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Film Festival in Cannes? Discover These Attractions Instead!



The Cannes Film Festival is one of the most prestigious events in the world, attracting celebrities, filmmakers, and movie enthusiasts from around the globe. However, there’s much more to Cannes than just the film festival. This charming city on the French Riviera offers a wealth of activities and attractions that visitors can enjoy during their stay. Whether you’re interested in history, shopping, dining, or simply relaxing by the sea, Cannes has something for everyone. In this article, we’ll explore some of the best things to do in Cannes while the film festival is in full swing.


Exploring the Glamorous La Croisette

Iconic Landmarks and Luxury Hotels

Walk along La Croisette, the famous street by the sea in Cannes. You’ll see beautiful buildings and fancy hotels like the Carlton, the Martinez, and the Majestic. These hotels are known for their luxury and often host celebrities, especially during the film festival. Take a stroll and enjoy the stunning architecture and the glamorous atmosphere. Don’t forget to snap some photos!


Designer Boutiques and High-End Shopping

If you love shopping, La Croisette is perfect for you. There are many high-end shops where you can find designer clothes, jewelry, and more. Brands like Chanel, Louis Vuitton, and Gucci have stores here. Even if you don’t buy anything, it’s fun to window shop and see the latest fashions. The shops are beautifully designed, and the staff is very friendly. It’s a great place to find something special or just enjoy the luxury shopping experience.


Beachfront Bliss: Relaxing on Cannes’ Stunning Beaches

Public and Private Beaches

Cannes has some of the best beaches on the French Riviera. You can choose between public beaches like Plage du Midi and Plage de la Bocca, where you can relax for free, or private beach clubs that offer sunbeds, umbrellas, and service right to your spot. These private beaches are more expensive, but they provide extra comfort and luxury. Whether you prefer the lively public beaches or the exclusive private ones, the clear blue water and soft sand are perfect for a day of relaxation.


Watersports and Beach Activities

If you like being active, Cannes’ beaches offer a variety of watersports and activities. You can try jet skiing, paddleboarding, or parasailing for an exciting adventure. Many places also offer boat rentals if you want to explore the sea on your own. For a more relaxed activity, you can rent a pedal boat or go snorkeling to see the underwater world. There are plenty of options to keep you entertained on the water.


Discover the best beaches of The French Riviera


Historical Wonders: Visiting Le Suquet

Old Town Charm and Historic Buildings

Le Suquet is the old town of Cannes, full of charm and history. Walk through the narrow, cobblestone streets and admire the old buildings, some dating back to the Middle Ages. The area is full of character, with small shops, cafes, and restaurants. It’s a great place to wander and get a feel for the history of Cannes.


Panoramic Views from Castle Hill

At the top of Le Suquet, you’ll find the old castle, which now houses the Musée des explorations du monde. The climb up the hill is worth it for the amazing views over Cannes and the Mediterranean Sea. From here, you can see the whole city, the port, and the surrounding hills. It’s a perfect spot for taking photos and enjoying the scenery.


As you make your way up the cobblestone streets, you’ll pass charming old houses and small cafes, giving you a taste of Cannes’ historic charm. The museum itself is housed in a medieval castle, which adds to the unique atmosphere of the area. Inside the museum, you can explore a diverse collection of artifacts from around the world, including art, music, and historical items. The castle’s tower is a highlight, offering an even higher vantage point for breathtaking views.

The best tour to discover Cannes


Once you reach the top, take your time to soak in the panoramic vistas. On a clear day, you can see all the way to the Lérins Islands, adding to the beauty of the scene. The sight of the sparkling blue sea contrasted with the red rooftops of Cannes is truly picturesque. The port, with its array of yachts and boats, adds a lively touch to the view.

In addition to the stunning views, the area around the castle is perfect for a leisurely walk. There are benches where you can sit and relax,  gardens with vibrant flowers, and peaceful spots to enjoy the tranquility. It’s an ideal place for a picnic or a quiet moment away from the bustling festival crowds.

For photography enthusiasts, Castle Hill is a dream location. The changing light throughout the day offers different perspectives, making it worthwhile to visit both during the day and at sunset. As the sun sets over the Mediterranean, the sky transforms into a palette of warm colors, providing a magical end to your visit.

Whether you’re interested in history, photography, or simply enjoying beautiful views, the panoramic views from Castle Hill are a must-see during your time in Cannes.


Gastronomic Delights: Top Restaurants and Local Cuisine

Michelin-Starred Restaurants

Cannes is home to several Michelin-starred restaurants where you can enjoy world-class dining. These restaurants offer exquisite dishes made with the finest ingredients, often with a Mediterranean twist. Places like La Palme d’Or and Paradiso are known for their exceptional food and service. Dining at one of these restaurants is a special experience you won’t forget.


Authentic Provençal Dishes

For a taste of local cuisine, try some authentic Provençal dishes. The food in Cannes is influenced by the flavors of Provence, featuring fresh ingredients like tomatoes, olives, garlic, and herbs. Don’t miss dishes like bouillabaisse (a fish stew), ratatouille (a vegetable dish), and pissaladière (an onion tart). Many local bistros and cafes serve these traditional meals, offering a delicious and authentic taste of the region.


Here’ a list of the best restaurants in Cannes


Art and Culture: Museum

Discovering Museum of the Sea

When visiting Cannes, explore the Musée de la Mer on Île Sainte-Marguerite, part of the Lérins Islands. The museum is housed in the 17th-century Fort Royal, which has a fascinating history as a defensive structure and prison. One of its most famous prisoners was the mysterious Man in the Iron Mask.

Maritime Artifacts and Treasures

The museum features maritime artifacts recovered from ancient shipwrecks around the islands, including amphorae and ceramics. These exhibits offer a glimpse into maritime history.

Natural Beauty of Île Sainte-Marguerite

The island itself is beautiful, with lush forests and scenic walking trails leading to quiet beaches and stunning viewpoints.

How to Get There

Take a short, 15-minute boat ride from Cannes to Île Sainte-Marguerite. The museum is a short walk from the ferry terminal.

The Musée de la Mer offers a mix of history, archaeology, and natural beauty, making it a great day trip from Cannes.


Day Trips from Cannes: Nearby Towns and Attractions

Antibes and Picasso Museum

A short trip from Cannes, Antibes is a charming town with a rich history. Visit the Picasso Museum, located in the Château Grimaldi, where the famous artist lived and worked for a time. The museum features many of Picasso’s works and offers beautiful views of the sea. Antibes also has a lovely old town, a bustling market, and stunning beaches.

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The Perfumeries of Grasse

Known as the perfume capital of the world, Grasse is a must-visit for fragrance lovers. Tour the famous perfumeries like Fragonard, Molinard, and Galimard to learn about the perfume-making process and even create your own scent. The town is full of history and charm, with narrow streets, beautiful buildings, and fragrant gardens. It’s a delightful day trip from Cannes.


Wellness and Relaxation: Spas and Wellness Centers

Luxury Spas

Treat yourself to some pampering at one of Cannes’ luxury spas. Many top hotels, like the Martinez and the Carlton, have world-class spa facilities offering a range of treatments. Enjoy a massage, facial, or full-body treatment to relax and rejuvenate. The serene environments and professional staff ensure a blissful experience.

Yoga and Fitness Classes by the Beach

Stay active and relaxed with yoga and fitness classes by the beach. Many instructors offer morning and evening sessions on the sand, allowing you to exercise with a beautiful view of the sea. These classes are suitable for all levels and provide a wonderful way to start or end your day in Cannes.


Hidden Gems: Off-the-Beaten-Path Attractions in Cannes

Secret Gardens and Hidden Courtyards

Explore some of the lesser-known spots in Cannes, like secret gardens and hidden courtyards. These peaceful places offer a break from the busy city and are perfect for a quiet stroll. Look for Jardin de la Villa Rothschild, a beautiful garden with exotic plants and flowers.


Unique Local Experiences

Discover unique local experiences in Cannes, such as visiting small, family-run shops and eateries. Try local delicacies at a tiny bakery or explore an artisan’s workshop. These hidden gems provide an authentic taste of Cannes and its culture, away from the usual tourist spots.

While the Cannes Film Festival is a major highlight, the city offers much more to explore and enjoy. From the glamorous La Croisette and relaxing beaches to historic sites like Le Suquet and intriguing museums, there’s something for everyone. 

Indulge in high-end shopping, savor local cuisine, and experience the vibrant nightlife. Don’t forget to take day trips to nearby attractions like Antibes and Grasse, or simply unwind with wellness activities. Whether you’re a film enthusiast or just visiting, Cannes provides a rich and diverse experience beyond the festival.


To truly discover every part of Cannes, don’t miss the chance to explore beyond the film festival. From the glamorous La Croisette and serene beaches to historic sites and vibrant nightlife, Cannes offers a wealth of experiences. To make the most of your visit, book a tour with us. Our licensed professional guides know the region perfectly and will ensure you experience the best of what Cannes has to offer.

If you need a private transfer with a private driver, you have to book a transfer with RivieraConnecting for a seamless and comfortable journey.