Top 5 things to do in Saint-Laurent-du-Var

Visiter Saint-Laurent-du-Var

What to see and do in Saint-Laurent-du-Var: a mini-guide to what you can do just outside Nice!

A visit to Saint-Laurent-du-Var and its splendors will leave you breathless. With 29,067 inhabitants spread over an area of 10.11 km², Saint-Laurent-du-Var is a small strip of land steeped in history: founded in the 11th century, the commune has endured the trials and tribulations of its geographical, political and social situation over the centuries (floods, invasions, epidemics and wars).

To visit Saint-Laurent-du-Var is to explore a piece of French history: the town was a frontier of France until 1860, when the County of Nice was attached to the country. Saint-Laurent-du-Var offers visitors the charm of an authentic Provencal village, the possibility of escaping easily to the mountains or dipping your feet in the water, and enjoying the liveliness of a seaside resort open to the deep blue sea.

So here’s our list of must-do things to do in Saint-Laurent-du-Var.

1. The old town

La vieille ville de Saint-Laurent-du-Var

Photo credit: Shutterstock – Margarita Hintukainen

A must-see in Saint-Laurent-du-Var’s old town: the 11th-century Romanesque church, a gem of Lombard Romanesque art.

A stroll through the old town will immerse you in the history and traditions of the local Laurentines. Over the centuries, Saint-Laurent-du-Var has been a citrus-growing and horticultural center. Mingle with the Laurentine fauna at the town’s three markets: Hôtel-de-Ville, in front of the nautical center and Cap 3000, and at the train station.

A veritable tradition and social institution in Provence, open-air markets combine color, scents and fresh local produce. You’ll find the charms, scents and vibrant colors of Provence all over town: local fruits, vegetables, meats and cheeses, and orchards of lemon, orange and olive trees!

To extend your walk, climb up to the Pugets forest for a splendid view of the Baie des Anges.

2. The Pugets forest

Forêt des Pugets, Saint-Laurent-du-Var

Photo credit: Saint-Laurent-du-Var

If you’re a nature-lover, this green setting high above the city is just the place for you. It’s the perfect place for a refreshing stroll in the shade of the pines, and the crackling of the cicadas in summer. Follow the banks of the Var along boulevard Georges Pompidou, then follow avenue Jean Aicard to the Pugets forest. Numerous footpaths leading into the forest are scattered along the road.

3. The ornithological zone

Réserve de la Petite Camargue, Saint-Laurent-du-Var

When visiting Saint-Laurent-du-Var, don’t miss the Petite Camargue, between Cap 3000 and the Var estuary (and Nice airport). Petite Camargue, you say? No, the Camargue is between the Gard and Bouches-du-Rhône departments… Well, it’s a wetland made up of small marshes where 270 species of wild birds live in complete freedom. The site is a meeting place for migratory and aquatic birds, and for this reason the Var estuary has been classified as a « Game and Wildlife Reserve ». Free of charge, the park is open all year round.

4. The beaches of Saint-Laurent-du-Var

Les plages de la Côte d'Azur

Photo credit: Flickr – blink+

Saint-Laurent-du-Var doesn’t have much coastline, but it does have four beaches:

  • Cousteau Beach, along the promenade named after Jean-Yves Cousteau (1910-1997),
  • Landsberg beach, next to the nautical center,
  • But also the Flots Bleus beach, a supervised beach,
  • The former Maona beach.

You’ll find plenty of places to go out and eat along the seafront, including the promenade des Flots Bleus and the esplanade de Goélands. The ideal place to enjoy a meal or a drink on the waterfront. Restaurants, pubs and clubs open their doors day and night.

5. A trip to the coast

Location de bateau St Laurent du Var

Photo credit: Shutterstock – elinaxx1v

Visiting Saint-Laurent-du-Var also means taking advantage of the coastline. In fact, the Côte d’Azur offers some very attractive boat excursions, including to the Lérins Islands, the Gulf of La Napoule and Cap d’Antibes.

So it would be a shame not to rent a boat and enjoy the idyllic setting of the Riviera.

How do I get to Saint-Laurent-du-Var?

Saint-Laurent-du-Var is only separated from Nice by the Var river. So you can get there easily from Nice by bike, for example. To find a cheap flight to Nice, you can search on our partner website Skyscanner.

Where to stay in Saint-Laurent-du-Var?

You can find a cheap hotel in Saint-Laurent-du-Var by searching on this hotel comparator.

Map of hotels and accommodation – Saint-Laurent-du-Var