Once a grand and glamorous resort at the beginning of the 20th century, Saint Raphael was sadly blitzed during the second World War. Many of the belle époque buildings were destroyed and so the atmosphere of the town is not exactly Saint Tropez.
The jet-setters loss is the family holidaymakers gain, as it is now far more affordable. It remains an important sailing centre and is also renowned for its diving schools. Saint Raphael hosts a daily food market, and arts & crafts stalls are on display during the summer. There are a number (36!) of small beaches in the area, and plenty of walking trails and other activities in the countryside behind the town.