Some of France's cultural marvels can be found a stone's throw from your favourite beaches.

If you wish to explore the local heritage during your beach holidays or are simply looking for inspiration, here is a tour of France's monuments by the sea. 

La Turbie

If you're closer to the Côte d’Azur, in fact, then make your way to the Trophy of August in La Turbie that towers over the Principality of Monaco. This ancient column was erected to celebrate Augustus' victory in finally subduing the people of the Alps.

Villa Kérylos

Journey back to ancient Greece! Villa Kerylos is located on the south coast of France between Monaco and Nice. Be whisked away to another time and place when you step into this villa where a passion for ancient Greece meets the modern comforts of the Belle Époque.

Also enjoy spectacular views over the Bay of Fourmis and Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat!

Château d'If

Heading slightly further east, visit the Château d’If, an island fortress built during the reign of France I of France.

The island is accessible by boat only but the trip across makes a great opportunity to take in stunning views of the Phoenician city and the Frioul archipelago. It was there that Alexandre Dumas incarcerated his well-known character the Count of Monte Cristo, which made the island famous. 

Remparts d'Aigues-Mortes

If you have set your heart on visiting the Camargue, then you absolutely cannot miss the Towers and Ramparts of Aigues-Mortes!

Constructed on the wishes of Saint Louis in order to furnish the French kingdom with a Mediterranean port, the fortress affords views from atop the ramparts over the salt marshes that turn red at certain times of year. 

Tours de La Rochelle

Ahoy shipmates! Towers have protected the port of La Rochelle since the 14th century.

As well as visiting this monumental icon of maritime architecture from the Middle Ages, you will also have an opportunity to take in beautiful views of the old port and, on the horizon, Fort Boyard and the islands of Aix, Oléron and Ré.

Maison de Clemenceau

Welcome to the one-time dwelling of Georges Clemenceau in Saint-Vincent-sur-Jard

The French statesman spent the last 10 years of his life at his home just a few miles from the small town of Les Sables d’Olonne. The cottage with sea views will reveal things about Clemenceau's personality you never knew. 

Abbaye du Mont-Saint-Michel

And finally let's conclude our tour of France's coastal monuments with one of its most famous and one of the first sites to be inscribed on UNESCO's World Heritage list: Mont-Saint-Michel Abbey.

At the whim of the tides, come and discover this place unlike no other in the world!

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