Spilling over from Antibes’ more residential quarter, Juan-les-Pins is petite—which makes it best navigated on foot. Be sure to swing by the shady square known as La Pinède (square Frank Jay Gould) to check out the legions of local pétanque players. Nearby, the ultra-contemporary Antipolis Palais des Congrès, or Convention Center (www.antipolis-events.com), hosts both year-round international conferences as well as the town’s friendly Tourist Office.
Most of us, however, would prefer to give business events a miss in favor of a stroll along the sweeping beachside promenade to Golfe-Juan instead. It was here that Napoleon kicked off his march to Paris and famous Hundred Days in power in 1815. Alternatively, pick a beach bar, order a glass of rosé, and watch the sun drop over the Iles de Lérins.
Beaches — Part of the reason people flock to Juan-les-Pins is for the town’s wealth of sandy beaches, all lapped by calm waters. The town also basks in a unique microclimate, making it one of the warmest places on the Riviera to soak up the sun, even in winter. Plage de Juan-les-Pins is the most central beach, although quieter stretches of sand wrap around the Cap d’Antibes and include family-friendly Plage de la Salis and chic Plage de la Garoupe. If you do want to stretch out on a sun lounger, go to any of the beach-bar concessions that line the bay, where you can rent a mattress for around 20€ (although prices can stretch up to 135€ for the most exclusive waterfront spots, depending on the venue). Topless sunbathing and overt shows of cosmetic surgery are the norm.
Watersports — If you’re interested in scuba diving, try Easy Dive, bd. Edouard Baudouin (www.easydive.fr; tel. 04-93-61-26-07). A one-tank dive costs 50€ to 75€, including all equipment. Sea kayaking, pedalos, and paddleboarding are available at virtually every beach in Juan-les-Pins but are best booked at Blue Drop (www.blue-drop.fr; tel. 06-31-48-30-90), a friendly establishment that knows all the secret ocean spots. Waterskiing was invented at the Hôtel Belles-Rives in the 1920s, and it’s still a great place to try out the sport.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.