This popular resort town sits on the sun-drenched French Riviera. From the glistening yachts docked in the harbour to the high-end boutiques that line the winding, cobblestoned streets, it oozes opulence and over-the-top style – even the speed bumps are tailored to the low clearance levels of visitors’ supercars. The port is the town’s busiest area, home to award-winning seafood restaurants and très chic cafés that boast Saint-Tropez’s top tables. There are also typically French bakeries and, of course, a patisserie or two. Wherever you choose to dine on the quayside, it’s likely your view will be of a glittering white yacht the size of a small château.
Saint-Tropez owes its fame and very good fortune to the 1956 Brigitte Bardot film And God Created Woman, which captured the beauty of the region and catapulted the relatively unknown fishing village and artists’ enclave into the limelight. Today stars of the silver screen, catwalk, billboard and sports field still flock here to soak up the sun, exclusive atmosphere and legendary nightlife. But Saint-Tropez isn’t just a magnet for the glitterati – the town’s population of around 6,000 swells to around 100,000 during the hot sultry summers as discerning holidaymakers descend from around the world.
While in town you can choose to wholeheartedly join in the fun, hitting the likes of Les Caves du Roy, where the resident DJ has famous fans such as Beyoncé; or Nikki Beach, home to legendary pool parties. However, it’s easy to step off the sunbathe-all-day-party-all-night conveyor belt if you want to explore further afield – there are cultural sites to visit, hiking trails to follow and a pretty old village to explore, where cobblestoned alleys and narrow streets of stone-washed houses wind their way up from the waterfront and come out at central square Place des Lices. Relax in the shade of plane trees and watch locals chatting and playing; this is a quintessential slice of France in one of the most glamorous destinations on earth.
Culture vultures should visit some of the area’s listed sites and monuments, such as a 16th-century citadel that was built to protect the town from the Spanish. It’s just a 15-minute walk from the port and offers sublime views of the boat-filled Gulf of Saint-Tropez. Inside, there’s a museum that showcases the region’s rich and varied maritime history. Sitting in the citadel’s shadow, the old fishing quarter oozes French Riviera charm and boasts a tiny beach surrounded by pretty stone cottages. Here you’ll also find an ancient tavern called La Ponche, which still operates as a hotel today – former gusts include artist Picasso, writer Jacques Laurent and a host of French actors and actresses.
For hikers and walkers should tackle the seven-mile Sentier du Littoral, which hugs the coast of the Saint-Tropez Peninsula and offers views of the glistening Mediterranean and beautiful coastline. Not a lot of people go out on this hike, so it’s a great option if you want a little time out from the crowds down by the port. It passes a number of bays on the way to Pampelonne, one of the region’s most famous beaches, which is located on the east coast of the peninsula and stretches for over three miles. There are a handful of exclusive beach clubs where you may end up rubbing shoulders with Saint-Tropez’s elite, as well as slightly more rustic venues and public areas where locals congregate in July and August.
The nearest airport to the town is Saint-Tropez La Môle, approximately nine miles away, which has a dedicated private terminal. Larger jets can land at Nice Cote d’Azur airport, followed by a 90-minute car journey or short helicopter hop to Saint-Tropez. Simply contact one of our team and we can arrange everything you need to charter a private jet to Saint-Tropez.