found with hiking boots on, ready to embark on an adventure. For the last 6 years, she has travelled throughout Europe in her self-built campervan with her trusty canine companion, Ivy. She loves exploring France, the Nordics and spending time in Alpine destinations.

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Your Cannes travel guide: What you Need to know before you visit

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Cannes travel guide

Cannes is one of the most iconic cities associated with the French Riviera and the Cote d’Azur. What was once just a calm fishing town has today turned into a cozy city full of life and world-famous events that are arranged throughout the year such as the iconic Cannes film festival. Cannes is beautifully situated along the French Riviera , with the stunning azure blue Mediterranean by its side, and has large beaches, which attracts plenty of people who want to soak the Mediterranean sun in the pleasant climate during the summer months

Despite the fact that Cannes isn’t a big city , it draws a lot of visitors and tourists every year. It is a city which has a lot to offer for everyone, from relaxing on the beach to going to attending events or going sightseeing to experience everything this city has to offer.

Cannes is a city that has a prestigious and luxurious reputation, with some of the most stunning hotels and buildings along the seafront road, the Boulevard de la Croisette. Every year, it draws lots of celebrities, and many of the rich and famous have Cannes as their summertime hideout spot for experiencing everything Cannes and the French Riviera has to offer.

Cannes has lots to offer, and before you go here, you should know a thing or two about the city, the best things to do here, everything it has to offer, and all the practical information that people aren’t telling you. Here is the ultimate Cannes travel guide to help prepare you for your next visit to Cannes and to make your visit as enjoyable as possible.

In this Cannes travel guide, we’ll share everything you need to know for your next visit. Dig in!

Cannes travel guide: Where is Cannes?

Cannes is situated on the southeastern coast of France, along the coast that is referred to as the French Riviera or Cote d’Azur. It is the gateway to many different visit-worthy places, and from here, you can access some of the most popular cities on the French Riviera, such as Saint-Tropez, Nice, and Monaco. Because of its location, many people choose Cannes as their base for their French Riviera adventures.

Where is Cannes, France

Cannes travel guide: Why Go to Cannes?

Cannes attracts millions of visitors each year, so clearly, the people have spoken that Cannes is a place worth visiting. But what makes it so special? Well, first off, the climate of Cannes is incredibly attractive. It sees about three thousand sun hours a year and has mild winters and warm summers.

It offers activities for everyone, and is full of life, yet, can, despite this, offer a relaxing experience for those that seek a place to relax and enjoy the French Riviera weather. It truly is a city of luxury and prestige, with stunning buildings and glamorous walk-on the iconic Croisette, where sipping wine in the sun is a culture.

Nightclubs, casinos, or days on the beach, Cannes has it all. For those looking to enjoy a stay out of the ordinary and of top-class, Cannes won’t give you a hard time to spend your money, with luxurious hotels, restaurants, clubs, and beaches as far as the eye can see. For this reason, Cannes has for a long time been popular among Europe’s elite.

Cannes apartment

How to get to and around Cannes and the French Riviera

Cannes is easily accessible with all means of transportation. Getting to Cannes by plane Cannes is blessed with not one but two airports both less than one hour away. The largest airport Nice Côte d’Azur Airport is located just 27 kilometers from the city center of Cannes and is the second most trafficked airport in France.

From Nice Airport, there are shuttles that depart regularly, getting you to Cannes in around 45 minutes.

The shuttles from the airport run every half hour between 8 am and 8 pm.

For more information about Nice airport, you can visit the official Nice airport website . The cost of this airport bus shuttle is 17,50 €* and round trip: 28,50 €. The line is 210. Tel. : + 33 (0) 4 93 39 11 39 Toll free: 0800 06 01 06

Taxis crowd Nice airport like in most airports, so getting a taxi from Nice airport to Cannes won’t be an issue. Taking a taxi from Nice airport will cost everything from €70 to about €110 depending on the season and taxi company.

Nice airport to translation

There’s another airport that’s situated even closer to Cannes which is Cannes-Mandelieu airport. This is the is the second business airport after Paris-Le Bourget. The airport is located just 15 minutes from the Cannes city center. It does, however, almost only take business flights and private jets. For more information about Cannes-Mandelieu airport , you can visit their website.

Cannes travel guide: getting to Cannes by boat

Since Cannes is situated right by the Mediterranean, it is possible to travel to Cannes by boat. Cannes has two harbors: Le Vieux port (the old port), and Port Pierre Canto, which is a more modern harbor.

Cannes welcome plenty of cruise ships every year, and before coming to Cannes, you’ll pass the Lérins Islands that are located just outside of Cannes, and you’ll be welcomed by n absolutely stunning view with the mountains as the backdrop. There are currently 4 companies share the maritime transport market: Horizon, Riviera Lines, Trans Côte d’Azur and Planaria.

If you need more information about traveling to Cannes by boat, visit  www.118000.fr/v_cannes_06/c_transport-maritime If you wish to travel to the Lérins Islands, doing so will only take 15 minutes or so, and the boats depart regularly from the old harbor.  For more information about traveling to the Lérins islands, visit:

  • Compagnie Riviera Lines: eng.riviera-lines.com
  • Horizon: www.horizon-iles-lerins-cannes.com
  • Planaria: http://cannes-ilesdelerins.com/site/index.php/en/
  • Trans Côte d’Azur: http://www.trans-cote-azur.co.uk/

BY TRAIN Thanks to its two train stations (Cannes Centre and La Bocca), the city is well serviced by TGV, Corail trains, and the express trains that connect it to all the regions of France and the largest European cities. This mode of transportation lets you admire the fantastic landscapes along the sea and at the foot of the Estérel Mountains.

More information on www.idtgv.com/en or http://uk.voyages-sncf.com/en/ . The TER also lets you familiarize yourself with the whole region of Saint-Raphael in Monaco, passing by Antibes, Cagnes Sur Mer, Biot, Nice, and Villefranche Sur Mer.

More information on  www.ter-sncf.com/paca or www.termobile.fr .

This is the French Riviera train line with all of the approximate travel times by train from Nice to…

  • Villefranche-Sur-Mer:   less than 10 minutes
  • Monaco:   25 minutes
  • Ventimiglia, Italy: 1 hour
  • Antibes:  20 minutes
  • Cannes:  40 minutes
  • Grasse:    1 hour 15 minutes
  • Saint Raphael:   1 hour 20 minutes

Here are the stations that the train stops at:

Train stations on the French Riviera

As the far majority of the train rail is laid along the coast, taking the train will provide you with some absolutely stunning views. Oh, and the vast majority of trains that operate the linear double-deckers, which means they provide even better views of the Mediterranean.

Cannes has great train connections via TGV , Corail train and express train which link the city to all French regions and the major cities of Europe, making it quite easily accessible by train.

Travel by bus

If you wish to travel around Cannes and to the surrounding cities on the French Riviera, taking the bus is a good alternative. Cannes has a Palm Bus network which services the Cannes, Le Cannet, Mandelieu-La Napoule, Mougins, and Théoule-Sur-Mer.

Taking this bus will allow you to get around the town of Cannes effortlessly, including neighboring cities such as Antibes.

The price for a single trip ticket is 1.50 € and connection is authorized within 59 minutes. If you wish to purchase a 10-trip card, the price is 10 €. For more information but the Palm buses, visit the Palm bus website: palmbus.fr

Travel by car

Because of the beautiful roads of the corniche and along the beautiful coastline on the French Riviera, renting a car is a popular activity among tourists. Furthermore, because the demand for cars is high, there are a large number of car rentals in Cannes.

For more information about which car rentals you have to choose from and where you’ll find them, read our complete list of car rentals in Cannes.

Cannes and the French Riviera is known to have great roads, especially the motorways. Cannes is connected to the larger European cities by the highway A8 Do note that on the highways, there are tolls, so have cash or card ready.

Toll charges on the Cote d’Azur

  • If you take the A7 from Montpellier to Aix-en-Provence, the tool will cost €9.40.
  • Taking the A54 from Aix-en-Provence to Toulon costs €7.60.

The total cost of this will, therefore, be €17.

  • If you take the A7 from Lyon to Aix-en-Provence, it will cost you €23.50.
  • Taking the A8 Toulon route to the Italian border costs €11.30.

These roads are for the people who need a Cannes travel guide because they plan on getting to Cannes with a road trip. Most foreign visitors, however, do not travel to Cannes by car as it can take a long time, but instead, they fly to Nice and then they rent a car.

This is why it can be good to know the road tolls around the French Riviera as well:

  • Nice to Menton means taking the A8 and paying those toll charges. The cost is €2.20
  • Nice to Cannes using the A8: €2.90
  • Nice to Aix-en-Provence using the A8:  €16.70
  • Nice to Frejus using the A8: €5.80
  • Nice to Marseille using the eA8 and A7: €19.60

If you have rented a car for multiple days,  you need parking, and you’ll be happy to hear that there are plenty of parking lots in Cannes, but most of them are paid parking. Since listing all the parking in this Cannes travel guide would leave us here all day, I recommend you to take a look at our Cannes parking guide where we list all the parking spots in Cannes .

9,200 parking spaces are available, including 7,000 in underground car parks. 2,320 places are for two-wheelers. In the 5 car parks located in the city center, the first hour of parking is free.

Download the list of Cannes car parks here.

Distances to major cities by car from Cannes:

  • Paris 950 km
  • Milan 320 km
  • Geneva 630 km
  • Barcelona 670 km
  • Rome 710 km
  • Munich 810 km
  • Brussels 1220 km
  • Amsterdam 1400 km

TaxI is not only available from Nice airport but throughout the whole of Cannes. If you use Uber, it is also available and the supply of cars is quite big, especially during the summer months. Uber is a popular option and often much more seamless than walking to the bus station and waiting for the bus or calling for a taxi.

Furthermore, you don’t need to carry around cash. Be prepared, however, that the cost of the taxi can quickly rise, especially during the summer season, when there’s a lot of traffic in particular.

There are, like in most cities, many different taxi companies operating in Cannes, but Taxi Cannes is one of the most popular. For regular taxis, the taximeter starts at € 2.35 and then it costs approximately € 3.00 per half-mile. Often times, traveling by car can often take a long time – much longer than traveling by train during the summer months when there’s a lot of traffic. This is why the train is often a good idea if your destination demands going through lots of traffic by car (or even by bus).

By helicopter

At the old port of Cannes, in the part known as Suquet, between 2 lighthouses, you’ll find a public helipad.

You can take a helicopter from Cannes to a number of different destinations, with Nice airport and Monaco being the most common ones. Furthermore, you can also go on a sightseeing helicopter tour.

Tel. : + 33 (0)4 93 39 25 56 [email protected]

Getting around by foot in Cannes is both simple, and allows you to see much more of the stunning scenery and buildings Cannes has to offer, compared to when taking the bus or car around town. By foot, you can really experience the French Riviera atmosphere. There are plenty of delightful pedestrianized streets, with the Croisette in particular.

Cannes travel guide: weather in Cannes

Average temperature in Cannes

The winters in Cannes are mild, and rainfall is relatively low. The most humid season in Cannes is, as you can see, between October and November.

Because of the wonderful weather during the summer months, this is also a time when the beaches of Cannes are packed and plenty of tourists have found their way here. Cannes especially see a lot of people crowding Cannes in August and the beginning of September, as this is the time when the Frenchmen get their vacations.

Cannes travel guide: Things To Do In Cannes

If you’re going to Cannes, you’re probably wondering about things you can do there and the things that are worth visiting. The good news is that Cannes has, as mentioned earlier, something for everyone, which makes it a city that everyone, no matter age. interests, or budget.

Stroll the Croisette

There are some things in Cannes that are so closely associated with the city that everyone who visits needs to do them. Walking on and experiencing the Croisette is certainly one of them. The beach walk along the beach in Cannes is the most iconic beach walk on the whole French Riviera after the Promenade des Anglais in Nice.

Complete Cannes travel guide

Enjoy the Cannes beaches

Cannes is known to have some amazing beaches, and it is also considered to be the city that has the best, or at some of the best beaches on the whole French Riviera.

In this Cannes travel guide, including the beaches is a given, because many people come here for that exact reason. At least in the summer. If you visit Cannes during the summer months, you’ll notice that Cannes is a popular beach place, because the beaches will be absolutely packed by people who are enjoying the Mediterranean sun.

Beach in Cannes, France

Cannes beach is blessed to have beautiful soft sand, which is cleaned and has new sand added every year. This is one of the most appealing factors to the beaches of Cannes, compared to the beaches of Nice.

Visit the Port

If you enjoy large yachts, this is the place to go when in Cannes. Cannes welcomes many celebrities and wealthy people with their yachts every year, and they stop and the port of Cannes, maybe for the day or for a longer period of time.

Cannes yachts

Festival De Cannes

This is undoubtedly the most iconic thing about Cannes. At the Place de festival, the iconic film festival is held every year, and this makes this place a popular tourist attraction of the people who come to Cannes.

In this Cannes travel guide, the place where the film festival takes place every year is a must-visit. Why not snap a photo when standing on the red carpet which all of the celebrities walk on?

Visit the old town

Cannes may be known for glitz and glamour, but that is not all there is to it. In fact, Cannes has an old part by the name of Le Suquet, and this is the part of Cannes which gave birth to the Cannes you know today when Cannes was just a modest fishing village.

Cannes old town

The old town can be found above the old port of Cannes and above the place de la festival. There’s also a museum here by the name of place the Castle. For a complete Cannes travel guide on things to do here, take a look at the complete list of things to do in Cannes .

Iles De Lerins

If you want to explore the surrounding areas, visiting the Iles De Learns should definitely be a part of your Cannes plans. The Iles de Lérins is a group of four islands located a mere 15 minutes by boat from the Cannes Croisette, with ferries departing from the old port of Cannes regularly, several times per hour. Cannes is a city that has a high pace, but since none of the Lérins islands are inhabited, except for Saint Honorat which is inhabited by monks who live in the monastery there. The islands offer amazing nature and give you peace and calmness from the otherwise crowded and hectic Cannes.

The two largest islands of the four are Sainte-Marguerite and Saint Honorat. The islands have a few restaurants, and also offers great picnic and swimming spots if you want to enjoy the beaches here. This makes these islands ataractic for if you want to enjoy a day on the beach, but do so in calmness rather than crowding with all of the people in Cannes

To learn more about the Lérins islands, you can read our complete article about the islands .

Cannes travel guide: shopping

If you plan on going shopping when visiting Cannes, you’ve come to the right place. Cannes is notoriously known for being a luxury resort and a hideout for the rich and famous, and this is the reason why, along the Boulevard de la Croisette, you’ll find the finest shops of them all – luxury brands as far as the eye can see. Gucci, Prada, Hérmes, Dior, Rolex, just to name few. But don’t be frightened if you have a limited budget.

Cannes luxury stores

Here, you’ll find all of the world-famous brands that you can find all over the world, such as Zara, Mango, Pull & Bear, and much more. Apart from the world-famous brands, the shopping street is also known for having lots of French shops, cafes, and restaurants. For shopping, Cannes really has everything.

If you’d like to go shopping traditional French style, you have to go to Forville market. This is where the locals go shopping locally produced products, with the main focus on traditional French products and locally grown commodities such as olive oil, vegetables, spices, and fruit. You’ll find the Forville market by following Rue Meynadier walking towards the old town, on your way to Rue Louis Blanc.

The market takes place every week, from Tuesday to Sunday. Lastly, on Rue Meynadier which is a parallel street to Rue d’Antibes, you’ll find a place where lots of local products are sold. This includes everything from local souvenirs such as bags, food, clothes, and much more.

Cannes travel guide: nightlife

If you’re in Cannes and want to experience the nightlife, you’re in the right place. In Cannes, the parties are known for continuing late at night, and this also includes beach clubs during the summer. Cannes has quite a wide selection of beach clubs, bars, and everything in between. There are exclusive and expensive bars, but also more laid-back and chill bars as well.

Baoli is one of the most trendy and exclusive clubs in Cannes, which attracts plenty of celebrities each year. It is a lounge bar and club which is open late until the early morning, and Baoli also offers great food as well. Baoli gives you the opportunity to either sit in the middle of the party or, sit in the more relaxing garden area among the palm trees. Address : Port Canto, Boulevard de la Croisette, Cannes, France.

Gotha Club is situated on the point of Cannes, in Palm Beach. The club is only open during summer and the film festival, however, when it is open, it draws a lot of people. Gotha is notoriously known for having some of the world’s largest artists, such as Tyga, A$ap Rocky, Justin Bieber, and Lil Wayne.

If you’re lucky, you’ll see celebrities here, and that you will is not very unlikely. The club is immensely popular and is open every day from 9th of July to the 30th of August. Address : Place Franklin Roosevelt, Cannes.

Palais Club

Palais Club is turning into one of the trendiest nightclubs in Cannes. It is only open in July and August, however, which are the two busiest months in Cannes. World famous DJs and artists have performed here, such as David Guetta, Snoop Dog, and Chris Brown. The club is open until early in the morning and has a 1,500 square meter rooftop terrace which offers a stunning view.

Address : Palais des Festivals, La Croisette, Cannes.

Cannes travel guide: Eating and drinking in Cannes

The French Riviera is notoriously known for its rosé wine, and wine is nothing that you’ll run short of when in Cannes. Furthermore, the Riviera is also known for its exquisite Mediterranean cuisine. Eating out in Cannes can be quite expensive though. This is especially if you eat on restaurants that are situated along the Boulevard de la Croisette. Generally speaking, the farther inland you get from the Croisette, the cheaper the restaurants get. That does not, however, have to mean that the food is any worse.

The food standard is quite high in Cannes, but there are always some restaurants that charge more than the quality their food holds. Despite the fact that the seafront restaurants in Cannes are expensive, they tend to draw a lot of people, because of the great view, and many people find that the view and the location compensate for the more expensive food.

There are lots of top-class restaurants in Cannes, and if you want top class, you need to be prepared so you don’t drop your jaw when seeing the prices. Here are just some of the many top-rated restaurants in Cannes:

  • La Palme d’Or
  • Contact: 0033 492 98 74 14;  cannesmartinez.grand.hyatt.fr
  • Contact: 00 33 493 38 15 45;  grand-hotel-cannes.com
  • Le Roof, Five Seas Hotel
  • Contact: 00 33 463 36 05 05; fiveseashotel.com
  • Table 22 by Mantel
  • Contact: 00 33 493 39 13 10;  restaurantmantel.com
  • Bistrot Gourmand
  • Contact: 00 33 493 68 72 02;  bistrotgourmandcannes.fr

There’s a great pride in the French cuisine from the Frenchmen, and this means that many restaurants are strange to welcoming new, non-french dishes into their menus. That is not to say that no restaurant is serving international dishes, though.

Moules Frites is a traditional French, Mediterranean dish that is highly popular in Cannes, and you’ll see plenty of people eating it. Crepes, which is a sort of pancake is also eaten a lot here.

Cannes travel guide: where should you stay?

Despite Cannes being notoriously known for being expensive, luxurious, and exclusive, you can still find places to stay at, whether it be on a hotel or renting an apartment, in all price ranges and for all budgets. This lovely studio apartment , for example.

The selection of luxurious five-star hotels in Cannes is large, and as you’d expect, many of the most iconic five-star hotels can be found along the Croisette, right at the waterfront. This includes hotels like Martinez, Carlton, and JW Mariott. As you can imagine, though, these hotels are expensive.

The range of apartments to rent is quite large, however, don’t take for granted that there’s always apartments available, because during summer, finding an apartment is very hard. At the same time, renting apartments in last minute normally means you’ll have to pay more than when booking in advance. If you want to have an experience out of the ordinary and experience a top-class luxury hotel, some of the top five-star hotels in Cannes are:

Grand Hyatt Cannes Hotel Martinez

Hotel Martinez is situated right at the Croisette, facing the Mediterranean sea. Martinez has 409 luxury rooms, and in 2017, an extensive renovation of the hotel begun, including a remaking of the entrance and outside the area.

Hotel Martinez Cannes

Carlton Intercontinental

Carlton it the most iconic hotel in Cannes. It has been featured in many films and is often the go-to hotel for many celebrities when staying in Cannes.

Cannes beach clubs

JW Mariott is situated on the Boulevard de La Croisette and attracts plenty of celebrities every year.

Le Grand Hotel

A five-star hotel loved on the seafront of Cannes.

Le Grand Hotel Cannes, France

Hôtel Barrière Le Majestic Cannes

Since this hotel is right across the street from the iconic Palais du festival, it is the natural choice for many celebrities during the Cannes film festival. This is a top-class hotel in Cannes that offers an amazing experience and stunning views. For a complete list of five-star hotels in Cannes, read this article .

Cheaper alternatives for accommodation in Cannes

Most people who come to Cannes don’t want to break their bank by living in a luxurious five-star hotel. Therefore, they might aim for choosing a cheaper alternative Cheap hostels can be found in Cannes that offer simple rooms and a place to stay for the night. Hostels are much cheaper than the regular hotels in Cannes, but of course, the standard is lower. Another highly popular alternative for finding accommodation in Cannes is Airbnb. This has become more and more common for people to use when looking for accommodation in Cannes and the selection of all types of housing is quite wide.

Cannes travel guide: Good To Know About Cannes

Before going to any place, you want to know about the practical things that can be good to know. In fact, that might be the reason you’re here at this Cannes travel guide in the first place.

Driving a car

If you’re driving on motorways in the Alpes Maritimes, have in mind that the maximum speed is 110kph, not 130 which the sign on the airport says, and thus makes some people believe.

According to the law, you need to have a yellow jacked inside of your car as well as a warning triangle. If you rent a car, it is especially important that you have these with you. Furthermore, when renting a car, make sure that there is a Crit’Air sticker in the window.

Passport & Visa

France is situated in Europe and is one of the countries within the Schengen agreement. This means that you can spend 90 days without a visa in France with a valid ID-card or passport. Visitors that come from the US, Australia, Canada and New Zealand can also enter France for 90 days without a visa, but they must carry a valid passport during the whole trip.

All other tourists and visitors to Cannes that do not fall under any of these categories need to get a tourist visa. These can be obtained from the French embassy in your home country.

Cannes travel guide: Electricity

In Cannes, they use  220 volts. Whole France uses the so-called European plug with has two plugs. There are travel adapters available so that you can easily get electricity when needed.

Despite what many tourists believe, the tap water in Cannes is actually drinkable. In fact, the tap water actually holds a high standard and quality, and regularly it wins prizes in France. Even though the water is high-quality, it does have a touch of chlorine taste, and the Frenchmen tend to prefer mineral water.

The mineral water is immensely taxed in France, at the source. In fact, it costs 0.54 euro per hectolitre with an additional tax of 0.58 euro per hectolitre which then goes to the local authority where the water is produced. This helps raise 20 million euros for them.

Cannes travel guide: Currency and debit cards

The currency in Franc is Euro. Throughout Cannes, you’ll find plenty of ATMs for when in need of cash, however, the vast majority of restaurants accept credit card. Having some euros with you is a good idea, though, because you never know when you’re at a place which doesn’t accept credit card.

If you want to avoid costs and exchange fees, you can get a credit card that is suited for travel and being used internationally.

Internet and mobile in Cannes

Wifi can be found at most restaurants, bars, cafés, and hotels throughout Cannes, just ask for the wifi password. If you don’t need internet that much, you’ll manage just fine using the wifis that are available in the different places you stop at.

When in Cannes, you can buy a special SIM-card on various local phone stores and then load it with calls and internet data that you can use during your stay.

Animals to be cautious of

There are a few animals that you want to be a little careful with when in Cannes. Fortunately, there aren’t really deadly animals here or common that poisonous snakes attack (because there aren’t a lot).

There can be jellyfishes in the waters, but generally, the jellyfishes aren’t that many. If you get stung by a jellyfish, rub the affected parts with sand gently. Then, if you can, apply vinegar. These are available from various kiosks an restaurants.

If you wash with fresh water, you’ll activate the stings, so make sure you only wash with seawater. Afterward, make sure you keep the affected area out of the sun, and if needed, see a doctor.

In French, mouettes, these aren’t dangerous, but especially on the Croisette and the closest water you get, they might fly above you and take a dump. Have in mind that it is actually illegal to feed them.

Mosquito bites

In French, moustiques . To protect yourself from mosquito bites, you can rub your skin with insect repellent, geranium leaves, mint or garlic. If you get bitten, you can apply vinegar or Dettol, as the latter takes away the itch.

In French requins, these are, fortunately not that common around Cannes and on the French Riviera.  A shark attack is extremely rare on the French Riviera, however, there have been sharks that have been allegedly spotted, for example in 2010 when lifeguards instated a swim ban after seeing what they thought was a shark.

There are 47 shark species in the Mediterranean sea. In the highly unlikely event that you’d encounter a shark, the risk of it attacking is even smaller. Therefore, be calm and don’t panic. Get away from the shark and get out of the water, not touching it.

If you aren’t hydrated during a heatwave and spend lots of time outside, it might get dangerous. During a Heatwave , or Vague de chaleur, make sure you drink a generous amount of water every 15 minutes even if you aren’t thirsty. You can also drink other hydrating drinks as well. Eating fresh fruit and vegetables is also a good idea to help replace mineral salts that you lose when sweating.

To protect yourself from the gazing sun, make sure you use sunscreen, sunglasses, and wear a hat. You should be especially careful with children, and really, during the middle of the day, they should avoid the beach completely. A heatwave is defined, on the French Riviera, as when the temperature is a minimum of 24 degrees at night and at least 31 degrees census during the day over a period of three days.

Cannes hospital

Cannes hospital

If you come to Cannes, make sure you bring your European health card. The charges will be drawn, but you can then claim the money back, normally by your insurance company. If you try to claim it through the French health service, it is a lengthy task.

Cannes travel guide: Police in Cannes

In Cannes, there are two police organizations. The police Municipal and police National. If you want to report any stolen property, pay parking fines etc, you go to the national police station. This is situated at the corner of ave de Grasse and the Voie Rapide.

If you need to go to the main police municipal police station, you’ll find it at the side of the bus station.  Furthermore, there are also small police offices throughout Cannes in residential areas. Cannes is quite heavily protected and guarded by police to make the tourists feel safe, so when walking in the city, you’ll see police officers quite often.

Cannes travel guide: general information

  • Population in Cannes: 72607 inhabitants
  • Population Density in Cannes: 3701 per km2
  • Name of Inhabitants: Cannois or Cannoises
  • Région: Provence-Alpes-Côte-d’Azur
  • Postal Code in Cannes: 06400

Useful Emergency Numbers

  • Tourist office +33 (0) 4 92 99 84 22
  • Fire: dial 18
  • Ambulance: dial 15
  • Police: dial 17
  • Single European emergency call  112
  • Medical – Samu  15
  • Homeless Hotline  115
  • Drugs & Alcohol Hotline  113                                                                                            
  • Riviera Medical Services – English speaking service:  0493 26 12 70
  • Sea or Lake Rescue 1 616
  • Child Abuse Hotline  119

Transportation information in Cannes

For more information about transportation in Cannes, visit the following websites:

  • www.cannes-destination.fr/infos-pratiques-cannes/acces-cannes
  • www.cannes.com/fr/cadre-de-vie/transports/se-deplacer-dans-cannes.html
  • Cannes travel guide: websites of museums and other sites in Cannes
  • Centre d’art La Malmaison: http://www.cannes.com/fr/culture/centre-d-art-la-malmaison.html
  • Musée de la Castre: http://www.cannes.com/fr/mairie/annuaire-pratique/lieux/eqt_munic/musee-de-la-castre.html
  • Musée de la Mer: http://www.cannes.com/fr/culture/musee-de-la-mer.html
  • Eglise Notre Dame d’Esperance: www.stnicolascannes.org
  • Palais des Festivals et des Congrès de Cannes: www.palaisdesfestivals.com
  • Abbaye de Lérins: www.abbayedelerins.com

Cannes travel guide: Surrounding places

  • For information about Les Iles de Lérins, visit www.trans-cote-azur.com/cannes-ile-sainte-marguerite.php
  • For information about Musée Bonnard, visit: www.museebonnard.fr
  • For information about Mougins, visit: www.mougins.fr
  • For information about Château de Mouans-Sartoux: http://www.mouans-sartoux.com
  • For information about Roches rouges de Théoule, visit: www.theoule-sur-mer.org
  • For information about Golfs de Mandelieu et alentours, visit: http://www.golfoldcourse.com/index.php?lang=en
  • For information about Château de La Napoule, visit:  www.chateau-lanapoule.com/
  • For information about Nice, visit : http://www.nicetourisme.com

Cannes travel guide: Tourist offices in Cannes

L’office de tourisme de cannes (main office).

  • Adress: 1 Boulevard de la Croisette
  • 06400 Cannes
  • Tel. : + 33 (0) 4 92 99 84 22
  • Fax: + 33 (0) 4 92 99 84 23
  • [email protected]

Open hours:

  • Monday 9AM–7PM
  • Tuesday 9AM–7PM
  • Wednesday 9AM–7PM
  • Thursday 9AM–7PM
  • Friday 9AM–7PM
  • Saturday 9AM–7PM
  • Sunday 9AM–7PM
  • Office de tourisme de Cannes
  • Address: 8 bis, place de la Gare
  • Tél. : + 33 (0)4 92 99 84 22
  • Fax : + 33 (0)4 92 99 84 23
  • Monday 9AM–1PM, 2–6PM
  • Tuesday 9AM–1PM, 2–6PM
  • Wednesday 9AM–1PM, 2–6PM
  • Thursday 9AM–1PM, 2–6PM
  • Friday 9AM–1PM, 2–6PM
  • Saturday 9AM–1PM, 2–6PM
  • Sunday Closed (including public holidays)

Office du Tourisme – Cannes la Bocca

  • Adress: Place du Marché
  • 1, rue Pierre Sémard
  • 06150 Cannes La Bocca
  • Fax: + 33 (0) 4 93 90 99 85
  • Tuesday 9AM–12:30PM, 1:30–5PM
  • Wednesday 9AM–12:30PM, 1:30–5PM
  • Thursday 9AM–12:30PM, 1:30–5PM
  • Friday 9AM–12:30PM, 1:30–5PM
  • Saturday 9AM–12:30PM, 1:30–5PM
  • Sunday Closed
  • Monday Closed
  • ( From 9 am to 12.30pm and from 1.30pm to 5 pm from November to March)
  • (From 9am to 12.30pm and from 2:30pm to 6pm from April to October)

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How Far is Nice from Cannes?

How Far is Nice from Cannes?

65 Celebrities That Have Visited the Cannes Film Festival

65 Celebrities That Have Visited the Cannes Film Festival

Best bars in Cannes? 21 Bars You Need to Visit

Best bars in Cannes? 21 Bars You Need to Visit

tourist center cannes

  • Explore Cannes

How to get to Cannes

The a8 motorway.

The A8 "La Provençale" motorway has two exits taking you to Cannes, Cannes-La Bocca (41) and Mougins/Cannes (42), from Aix-en-Provence to the west and Italy to the East.

The Route Napoléon

The Route Napoléon (N85) runs from Golfe Juan to Grenoble through Cannes city centre (rue Bivouac Napoléon), Castellane, Digne, Sisteron and more. It follows the famous route Napoleon and his army took to return to Elba in 1815.

Find out more about the Route Napoléon at: www.route-napoleon.com

tourist center cannes

The former Nationale 7 trunk road (RN7)

The RN7 was nicknamed the "Route des Vacances" (holiday road) and Charles Trénet sang about it in 1955. The 996km road ran from Paris to Menton before it was downgraded and crossed the entire Cannes area from west to east along the seaside. The route is now covered by the 6007 and 6098 regional roads.

Lignes d'Azur bus network

The bus network is run and funded by the Regional Council and provides inter-city services throughout the area.

The Lignes d'Azur bus network has 60 regular services, 100 school bus services, 250 coaches, 1800 stops and over 10 million annual users.

For information about services and timetables:

  • visit the Lignes d'Azur website: Lignes d'azur
  • or phone to   08 1006 1006 Mon - Sat, 7am-8pm (Service 0,06 €/min + call charge

FlixBus is a long-haul bus company with a wide range of destinations in France and Europe. FlixBus provides several services to and from Cannes.

More information

The railway enables visitors and locals to reach Cannes and travel from East to West as well as on the North-South line between Grasse and Cannes.

Cannes train stations:

  • Gare SNCF de Cannes
  • Gare SNCF de Cannes La Bocca
  • Gare SNCF Le Bosquet
  • Gare SNCF La Frayère
  • Gare SNCF de Ranguin
  • Cannes-Mandelieu Airport is the 2nd biggest business airport in France. It covers tourist and business aviation and is just 5 minutes from central Cannes and the Palais des Festivals. Officiel website
  • Nice-Côte d'Azur Airport is 25km from Cannes on the motorway. It's the 2nd biggest airport in France with over 10 million passengers a year and over 100 destinations to choose from. Official website

Cannes Lions Awards 24 Gold

VML Roars at Cannes 2024

Jun 20, 2024, stay updated on vml's cannes triumphs, award-winning campaigns, and the success of our agency and client partners in creativity and innovation.

We are proud to share the incredible achievements of our creative teams and client partners at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. Each day, we will update this page with our latest wins, so be sure to check back regularly to see how VML is making its mark. Click on the accordions below for detailed results from each day.

As of Thursday evening in Cannes, VML has earned one Grand Prix, six Gold, 19 Silver, 28 Bronze, and 153 Shortlists.

Daily Updates

Monday, june 17.

VML had a fantastic start to the week with a successful Monday, June 17, at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, securing 14 Lions!

Leading the charge was "Thanks for Coke-Creating," created by WPP Open X, led by VML, and supported by Essence Mediacom and Ogilvy PR, which secured a Gold Print & Publishing Lion.

Silver wins include an Audio & Radio Lion for "Sound Scales;" a Health & Wellness Lion for "Call Glenn" and "Waiting to Live;" and two Outdoor Lions for "Thanks for Coke-Creating."

Additionally, we achieved multiple Bronze awards across various categories including "Vaseline Sunitizer," "Fitchix," "Adscan," "Unsilence the Violence," "Napkins of Rights," "Not a Lonely Journey," "The Beko Inheritance," and "The 100th Edition."

Tuesday, June 18

Following our strong start, Tuesday brought even more success for VML at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity.

We are thrilled to announce our Grand Prix in Industry Craft for "The 100th Edition" by Scholz & Friends for Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. Our Gold wins included Entertainment Lions for Gaming for "This Is Not a Game" by VML Mexico for Movistar and Industry Craft for "Thanks for Coke-Creating" created by WPP Open X, led by VML, and supported by Essence Mediacom and Ogilvy PR.

Our Silver wins included "Pride Unravelled," which won Silver in Design, "The 100th Edition," which won Silver in both Design and Industry Craft, and "This Is Not a Game," which won Silver in Entertainment. Additionally, we secured Bronze wins in Design for "IWC Ingenieur. Form Und Technik" and "Edible Literature," as well as Entertainment Lions for Music for "Sing to Remember."

Wednesday, June 19

Wednesday brought another wave of fantastic achievements for VML at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity.

Our Gold wins included "Thanks for Coke-Creating" created by WPP Open X, led by VML, and supported by Essence Mediacom and Ogilvy PR in Creative B2B and "Absurd Promises" for ASDA in Creative Data. Silver wins were abundant, with "Thanks for Coke-Creating" for The Coca-Cola Company winning Silver in both Creative B2B and Direct categories. We also secured Silver for "Betis Pregnancy Test" for Real Betis in Direct, "Don't Delete Menu" for Wendy's in both Direct and Media, and "Sing to Remember" for Coca-Cola in PR.

Our Bronze wins were equally impressive, with "Rip Curl Virtual Pro" for Rip Curl in Creative Data, "Waiting to Live" for NHS Blood and Transplant in Direct, "Thanks for Coke-Creating" for Coca-Cola in Direct, "Lux 'The End'" for Lux in Media, "Oreo Calls" for Oreo in Media, "Call Glenn" for Child Focus in PR, "Unsealed Books" for LÕRA in PR, and "Wendy's Enters the Chat" for Wendy's in Social & Influencer, securing three Bronze Lions in this category.

Thursday, June 20

Thursday continued to showcase the outstanding work of our creative teams and client partners at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity.

We are excited to announce our Gold win for "Oreo Calls" by VML U.S. for Oreo. Our Silver wins include "Charmology" by VML U.S. for Lucky Charms, "Sound Scales" by VML United Kingdom and VML U.S. for Baileys, and "Fitchix" by VML Australia for Honest Eggs Co.

Our Bronze wins were numerous and impressive, with "Vanishing Emails" created by VML, built by Slalom, and powered by AWS; "Oreo Menu" by VML New York for Oreo; "Fitchix" by VML Australia for Honest Eggs Co. (securing three Bronze Lions); and "Waiting to Live" by VML United Kingdom for NHS Blood and Transplant.

Check back tomorrow to see our latest achievements at Cannes Lions!

VML's full list of winning work:

The 100th Edition Hero Image

"The 100th Edition" by Scholz & Friends Germany for Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung

  • Grand Prix in Industry Craft
  • Silver Lion in Design
  • Silver Lion in Industry Craft
  • Bronze Lion in Print & Publishing

000 Coca Cola Murals

"Thanks for Coke-Creating" created by WPP Open X, led by VML, and supported by Essence Mediacom and Ogilvy PR

  • Gold Lion in Print & Publishing
  • Gold Lion in Industry Craft
  • Gold Lion in Creative B2B
  • 2 Silver Lions in Outdoor
  • Silver Lion in Creative B2B
  • Silver Lion in Direct
  • Bronze Lion in Direct

This Is Not a Game

"This Is Not a Game" by VML Mexico for Movistar

  • Gold Lion in Entertainment Lions for Gaming
  • Silver Lion in Entertainment

OREO Calls HERO

"OREO Calls" by VML U.S. for Mondelez

  • Gold Lion in Creative Commerce
  • Bronze Lion in Media

Absurd Promises 1

"Absurd Promises" by VML Argentina for ASDRA

  • Gold Lion in Creative Data

Dont Delete Menu 600x450

"Don't Delete Menu" by VML U.S. and VML Argentina for Wendy's

  • Silver Lion in Media

Baileys Sound Scales 16x9 jpg

"Sound Scales" by VML United Kingdom and VML U.S. for Baileys

  • Silver Lion in Audio & Radio
  • Silver Lion in Creative Commerce

Fitchix WT 1

"FitChix" by VML Australia for Honest Eggs Co.

  • Silver Lion in Creative Strategy
  • Bronze Lion in Health & Wellness
  • Bronze Lion in Brand Experience & Activation
  • Bronze Lion in Creative Effectiveness
  • Bronze Lion in Creative Strategy

Waiting to live KV1

"Waiting to Live" by VML United Kingdom for NHS Blood and Transplant

  • Silver Lion in Health & Wellness

Call Glenn Hero Image

"Call Glenn" by VML Belgium for Child Focus

  • Bronze Lion in PR

Sing to Remember hero image

"Sing to Remember" by VML India for The Coca-Cola Company

  • Silver Lion in PR
  • Bronze Lion in Entertainment Lions for Music

Charmology Hero

"Charmology" by VML U.S. for General Mills

  • Silver Lion in Brand Experience & Activation

VML Spain Test Betico

"Test Bético" by VML Spain for Real Betis

Pride Unravelled Hero

"Pride Unravelled" by VML Canada for Egale

Wendys Enter Chat Hero

"Wendy's Enters the Chat" by VML U.S. for Wendy's

  • 3 Bronze Lion in Social & Influencer

Oreo Menu 2

"OREO Menu" by VML U.S. for Mondelez

  • Bronze Lion in Creative Commerce

Ad Scan hero 01

"AdScan" by VML Colombia for Makro

  • Bronze Lion in Outdoor

Edible Literature Place Holder

"Edible Literature" by VML Ogilvy Japan for Kambya Yoshinaga

  • Bronze Lion in Design

IWC Ingenieur

"IWC Ingenieur. Form und Technik." by Scholz & Friends Germany for IWC Schaffhausen

Napkins of Rights Hero

"Napkins of Rights" by VML U.S. for Florida Immigration Coalition

VML ITA NALJ

"Not a Lonely Journey" by VML Italy for Biogen and FundAME

  • Bronze Lion in Pharma

11 MAY RIP CURL VIRTUAL PRO FINAL 1

"Rip Curl Virtual Pro" by VML Australia for Rip Curl

  • Bronze Lion in Creative Data

Sunitizer Website Banner visual

"Sunitizer" by VML Indonesia for Vaseline

Beko PR IMAGE ADDENDUM03

"The Beko Inheritance" by VML United Kingdom and VML Germany for Beko

LUX The End

"The End" by VML Singapore for LUX

Unsealed Books VML com HERO

"Unsealed Books" by VML Hungary for Lira

Unsilence The Violence Scholz Friends x TERRE DES FEMMES

"Unsilence the Violence" by Scholz & Friends Germany for Terre Des Femmes

Hero Banner VE

"Vanishing Emails" created by VML, built by Slalom, and powered by AWS.

  • Bronze Lion in Innovation

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Breaking news, map shows chinese-owned farmland next to 19 us military bases in ‘alarming’ threat to national security: experts.

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China has been buying up strategically placed farmland next to military installations across the US, raising national security fears over potential espionage or even sabotage.

The Post has identified 19 bases across the US from Florida to Hawaii which are in close proximity to land bought up by Chinese entities and could be exploited by spies working for the communist nation.

They include some of the military’s most strategically important bases: Fort Liberty (formerly Fort Bragg) in Fayetteville, North Carolina; Fort Cavazos (formerly Fort Hood) in Killeen, Texas; Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton in San Diego, California, and MacDill air force base in Tampa, Florida.

Robert S. Spalding III, a retired United States Air Force brigadier general whose work focuses US-China relations told The Post: “It is concerning due to the proximity to strategic locations.

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“These locations can be used to set up intelligence collection sites and the owners can be influential in local politics as we have seen in the past,” he added.

“It is alarming we do not have laws on the books that would prevent the Chinese from buying property in the US.”

Under the guise of farming, the Chinese landowners could set up reconnaissance sights, install tracking technology, use radar and infra-red scanning to view bases or attempt to fly drones over them as ways to surveil military sites, sources told The Post.

A report in the Wall Street Journal from September 2023 found Chinese intruders attempted to breach military facilities over 100 times in recent years, including sneaking onto a missile range in New Mexico and scuba divers spotted near a government rocket-launch site in Florida.

The threat the Chinese government poses to America is huge, with the FBI labelling it a “grave threat” and director Christopher Wray saying in April hackers have made their way into US critical infrastructure and are waiting “for just the right moment to deal a devastating blow” and “physically wreak havoc.”

Brigadier General Robert S. Spalding III in uniform

The Department of Homeland Security has also warned of the threat of Chinese spies slipping over the US Southern border, disguised as among the more than 30,000 who have already been admitted this since October last year. Those spies will likely “employ economic espionage” and “seek to illicitly acquire our technologies and intellectual property” according to DHS’s Homeland Threat Assessment 2024.

Morgan Lerette, a former contractor for private military contractor Blackwater is sounding the alarm.

“The Chinese are, or will, use this farmland to learn more about US military capabilities, movements, and technology,” Lerette told The Post.

“This will allow them to better understand how to transition their military from a defensive strategy to an expeditionary one,” he said, adding they’ll figure out “how to move forces quickly for conflicts such as taking Taiwan and how and when US forces would respond to their incursions based on troop movement at these bases,” he explained.

He added China will be watching troop movements into and out of bases in an attempt to form an idea of the patterns of behavior and movements.

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“It would allow the Chinese to research what is moving and how to combat it. It’s easy to identify mobilization if you know what to look for.”

Lerette cited specific examples: “Listening to GIs at a bar talking … Local storage units being rented out near a base is an indicator troops are leaving.

“A train carrying tanks, Strykers [armored fighting vehicles], and [Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected vehicles], followed by an increased number of cargo planes landing and leaving a joint base like Lewis-McChord in Washington state, would indicate when US forces are moving,” all of which is invaluable military knowledge.

According to the latest analysis from the Farm Service Agency of the USDA, Chinese investors owned 349,442 acres of US farmland as of December 31, 2022.

One of the biggest investors in Texas is secretive billionaire Sun Guangxin, who has deep ties to the communist party and spent an estimated $110 million buying up land next to Laughlin Air Force Base in Val Verde County, a training ground for military pilots.

Farmland with cows

Although no overt evidence of spying by Guangxin’s companies, which use the land as a wind farm, has emerged the state’s republicans have raised the alarm.

Senator Ted Cruz, speaking in relation to the project, told Forbes : “The Chinese Communist Party has demonstrated time and again they’re willing to invest billions of dollars to expand their espionage capabilities and their global reach, including through land purchase schemes near military bases.”  

Fufeng Group, a Shandong, China-based company that specializes in flavor enhancers and sugar substitutes, purchased 300 acres of farmland 40 miles from Grand Forks Air Force Base, North Dakota, in 2022.

Billionaire and Chinese Communist Party member Chen Tianqiao is the second-largest foreign owner of farmland in the US . He bought nearly 200,000 acres of farmland in Oregon in 2015 at about $430 an acre, according to the Land Report .

However, his purchase of the acreage did not appear in government records of land ownership by foreign investors when it was first revealed in January,   according to the Daily Caller .

Chinese holdings total under one percent of foreign-owned agricultural land in the US, per NBC , but its the proximity to critical military installations which raises concerns, critics have charged.

tourist center cannes

For example, Fort Liberty in North Carolina, for example, is surrounded by Chinese-owned farmland within a 30-mile radius.

In a move acknowledging these security risks, a Chinese-backed cryptocurrency mining firm was barred from owning land in Wyoming in May by the Biden administration.

MineOne Partners, a firm partly backed by Chinese nationals, was told to move equipment from less than one miles from F.E. Warren Air Force Base in Cheyenne, saying it was a “national security risk,” per the Air Force Times.  

Potential espionage attempts by Chinese operatives have prompted the Defense Department, FBI, and other agencies to heighten their investigations on so-called “gate-crashers” attempting to breach US military installations.

According to the Wall Street Journal report, the incidents largely appear designed to test security practices, officials explained.

Troops marching at Fort Liberty

US-China tensions also spiked in early 2023 after a Chinese surveillance balloon flew over the mainland.

The FBI has previously warned: “The Chinese government is engaged in a broad, diverse campaign of theft and malign influence without regard to laws or international norms that the FBI will not tolerate.”

At Fort Wainwright, Alaska, home to the Army’s 11th Airborne Division, a group of Chinese nationals attempted to push past guards, claiming they had hotel reservations on base.

In New Mexico, officials reported repeated cases of Chinese nationals taking pictures at a US Army range after straying from nearby White Sands National Park, according to WSJ.

Chinese nationals have also used drones to enhance their surveillance efforts. Key West, Florida, has seen repeated incidents at an intelligence center, where Chinese ‘tourists’ were found swimming near the military facility and snapping photos.

In 2020, three Chinese citizens were sentenced to prison after illegally entering the naval air station there, either walking around the fence or driving in and ignoring orders to turn back, the WSJ reported.

troops exiting an aircraft

Meanwhile, the border has proven an even greater threat to America’s security.

By the end of the 2023 fiscal year, Customs and Border Protection officials apprehended 24,048 Chinese citizens at the border with Mexico, they revealed. That number is more than 12 times the 1,970 arrests in the previous fiscal year.

“They are a communist dictatorship no different from the [Soviet Union], except they have been integrated into the global economic system.

“This makes them even more dangerous than the USSR because of their political influence,” Spalding added.

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All the Red-Carpet Looks From the 2024 Tony Awards

From Alicia Keys’s sparkling burgundy look to Brooke Shields’s Crocs moment

all the red carpet looks from the 2024 tony awards

As the 2023–24 Broadway season draws to a close, the 77th Annual Tony Awards are here—bringing with them historic wins, head-turning red carpet looks, and of course, musical numbers.

This year, the anticipated performances come courtesy of the casts of Stereophonic , Cabaret , Illinoise , Merrily We Roll Along , Suffs , The Outsiders , The Who’s Tommy , and Water for Elephants , who will perform numbers from their shows. As a special treat, Jay-Z will also join Alicia Keys onstage to perform “Empire State of Mind,” as part of a special Hell’s Kitchen medley.

The event, held at New York’s Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts for the first time, will be hosted by Ariana DeBose for a third year in a row. She and other big names like Angelina Jolie and Daniel Radcliffe are expected on the red carpet in ensembles that reflect their personal styles as much as their onstage star quality. Click through to see every look from the 2024 Tony Awards.

Angelina Jolie and Vivienne Jolie

new york, new york june 16 l r vivienne jolie and angelina jolie attend the the 77th annual tony awards at david h koch theater at lincoln center on june 16, 2024 in new york city photo by dimitrios kambourisgetty images for tony awards productions

In Versace.

Taraji P. Henson

new york, new york june 16 taraji p henson attends the 77th annual tony awards at david h koch theater at lincoln center on june 16, 2024 in new york city photo by jenny andersongetty images for tony awards productions

In Oscar de la Renta.

Elle Fanning

In Saint Laurent.

Rachel McAdams

In Givenchy gown.

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In Nicolas Jebran and Cicada and Maison H jewelry.

Jonathan Groff

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Erin Darke and Daniel Radcliffe

In Todd Snyder.

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In Christian Siriano.

Liev Schreiber and Taylor Neisen

Sarah paulson.

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Maya Ernest is an editor who covers everything from the latest fashion news to features that investigate personal style, social media trends, and thoughtful consumption. 

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Jimmy Fallon and ‘Tonight Show’ Team Detail Wildest Set Designs and Which Guests Are Always Down — From Keegan Michael-Key to Cher

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THE TONIGHT SHOW STARRING JIMMY FALLON -- Episode 1917 -- Pictured: (l-r) Actor & comedian Keegan-Michael Key and host Jimmy Fallon during “Cool Bartenders” on Monday, February 5, 2024 -- (Photo by: Todd Owyoung/NBC)

When late-night talk show host Jimmy Fallon has an idea for a sketch, there are two people he can trust to bring it to life: “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon ” production designers Kelly Hanson and Heather Wolensky.

Whether it’s a “Miami Vice” cop spoof, a Kentucky Derby sketch or having celebrities such as Mick Jagger or Cher in a deep freezer to share some secrets, Hanson and Wolensky help push things along. It’s something they’ve mastered for the past 10 years. “You’ll bring up a silly idea, and they’ll go, ‘Yeah, and we’ll give you sketches and build around it,’” Fallon explains.

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Hanson and Wolensky have done it all over the years, with sets involving puppets, moving walls and secret entrances. Fallon is very involved in the process, with a keen attention to detail. The audience experience is what matters most to Fallon, and that means doing things like turning the sets around during commercial breaks to give those in the studio a look.

It’s important that things move quickly and efficiently, and the audience is not sitting there waiting,” says Hanson.

Despite limited timelines, the team works closely together to ensure the highest level of artistry is delivered every time.

The Kentucky Derby sketch was a last-minute idea. Fallon wanted a place at a starting gate to hold the giant, over-the-top hats traditionally worn at the race — and it would appear that the hats were moving. In the end, an audience member would win the chapeau.

To the human eye, it would look robotic and expensive, but “it’s a human being pushing it,” Fallon says. “There are all sorts of showbusiness tricks that make things look better quality, and they know those tricks and they pull it off.”

“It was a series of gates. He wanted these cabinets, and each day one of the hats come out of it. I thought, ‘Does he realize how huge that’s going to be?’ These hats are three feet wide, so the cabinets needed to be 15 feet wide,” Hanson says. “I was nervous because I thought he’d think it was way too big — but he loved it.”

The “Freezer Secrets” set is another example of the team working together to bring the host’s visions to life. They needed to tell the story that Fallon and his guest were in a freezer, so Hanson and Wolensky brought in the special effects department to add water vapor to make the set look cold.

The props team was also brought in to stack the shelves. “Every single jar has a printed graphic inside it, to make it look real,” says Hanson. “Those shelves are perfectly dressed.”

Wolensky also handles all aspects of production design when it. comes to Fallon stepping outside of the studio. Like the “Cool Bartenders” sketch with Keegan-Michael Key, for example. Once she had the brief, she looked into bars around the Rockefeller Center area, where the show films. “We never really get a lot of time with celebrities. The further they have to travel, the less time we have to shoot,” says Wolensky.

In her scouting for the ideal location, it was less about the look of the bar since transforming a set wasn’t a factor. “It was more about what would work spatially for our shots and cameras,” she explains.A bar at 30 Rock, Smith & Mills, checked all the boxes.

“What doesn’t show is how much work we did,” Wolensky says. “We were there at five in the morning. One wall is all windows that we covered to look like wood paneling. The bar is all mirrored, so we had to cover all the mirrors. All the artwork was covered for clearance issues.”

Her team also brought in lighting to get the mood just right and décor to fit the sketch, which was supposed to be in a super hip bar. A cocktail stylist was then brought in who made dozens of cocktails, including blue margaritas.

While the job is fun, there are challenges along the way — the biggest being that the show is not filmed on a soundstage, but as Hanson points out, “we shoot in a skyscraper.”

That means anything she and the production design team create and build is always done with the building’s layout in mind. The individual pieces need to fit in the tiny elevators, be maneuvered through the hallways, go through office-building-sized doors and then assembled. “All our stuff needs to fit in the small room backstage, and we have 12-foot-by-8-foot doors that everything has to roll through and roll back out,” Hanson says.

When Fallon pitched “Freezer Secrets,” Cher didn’t bat an eye.“Cher is fantastic to pitch,” he says. “She knows the business. She’s done it perfectly for years. I’ll pitch her an idea and it’s silly stuff, and she was immediately game. She’s like, ‘I love it. I want to do it.’” He adds, “She had so much fun doing it that she wants to come back.”

Fallon’s door is always open for any celebrity who wants to sit on a sizzling steak, share secrets in a freezer or whatever idea he dreams up next.

“I’ll wake up in the middle of the night and record them on my iPhone,” he teases. “Me and Will Ferrell wearing jean shorts. I’m singing, ‘I’ve got my jorts.’ Keegan-Michael Key and Fallon get in the proper spirit during the “Cool Bartenders” sketch. It’s not an idea now, but it might be.”

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