Set sail for the wild and verdant islands of Provence. Located just a few minutes by boat from the coast, Frioul, Les Embiez and Porquerolles are tranquil havens of peace, promising a plunge into mesmerizing and exotic scenery.
Culture & nature
Located off the coast of Marseille, Frioul offers a captivating foray into history, culture and nature. The Île d’If – the smallest island of the archipelago and nearest to Marseille – takes you on a deep dive into Alexandre Dumas’ world-famed novel “The Count of Monte Cristo”. It was here at the formidable Château d’If that his notorious Count was imprisoned. Hop back on the boat to Ratonneau and Pommègues, the archipelago’s other two islands, connected by a thin strip of land. As you head away from the port, you’ll adventure into wild and unspoiled scenery. Here, white fjords dotted with arid garrigue plunge into the pure and sparkling waters of the Med.
A jewel of the Mediterranean
Welcome to a wild and enchanting island. Set offshore from the town of Six-Fours-les-Plages, Les Embiez is home to a myriad of rocky coves and discreet little hideaways you can enjoy exploring in every season. Pine woods, vines, garrigue and flowers – the island’s flora is extraordinarily abundant. Reputed for its translucent waters and a paradise for bathers, snorkellers and sun-worshippers, Les Embiez can be explored on foot or by bike. Its Institut Océanographic, founded in 1966 by philanthropist and businessman Paul Ricard (the island’s former owner), harbours a must-see aquarium. In addition to the island of the same name, the Embiez archipelago also comprises Île du Petit Rouveau and Île du Grand Rouveau, and the Rochers des Magnons. The archipelago is a Natura 2000 protected site.
Porquerolles, Port-Cros and Le Levant
The Golden Islands
Used as defence posts by King François I in the 16th century, the Golden Islands (Îles d’Or) are now a coveted playground for botanists, nature lovers, sailors and divers alike. Home to rich and varied plant and animal life, Porquerolles, Port-Cros and Le Levant form part of the Parc National de Port-Cros. Adorned with turquoise waters, golden beaches and impressive cliffs, Porquerolles offers over 50 km of signposted footpaths and many cycle paths. People also come here to visit the astonishing Fondation Carmignac, dedicated to contemporary art. You can explore Port-Cros via the botanical footpath winding its way through the island’s luxuriant vegetation. Its neighbour, Le Levant, is a paradise for naturists.
A green cocoon
Set facing the town of La Ciotat, just 400 metres from the shore, Île Verte is a verdant haven of tranquillity. Its 2 km botanical footpath is lined with dense Aleppo pines and myrtle bushes. The ancient Fort Saint-Pierre and blockhouses stand witness to a rich military past, owed to the island’s strategic location. Today, people come here to picnic and bathe in the crystal-clear waters of its fjords and coves, or simply contemplate the waves sparkling and dancing in the sun’s rays, all the way to the distant horizon.
SET SAIL IN PROVENCE
Fans of water sports and seafaring spectacles all agree: do not miss Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez and Septembre en Mer, two major sailing events in Provence. Want to go sailing or learn how to sail? Find out about our great deals.