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Tourist Places To Visit In Saint-Tropez
Often frequented by celebrities and some of the wealthiest crowds in the world, Saint-Tropez will prove to be quite different from other cities on the French Riviera. Located in the south-eastern region of France, Saint-Tropez is a luxurious yet tranquil getaway for those looking for a change from the typical tourist destinations of Europe. This seaside resort has been attracting the artistic and self-indulgent crowds even before Brigitte Bardot’s time, who brought international fame to the town through her film ‘And God Created Woman’. A short drive away from other popular destinations like Nice and Cannes, Saint-Tropez is a great place to spend even just a day in; whether it’s the many beaches of the town or the old port’s markets and cafes, there’s something here for everyone. Here are our recommendations for the top places to visit in Saint-Tropez.
Vieux Port (Old Port)
Saint-Tropez’s Old Port essentially serves as the city centre and the heart of the town. The harbour is packed with numerous little boats and yachts, along with quaint yet chic cafes that are a great place to spend an afternoon in and people-watch. Alternatively, visitors can simply stroll through the charming old harbour and admire the numerous artists here who line up each day to sell their exquisite paintings, most of which depict scenes of Saint-Tropez. Place aux Herbes at the port is the open market that is set up early each morning and is a great place to purchase local produce like fruits, vegetables and even flowers. Try your hand at some great fresh fish at Halle aux Poissons, which is also where local restaurants purchase their supply every day.
This 17th century chapel is situated in a conifer grove on Mont Pecoulet, a hill behind the village of Saint-Tropez. Long-distance sailors were often known to visit this church to seek protection from St. Anne before departing on their journey. The chapel itself is located in a beautiful spot surrounded by panoramas of the blue sea. It is also known for being the wedding venue of Mick and Bianca Jagger in 1971, which was attended by A-list stars like Paul and Linda McCartney, Eric Clapton and Ringo Starr.
Marché de Saint-Tropez
The open street market of Saint-Tropez is held on the mornings of Tuesdays and Saturdays each week. More than a 100 sellers set up stalls in the neighbourhood of Place des Lices just a few steps away from the old port. Visitors can purchase fresh local produce like fruits and vegetables, and also meat and seafood. Flowers, clothes and Provencal herbs are also widely sold in the market, as are French delicacies and other freshly-made fares that will appeal to all types of food lovers.
Musee de l’Annonciade
This art museum is housed in a building that was previously the Notre-Dame l’Annonciade Chapel. The structure dates back to the early 16th-century and now contains an extensive art collection that belongs to a number of prominent artists; it is a reminder of Saint-Tropez’s remarkable artistic past. A wide collection of post-impressionist paintings will especially appeal to art lovers, with artworks from Matisse, Signac and Bonnard forming the main highlight of the museum.
Maison des Papillons (Butterfly Museum)
The Butterfly Museum was established by Dany Lartigue, who spent his lifetime collecting over 35,000 specimens of butterflies and presented it to the public in the form of this museum. Visitors can observe some of the rarest and even some extinct species of butterflies here, like the Black Apollo. Apart from almost every French butterfly species, exotic varieties from the Amazon and the Solomon Islands, which are known to be the most beautiful butterflies in the world, can also be found here. While the artful display of the butterfly arrangement is quite appealing in itself, entomologists consider the museum’s extensive collection to hold exceptional value as well.
Place des Lices
Also known as Place Carnot, Saint-Tropez’s old charm can best be experienced in this little neighbourhood. Located close to the old port and the Annonciade Museum, Place des Lices is also the spot where the locals gather to play the popular regional sport petanque. Tuesdays and Saturday mornings witness the setting up of a traditional Provencal street market where visitors can enjoy shopping for fresh local produce like fruits, vegetables and flowers. Another attraction of the neighbourhood is Café des Arts where both the locals and tourists like to gather to experience the village’s original atmosphere.
Musée de la Gendarmerie et du Cinéma
Saint-Tropez’s Hollywood claim to fame, the movie ‘And God Created Woman’, has brought considerable fame to the city. Since then, Saint-Tropez has been used as a locale in numerous films; especially movies associated with the gendarme, or the local police brigade, with the façade of Saint-Tropez’s police station appearing in a number of Jean Girault movies. This police station was later converted into a museum that opened in 2016. It consists of three floors that contain memorabilia and exhibitions dedicated to the Gendarme of Saint-Tropez and all its film associations.
The Saint-Tropez Citadel is a hexagonal-shaped fortress-like structure that was built way back in the early 17th-century. Its location high above the city offers a great vantage point for Saint-Tropez sightseeing, and the Maritime Museum located within its dungeons regularly attracts tourists and history lovers. In the museum, visitors can learn all about the maritime past of Saint-Tropez and learn all about Bailli de Suffren, the well-known seaman from Saint-Tropez. Fishermen from this small town travelled to far-off distances like Africa, India and the Far East; visitors to the museum can also learn about these expeditions and exotic destinations in the Maritime Museum.