SAINT TROPEZ

France

Saint-Tropez is a town, 100 kilometres (62 miles) west of Nice, in the Var department of the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region of southeastern France. It is also the principal town in the canton of Saint-Tropez.

Info Saint Tropez

introduction

Saint-Tropez is a town, 100 kilometres (62 miles) west of Nice, in the Var department of the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region of southeastern France. It is also the principal town in the canton of Saint-Tropez.

Saint-Tropez is located on the French Riviera. It was a military stronghold and an unassuming fishing village until the beginning of the 20th century. It was the first town on this coast to be liberated during World War II (as part of Operation Dragoon). After the war, it became an internationally known seaside resort, renowned principally because of the influx of artists of the French New Wave in cinema and the Yé-yé movement in music. It later became a resort for the European and American jet set and a goal for tourists in search of a little Provençal authenticity and an occasional celebrity sighting.

The inhabitants of Saint-Tropez are called Tropéziens , and the town is familiarly called St-Trop .

info
POPULATION : 5,612
FOUNDED : 
TIME ZONE :• Time zone CET (UTC+1)
• Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
LANGUAGE : French
RELIGION :
AREA : 15.18 km2 (5.86 sq mi)
ELEVATION :  0–113 m (0–371 ft)
(avg. 15 m or 49 ft)
COORDINATES : 43°16′24″N 6°38′23″E
SEX RATIO :
ETHNIC :
AREA CODE :
POSTAL CODE : 83119 / 83990
DIALING CODE :
WEBSITE :

Tourism

Beaches

Tropezian beaches are located along the coast in the Baie de Pampelonne, which lies south of Saint-Tropez and east of Ramatuelle. Pampelonne offers a collection of beaches along its five-kilometre shore. Each beach is around thirty metres wide with its own beach hut and private or public tanning area.

Many of the beaches offer windsurfing, sailing and canoeing equipment for rent, while others offer motorized water sports, such as power boats, jet bikes and water skiing, and scuba diving. Some of the private beaches are naturist beaches.

Toplessness and nudity

In June, 1964, Austrian-American fashion designer Rudi Gernreich introduced a topless swimsuit called the monokini that generated a great deal of controversy in the United States and internationally. During Gernrich's youth, some Austrians advocated nude exercising, which gave him this fashion idea.  The Vaticanrenounced the swimsuit, and L'Osservatore Romano said the "industrial-erotic adventure" of the topless bathing suit "negates moral sense."  In Italy and Spain the church warned against the topless fashion.  At Saint-Tropez, the mayor ordered police to ban toplessness and to watch over the beach via helicopter.

During the 1960s, the monokini influenced the sexual revolution by emphasizing a woman's personal freedom of dress, even if her attire was provocative and exposed more skin than had been the norm during the more conservative 1950s.  Quickly renamed a "topless swimsuit", the design was never successful in the United States, although the issue of allowing both genders equal exposure above the waist has been raised as a feminist issue from time to time. In Saint Tropez, Tahiti beach, which had been popularised in the film And God Created Woman featuring Brigitte Bardot, emerged as a clothing-optional destination.  The "clothing fights" between the gendarmerie and nudists become the main topic of a famous French comedy film series Le gendarme de Saint-Tropez (The Troops of St. Tropez) featuring Louis de Funès, but in the end the nudist side prevailed.  Topless sunbathing is now the norm for both men and women from Pampelonne beaches to yachts in the centre of Saint-Tropez port. The Tahiti beach is now clothing optional, but nudists often head to private nudist beaches, like that in Cap d'Agde.


Port

The port was widely used during the 18th century; in 1789 it was visited by 80 ships. Saint-Tropez's shipyards built tartanes and three-masted ships that could carry 1,000 to 12,200 barrels. The town was the site of various associated trades, including fishing, cork, wine, and wood. The town had a school of hydrography. In 1860 the floret of the merchant marine, named "The Queen of the Angels" (a three-masted ship of 740 barrels capacity), visited the port.

Its role as a commercial port declined, and it is now (2013) primarily a tourist spot and a base for many well known sail regattas. There is fast boat transportation with Les Bateaux Verts to Sainte-Maxime on the other side of the bay and to Port Grimaud, Marines de Cogolin, Les Issambres and St-Aygulf.


Events

Les Bravades de Saint-Tropez

Les Bravades de Saint-Tropez are an annual celebration held in the middle of May where people of the town celebrate their patron saint Torpes of Pisa and their military achievements. One of the oldest traditions of Provence, it has been held for more than 450 years, since the citizens of St Tropez were given special permission to form a militia in order to protect the town from the Barbary pirates. During the three-days celebration, the various militias in costumes of the time fire their muskets into the air at traditional stops, march to the sound of bands and parade St Torpes's bust. The townspeople also attend to a mass wearing traditional Provençal costume.

Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez

Each year, at the end of September, a regatta is held in the bay of Saint-Tropez (Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez). This is a draw for many yachts, some up to 50 metres in length. Many tourists come to the location for this event, or as a stop on their trip to Cannes, Marseille or Nice.

History

In 599 BC, the Phocaeans founded Massilia (present-day Marseille) and established coastal mooring sites in the region. In 31 BC, the Romans invaded the region. Their citizens built many opulent villas in the area; one is known as the "Villa des Platanes" (Villa of the Plane trees). The first name given to the village wasHeraclea-Caccaliera, and the mouth of the Gulf was named The Issambres.

The town owes its current name from the early, semi-legendary martyr named Saint Torpes. The legend says that he wasbeheaded at Pisa during the reign of Nero, and that his body was placed in a rotten boat along with a rooster and a dog. The body landed at the present-day location of the town.

Towards the end of the ninth century with the fall of the Roman Empire, pirates and privateers attacked and sacked the region for the next 100 years, and in the 10th century the village of La Garde-Freinet, 15 km (9 mi) north of St. Tropez, was founded. From 890–972, Saint-Tropez and its surroundings became an Arabic-Muslim colony dominated by the nearbySaracen settlement of Fraxinet. In 940, Nasr ibn Ahmad was in control of Saint-Tropez. In 961–963, Audibert, son of Berenger, the pretender to the throne of Lombardy who was pursued by Otto I, hid at Saint-Tropez.  In 972, the Muslims of Saint-Tropez held the abbot of Cluny Maïeul until he was released for ransom.

In 976, William I Count of Provence, lord of Grimaud, began attacking the Muslims and in 980 built a tower at the current location of the Suffren tower. In 1079 and 1218, Papal bulls mentioned the existence of a manor in Saint-Tropez.

From 1436, Count René I (called "good King René") tried to repopulate the Provence. He created the Barony of Grimaud and appealed to the Genoan Raphael de Garezzio, a wealthy gentleman who sent a fleet of caravels carrying sixty Genoese families to the area. In return, Count René promised to exempt the citizens from taxation. On 14 February 1470, Jean de Cossa, the Baron of Grimaud and Grand Seneschal of Provence, reached an agreement with Raphael de Garezzio that allowed Garezzio to build city walls and two large towers which are still standing. One tower is at the end of the "Grand Môle" and the other is at the entrance to the "Ponche".

The city became a small Republic with its own fleet and army and was administered by two consuls and twelve elected councilors. In 1558 the office of Captain of City (Honorat Coste) was empowered to protect the city. The captain lead a militia and mercenaries who successfully resisted attacks by the Turks, Spaniards, succored Fréjus and Antibes, and assisted the Archbishop of Bordeaux to regain control of the Lérins Islands.

In 1577, the daughter of the Marquis Lord of Castellane, Genevieve de Castilla, married Jean-Baptiste de Suffren, Marquis de Saint-Cannet, Baron de La Môle, and advisor to the Parliament of Provence. The lordship of Saint-Tropez became the prerogative of the de Suffren family.

In September 1615, Saint-Tropez was visited by an expedition led by the Japanese samurai Hasekura Tsunenaga who were on their way to Rome but obliged by weather to stop in St. Tropez. This is believed to be the earliest instance of contact between the French and the Japanese.

The local nobleman were responsible for raising a standing army which drove away a fleet of Spanish galleons the 15 June 1637. Les Bravades des Espagnols is a local religious and military celebration commemorating this victory of the Tropezian militia over the Spanish. Count René's promise in 1436 to not tax Saint Tropez' citizens continued until 1672 when it was repealed by Louis XIV, who reasserted French control over the city.Pierre André de Suffren de Saint Tropez(1729–1788) was a famous vice-admiral who fought in the War of the Austrian Succession, the Seven Years' War and the American Revolutionary War.

During the 1920s Saint-Tropez attracted famous figures from the world of fashion, like Coco Chanel and Elsa Schiaparelli. During World War II, on 15 August 1944, it was the site of a military landing called Operation Dragoon, the Allied invasion of southern France. In the 1950s, Saint-Tropez became internationally renowned as the setting for films including And God Created Woman starring French actress Brigitte Bardot.

In May 1965, an Aérospatiale Super Frelon preproduction aircraft crashed in the Gulf, killing its pilot.

On 4 March 1970, the French submarine Eurydice, which was home ported at Saint-Tropez, disappeared in the Mediterranean after an explosion of unknown cause, with 57 crew members on board.

The English rock band Pink Floyd wrote a song called "San Tropez" after the town. Saint-Tropez is also cited in David Gates' 1978 hit, "Took The Last Train" and Aerosmith's "Permanent Vacation". Rappers including Diddy, Jay Z and 50 Cent refer to the city in some of their songs as a favorite vacation destination, usually by yacht. DJ Antoine wrote a song called "Welcome to St. Tropez" which talks about people going there and spending all the money they have.

Climate

Saint-Tropez has a hot-summer mediterranean climate with mild winters and hot summers, although daytime temperatures are somewhat moderated by its coastal position.

Climate data for Saint-Tropez

MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDecYear
Average high °C (°F)12.1
(53.8)
12.6
(54.7)
14.3
(57.7)
16.5
(61.7)
19.7
(67.5)
23.4
(74.1)
27
(81)
27.3
(81.1)
24.3
(75.7)
20.2
(68.4)
15.6
(60.1)
13
(55)
18.8
(65.8)
Daily mean °C (°F)9.3
(48.7)
9.6
(49.3)
11
(52)
13.2
(55.8)
16.3
(61.3)
20
(68)
23.3
(73.9)
23.4
(74.1)
20.8
(69.4)
17.1
(62.8)
12.8
(55)
10.3
(50.5)
15.6
(60.1)
Average low °C (°F)6.5
(43.7)
6.6
(43.9)
7.8
(46)
9.8
(49.6)
13
(55)
16.5
(61.7)
19.5
(67.1)
17.3
(63.1)
14.1
(57.4)
9.9
(49.8)
7.5
(45.5)
6
(43)
12.3
(54.1)
              
Source: Climatologie mensuelle à la station de Cap Camarat.

Economy

The main economic resource of Saint-Tropez is tourism. The city is well known for the Hôtel Byblos and for Les Caves du Roy, a member of the Leading Hotels of the World, whose inauguration with Brigitte Bardot and Gunter Sachs in 1967 was an international event.

Transportation - Get In

Transportation - Get In

By sea

The 800 berths port with two marinas hosts boats, including ferries. In the summer season there is a ferry service between St-Tropez and Nice, Sainte-Maxime, Cannes,Saint Raphael, or by chartering a private yacht.

Some examples of actual ships near/in the Saint-Tropez port can be shown there.

Transportation - Get In

By air

There is no airport located in Saint-Tropez, but there is a charter service to and from clubs, town, and Tropezian beaches by helicopter.

The nearest airport is La Môle – Saint-Tropez Airport (IATA: LTT, ICAO: LFTZ) located in La Môle, 15 km (9 mi) (8 NM) southwest of Saint-Tropez.

Other main airports are:

Nice Côte d'Azur Airport (IATA: NCE, ICAO: LFMN) (~95 km)
Toulon-Hyères Airport (IATA:TLN, ICAO:LFTH) (~52 km)
Marseille Provence Airport (French: Aéroport de Marseille Provence) (IATA: MRS,ICAO: LFML) (~158 km)

Some of the nearby air traffic is shown, for example, here

Transportation - Get In

By land


Rail: There is no rail station in Saint-Tropez. The nearest station is 'Saint-Raphaël-Valescure' located in Saint-Raphaël (39 km (24 mi) from Saint-Tropez), which also offers a boat service to Saint-Tropez.  There is also direct bus service to Saint-Tropez, and the rail station is connected with bus station.


Bus: There is a bus station in Saint-Tropez called the French: Gare routière de Saint-Tropez located in Place Blanqui.  It is operated by Var department transport division Varlib, which employs other transport companies to operate routes.


Taxi: There are taxi services – including from Nice airport to Saint-Tropez – but this is not cheap due to long distances, and image of "wealthy Saint-Tropez".


Private car: In the tourist season traffic problems can be expected on roads to Saint-Tropez, so the fastest way to travel is by scooter or bike. There is no direct highway to the village. There are three main roads to Saint-Tropez:

  • Via the A8 (E80) with the sign "Draguignan, Le Muy-Golfe de Saint-Tropez" – RD 25 Sainte-Maxime, 19 km (12 mi) -> on the former RN 98 – 12 km (7 mi).
  • A57 with the sign "The Cannet des Maures" -> DR 558, 24 km (15 mi) Grimaud until then by the RD 61 – 9 km (6 mi) through the famous intersection of La Foux
  • Near the sea, the former RN 98 connects to Toulon-La Valette-du-Var, Saint-Raphaël, Cannes, Nice, Monaco, DR 93, called "Beach Road", with destinations to Pampelonne, Ramatuelle and La Croix – Valmer.

Some services show the actual traffic on the main roads near the Saint-Tropez, for example in English: Via

 


Transportation - Get Around

Public transport in Saint-Tropez includes mini buses, which maintain a shuttle service between town and Pampelonne beaches.

Other means of transport include scooters, cars, bicycles and taxis.  There are also helicopter services,  and boat trips.

Because of traffic and short distances, walking is an obvious choice for trips around town and to the Tropezian beaches.

Hotels

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Hotels

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Beaches

Tropezian beaches are located along the coast in the Baie de Pampelonne, which lies south of Saint-Tropez and east of Ramatuelle. Pampelonne offers a collection of beaches along its five-kilometre shore. Each beach is around thirty metres wide with its own beach hut and private or public tanning area.

Many of the beaches offer windsurfing, sailing and canoeing equipment for rent, while others offer motorized water sports, such as power boats, jet bikes and water skiing, and scuba diving. Some of the private beaches are naturist beaches.


Toplessness and nudity

In June, 1964, Austrian-American fashion designer Rudi Gernreich introduced a topless swimsuit called the monokini that generated a great deal of controversy in the United States and internationally. During Gernrich's youth, some Austrians advocated nude exercising, which gave him this fashion idea.  The Vaticanrenounced the swimsuit, and L'Osservatore Romano said the "industrial-erotic adventure" of the topless bathing suit "negates moral sense."  In Italy and Spain the church warned against the topless fashion.  At Saint-Tropez, the mayor ordered police to ban toplessness and to watch over the beach via helicopter.

During the 1960s, the monokini influenced the sexual revolution by emphasizing a woman's personal freedom of dress, even if her attire was provocative and exposed more skin than had been the norm during the more conservative 1950s.  Quickly renamed a "topless swimsuit", the design was never successful in the United States, although the issue of allowing both genders equal exposure above the waist has been raised as a feminist issue from time to time. In Saint Tropez, Tahiti beach, which had been popularised in the film And God Created Woman featuring Brigitte Bardot, emerged as a clothing-optional destination.  The "clothing fights" between the gendarmerie and nudists become the main topic of a famous French comedy film series Le gendarme de Saint-Tropez (The Troops of St. Tropez) featuring Louis de Funès, but in the end the nudist side prevailed.  Topless sunbathing is now the norm for both men and women from Pampelonne beaches to yachts in the centre of Saint-Tropez port. The Tahiti beach is now clothing optional, but nudists often head to private nudist beaches, like that in Cap d'Agde.


The "in-town" beaches

They consist of "La Glaye", "La Ponche" and "La Fontanette". As Saint Tropez is several hundred years old, the three beaches are small or even tiny and they are located near the heart of the village.


Pampelonne beach

Probably this is the kind of beach that most people consider a "Saint-Tropez" beach. Basically, it is a long, mostly sandy beach, located about 5km south-east to Saint-Tropez. Only half of the beach belongs to the commune of Saint-Tropez, but clubs like Nikki Beach - strictly speaking located in Ramatuelle - often use the term Saint-Tropez beach.

Most parts of the beach have their own parkings, toilets, showers, changing facilities, cafes, restaurants, lifeguard patrols, rentable sun-loungers and wind-surfing opportunities.

Also most famous clubs are located in many of Pampelonne beach parts. This includes:

  • Club 55
  • La Voile Rouge, a resort for the rich and famous (renamed Latoya, and after a 10 year legal battle destroyed in December 2011)

Plage de Tahiti

This beach was popularised in the film 'And God Created Woman'. with Brigitte Bardot. The beach is accessed through an unpaved road.


Other near the town beaches

Basically this includes other beaches, considered as near, and linked to Saint-Tropez. It includes:

Plage de la Bouillabaisse

Located beyond the port and car park. Offers views across the bay to the Maures mountains.

Plage des Salins

It is sometimes wrongly included as part of Pampelonne.

Shopping

The waterfront is packed with stores offering "elite" goods, and cafes for the "in-crowd" (or naive tourists), all at heady prices. A block or two inland, offerings are often equally good, with slightly more modest prices.

Restaurants

Saint-Tropez is famous for its traditional tarte tropézienne (tropezian pie), which is worth of tasting. It was invented by Alexandre Micka in 1955.

Sights & Landmarks

  • Vieux Port. A picturesque harbor with many beautiful yachts is one of the major attractions in the town, where all people meet together: rich and poor, locals and tourists. Typical pastel colored houses with light yellow colored blinds on windows. A round tower of the church of Saint-Tropez can be seen from the harbor and is part of the typical view of the port of Saint-Tropez. On the quay there are also several boutiques, tourist shops, cafes and restaurants.
  • Place de Lices. People gather there to play jeux de boules. It is a quite large square with a white sandy ground and more than a hundred year old plane trees. It 's cheerful atmosphere there with lots of bars, cafes and restaurants.Rue Gambetta. an old cobblestoned street.
  • Place de l'Ormeau. a cozy old square in the middle of an artistic boom.
  • Gendarmerie. A pretty building of a police station where the Les Gendarmes de Saint-Tropez featuring Louis de Funes was filmed. No visitors are allowed, but still people love to take photos from outside.
  • Église Notre-Dame-de-l'Assomption de Saint-Tropez. A lovely little pastel colored church built in 1820 in a perfect harmony with the surrounding buildings.
  • La Chapelle Sainte-Anne. it was built in the 17th century in acknowledgement of a protection of the town against the plague raging then across the Provence. There are some magnificent views of Saint-Tropez from the top of chapel.
  • Citadelle. a fortress dating from the sixteenth century is seen above the town. It hosts currently a naval museum.
  • Musée de l'Annonciade. Near the western end of the main harbor area, L'Annonciade is a riveting collection of post-Impressionist, Fauve and other early 20th Century art. Housed in a converted church, the collection includes striking works by Matisse, Dufy, Bonnard and Derain, as well as other early modern masters. The most of the works date between 1890s and 1950s. In addition, the views of the town and harbor from the windows of the museum are quite distinctive.

Things to do

The "village" itself is easily walked and enjoyed. The waterfront is crowded with cafes and shops with "elite" offerings. A block or two inland, through narrow streets and alleys, you'll find fewer stores and cafes, quaint and interesting studios, homes and a few historical structures.

Festivals and events


Les Bravades de Saint-Tropez

Les Bravades de Saint-Tropez are an annual celebration held in the middle of May where people of the town celebrate their patron saint Torpes of Pisa and their military achievements. One of the oldest traditions of Provence, it has been held for more than 450 years, since the citizens of St Tropez were given special permission to form a militia in order to protect the town from the Barbary pirates. During the three-days celebration, the various militias in costumes of the time fire their muskets into the air at traditional stops, march to the sound of bands and parade St Torpes's bust. The townspeople also attend to a mass wearing traditional Provençal costume.


Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez

Each year, at the end of September, a regatta is held in the bay of Saint-Tropez (Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez). This is a draw for many yachts, some up to 50 metres in length. Many tourists come to the location for this event, or as a stop on their trip to Cannes, Marseille or Nice.

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