This summer we’re highlighting sizzling international locales, where guests can now book cars on Turo! For local, insider travel tips from awesome Commercial Hosts, check out all of the guides here, and visit this page to see all the places around the globe you can book on Turo.
The French Riviera is one of Europe’s most fashionable summer destinations for relaxing and playing in the sun. It’s the sort of dreamy warm place that serves as the setting for plodding romantic films from the sixties in which life seems but a fanciful rosé-fueled fairytale.
And that’s not an entirely inaccurate depiction — France’s Mediterranean coast features sunny beaches, picturesque towns, Roman ruins, and plenty of entertainment. The French Riviera, also known as the Côte d’Azur, stretches from the Italian border next to the Alps towards Saint-Tropez, and all the way to Marseille if you’d like. With so many famous options to visit in the area, we asked local Turo host Franck of Luxury & Services to set us straight on what’s what on the Riviera.
Luxury & Services is in both Nice and Monaco, two gems that are about a half hour apart in the most popular part of the Riviera. If you’re flying into the area, you’ll probably land in Nice, a wonderful, walkable town that serves as an excellent jumping-off point for exploring the region. Nice has excellent restaurants (of course), a beautiful promenade, and a charming old town that’s well worth a visit. Be sure to stop by the famous Cours Saleya flower market to get your fill of romance.
And there are dozens more idyllic beachfront towns to visit, including Cannes, which is perhaps most famous for its film festival. Like Nice, Cannes is a beautiful and walkable dream vacation spot, but with a touch more glamor. It’ll be tempting to spend your days lounging in the sun, eating well and living the charmed life in Cannes or Nice, but Franck urges all who visit to move about and explore all the sights of the whole Riviera.
Franck recommends a relaxing cruise along the coast for those who are especially beach-inclined. But he also notes that the hills above coast are full of wonderful driving roads, perfect for enthusiasts or anyone who wants to escape the summer crowds for a spell. The drive from Nice to Marseille offers an enchanting tour of the Riviera in only two hours, though you could mosey your way over and take the coastal route in double that time.
Let’s say you’re using up precious PTO days during your European vacation and only have a few days in the South of France. What are the top three places you absolutely must visit? Franck knows just the spots.
You can pick up one of Franck’s cars in either Nice or next-door Monaco. The luxurious, uber-wealthy city-state is packed with top-notch resorts, shops, and casinos, and is the ultimate play place for people with upscale taste and the right spending habits. Stroll along the marina to take in the yacht parties or visit the sites of the Monaco Grand Prix — you’re sure to see plenty of exotics and supercars recreating the route.
During the short drive between Monaco and Nice, be sure to stop in Èze for beautiful ocean views and small-town vibes. Èze’s medieval stone streets and hilltop gardens make for a calming escape from the glitz of Monaco’s casino scene. Plus, Franck says the surrounding hills have some of the best driving roads in the area.
Perched high above the Riviera’s more flashy beach towns, the legendary Saint-Paul-de-Vence makes for a perfect day trip from wherever you’re staying in the area. Its manicured gardens, old-town charm, and exquisite hillside views offer a great taste of Provence without having to stray too far from the water.
Saint-Paul-de-Vence is bursting with art galleries and vineyards, so it’s the perfect place for you to live out your European fantasies in Southern French style. Art’s influence permeates the area, and you’ll feel it even when exploring the narrow alleys of the 15th-century walled village.
This former sleepy fishing village has become one of the liveliest and sexiest favorites on the Riviera. While massive yachts jostle for moorings at Saint-Tropez’s marinas, their owners hit the upscale shops, restaurants, and bars along the beaches. Saint-Tropez’s laid-back daytime feel and booming nightlife make for an excellent time for partygoers, but you can easily spend your time relaxing in the sun and sampling the French cuisine. For food, it’s hard to go wrong. In the wine department, Franck recommends some local rosé — the Provence region is comfortably the world’s top producer of rosé and it’s the perfect beverage to pair with your dreamy French Riviera brunches.