Chic guide to the South of France

Where is it?

The term “South of France” is usually used to describe the southern stretch of the country’s coastline that runs between Spain and Italy, and the rural inland areas that include Provence and the Lubéron. With its warm climate, fertile landscape and developed coastline, it is one of the most regularly-visited parts of Europe.

Where can I stay?

Unsurprisingly, for somewhere as popular as the South of France, there is no shortage of hotels, guesthouses, bed and breakfasts and camp sites. For a true taste of the area though, stay in one of our recommended boutique hotels. Small and intimate, they are a home from home and turn a basic holiday into a luxury retreat. Through Chic Retreats, you can have access to boutique hotels including Mas de L’Amarine in St Remy, Hotel Deluxe Spa and Restaurant Cantemerle and Les Rosees to name a few. All of these boutique hotels offer well-designed and contemporary rooms and the service is discreet and impeccable. Good food usually goes hand-in-hand with the boutique-style rooms and public areas and by choosing one of these hotels you’ll be treating yourself to a memorable stay in the South of France.

What can I see?

The South of France is too big an area to be fully explored in a single holiday, which is why many people return year after year. Some of France’s most expensive resorts lie on the south coast, including St. Tropez and Cannes, and where better to watch the yachts and fashions of the rich and famous? The area is famous for its coastline, sailing and water sports and for the cities that lie near it: Nice, Marseilles and Montpelier for example. Inland, Provence is well-known for its rolling landscapes, stretches of vineyards and swathes of wild flowers. With no shortage of historic buildings, local markets and museums to explore, the South of France has something for everyone.

How do I get around?

If you’re planning on exploring the South of France, you should hire a car. The French, like most European countries, drive on the right hand side of the road and the roads are largely well-maintained, although many are toll-controlled and you will have to pay at marked toll stations to use the main road network. If you are planning on staying mostly in one place and just visiting major cities or tourist areas, then opt for the train system, operated by SNCF.

Our boutique hotels in the South of France are handpicked for their quality and style. Take a look now to see where you could be spending your next holiday.

Andrew Panteli
Andrew is a firm believer that travelling like a local inevitably leads to the best off-the-beaten-path finds which truly make a destination remarkably more memorable. From traditional Indian festivals in humid Hyderabad to fresh seafood pasta by the Sorrentine Peninsula, he appreciates variety when travelling. He hasn't been everywhere, but it’s on the list.