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French Riviera: 7 days cruising west from Saint-Tropez along the Mediterranean coast

French Riviera: 7 days cruising west from Saint-Tropez along the Mediterranean coast

Day 1

Live the highlife in Saint-Tropez

 Saint-Tropez view

Whether you are enjoying the French Riviera as part of a luxury yacht charter or on your own private yacht the area has long been associated with the finer things in life. In fact according to the Côte d’Azur Economic Development Agency in one year alone this fine French area hosts 50% of the world’s superyacht fleet with at least 90% visiting the region at least once in their lives.

From the trendy clubs of Saint-Tropez to the sheltered coves of Illes d’Hyeres, this seven day itinerary takes you west and away from Cannes and Monaco. Enjoy the laid back life of lazy French days as you sail along the Mediterranean Sea.

Day 1: Live the highlife in Saint-Tropez

Fly into Nice, and get a helicopter shuttle across to St Tropez where you will meet your yacht. Once you’ve settled on board, go out for a stroll around this iconic port on the Cote d’Azur. Despite the fact that Saint-Tropez is heaving with visitors for much of the year, the town still retains that "je ne sais quoi" that makes it popular with the glitterati and the day-trippers alike.

To make your day in Saint-Tropez complete, book a table at Résidence de la Pinède on the Plage de la Bouillabaisse. This fabulous gourmet eatery is one of top restaurants in the French Riviera and boasts two Michelin stars, so reservations need to be made some way in advance. A pleasant stroll back to the yacht and a night on the aft deck should round off the day nicely. Alternatively Saint-Tropez is one of the top Mediterranean party destinations if you want to start your holiday with a bang.

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Day 2

Swim with the beautiful people

Superyacht destination Pampelonne Beach

After breakfast, head west from Saint-Tropez for a few miles, and drop the anchor off Pampelonne Beach — one of the best beaches in the Mediterranean. In high summer there are literally dozens of superyachts anchored here, while owners and guests go ashore on this fabulous beach to swim, paddle, and enjoy the restaurants and bars along the beach.

It can get pretty crowded here in the summer, so if you like your peace and quiet you may want to move on quite quickly. Otherwise, enjoy being where the “beautiful people” are, have a spot of lunch, and then head back to the yacht for an afternoon cruise west.

Next stop are the Illes d’Hyeres, the delightful group of islands just off the coast between St Tropez and Toulon. Drop the anchor in a sheltered cove and maybe go out in the tender to explore and swim in the crystal clear waters. An al fresco dinner under the stars is a great way to end a wonderful day.

Picture courtesy of Elena Elisseeva/Shutterstock.com

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Day 3

Get a taste for the “hidden” South of France

Sanary-sur-Mer, French Riviera

Spend the morning exploring the islands from the tender, have a leisurely lunch in a picturesque anchorage, and then head slowly westwards in the afternoon.

Passing Toulon on the starboard side, you round the Ile du Gaou and find yourself just off Sanary-sur-Mer. Get the skipper to launch the tender so that you can go ashore with one of the crew, while the yacht carries on to Bandol in the next bay. Spend an hour or so exploring the delightful town of Sanary, maybe sit in one of the harbour-front cafes enjoying a late afternoon tisane and a pastry, before jumping in the tender and heading back to the yacht in Bandol.

The town of Bandol is a cosmopolitan and lively place with numerous restaurants, bars, and a lively nightlife should the fancy take you.

Picture courtesy of David Herraez Calzada/Shutterstock.com

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