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10 Secret islands of the Côte d'Azur

10 Secret islands of the Côte d'Azur

6 of 10 6/10

Ratonneau & Pomègues

Location: A faint shimmer
 off the coast of Marseille

Hideaway Rating: **

Since Roman times, sailors have been quarantined on Ratonneau. Lucky devils. This sun-seared granite speck has a Croatian quality: tiny beaches, jump-right-in rocks and more than 300 species of flora, including sea lilies that scent the spring breeze. The ruin of Hôpital Caroline now forms the backdrop for the yearly MIMI festival in early July, a 10-day blowout of musical avant-garde. 
The Romans also built a simple causeway across to Pomègues, Ratonneau’s beautiful little brother. A secluded 700-berth marina now sits between the two islands. Best of all, the entire Frioul archipelago (which includes these islands as well as the Alcatraz-style Château d’If resides within the Calanque National Park, so those teeming shoals of brown grouper and John Dory are protected forever more.

Picture courtesy of Alamy.com

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