The best things to do in St Tropez go beyond only hitting the town’s wonderful French Riviera beaches that attract the rich and famous. The glamorous coastal town also has plenty of cool spots where you can soak up the vibes of its colorful cultural heritage.

Indeed, St Tropez is a place to see and be seen. But if you’re looking to explore some of the town’s charming backstreets, mingle with locals in a lively yet humble market setting, or get the best views, then this guide is for you. To help point you in the right direction, read through this list for some ideas on what St Tropez is most famous for.

What are the best things to do in St Tropez?

  • 1

    Pampelonne beach

    As A-list as it gets

    Pampelonne beach
    • Budget
    • Families
    • Photo

    Pampelonne Beach (Plage de Pampelonne) is the trendiest beach in St Tropez. Indeed, it’s the sun, sea and sand that have most of the jet set flocking to the coastal town – the beach is also the longest and most popular. You can find the beach in a lovely, sheltered bay not far from the village of Ramatuelle.

    Pampelonne is famous for its exclusive beach clubs that are packed with A-list celebrities, but you can also pull up your own towel or rent a deckchair along much of its length. If Pampelonne doesn’t appeal, numerous other public beaches in and around St Tropez are just as stunning, including Plage de Bouillabaisse and Plage des Salins.

    Read more

    Location: Pampelonne, 83350 Ramatuelle, France

    Map

    photo by avu-edm (CC BY 3.0) modified

  • 2

    Old Town St Tropez

    Get lost in La Ponche’s backstreets

    Old Town St Tropez
    • History
    • Photo

    St Tropez’s Old Town evokes the kind of spirit that most people imagine when they think of the charming, character-rich south of France. Much of the appeal is in simply getting lost in its charm. Here you can wander the narrow, pastel-hued alleyways as they meander into one another, and feel the cobblestones beneath your feet as you take in the sights.

    Popular attractions include the Church of Notre-Dame (Église Paroissiale Notre Dame de l'Assomption) while there are also restaurants, bars and cafes in this bustling, atmospheric neighborhood.

    Location: Rue Commandant Guichard, Saint-Tropez, France

    Map

    photo by MartinPutz (CC BY-SA 3.0) modified

  • 3

    Maritime History Museum

    Discover St Tropez’s naval culture and history

    Maritime History Museum
    • History
    • Photo

    The Maritime History Museum (Musée d’Histoire Maritime) traces back St Tropez’s rich, enduring past as a maritime city. And that’s long outdating its more recent reinvention as an on-trend destination for the moneyed jet set. The museum is set in a fitting and photogenic location, set in the dungeon of St Tropez’s citadel.

    This means that once you’ve explored the exhibitions of artifacts relating to voyages off the French coast and far beyond, you can also take in the stunning 17th-century citadel itself. The Citadel comes complete with lookout points over the sea and mountains – must-sees for incredible, sweeping vistas.

    Location: 1 Montée de la Citadelle, 83990 Saint-Tropez, France

    Open: Daily from 10 am to 6.30 pm

    Phone: +33 4 94 97 59 43

    Map

    photo by André Payan-Passeron (CC BY-SA 3.0) modified

  • 4

    Annonciade Museum

    A quaint art museum set in a 16th-century chapel

    Annonciade Museum
    • History
    • Photo

    The Annonciade Museum, created in 1922, showcases paintings by prominent artists of the 20th century who lived in or near St Tropez. The museum is housed in a former 16th-century chapel, which is where it gets its name.

    Inside, you’ll find paintings and sculptures from 1890 to 1950, with works by well-known artists such as Henri Matisse and Georges Seurat decorating the walls of their 8 rooms. The paintings reflect the Navis, Fauvist, and Pointillist movements, and there are occasional events held throughout the year.

    Location: 2 Place Georges Grammont, 83990 Saint-Tropez, France

    Open: Hours vary by season

    Phone: +33 (0)4 94 17 84 10

    Map
  • 5

    Place des Lices

    For some of the best produce Provence has to offer

    Place des Lices
    • Families
    • Food
    • Shoppers

    Place des Lices and its market is where you want to head to for good grub in St Tropez. Even those who aren’t necessarily foodies know that Provence is the place to come in France – one of the best in Europe, many would tell you – for choice cheeses, meats, bread, pastries and more, with Place des Lices showcasing the best of it.

    The twice-weekly market is the perfect place to stock up if you’re staying in self-catering accommodations in St Tropez, or else to pick up supplies for an impromptu picnic. There are also homewares and handcrafted goods to discover – just be sure to get here early.

    Read more

    Location: Place des Lices, 20 Boulevard Vasserot, 83990 Saint-Tropez, France

    Open: Tuesday and Saturday from 8 am to 1 pm

    Map

    photo by chisloup (CC BY 3.0) modified

  • 6

    Portalet Tower

    A 15th-century defense tower overlooking the port

    Portalet Tower
    • History
    • Photo

    Portalet Tower is a defense tower built in the 15th century to protect the coast and port of St Tropez. It was 1 of 4 defense towers in the area, and although only 3 remain, you can visit each of them to experience a bit of St Tropez's history.

    The observation tower is a great spot away from the crowds to get scenic views over the port both day and night. It's situated in the historic Fisherman’s town of La Ponche, and on the other side of the cove to the east, you’ll find a second tower, Tour de La Vielle, just a 4-minute walk away.

    Location: 26 Rue du Portalet, 83990 Saint-Tropez, France

    Open: 24/7

    Map
  • 7

    Gendarmerie Nationale

    History of film and the French police

    Gendarmerie Nationale
    • Couples
    • History

    Gendarmerie Nationale (Musée de la Gendarmerie & du Cinéma Saint-Tropez) is housed in an old law enforcement building and tells the story of the town’s cinematic roots. It is proof of St Tropez's rich, vibrant and long-lasting history of cinema production, and how it became a center for film and the arts.

    You can take in the different films that have been produced in St Tropez and the surrounding area, and – in a nice crossover that pays homage to the venue’s past – see how the police have been depicted in French films over the years. The museum also has exhibitions that seek to pick apart the various myths that surround the glamor of St Tropez’s prestigious movie theater industry.

    Location: 2 Place Blanqui, 83990 Saint-Tropez, France

    Open: Daily from 10 am to 6 pm

    Phone: +33 4 94 55 90 20

    Map

    photo by Julien Ricard (CC BY 2.0) modified

  • 8

    Place aux Herbes

    Mingle with the locals in a humble market setting

    Place aux Herbes
    • Budget
    • Food
    • Shoppers

    Place aux Herbes is the original old morning market square in the Old Port (Vieux Port) area, where you can get a first feel for the slightly more modest side of St Tropez. It serves as a great alternative for when you need a breather from all the glamour and glitz of its beaches and bars.

    Browse the deliciously fresh southern French produce that benefits from all the richness of the Mediterranean region’s sun. If you have somewhere to cook back at your accommodations, you can perhaps pick up a few items to whip up a French feast of your own. Take time, too, to stop for a coffee and some people-watching on the terrace of the famous Café Senequier nearby.

    Read more

    Location: Saint-Tropez, France

    Map

    photo by Daniel Villafruela. (CC BY-SA 3.0) modified

  • 9

    St. Tropez Harbor

    Take apéro on the quay

    St. Tropez Harbor
    • Couples
    • Food

    St Tropez Harbour (Port de Saint-Tropez) is one of the most picturesque places in the coastal town. Besides offering plenty of Instagrammable angles and being a popular spot among the luxury yachting crowd, it’s lined with chic cafes and shops. Little sums up France better than the deeply ingrained cultural ritual of taking an aperitif before dinner, and this is an ideal spot for l’heure d’apéro (apéro o’clock).

    Open as it is from the early morning until the wee hours, Café Senequier is as good a spot as any to sip something refreshing as you watch the sun begin to sink down over the Côte d’Azur. The trendy and aptly named Bar du Port also has outside seating and makes for an equally solid choice.

    Map

    photo by Gzen92 (CC BY-SA 4.0) modified

  • 10

    Carré Sainte-Maxime

    Diverse cultural presentations in a forward-thinking space

    Carré Sainte-Maxime
    • Couples
    • Luxury

    The Carré Sainte Maxime is a multi-disciplinary performing arts theatre in the city of the same name, about half an hour’s drive north from St Tropez. If you’re looking to fill up on culture after spending your days bronzing on the beaches and your other evenings star-spotting in the nightclubs, then you’re in luck.

    There’s a diverse and eclectic program of events on offer here throughout the seasons (the venue itself is open every day of the year), from dance and theatre to live music performances, and even circus-style spectacles.

    Location: 107 Route du Plan de la Tour, 83120 Sainte-Maxime, France

    Phone: +33 4 94 56 77 77

    Map
Chris Wotton | Contributing Writer