Located at the southeastern end of the Côte d’Azur and at the gates of Italy, this beautiful town is considered “the pearl of France”. In addition to exuding charm, Chin It has a subtropical temperature, which makes it a super pleasant destination all year round. And despite having the best climate in all of France and characters like Vicente Blasco Ibáñez or Jean Cocteau surrendering to its charms, this idyllic French village is (for now) the great unknown for tourists in Spain.

A walk through the historic center

Picturesque narrow streets with colorful traditional houses in the old town of Menton, French Riviera, South of France
Colorful houses in the historic center of Menton, southern France

As soon as we stepped into its historic center, with its old facades in pastel colors, we discovered the first surprise. You will love to explore its medieval alleys full of charm, where there is no shortage of pretty ones facades adorned with Mediterranean plantss. One of the most beautiful streets is the rue du Vieux Château, but also Capodanna, Aquassoma and Mattoni, streets that bear the names of the pirates who sailed the Mediterranean centuries ago and founded the city of Menton, according to legend.

During the tour you will come across two points of interest where you can stop: the Capuchin chapel of the Pénitents Noirs de la Miséricorde and that of the Immaculate Conception.


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What to visit in Menton

Small town square and Saint-Michel Archange Basilica under blue sky in Menton, France.
Basilica of Saint-Michel Archange in Menton, France.

The city has a very rich architectural heritage, which you should not overlook. You can count up to 17 buildings from the Belle Époque in the form of palaces dating from the late 19th and early 20th centuries, all with impressive facades. Some of the most beautiful are the Grand Hôtel de Venise, the Riviera Palace, the Royal Westminster or the Winter Palace.

The city also has an important religious heritage: the Monastery of l’Annonciadelast vestige of the ancient city of Podium Pini, the Notre-Dame de l’Annonciade chapel, located 225 meters above sea level, and, above all, the Basilica of Saint-Michel (from the 17th century), which is one of the most important monuments in Menton. Located in the old town, this beautiful basilica is one of the emblems of the town and an authentic jewel of baroque art. Stairs lead you inside, where sumptuous Italian-style decoration awaits you.

The gardens, its hallmark

Menton, France - May 2, 2022: Various species of aloes blooming at the Val Rhameh botanical garden.  Taken on a sunny spring day with no people
Various species of aloes flowering in the Val Rhameh botanical garden, Menton, France

This postcard city overlooking the Mediterranean is known for its lemons and its magnificent gardens, so take note of the main ones you should include in your tour. One of the most famous is the Val Rahmeh botanical garden, where you can admire the tropical plants. We also recommend the Serre de la Madonedating from 1924, and the citrus garden of the Carnolès Palace, where you will find a unique collection in France of more than 130 varieties of lemons. And if you are looking for nature and good views, don’t miss the Colombières garden, one of the most incredible for its wonderful views of the sea and the city.

Finally, among the numerous gardens that you will find there is one that, due to its wonderful location, we cannot overlook: those of the villa Maria Serena. It is located at the foot of the cliffs located on the Italian border and has stunning views of the Mediterranean Sea. Known as “la petite Afrique”, it is from the 19th century and has a beautiful collection of palm trees and flowers.


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The best beaches in Menton

Rondelli Beach in Menton on the French Riviera
Rondelli Beach in Menton on the French Riviera

In this southern destination there is also no shortage of beaches with turquoise and crystalline waters, which are an attraction both in summer and winter. Beaches of fine sand and also pebbles that will allow you to enjoy the best of the Mediterranean. The most notable are: Sablettes beach, near the old port. It extends for almost 350 meters and is, without a doubt, the most beautiful of Menton’s sandy areas due to the beautiful panoramic view it offers of the mountains of the Southern Alps and the colorful houses. Another that has nothing to envy is the Rondelli beachsince the view it offers of the old town is also impressive. Hawaii beachjust one kilometer from Italy, is the wildest and narrowest.

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