Welcome to Saint Tropez
Saint Tropez has been synonymous with glamour since sex siren Brigitte Bardot cavorted on its beach in a skimpy bikini, although this pretty fishing village had been luring artists with its pastel coloured buildings and mythical light long before that.
Every summer images of movie-stars, oligarchs and models enjoying champagne on yachts and dancing in nightclubs adorn the pages of celebrity magazines, all with the same caption “…spotted in St Tropez”. It is easy to see the attraction of this once-tiny fishing village: beautiful beaches, luxury yachts, expensive boutiques, cafes, bars and night clubs-all the trappings of a millionaire lifestyle with a twist of French Riviera chic. Yet it still has its quiet charm in its narrow streets and traditional restaurants shaded by grape vines, and the pretty harbour lined with wooden masts. Spectacular white sand beaches line the Gulf de Saint Tropez, while the Provencal countryside rises up behind the town with medieval villages, vineyards and lavender fields sweeping over the rolling countryside.
Saint Tropez has managed to retain it's old fashioned charm thanks to it's position on an inaccessible headland on the French Riviera. This meant that early development from the 60's & 70's largely passed it by, and so today you will see very few, if any, high-rises in the area. There are no main roads going through the village, no train station, no big resort hotels, no 'English Breakfasts'. Instead, you find a very pretty Provencal village, with an immaculate maze of cobbled lanes filled with boutiques, lovely cottages with painted shutters and flowering balconies, and a wonderful shady square where a most excellent market is held twice a week. La Place des Lices is in the heart of the old town and is also the favourite hang out for 'boules' players in the afternoon. The Provencal market is held here every Tuesday and Saturday mornings. In addition to the market style shopping, St Tropez has its fair share of designer brands and labels, plus a very unique and traditional Tropezien style. The old town is also home to some important historical monuments and museums.
Of course, St Tropez stands firmly on the world map as a destination for the rich and famous. The international jet set are attracted to the designer boutiques, glitzy art galleries, world renowned beach clubs and exclusive nightclubs. Much of the buzz is centred around the marina. This is the place for people-watching in one of the many smart cafes and restaurants that surround the harbour with it's magnificent yachts.
However, the draw of Saint Tropez isn't just superficial. you can choose to engage with swanky playboy lifestyle, or take a more relaxed path, by visiting some of the beautiful surrounding villages with their vineyards, or exploring the Natural Park of the Massif des Maures, famous for it's chestnut & cork trees.
This once tiny fishing village certainly has it all; beautiful beaches, luxury yachts, expensive boutiques, cafes, bars and night clubs, all the trappings of a millionaire lifestyle with French Riviera chic.