Une Semaine sur Riviera Français
Les Prairies de la Mer - Port Grimaud (La Golfe de St Tropez - La Côte d'Azur) -
An account of a week spent at the Prairies Caravan and Camping site just outside beautiful Port Grimaud in the Gulf of St Tropez on the Cote d'Azur. This was our little bit of rest and relaxation during a road trip to France.
- Les Prairies de la Mer
- Port Grimaud - A 'Little Venice' on the Côte d'Azur
- Port Grimaud's Marina
- The Sun, the Sand, the Sea - and the Beach Bars!
Les Prairies de la Mer
Arriving at Les Prairies de la Mer holiday complex, in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region, we soon realised that this huge place was a veritable maze that you (we!) could easily get lost in - competely lost! It took me until the end of the week to get my bearing - and even then, I was sure which path to take.
Nevertheless, Les Prairies is a super complex with lots of attractions - lots to do. We wanted a week of relaxation with a smattering of sight-seeing thrown in - and that's what we got. Ah, bliss!
Twenty three years after our last visit here - when my son was only eight years old - we were amazed and delighted to find that it was as good as we remembered it. He'd been hankering after a return sojourn to this very campsite and although I'd agreed to come back, I'd said it might be a disappointment. But it wasn't. Not at all. Of course it had been updated and more things had been added like more food outlets on site, a live music venue more water sports etc..etc.. but unlike so many places, the look and feel was exactly how we remembered it from all those years ago.
We stayed in a super, spacious 6-berth caravan - our 'Little House on Les Prairies' The only problem was that there was no satellite TV. Not even in 2011! What? That was a disappointment for my son - but for me and my husband, well, we couldn't have cared less!
If you want to stay in the Gulf of St Tropez and not get ripped off, this is the only place to stay.
Port Grimaud - A 'Little Venice' on the Côte d'Azur
Enchanting Port Grimaud, with its colourful Provencal style houses built along a network of canals lined with yachts and cruisers, is often known as the Venice of Provence.
Situated at the foot of the Massif des Maures and only 3 miles from lively St Tropez and Sainte Maxime, it is well placed for exploring the countryside, beaches, vineyards and lovely villages of this beautiful region.Port Grimaud offers restaurants, bars and shops, a twice-weekly Provencal market and large supermarket all within fifteen minutes walking distance of Les Prairies de la Mer.
The day we visited Port Grimaud, it was the only 'poor' weather day. The wind whipped around our knees and ankles and the sea's surf covered us from head to toe. But we laughed all the way there and all the way back!
A thirty-minute round-trip walk around the bay of St Tropez, we found this 'Little Venice' to be charming, with an atmosphere of excitement. Walking along the canal-sides, wandering over the picturesque bridges, calling in at the quaint cafes and tourist shops - and checking out the stunning yachts at the bottom of the residents' gardens (!!), we were enthralled with the wonderful ambience of Port Grimaud.
It is the most significant construction of its style in the whole of the Meditteranean. All of the units in Port Grimaud, except very small 'apartements', have their own mooring. What a way to live that must be. Oh, to be a millionaire!
Port Grimaud's Marina
Port Grimaud has an excellent marina, looking across the Bay of Saint Tropez, protected from Wind form the East and the ”Mistral” from the West.
The marina was built on the sea, in the ilk of Venice. Walking around the brand new marina, there are statues of anchors and small but very pretty cactus gardens.
We loved it - so I wrote two verses of haiku to salute Port Grimaud and it's lovely marina.
A little Venice
in the Bay of St Tropez
What a paradise.
Littered with small boats
moored at the end of gardens
in a rich playground
The Sun, the Sand, the Sea - and the Beach Bars!
It was such fun - and so relaxing - to eat breakfasts of fresh croissants and Nutella (a favourite of the French) on the balcony of our luxury caravan, soaking in the first rays of sunshine in the early morning.
It was great fun wandering down to our favourite Beach Bar, the Beach Boys Bar, on the sands of the bay, munching pizza or croques monsieur or crepes to the sounds of reggae from Bob Marley and UB40!
It was wonderful, strolling along the white sandy bay, gazing at the mountain tops, staring with awe at the glaring blue sea of the Bay of St Tropez, watching paragliders as they sailed through the air over white luxury yachts.
It was a real taste of R & R, It was heaven.
The week went by all too quickly - and soon we were cleaning out the caravan with buckets and mops - all ready to travel north to our next port of call on the way back up to Calais.