St. Tropez

Despite existing as an independent republic between 1470 and 1672, the incredibly fashionable resort of St Tropez is really little more than a small fishing town. Throughout the summer months it receives between 30,000 to 40,000 daily visitors; although off-season its population falls to only 6000. During the 1920s it began to achieve global renown as the preferred holiday destination of fashion industry celebrities. After the Second World War, when it was a landing site used for the allied invasion of southern France, St Tropez became the summer refuge of the French Existentialist movement. However St Tropez’s iconic status was truly established in the 1950s, by Roger Vadim’s film, And God Created Woman, starring Bridget Bardot.

Since its 50s and 60s heyday St Tropez has continued to attract the international jet-set due to the quality of its beaches which are considered the best in France. There are a few family orientated beaches within walking distance of the centre of St Tropez; although the best are located south of the town along the sandy five-kilometre shore of the Baie de Pampelonne. At its northern edge is the renowned Plage de Tahiti, where ‘revealingly-attired’ celebrities come to be seen and photographed by paparazzi.

Divided into public or private sections, the beaches often feature waters-edge restaurants and bars, which remain host daily fashion show and remain open well into the evening. Many customers arrive by tender from their yachts anchored offshore.

Resisting the invasion of designer boutiques and five-star hotels, the narrow streets and open markets of St Tropez retain a Provencal atmosphere and locals still play pétanque under the shade of the platane trees on the Place des Lices, while local fisherman sell their produce each day at the Place aux Herbes. Along the harbour, the expensive, celebrity-filled terraced brassieres are separated from the water by a constant slow-moving procession of sports cars.

Nightlife and Eating Out

The Baie de Pamplonne contains a number of celebrated restaurants whose exclusivity is reflected by their pricey menus. The most prestigious is Club 55, named after the release date of Vadim’s film, where diners eat on wooden decking on the waters edge. The younger and more exhibitionist elements of St Tropez frequent the private beach clubs of La Voile Rouge and Nikki Beach, which have both borne testament to much of the drunken debauchery for which St Tropez is notorious.

Inside St Tropez, the famous chefs of fashionable, haute-cuisine restaurants serve dishes from around the world, with an emphasis on seafood, while traditional restaurants serve more reasonably priced fare.

St Tropez’s six nightclubs remain open until dawn and inside musicians and film-stars mingle with eminent businessmen and royalty over exorbitantly priced cocktails and champagne, to the music of the world’s most sought-after DJs.

Tourist Information

Tourist Office of Saint-TropezSt Tropez Tourist Office quai Jean Jaures,B.P. Nº 218 F-83994St-Tropez, Cedex, Francetel. +33 (0)494 974 521fax. +33 (0)494 978


The Cote d'Azur International Airport in Nice is serviced by a total of 41 airlines. It receives regular flights from all over the world, including 13 different UK airports and is a popular destination for both budget and prestige airlines. It is 50 miles from St Tropez and the journey takes roughly an hour and 15 minutes by car, or longer by train or bus depending on connections. Helicopter transfers are also available and last approximately 25 minutes.

Toulon airport is nearer to St Tropez than Nice and the direct bus service between the two takes less than an hour.

The best way to get to St Tropez in the summer is by ferry from Cannes or St Raphael. From Cannes the journey takes about an hour and 15 minutes and costs upwards of 35 euros.

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