Upon the French Riviera, close to the Italian border, sits the sweet town of Menton. Quite like it’s macaroons, this town is filled with pretty pastel coloured buildings that are crumbling at the edges. It’s said to be the warmest within the French Riviera, with 316 days of sunshine all year! Yet it still remains a slower paced and relaxing destination. Hike up the cobbled streets of the Old Town, admire it’s Italian inspired architecture and soak up the rays at its postcard perfect beach. Warm fuzzy feels all round!
Less pebbly compared to it’s neighbouring beaches, yet surprisingly less crowded. The ban of jet skis and wind-surfers make this spot the ideal location for relaxation. You can purchase an ice-cream at the shop next to the beach, although their food choices are limited. I’d pack a picnic to keep your grumbling stomachs at bay. Local supermarket ‘Carrefour’ offer tasty and affordable salads to take away.
Top tip: walk down the promenade and onto the pebbles for the best sunset view!
The Famous Menton Staircase
Criss cross your way up into the Old Town via this Baroque beauty. As you climb your way up the stairs, you’ll be stunned by the largest Basilica in the region, St Michel Archange. It’s bell tower has become quite the local landmark. It’s the perfect walk to burn off that ice-cream!
The Old Town
Everywhere you look there are palm, olive, lemon and orange tree, which curve around towering buildings. With it’s position on the Franco-Italian border, the architecture is Italian inspired, with pastel shades and colourful window shutters. Plus the slower pace of this town means you can revel in the oldy worldy ambiance – it’s relatively free of bargain-hunting tourists.
When to Visit?
September brings the end of the peak season, so it’s nice and quiet. But if you’d like a bustling atmosphere, visit in February, which is when Menton goes all out with its Lemon Festival. It’s a celebration of spring and a throwback to the town’s past, when it survived principally on citrus production. When life gives you lemons, the locals decorate elaborate floats and fill their gardens in all-natural sculptures.
Inspire me further…
The French Riviera is filled with quaint coastal towns like Menton. The best way to explore them all is to jump on the scenic train ride from Nice to Menton. Stop off at each stop to discover their beauty. Read my Nice blog for further information and be inspired!