Nestled between Cannes and Nice in southeastern France, Antibes is a striking place that attracts the likes of artists, writers, and the wealthy to the shores of the Mediterranean Sea. Along with restaurants and sites within the Old Town of the city, there are other places for travelers to explore such as the Picasso Museum, housed in a Medieval castle formerly owned by the Grimaldi Family, and the Naval and Napoleonic Museum, located within Graillon Tower in a pretty park on the tip of Cap d’Antibes.
Many artists found inspiration on the French Riviera, including one famous Spanish painter by the name of Pablo. Inspired by the famous paintings of the Impressionists and those that came after, Picasso’s Trail highlights famous paintings and the artists that created them with interesting details along a scenic walking path. Travelers who are interested in following the footsteps of artistic geniuses who fell in love with Antibes may pick up a guided map from Antibes Juan-les-Pins Tourist Office. Among the highlights are a cast-iron structure painted by Emile Charles-Dameron and a picture by Ernest Meissonier from 1868.
2.The Naval and Napoleonic Museum
Established in 1964, the Naval and Napoleonic Museum lies within Graillon Tower in an exquisite 10-acre park at the tip of the Cap d’Antibes. The historic site has ties to the legendary French statesman and military leader who restored it as a defense post in 1794. Today, visitors get to see an interesting collection of memorabilia from paintings to proclamations, artifacts, and sculptures including a marble bust of Napoleon by Neoclassical artist Antonio Casanova. At some point, it is recommended to take in the panoramic views from the large terrace and take a stroll through the beautiful grounds.
Batterie du Graillon, Boulevard J.F. Kennedy 06160 Antibes-Juan les Pins, France, Phone: +33-4-93-61-45-32
3.The Picasso Museum in Chateau Grimaldi
Housed in a Medieval castle once owned by the Grimaldi family, the Picasso Museum pays homage to the great 20th-century art master, Pablo Picasso. It is here where the painter, sculptor, and visionary spent six months of his creating magnificent new works, some of which are part of the current collection of 245 pieces including paintings such as The Goat and La Joie de Vivre, as well as his drawings, etchings, ceramics, and rugs. On the ground floor there are two galleries dedicated to modern art, and on the terrace are sculptures by Germain Richier, Joan Miro, Patrick Poirier, among others. The museum has the distinction to be the first of its kind dedicated to the Spanish artist.
Prom. Amiral de Grasse, 06600 Antibes, France, Phone: +33-4-92-90-54-28
4.The Safranier Free Commune
Created in 1966, the free commune Safranier is a friendly community in old Antibes, known for happy vibes, festive events, original character, and flower-adorned homes. Spanning from Tourraque Street to Haut Castelet, the quirky neighborhood often has events going on in Place du Safranier, the main square, where you’ll find many people hanging out at the local tavern. Eclectic gatherings happen year-round from the Grape Harvest Festival in September to the Festival of the Chestnut in November and the Log Feast in December, and so much more. Regardless of the occasion, song and dance are almost always a part of the entertaining experience.
Place du Safranier, 06600 Antibes Juan-les-Pins
Stretching four miles, the Cap d’Antibes is an idyllic peninsula known for beautiful beaches, views of the Mediterranean, and gorgeous greenery. The destination has always attracted a chic and cultured crowd from world-renowned artists such as Claude Monet and Pablo Picasso to legendary writers, such as Ernest Hemingway, Dorothy Parker, and F. Scott Fitzgerald, along with a who’s who from the worlds of business and entertainment. One of the recommended things to do along this picturesque stretch is to walk the Sentier du Littoral, located between Plage de la Garoupe and Villa Eilenroc, for a tranquil path to observe nature. Adventurous types often cool off by leaping from the rocks into the Baie des Milliardaires for a relaxing and refreshing swim.
Animal lovers will be remiss to not include Marineland on their Antibes itinerary. Set on the French Riviera, the incredible theme park first opened to the public in 1970 and is still a popular destination. Visitors will find a variety of attractions and activities, from the Aquasplash water park to the Dolphinarium, a marine zoological park, Kids Island, and a wonderful see-through tunnel with sharks and manta rays swimming above. When it comes to entertainment, there are several shows not to miss with killer whales, dolphins, and sea lions.
306 Avenue Mozart, 06600 Antibes, France, Phone: +33-4-93-33-49-49
© Christian Musat/stock.adobe.com
Perched on the edge of the Saint-Roch peninsula, Fort Carré stands 85 feet above sea level on the coast of Antibes. Designed by Henri de Mandon in the late 16th-century under the direction of King Henry II of France, the star-shaped fortification features four arrow-shaped bastions and stunning 360 panoramic views. Nestled within a four-acre park, the site has had many uses including as a defensive stronghold, barracks, and military training center, and Napoleon Bonaparte was even imprisoned there briefly during the French Revolution. It was later redeveloped in the 17th century by the Marquis de Vauban.
Avenue du 11 Novembre, 06600 Antibes, France, Phone: +33-4-92-90-52-13
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8.Jazz a Juan
Since 1960, music lovers descend on Juan-les-Pins and Antibes in July around Bastille Day to experience Jazz à Juan, the oldest jazz festival in Europe. Over the years, the event has attracted legendary headliners from Miles Davis to Nina Simone and Charles Mingus. In recent times, artists from other genres have also entertained the crowds including Ben Harper, George Benson, and Snarky Puppy, and attendance has grown to over 50,000 people from around the world. Along with the concerts at Pinède Gould gardens, spectators enjoy stunning views of the Mediterranean Sea, fireworks and jam sessions on the beach.
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Given that Antibes is set at the end of the Bay of Angels, it’s no wonder that that destination is home to several pristine beaches. Lovers of sun, sand, and surf have plenty of options throughout the area with activities ranging from water sports to waterfront dining, exclusive beach clubs, and more. There are also opportunities in Cap d’Antibes and the nearby resort destination of Juan-les-Pins. In the middle of Old Town, Plage de la Gravette offers an intimate retreat below the Medieval ramparts. Meanwhile, Plage du Ponteil is west of Central Antibes close to the Antibes Yacht Club where paddleboards and kayaks are available for rent, and further east Plage de Salis provides a laid-back vibe and continues to be a popular choice among locals.
Plage de la Gravette: Quai Henri Rambaud, Port Vauban, 06600 Antibes, France
Plage de Ponteil: Boulevard Maréchal Leclerc 06600 Antibes, France
Plage de Salis: Boulevard James Wyllie, 06160 Antibes, France
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10.Le Figuier de Saint-Esprit
© Le Figuier de Saint-Esprit
Driven by strong tradition, immense experience, and creativity, Le Figuier de Saint-Esprit is a refined restaurant in the heart of Old Antibes, not too far from the Picasso Museum and Port Vauban. At the helm of its kitchen is Chef Christiaan Morisset, who takes pride in using high-quality seasonal ingredients sourced from local markets for his fine dishes. Among the specialties on the menu are Cannelloni with Squid Ink and Lamb cooked in spices Vallauris clay, haute cuisine that has contributed to the establishment earning a Michelin star over the years. Other gastronomic delights include starters such as Wild Sea Bream in Ceviche and main courses such as Roasted Veal Filet with Crispy Polenta and delightful desserts including Roasted Apricots and Yellow Peach Tartare. As for spaces, there is indoor and outdoor seating, including a terrace featuring a beautiful fig tree.
14 Rue du Saint-Esprit, 06600 Antibes, France, Phone: +33-4-93-34-50-12
11.Restaurant de Bacon
© Restaurant de Bacon
Overlooking the Baie des Anges, Restaurant de Bacon is an elegant restaurant specializing in fresh fish and Mediterranean cuisine that has earned quite the reputation since first opening its doors back in 1950. The Michelin-starred establishment has a modern feel with crisp, white furnishings, contemporary accents, and lovely views of the sea. Perhaps the most popular item on the menu is the bouillabaisse, but there are other tantalizing options including Lobster Medallions which go well with the classic French wine list.
664 Boulevard de Bacon, 06160 Antibes, France, Phone: +33-4-93-61-50-02
© Alexandre Rotenberg/stock.adobe.com
On the edge of the Mediterranean between Port Gallice and Port du Crouton, Les Pêcheurs is an inviting beach club set within the five-star Cap d’Antibes Beach Hotel boasting magnificent views of the Lérins islands and the Estérel Mountains. Only a short walk from the town center, this relaxing refuge boasts a tranquil setting complete with comfortable sun loungers, the perfect location to take refreshing dips in the sea, getting lost in a book or enjoying a fresh fruit cocktail from the bar. Also on the premises are wellness tents where guests can indulge in massage and other pampering services and the chic Patio Bar to enjoy a drink. An outdoor infinity pool is also available to those staying at the hotel.
Cap d’Antibes FR, 10 Boulevard Maréchal Juin, 06160, France, Phone: +33-4-92-93-13-30
13.Le Comptoir de la Tourraque
© Le Comptoir de la Tourraque
Nestled within the streets of Old Town Antibes, Le Comptoir de la Tourraque is a cozy restaurant complemented by intimate interiors. The dining room has a rustic feel complete with dim lighting, comfortable furniture, a warm palette of beige and burgundy and old wooden doors. Based on traditional French cuisine with occasional international influences, the simple menu features starters such as Pan-Fried Scallops and Marmalade with Lemon Endive, savory main dishes from Lamb Shank to Crispy Red Tuna with the Flavors of Asia and Provence, and enticing desserts such as the White Chocolate Mousse Verrine and Strawberry Coulis. The restaurant is open for dinner only.
1 Rue de la Tourraque, 0660 Antibes, France, Phone: +33-4-93-95-24-86
Seafood lovers should look no further than L’oursin, an Antibes institution since first opening its doors in 1962. Uniquely designed, the restaurant gives guests the feeling that they are on board a ship with its nautical-themed decor and interesting features, such portholes including one that offers street views from the Amirale room. Fresh fish and shellfish are the specialties of the day, every day with menu items such as real homemade Bouillabaisse, Tasty Mussels Stuffed with Parsley Butter and Half Lobster Risotto. Desserts such as the Commander, a refreshing treat of Mandarin Sorbet and Limoncello, and the Creme Brulee end meals on a sweet note. An extensive wine list with French-heavy selections ensures the perfect pairings every time. For those that prefer to dine alfresco, the terrace is the perfect spot for people-watching.
16 Rue de la République, 06600 Antibes Juan-les-Pins, France, Phone: +33-4-93-34-13-46
© Chez Lulu
Dining at Chez Lulu can be compared to having a family meal. The charming and casual establishment in the old town of Antibes is known for its hearty, home-style cooking with fresh, seasonal ingredients. Although, guests should expect close quarters as the establishment features shared tables. As for the food, on a typical night, there are seven entrees, one hot main dish, and a dessert buffet. While the selections change often, recent options provide a glimpse of the deliciousness from the leek soup to beef lasagna, market salad, and creme brulee. The hosts are lively, service attentive, and food comforting according to happy diners who have very much enjoyed their experience at the friendly eatery.
5 Rue Frédéric Isnard, 06600 Antibes, France, Phone: +33-4-89-08-92
© Le Vauban
Light and airy, Le Vauban has a welcoming presence in the Old Town of Antibes. Chef Thierry Alix and the restaurant’s owners, The Colberts, team up to present contemporary French market cuisine and all its seasonal goodness. The location is a lovely one as the establishment overlooks the historic rampart walls and features a quaint terrace. Diners may order from one of the set menus such as The Vauban featuring delectable options such as Crown of Octopus Medallions or Homemade Duck Foie Gras to start, and Pave de Cod with Coconut Paimpol with Truffle or Beef Fillet with Celery Pie and Sherry Beetroot as mains, and exquisite desserts such as the Souffle with Grand Marnier.
7bis Rue Thuret, 06600 Antibes, France, Phone: +33-4-93-34-33-05
17.Le P'tit Cageot Restaurant
© Le P’tit Cageot Restaurant
When it comes to the food at Le P’tit Cageot Restaurant in old Antibes, owners Arnaud and Roxane Lacombe describe their cuisine as “Bistronomy.” Set on a pedestrian street, this quaint restaurant exudes a farmhouse feel complete with stone walls and wood-beamed ceilings and outdoor terrace that has attracted attention since opening back in 2016. The menu features a mix of traditional and contemporary dishes with locally sourced market ingredients. Diners who prefer an element of surprise should go for the set menu, while others might order a la carte dishes such as Aubrac Beef in Tataki Mayonnaise with Truffle Capers and Pine Nuts or Organic Salmon Gravlax served with a Raw Fennel Salad and Fresh Herbs before finishing a meal with Paris-Brest inspired profiteroles or Pavlova with red fruits.
5 Rue du Dr Rostan, 06600 Antibes, France, Phone: +33-4-89-68-48-66
18.Restaurant La Cafetiere Felee
© Restaurant La Cafetiere Felee
Translated to English, La Cafetiere Felee means The Cracked Coffeemaker. The restaurant name provides a hint at the playful and fun approach of chef Julien Fiengo, who turns out original fusion cuisine that combines French and Asian flavors. With only 30 seats, the restaurant in old Antibes is small in size but big on flavors and service. The establishment has straightforward, minimalist decor and a friendly vibe. Guests get to discover house specialties such as Goat Cheese Spring Rolls with Porcini Mushrooms and Honey Mustard Sauce, Thai Beef Tartare and Udon Noodles with Seafood and Creamed Lobster Bisque. Oenophiles will appreciate the selections from Provence and Loire as well as one of the Vins du Monde from Argentina, Spain, Italy, and California.
18 Rue du Marc, 06600 Antibes, France, Phone: +33-4-93-34-51-86
18 Best Things to Do in Antibes, France
- Picasso’s Trail, Photo: nata_zhekova/stock.adobe.com
- The Naval and Napoleonic Museum, Photo: 1tomm/stock.adobe.com
- The Picasso Museum in Chateau Grimaldi, Photo: arbalest/stock.adobe.com
- The Safranier Free Commune, Photo: doraneko777/stock.adobe.com
- Cap d’Antibes, Photo: HeinzWaldukat/stock.adobe.com
- Marineland, Photo: Marineland
- Fort Carre, Photo: Christian Musat/stock.adobe.com
- Jazz a Juan, Photo: Aliaksei/stock.adobe.com
- The Beaches, Photo: simon gurney/stock.adobe.com
- Le Figuier de Saint-Esprit, Photo: Le Figuier de Saint-Esprit
- Restaurant de Bacon, Photo: Restaurant de Bacon
- Les Pecheurs, Photo: Alexandre Rotenberg/stock.adobe.com
- Le Comptoir de la Tourraque, Photo: Le Comptoir de la Tourraque
- L’oursin, Photo: L’oursin
- Chez Lulu, Photo: Chez Lulu
- Le Vauban, Photo: Le Vauban
- Le P'tit Cageot Restaurant, Photo: Le P’tit Cageot Restaurant
- Restaurant La Cafetiere Felee, Photo: Restaurant La Cafetiere Felee
- Cover Photo: proslgn/stock.adobe.com