Saint-Raphael is a stunning Mediterranean Sea resort and considered one of the more serene resorts of the French Riviera. In the shade of the Esterel Hills, this city offers both rich natural and vast cultural heritage that makes for a memorable day in port. Year-round sports and leisure activities along with live events round out the options for visitors on a stop in Saint-Raphael.
There’s a lot to choose from in Saint-Raphael. Visitors can start their day with a 30-minute guided train tour around the center of the city while guides provide anecdotes and facts about the different historical sites and things to do. The city center is just a short walk from the train entrance. In the center, more than 30 local shops and businesses have joined the Cruise Passeport Shopping experience, offering discounts and special welcome gifts inside each cruise-friendly store, making for a streamlined and hassle-free shopping experience.
History is everywhere in the city center, and just past the more contemporary area is the historic Old City Center of Saint-Raphael. Once home to farmers, this historic neighborhood hosts a daily covered market that sells flowers, food, and everything in between. At the edge of the city, visitors looking to relax will find the Veillat City Center Beach. This beach includes a scenic path dotted with restaurants. It’s also a good spot for watersports.
Visitors with an interest in art and history will not be disappointed. The Archeological Museum is in the heart of the city and is housed in a 12th century presbyter. The exhibits are great, but the main draw of the museum is at the top of the 360-degree dome. There’s a view that showcases all of Saint-Raphael and stretches down the coast into Saint-Tropez. The panoramic view is rivaled only by that of the Big Wheel, a large Ferris wheel at the edge of the city.
Art lovers will jump at the opportunity to spend time in the Notre-Dame de la Victoire Basilica, a testament to the Romano-Byzantine architectural style that was popular in 1883. Visitors can also enjoy Bonaparte Garden, a work of natural art built around the monument statue of the angel Raphael. The park surrounds a public square and children’s play area.
From shopping to curated experiences and stunning views as far as the eye can see, cruise passengers will be charmed by a stop in the port of Saint-Raphael.
Image credit: Saint Raphael Tourisme