Cannes vs. St. Tropez

Are you torn between Cannes and St. Tropez for your next vacation? It's a tough choice. Both these French Riviera towns boast a wealth of attractions and distinct character. Cannes, known for its world-renowned film festival, and St. Tropez, a favorite spot for artists and celebrities, are each unique in their own right. Which one will become your dream destination?
Cannes vs. St. Tropez

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The French Riviera is a region of romance, beauty, and glamor. Cannes and St. Tropez, two of its most famous towns, have so much to offer. But which one will captivate your heart and fill your vacation with unforgettable memories? Read on, the French Riviera is waiting to reveal its secrets to you.

History & Culture

In the realm of history and culture, both Cannes and St. Tropez have fascinating stories to tell.

Cannes, now known worldwide for its glamorous film festival, has humble roots. It started as a small fishing village, developing over time into a winter resort for the British aristocracy. Today, Cannes combines its historical charm with the sophistication of a modern city.

You can explore the old town of Le Suquet, where narrow streets wind up the hill to the old castle, offering you a glimpse into the town’s past.

St. Tropez, on the other hand, has a distinct history marked by military significance and artistic legacy. It was initially a military stronghold and later became a quiet fishing village. It rose to fame when the renowned painter, Paul Signac, discovered its unique light and vibrant colors. His works attracted many famous artists and turned St. Tropez into an artists’ colony.

Culturally, Cannes is an elegant blend of luxury and history. You’ll feel the city’s vibrant energy during the annual Cannes Film Festival when stars from around the world grace its red carpet. Throughout the year, Cannes’ cultural scene thrives with numerous music and theater events.

In contrast, St. Tropez’s culture reflects its artistic heritage. Even today, it’s a beloved haven for artists. Its narrow streets, dotted with art galleries, and its open-air markets reveal the town’s bohemian spirit.

To sum it up, both Cannes and St. Tropez offer rich history and vibrant culture. If you’re attracted to a glamorous city with a buzzing cultural scene, Cannes might be your destination. On the other hand, if an artistic atmosphere and laid-back bohemian vibe appeal to you, St. Tropez could be your perfect choice. The decision is yours to make. Which town will weave its history and culture into the fabric of your vacation memories?

Attractions & Activities

In Cannes and St. Tropez, the variety of attractions and activities you can enjoy are plentiful and diverse.

Cannes offers you some wonderful sightseeing opportunities. Walk along the famous Boulevard de la Croisette, enjoy the luxury hotels and boutiques, and admire the beautiful gardens.

For a taste of the past, venture into the old town, Le Suquet, with its winding streets, old houses, and panoramic views of the city. A visit to the Musée de la Castre will provide you with an array of exhibits, from primitive art to Mediterranean antiquities.

On the other hand, St. Tropez can satisfy your artistic spirit. The vibrant colors and special light that once attracted famous painters can still be found in the Musee de l’Annonciade, showcasing works from Signac, Matisse, and more. Or perhaps you’d like to follow in the footsteps of Brigitte Bardot, exploring the town as she did while filming “And God Created Woman.”

Outdoor activities in Cannes can include a stroll along the Promenade de la Pantiero, or perhaps you’d prefer a tranquil walk around the Îles de Lérins, where the sea breeze and natural beauty will captivate you. Don’t forget the Cannes Film Festival if you’re there in May, an event that transforms the city into a movie wonderland.

In St. Tropez, a climb up to the Citadel is sure to reward you with stunning views over the town and the sea. Or take a leisurely walk around the old port, filled with beautiful yachts, old wooden boats, and charming terraces. If you’re visiting in October, don’t miss “Les Voiles de St. Tropez,” a remarkable classic yacht regatta.

In conclusion, both Cannes and St. Tropez are ripe with unique attractions and activities. If luxury boutiques, famous festivals, and breathtaking promenades speak to your heart, Cannes might be your match. But if art museums, beautiful ports, and historical climbs spark your interest, then St. Tropez beckons.


When it comes to sand and sun, both Cannes and St. Tropez are highly regarded. But each has its own charm that can enhance your beach experience.

In Cannes, the La Croisette beach is a must-visit. It’s approximately 2 kilometers long (about 1.2 miles), providing ample space for you to relax or take a leisure stroll along the shoreline. What makes this beach unique is that it’s divided into public and private sections, so you can choose based on your preference.

St. Tropez, on the other hand, is famous for the Pampelonne beach. This beach stretches for almost 5 kilometers (around 3 miles), offering you plenty of room to spread out and enjoy the sun. It’s divided into various sections with different vibes, from vibrant and lively areas to tranquil and relaxing spots.

When comparing the amenities, Cannes’ private beaches provide you with high-quality services like sun loungers, parasols, and eateries. On the public beaches, you’ll find showers and public restrooms. In St. Tropez, the Pampelonne beach also features private beach clubs that offer sunbeds, umbrellas, and restaurants.

To sum up, the beaches of Cannes and St. Tropez each have their distinct appeal. If you favor a beach with both public and private options close to city amenities, Cannes may be your ideal choice. But if a larger beach with diverse vibes and beach clubs is more appealing, then St. Tropez could be your dream destination.

Eating, Drinking & Nightlife

When it comes to eating, drinking, and nightlife, both Cannes and St. Tropez are unique and thrilling in their own ways.

In Cannes, the food scene is exquisite. You can find a host of elegant restaurants serving French cuisine. One particular favorite is the Boulevard de la Croisette, where seafood is the star. In St. Tropez, you can also enjoy excellent cuisine, with a focus on Mediterranean flavors. The fresh seafood and local produce make every meal a delight.

As for drinks, Cannes offers you a wealth of glamorous bars and lounges where you can enjoy a glass of French wine or a classic cocktail. The wine bars in the old town are especially notable. St. Tropez, on the other hand, is home to vineyards where rosé wine reigns supreme. You can visit these vineyards for a tour and tasting, a truly unique experience.

The nightlife in Cannes is a glamorous affair. Famous for its film festival, the city boasts many upscale clubs and bars where you can dance the night away. In contrast, St. Tropez is known for its beach clubs. The most iconic one is perhaps Nikki Beach, where parties often go on until dawn.

In summary, both Cannes and St. Tropez offer wonderful culinary experiences, unique drinking scenes, and vibrant nightlife. If elegant restaurants, glamorous bars, and upscale clubs are your things, Cannes might be your ideal destination. But if you’re drawn to Mediterranean cuisine, rosé wine, and beach parties, St. Tropez is the place for you.


Shopping in Cannes and St. Tropez can be an adventure, filled with chic boutiques, luxury brands, and local markets.

In Cannes, the famous Boulevard de la Croisette is lined with high-end boutiques from international luxury brands, perfect if you’re looking for the latest fashion trends. Another notable shopping area is Rue d’Antibes, where you can find a mix of designer boutiques and mainstream retailers.

In contrast, St. Tropez offers a more bohemian shopping experience. While it does have its share of luxury boutiques, especially around the Place de la Garonne, what makes shopping unique here are the small independent boutiques found in the old town. You can find handmade sandals, unique clothing, and local art, all carrying the spirit of St. Tropez.

To wrap up, if high-end fashion and luxury shopping are what you’re after, Cannes will not disappoint. However, if you’re looking for unique finds and local charm, St. Tropez is sure to leave a lasting impression. Both cities offer shopping experiences that reflect their unique character and style.


Both Cannes and St. Tropez offer a variety of accommodations to make your stay comfortable and memorable.

In Cannes, you can find everything from luxury hotels on the Boulevard de la Croisette to cozy bed and breakfasts in the old town. Many accommodations offer stunning sea views, and service is top-notch. With many options, you can find something that fits your budget and preferences.

St. Tropez, on the other hand, is known for its charming boutique hotels, particularly those located in the heart of the town. You can also find luxury villas overlooking the Mediterranean, perfect for a family vacation or a group of friends. Here, the accommodations blend seamlessly with the town’s vibrant and laid-back vibe.

In short, whether you’re looking for a luxury hotel with all the amenities or a cozy, charming inn, both Cannes and St. Tropez have you covered. If glamour and sea views are your thing, Cannes might be your pick. But if you’re seeking a vibrant, beachy vibe, then St. Tropez could be your ideal choice.

Family-Friendliness & Children’s Activities

If you are looking for a family-friendly destination in the French Riviera, you might be wondering whether to choose Cannes or St. Tropez. Both towns have their unique offerings when it comes to children’s activities and attractions.

In Cannes, you’ll find many parks and playgrounds where children can play and enjoy nature. Some of the most popular ones are Square Mero, Jardins des Gabres, Jardin des Vagues, and Square Verdun.

The beaches along the Boulevard de la Croisette are perfect for building sandcastles and swimming in the Mediterranean Sea. You can also visit the aquarium at Port Canto or take a family boat trip to the nearby Lérins Islands for a day of adventure. The islands are home to a medieval monastery, a fort, and a nature reserve.

St. Tropez, on the other hand, is full of family-friendly beaches with calm waters, perfect for little ones. Some of the best ones are Pampelonne Beach, Plage des Graniers, and Plage de la Bouillabaisse.

You can also take a carousel ride in the Place des Lices, the main square of the town, or visit the butterfly museum (La Maison des Papillons) for a fun and educational experience. The museum displays more than 35,000 specimens of butterflies from around the world.

Summing up, both Cannes and St. Tropez are very family-friendly with plenty of activities for children. If city parks, boat trips, and aquariums appeal to you, consider Cannes. But if your family loves beaches, carousels, and butterflies, then St. Tropez might be the one for you.

Getting There & Getting Around

Reaching and exploring both Cannes and St. Tropez is a breeze, thanks to their excellent transport links and infrastructure.

To get to Cannes, you can fly into Nice Côte d’Azur International Airport, which is around 25 miles (40 kilometers) away. From the airport, you can take a bus or taxi, or rent a car to reach Cannes. On the other hand, to reach St. Tropez, the closest major airport is Toulon-Hyères, approximately 34 miles (55 kilometers) away. From there, you can take a taxi or rent a car.

When it comes to getting around, Cannes has a well-developed public transportation system including buses and trains, which makes exploring the city and surrounding areas easy. In St. Tropez, while there is public transport, many people choose to rent a bicycle or a scooter, which adds to the town’s laid-back and fun atmosphere.

To summarize, whether you choose Cannes with its reliable public transport or St. Tropez with its fun bike and scooter rentals, getting there and getting around is part of the adventure. Choose the one that matches your travel style and enjoy the journey!


When planning your vacation to Cannes or St. Tropez, it’s good to consider the weather, as it can greatly influence your activities.

Cannes enjoys a Mediterranean climate with warm, sunny summers and mild winters.

From June to August, temperatures usually hover around 77-86 degrees Fahrenheit (25-30 degrees Celsius). This is the perfect time for beach activities and water sports. During winter, temperatures drop to around 50 degrees Fahrenheit (10 degrees Celsius), and it becomes a bit rainy, but it’s still pleasant for sightseeing.

On the other hand, St. Tropez also enjoys a similar Mediterranean climate. During summer, temperatures reach up to 86 degrees Fahrenheit (30 degrees Celsius), making it ideal for sunbathing and swimming. The winters are a bit cooler and rainier, with temperatures around 53-60 degrees Fahrenheit (12-15 degrees Celsius), but it’s still comfortable for exploring the town.

In conclusion, both Cannes and St. Tropez offer excellent weather for holiday-goers. If you prefer hotter summers and milder winters, St. Tropez might be the better choice. However, if you’re looking for slightly cooler summer temperatures and don’t mind a bit of rain in the winter, Cannes could be the better option.


Safety is a crucial factor to consider when choosing your vacation destination.

In Cannes, the overall crime rate is relatively low. It’s generally safe to walk around, even at night, but like any other city, it’s important to stay alert and keep an eye on your belongings.

St. Tropez also enjoys a low crime rate. It’s a small town with a friendly atmosphere, making it safe for families and solo travelers alike. That said, during the peak tourist season, it’s wise to be mindful of your belongings due to increased crowds.

Apart from crime, both cities offer excellent healthcare facilities, ensuring that you’re well taken care of in case of any medical emergencies.

In summary, both Cannes and St. Tropez are considered safe destinations with low crime rates. However, it’s always recommended to exercise common sense and take necessary precautions regardless of where you are.


Last but not least, the cost can be a deciding factor when choosing between Cannes and St. Tropez.

Cannes, being a popular tourist destination, offers a range of options to suit various budgets. Dining can range from 20 to 100 euros ($24 to $120) per person, depending on the restaurant. Accommodation can be as low as 80 euros ($96) for budget options and as high as 300 euros ($360) for luxury hotels.

In St. Tropez, costs tend to be on the higher end, especially during peak season. The average cost for a meal can start from 30 euros ($36) per person, while accommodations can range from 100 euros ($120) for budget-friendly options to 400 euros ($480) for luxury hotels.

In conclusion, if you’re traveling on a budget, Cannes offers more affordable options. But if luxury and exclusivity are what you seek, St. Tropez may be worth the splurge.

Which Is Better – Cannes or St. Tropez?

After exploring the many facets of Cannes and St. Tropez, it’s evident that both towns offer unique experiences.

In terms of history and culture, Cannes takes the lead with its rich cinematic heritage and intriguing past, making it a great choice for history buffs. St. Tropez, however, has a more rustic charm and a unique artist community, perfect for those seeking an authentic Provençal experience.

When it comes to attractions and activities, both towns excel, but in different areas. Cannes is known for its world-renowned film festival and sophisticated charm, while St. Tropez stands out with its lively nightlife and beautiful yacht-filled harbor.

As for beaches, it’s a toss-up. Cannes’ sandy beaches are complemented by a magnificent backdrop of the city, whereas St. Tropez’s Pampelonne Beach, with its crystal-clear waters, promises a more serene and natural experience.

The dining, drinking, and nightlife scenes also differ. Cannes offers a wide range of options, from affordable local fare to high-end gourmet restaurants. St. Tropez, known for its party scene, provides an unmatched nightlife experience, though at a higher price point.

In the shopping department, both towns offer upscale shopping options with Cannes leaning towards high-end international brands and St. Tropez favoring exclusive local boutiques.

For accommodations, both Cannes and St. Tropez offer a wide range of options, from budget-friendly to luxury. However, St. Tropez’s accommodations tend to be pricier, particularly during peak season.

For families, both towns offer child-friendly activities. Cannes, with its long sandy beaches and child-friendly museums, is particularly suitable for families, while St. Tropez offers unique experiences like butterfly watching and water sports.

In terms of getting there and around, Cannes is more accessible with better public transport options, making it easier for tourists to explore the city and the surrounding region. St. Tropez, being a smaller town, is more walkable but can be congested during the summer season.

Comparing the weather, both towns enjoy a Mediterranean climate, with warm summers and mild winters. However, St. Tropez offers hotter summers and milder winters, making it a slightly better choice for sun-seekers.

Safety-wise, both towns are relatively safe with low crime rates. However, it’s always recommended to take the usual safety precautions when in unfamiliar surroundings.

Lastly, in terms of cost, Cannes provides more flexibility, catering to a range of budgets, while St. Tropez tends to be pricier.

In conclusion, choosing between Cannes and St. Tropez depends largely on what you’re seeking from your vacation. If you’re after glamour, culture, and a balance of cost, Cannes is the better choice. However, if you’re looking for rustic charm and vibrant nightlife, and don’t mind spending a bit more, St. Tropez is the way to go. Both towns, however, promise an unforgettable experience on the French Riviera.