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Antibes





Why visit Antibes



Antibes is the second largest city in the Alpes Maritimes department. A beautiful location it is multi faceted with something to attract the interest of every visitor. Antibes, like all the coastal towns along the French Riviera, has its own unique atmosphere which is born out of its origins, its geography and the journey that the town has taken. An atmosphere that has been nurtured through the centuries according to its inhabitants and all that befell them.

It is a seaside town with pretty beaches and clear water, it's a port town with long marinas and nearby markets and it was a strategic military town with its city walls, fortifications and evident history.

Port Vauban, AntibesBeaches, AntibesCity walls keeping Antibes safe


The beginning for Antibes

The area around what is known as Antibes today showed signs of early settlement by a variety of tribes but Antibes was first established as a significant settlement by the ancient Greeks in 5th century BC as another trading port in their string of Mediterranean posts.

Known as Antipolis, meaning the 'town opposite' as it lay across the bay from the other Greek settlement 'Nikaia' or Nice, Antines came under Roman control when the Greeks pressed upon the Romans to assist them with their coastal defense against raiding northern tribes in the higher regions of the Alps.

It was called Anitboul by the Romans and they continued the development of the town as a port long after the Greeks had receded. Many Roman artifacts and remains are still evident today.

With the advent of Christianity and the fall of the Roman empire Antibes became a pontifical town and the first Bishop, Saint Hermentaire, was installed. Its fortunes rose and fell with the turmoil of the times and the entire region endured a period of great unrest and insecurity.


Narrow view of the world, Antibes
Defense
Vessels sighted in Antibes
Fortification
Sea views in Antibes
Sea port
Old Town, Antibes
Old town


A strategic position for Antibes

Through the middle ages the south coast of France was ravaged by local wars and foreign invaders. The fortunes of many villages and towns hung in the balance and it was during this time that many of the now famous fortifications in the area were built. There came about two incidences that were to change the fortunes of Antibes and shape it into the town that we know today.

The first landmark event occurs in 1338 when Nice signs a treaty to align itself with the house of Savoy, a long time enemy of neighbouring France due to the Duke of Savoy's occasional allegiance to Spain. Antibes had fallen under the control of the Grimaldi family a wealthy investment and military family originating from Genoa. Two brothers, Luca and Marc Grimaldi, lent money to the Pope Clement VII who leveraged Antibes as collateral. The loan was called in and in 1384 the brothers became the first Lords of Antibes

The second cornerstone in Antibes' history is laid when the brothers aligned themselves with the Counts of Provence and continued to build on their wealth and success. Provence was annexed by the French and in 1487 came under the reign of King Louis VI. This put Antibes under French rule and at odds with the neighbouring county of Nice. Antibes' political status leaped to the fore and, with the border on the Var river just west of the city of Nice, Antibes became the last harbour on the Southern coast of France.

defense became imperative as tensions escalated and Antibes was to become pivotal in the military and strategic defense of France's borders. It bore the heavy brunt of every Royal military campaign for generations. The ante was higher than ever and the building of a Fort was supported by the King.


The building of Antibes

In 1550 the King of France was Henry II and he commissioned the building of a circular tower on the site of the Saint Laurent chapel. This site had already seen pagan Roman sites of worship before Christianity and was now about to enter a military period.

Under Henry III the tower was added to with the four additonal towers which looked out over Antibes, Nice, Corsica and France. These were the areas that attack from invaders was expected and the towers were named according to the direction each faced.

The Fort was added to and developed by some of the greatest military engineers that France had to offer. It housed a chapel, sleeping accommodation, kitchens, officers accommodation, ammunitions stores and walls higher and thicker than any seen before. Fort Carré was impregnable and remained un-breachable throughout its military use despite long and consistent campaigns.

WWI soldier, AntibesButresses, Antibes
Soldiers storyImpregnable
Welcome, AntibesChapel detail, Antibes
FortifiedA prayer

Napoleon was said to have been a guest when he returned from exile in St Elba and landed back in France via this port. In the late 1880's Nice came under French rule and the pressure eased for Antibes.

The fort remained a military post and Antibes a garrison town but it saw no more fighting action and by the 1920's was focused on military education in particular physical education and the extensive sports grounds at the foot of the fort were built.


Renting holiday apartments in Antibes

Today Antibes is a beach resort, a yachties delight and a city break all rolled into one. Its culture and history laid bare on the very streets and in its atmosphere. If you would like to holiday here and want to rent an apartment or villa for your vacation then please use the search facility below. You can also click on 'Browse Rental' in the main menu to see everything available for your holiday rental.




 


Some top holiday rentals in Antibes



Vallauris Luxury 6-Bed Belle Epoque Villa

French Riviera » Antibes » Vallauris 400 sq.m. Villa 1015
»Holiday rental villa
»Bedrooms:6
»Sleeps:10
»Price per night:$1,026.13
»Per person (x10):$102.61
Contemporary, Swimming Pool
An elegant, luxurious Belle Epoque villa located in Vallauris, just a 10 minute drive from Cannes and Antibes. This gorgeous villa for 10 guests features contemporary Italian styling and a private garden with a swimming pool, dining area and terrace.


Vallauris 5-Bed Sea View Family Villa

French Riviera » Antibes » Vallauris 190 sq.m. Villa 1192
»Holiday rental villa
»Bedrooms:5
»Sleeps:10
»Price per night:$637.51
»Per person (x10):$63.75
Sea View, Swimming Pool
A stunning, newly-built 5 bedroom family villa in Vallauris, just a short drive from Cannes and Antibes and close to the sandy beaches of Golfe Juan. This villa features beautiful terraces with sea views, an infinity pool and large grounds with a garden.


Antibes apartment

French Riviera » Antibes 55 sq.m. Apartment 0883
»Holiday rental apartment
»Bedrooms:1
»Sleeps:4
»Price per night:$102.57
»Per person (x4):$25.64
Swimming Pool, Contemporary
A one bedroom apartment in a residence with a pool that sleeps up to 4 guests. This is a nicely presented budget apartment that would suit a couple or a family with children. There is a large private outdoor terrace and a public sun deck on the roof.


 

Find your holiday rental in Antibes


 
 

Immediate Area

 
» Villeneuve-Loubet» Roquefort-les» Valbonne
» Cap d'Antibes» Juan-Les-Pins» Vallauris
» Biot 
 
 
 
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