20 Best Beaches In The South Of France

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Beaches in the South of France constitute an abundance of pristine shores whose azure and turquoise waters are bordered by famous or isolated stretches of sands or pebbles. This stunning coastline is home to amazing waves, coves, and cliffs that offer the perfect escape, whether you dip your toes in the warm Mediterranean sea or the stunning Atlantic ocean.

From the beauty of the Côte d’Azur, the creeks of Provence, the Languedoc coast, or the heavenly beaches of Corsica, here are 20 best beaches in the South of France to lay your towel on.

Most Popular Beach in the South of France 

Pampelonne Beach (Plage Pampelonne), St Tropez

People can’t think of Southern France Beaches without St Tropez popping into their minds. Although it is known for its flashy streets, luxurious restaurants, and the many superyachts inhabiting its coast, visitors first flocked to this town because of its beautiful beaches.

Popularity isn’t synonymous with crowds as the beach stretches for five kilometers (3.1 miles) of white sands and gentle waters. And there are plenty of private beach club options for those who’d rather spend their morning or afternoon in an intimate atmosphere. The most famous is probably Club 55, which served as the set for Bardos’ movie “And God Created Woman.”

For those who want to escape the noisy and overcrowded parts of St Tropez, but still enjoy the beautiful beaches in the South of France, consider staying at Hotel Les Bouis. It’s near the city’s center but far enough to remain tucked amidst quieter surroundings.

Best Beaches in the South of France in the French Riviera

Paloma Beach (Plage Paloma), Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat

Tucked amidst a quiet cove on the French Riviera, this secret slice of paradise is the go-to destination for many celebrities and wealthy individuals who like to frequent beaches in the South of France.

Paloma beach is made out of a stretch of half-sand, half-pebble coast, one section of which is private. Here, you’ll be greeted by views of luscious vegetations, pines-covered hills, and gleaming yachts.

There’s a seaside restaurant, toilets, public showers, and a lifeguard during summer, making this southern France beach very popular with families. Many watersports are also offered on-site, from sailing to water skiing. Experienced snorkelers will also have the opportunity to admire the local marine life: starfish, seagrass meadows, and sea breams hide under the water.

To truly bathe in the quiet of Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat, consider staying at Hôtel de Charme Brise Marine. This exceptional family-owned accommodation is a short 3-minute walk from Paloma beach and offers breathtaking views of some of the best beaches in the South of France.

Beach of the Bestouan (La Plage du Bestouan), Cassis

Even French people who know the best South of France beaches tend to flock to Cassis at least once during summer. This small town is home to La Plage Du Bestouan, a beach that seems to get everything just right. It is small but presents a magnificent view of Cap Canaille – one of Europe’s highest cliffs.

In summer, its shimmering sea will frequently be marked by color: on the horizon, many small boats with multicolored sails like to cruise around. You’ll find plenty of options for food and refreshments, showers, toilets, and a first aid station. Cassis’s beaches are all supervised during summer.

La Plage Du Bestouan is conveniently located 11 minutes away from Hôtel Les Roches Blanches Cassis – making it a perfect starting point for those wishing to explore the surrounding South of France beaches and Calanques.


Calanque de Figuerolles, La Ciotat

Calanque de Figuerolles is one of the few family-friendly rocky inlets of the Massif park and is as breathtaking as its surrounding Southern France beaches. Its provides a spectacular view of the “Bec de l’Aigle” – a famous landscape in La Ciotat.

The surrounding rocks seem to dive into inviting turquoise waters, and many filmmakers have been attracted to its distinctive earthy landscape. This beach will please those inclined to eat good food: it is home to a restaurant that hides atop one of its hills.

To best explore this Calanque and the wonderful town of La Ciotat, consider staying at Best Western Premier Hôtel du Vieux-Port. It is ideally located with an opening directly onto the bay and a short walk from various surrounding beaches in the South of France. Decorated in a contemporary style, this hotel has a rooftop pool, sauna, Turkish baths, and a hot tub.

Beach of L’Aiguille (Plage Pointe de l’Aiguille), Théoule-sur-Mer

Théoule-Sur-Mer is home to a unique beach in the South of France: Pointe De L’Aiguille, where red rocks plunge into a green-blue sea. This region’s volcanic past resulted in many strange cliff formations, most of which are either red, orange, pink, or purplish.

Pointe De L’Aiguille beach is a crowd’s favorite as it has a small stretch of sand between its pebbles. It offers views of Cannes and its various southern France beaches, and you’ll find restaurants, toilets, showers, and snack bars around it. For the adventurous-inclined: rock climbers like to test their skills along its intriguing rock structures.

Continuing on the theme of uniquely-shaped structures and surroundings: consider staying at Hôtel Club Port La Galère, a distinctive place with exotic architecture.

Beach of La Marinière (Plage des Marinières), Villefranche-sur-Mer

Villefranche-Sur-Mer is a delightful little fishing village whose beaches offer postal-card scenes of colorful provincial houses encircled by trees. And Des Marinieres beach features some of the cleanest and clearest waters in the area. It is long, and some of its sections are made out of velvety sand.

Although it’s sandwiched between energetic Nice and Monaco, this southern French beach is surprisingly laid-back and casual. Plage des Marinières is also popular with families because of the presence of anti-jellyfish nets and a portion of it being strictly non-smoking.

Royal Riviera is one of the best places to stay in Villefranche-sur-Mer. Settled on top of the peninsula, panoramic views of the Mediterranean surround it. The hotel merges luxury and intimacy in a glamourous setting where guests can stroll around Provençal gardens and its private beach.

La Gaillarde Beach (Plage de La Gaillarde), Les Issambres

Gaillard beach is a paradise for water sports lovers as it offers an extensive list of activities, from basic snorkeling to boating. Its sandy beach stretches 250 meters (820 ft) along the shores of the Mediterranean and is surrounded by vast green spaces. Although most of its coast is public, a small private part is home to a bar and nightclub.

This one is another crowd-pleaser as tourists and locals flock to its water during summer. There are plenty of restaurants nearby, but if you feel like hosting your own private picnic on one of the best beaches in the South of France, there’s a convenience store a short walk away.

Cap Riviera Hotel & Restaurant Saint Aygulf borders the corniche of Les Issambres and offers rooms and suites with breathtaking panoramic views of the sea: you’ll feel like the waters are right beneath your window.


Quieter Beaches in the South of France

Mala Beach (Plage de la Mala), Cap d’Ail 

La Mala beach casually lies between the go-to spots of Saint-Jean Cap-Ferrat and Monaco, yet remains an uncrowded beach due to its neighbor’s popularity and its own lack of parking space and access. To join this piece of paradise, you’ll have to descend a steep and rocky incline.

But for those wishing to bask in the sun of a crescent-pebbled bay during peak summertime and still get to enjoy their personal space: picking this beach is a no-brainer. Unlike other beaches in the South of France with the same atmosphere, this one is well-equipped with facilities: sunbeds, water sports, and two Provençal restaurants.

Hotel Normandy oozes with Provençal flair and is located in the center of Cap D’Ail. Although small, this boutique hotel radiates warmth and calm and serves as a cozy refuge to spend your holiday in.

Sylvabelle Beach (Plage de Sylvabelle), La Croix Valmer

De Sylvabelle beach is probably the best-kept secret of the Cote D’Azure due to its rather laborious access: you’ll have to walk down 100 steep and rocky steps to reach this little piece of paradise. Your labor will be rewarded by views that stretch from the Cap lardier to that of Calvaire.

Golden soft sand will greet your tired feet and envelop you in a relaxed atmosphere: the area is tranquil and rarely has children. As you sunbathe and enjoy one of the most intimate beaches in the South of France, don’t forget to check out its waters: they aren’t deep but are home to many marine animals.

The seafront hotel of La Pinède Plage is only 3 minutes away from this beach and is a wonderful choice for those who want to enjoy everything the area offers. Each of its modern rooms is equipped with a furnished balcony that overlooks either gardens or the sea.

Calanque D’En Vau, Cassis


Calanque D’En Vau is part of the Calanques National Park and is probably one of the most remote coves of the massif. The hike to reach the beach runs through spectacular craggy limestone cliffs of somehow vertiginous beauty and unforgettable views of emerald waters.

Your reward for this beautiful yet demanding walk is one of the best beaches in the south of France: a pebble niche enclosed in a ravine of white limestone and pine trees. Most people choose the admire the cove on small motorboats or forgo the hike and reach it by kayak, which is why it’s usually pretty quiet.

The Calanques National Park is a protected natural area that forbids the construction of hotels. But the world-renown Hôtel Les Roches Blanches Cassis provides the ideal starting point to explore the park and Calanque D’En Vau.

Beach of Camp Long (Plage du Camp Long Agay), Saint-Raphaël 

If you’re a nature lover, look no further than Camp Long beach, located in the half-moon bay of Agay in the South of France. Overtaken by green forests whose trees almost morph into its waters, this beach feels miles away from civilization – even though it’s located between Saint-Tropez and Cannes.

Although it’s secluded and very natural, you’ll find basic facilities such as showers and beach beds. The sea is crystal-clear and clean and home to many fish you can easily spot if you snorkel around.

There aren’t many accommodations around this southern France beach, but if you choose to stay there, consider Hotel Le Virevent. It is well located and surrounded by many shops, supermarkets, and restaurants. 

Gravette Beach (Plage de la Gravette), Antibes


Gravette beach is located in Antibes’ old town and is one of the most beautiful sandy beaches in the South of France. It is well connected to various transportation options but still lies relatively far from the road, making it a popular destination with families.

This beach in the South of France constitutes a vast stretch of sand with a gentle slope towards the sea, which lifeguards always supervise in Summer. Due to its proximity to Old Antibes, you’ll have plenty of options to eat or refresh yourself.

Located in the heart of the old town in Antibes, Irin Hotel is one of the few accommodations in the area where you’ll be sure to get a quiet night of sleep as it is in the middle of a pedestrian-only zone.

Notre Dame Beach (Plage Notre-Dame), Porquerolles

The isle of Porquerolles is renowned for snorkeling: the marine territory is protected from human development. As you’d expect, you won’t find any facilities here, so make sure to grab anything you might need at the harbor before you arrive.

Most visitors rent a bike from the drop-off point and pedal to Plage Notre Dame. The ride is scenic: fragrant pine forests covered with wild herbs and eucalyptus trees. When you reach your destination, you’ll be greeted by white sand and cool azure waters.

This island only has one property where you can spend the night: L’Arche de Porquerolles. This little hotel reflects the charm of Porquerolles and beaches in the South of France: it’s cozy, charming, and friendly. Although not very close to Plage Notre Dame, you can easily rent a bike and get there.

Rayol-Canadel Beach (Plage du Canadel), Rayol-Canadel-sur-Mer

Rayol-Canadel beach faces Cap Nègre, a famous landmark of the area. It’s a quiet beach, even during summer, but it’s equipped with all the necessary facilities, from toilets to showers. Although it is situated in one of the most beautiful areas in the South of France – Carla Bruni’s family owns the majority of the surrounding peninsula – it has somehow managed to remain a well-kept secret and continually escapes the eyes of tourists.

This stretch of sandy beach in southern France is a succession of privatized and public beaches, all offering the same majestic view of sparkling turquoise calm waters marked by the occasional boats and surrounded by green vegetation.

La Résidence du Bailli is a 1-minute walk from the beach and consists of lovely self-contained seaside apartments, each with a view of the surrounding green nature. This property has direct access to the beach and three different restaurants.

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Best Beaches in the South of France in Corsica

Palombaggia Beach (Plage de Palombaggia), Corsica


Palombaggia beach’s atmosphere oozes with Caribbean flairs. The area is inhabited by azure waters, towering umbrella pines, long stretches of fine sand, and pink and gray smooth granite rocks – making it one of the best beaches in the South of France.

Breathtaking beauty does come with a cost: this beach gets extraordinarily crowded during Summer. Many bars and restaurants can be found in the area, catering to its numerous visitors, as well as a diving and nautical club where you can rent jet skis or pedal boats.

Les Bergeries De Palombaggia mirrors the beauty of beaches in the South of France. Located a short 9-minute scenic walk from the beach, this hotel boasts spectacular mountainous and sea views of the area. It guarantees a memorable stay with a pool, elegant decor, and a delicious restaurant serving regional cuisine on its terrace.

D’Argent Beach (La Plage D’Argent), Corsica 

La Plage D’argent is narrower than most beaches in Corsica but remains one of the most beautiful ones on this island in the South of France. It has stunning views of the Gulf of Ajaccio and featuures green edges covered by pine forests and soft grass.

Here, the landscape mixes in various colors: green mountains merge into white sand that disappears into dark blue and turquoise waters. During high season, small huts are set up along the water’s edges and serve as restaurants and sun beds rentals.

An exceptional location calls for equally exceptional accommodation, and you won’t find a better choice than Résidence Aigue Marine if you want to stay near La Plage D’argent. It is located a 5-minute walk from this beach and various other stretches of sands and creeks.

The Least Crowded Beach in the South of France 

Espiguette Beach (Plage de l’Espiguette), Le Grau-du-Roi 

Espiguette beach is one of the most distinctive beaches in the South of France, stretching 10 km into its Meditteranean basin. This natural stretch of sand is untouched by construction and is home to an ecosystem with distinctive flora and fauna. Its dune extends as far as the eyes can see, offering unique and unusual rolling landscapes marked by marram grass.

It’s very popular with families due to the quality of its calm waters and its relative proximity to various city centers. But don’t worry if you’re looking for quiet surroundings; this beach is vast, so you can choose to lay your towel in crowded spots or find your own little cove. Make sure to bring everything you need with you as there aren’t any facilities. Here’s a beach packing checklist you can refer to.

Oustau Camarguen Hôtel & Spa is located at the far end of Espiguette beach, which provides guests with plenty of opportunities to explore other nearby beaches in the South of France.

Best Beaches in the South-West of France

Beach Dunes (La Plage des Dunes), Cap Ferret

The Atlantic Ocean borders Cap Ferret, and the Dunes beach is one of the most beautiful on the peninsula. As the name suggests, this beach’s environment is quite different than others in the South of France: it constitutes a vast stretch of sandy dunes.

This is one of the last truly wild and natural beaches in the South of France. As such, it is not supervised, and the path to reach it isn’t clearly laid out: you’ll have to walk on the sand for 15 minutes before reaching the edge of its water. Make sure not to plan a visit there if it’s too windy, as the sand can be an issue.

Hotel des Dunes – as the name suggests – is conveniently located a short 5-minute walk from this beach, and its spot allows it to host a stunning view of the dunes and the ocean. 

Miramar Beach (Plage du Miramar), Biarritz

Magnificent views snuggle Miramar Beach. To the left, the famous ‘Virgin’s Rock’ towers on the horizon, with the Pyrenean mountains serving as its backdrop. And to the right, the steep rocky facade of Cap St-Martin’s lighthouse towers over its waters.

This sheltered beach in the South of France is frequented by Biarritz regulars who seek it out for tranquility: its rougher seas and stronger currents keep dissuading tourists from giving it a chance. But try it out! We guarantee you won’t be disappointed as this large sandy beach offers some of the most mesmerizing views in the South of France, particularly when the tide reclines and the sand is left mirroring the sky.

A 12-minute walk from Miramar beach will land you at Le Garage Biarritz Hôtel, one of the region’s most beautiful beachfront accommodations. This excellent boutique hotel has been renovated and boasts modern rooms with a lovely interior design. 

Grande Beach (Grande Plage), Hendaye 


Hendaye sits on the Spanish border of the Southwest of France and contains a long sandy beach that is very popular with locals. The Grande Plage is a sheltered centrally-located bay along this coast that boasts many cafes and restaurants. There are also volleyball courts and surfable waters for those with a sport-inclination and a playground for kids.

This beach in the South of France is accessible to everyone as one portion is dedicated to people with mobility impairments. This area is known for its Atlantic waters, whose waves can be hazardous, but you won’t find this problem at La Grande Plage since it has a natural inward curve and three dams that calm its waves.

Consider staying at Hotel Bergeret Sport if you want to see what the rest of Hendaye has to offer. This family-run hotel is a short 3-minute walk from the beach and has rooms overlooking its luscious garden.


Enjoying The Best Beaches In The South Of France

These are just some of the best South of France beaches you can visit for a nice beach vacation. With crystal-clear water, soft sand, and a relaxed vibe, these beaches have everything you need to enjoy a perfect day in the sun. Although many of the most beautiful beaches in the South of France seem to gather around the French Riviera, many lie in the southwest and other areas of this stunning country and are worth a trip.



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Welcome To NomadsUnveiled
This is Rax. For over a decade, I have traveled to over 60 countries - from a budget backpacker to a business traveler, expat and then a digital nomad. You can find insights and perspectives from myself and other world travelers that will inspire your journey of discovery.


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