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Completed in 1648, Notre-Dame d'Espérance is a beautiful Provençal Gothic church. Its charm lies in its wood-paneling, which dates back to the 14th and 15th Centuries. Also worth a look is the collection of 19th-Century paintings, which include a fresco by George Roux that portrays the baptism of Christ. Statues of Saint Anne and Notre-Dame d'Espérance (both in gilded wood) from the 15th and 18th Centuries are worth checking out. Situated on top of Suquet hill in old Cannes, the church offers visitors a fabulous view of the town and its bay. One of the fishermen's favorite saints, Notre-Dame d'Espérance is also called upon to heal the sick.
Explore the charming city of Cannes from this little train. You can choose from two routes that pass through the city's famous and beautiful sights. The Croisette tour takes you along Cannes' famous seafront. Welcoming beaches, the facades of its luxury hotels and the famous Palais des Festivals are its main stops. The historical tour explores the old town of Suquet. Fees vary according to which tour you choose.
In the heart of Cannes, mornings see a flurry of local vendors and farmers thronging the streets of Le Suquet with their vibrant wares. Everything from freshly grown vegetables, meats, cheeses and other dairy products are displayed, alongside a few florists selling fresh flowers. While the farmers market is open from Tuesday to Sunday, Monday mornings mark the day of the flea market, where vintage curios and jewelry, paintings and used books find their way into Marché Forville.
Built-in 1950, Le Vieux Port in Cannes is an excellent spot to explore the culture of this maritime city. Some of the prime shopping areas of Cannes are located along its borders along with numerous fine dining destinations, lively bars, and quaint cafes. As you enter this port, you will come across several ships, yachts, and boats floating in the sea or tied to the anchor. Most of these are privately owned. The scenic views make the port a great place for a long stroll while simply soaking up the gentle sea breeze.
Palais des Festivals et des Congrés is one of the most popular venues in Cannes not only for business but also for cultural events. This massive avant-garde facility was built in 1982 and features 15 auditoriums and a huge expanse of exhibition space. Perennially busy throughout the year with various events, this futuristic structure is a much-admired landmark of the city.
Boulevard de la Croisette is a famous street, renowned for its shopping and views. It gets its name from a small cross that used to stand east of the bay. A favorite spot for locals and visitors alike, this wonderful promenade hugs the seashore and its beaches for several kilometers. To one side there's the Mediterranean, the Lérins Islands off the coast, and the Estérel mountain range. On the other, there are palm trees, elegant belle époque hotels, and fashionable boutiques. It is an ideal place to people-watch, especially during the Film Festival.
Situated in the heart of Cannes, Rue d'Antibes marks the center of the city's luxury shopping district. The shops here are some of the world's finest, and the wide street is pedestrian friendly and perfect for a stroll. Runway couture houses abound including Agnes B, MaxMara, and Missoni and are backed by the grand Galeries Lafayette and plentitudes of chic boutiques and specialty stores including perfumeries, jewelers, florists, tea shops, and confectioners.
Originally a part of the the Grand Hôtel, Malmaison, open in 1993, today holds temporary art exhibitions. Located at the center of La Croisette, it is Cannes' newest museum. The Cannes Directorate of Cultural Affairs is located on the first floor of the building. The exhibitions, which promote modern and contemporary art, are held in the beautiful gardens and are worth checking out.
The Espace Miramar is a cultural center made up of a 400 seat concert hall, a great room, and considerable space devoted to temporary art exhibits. These exhibits are usually contemporary photography or other visual arts and the best part is the free entry. It occupies the ground floor of the grand building at the corner of La Croisette and rue Pasteur, which once was Palais Miramar hotel. The Espace Miramar, is open every day except on Monday and some holidays.
The largest of the three Lérin islands is a 15-minute boat ride from Cannes. In ancient times it was called Léro. Numerous boat companies make the crossing from the old port. Also inhabiting this island is a 17th-century fort, which houses the Maritime Museum. This fort was once a prison and was the home to the unidentified character, known as the man in the iron mask.
Several companies offer a wide choice of sailboats and boat trips to these beautiful and relatively wild islands. Less than half an hour's boat ride away, the smaller of the two islands, Saint-Honorat, has an active monastery, a museum, and an abbey. The larger, Sainte-Marguerite Island's claim to fame is its old fort, where the legendary Man in the Iron Mask was imprisoned. Also worth a look while visiting this pleasant car-free sanctuary is the Musée de la Mer, which is home to an impressive collection of archaeological treasures and relics.
Home to a community of monks since the 5th century, Île Saint-Honorat is rich in monastic tradition and history. It is the second largest and most distant of the two Lérins Islands used to be called Lérina. It has fertile soil and magnificent trees, notably Aleppo pines. A reef protects the south side of the island against the sea. Once on the island, make sure you visit the abbey Notre-Dame de Lérins, its main attraction.Also, remember to shop for the wines and honey native to the island.