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A beach resort with a perched village above

Roquebrune-Cap-Martin (don’t confuse it with Roquebrune-sur-Argens in the Var) is a very pleasant Riviera resort next door to Menton, based around Cap-Martin with the fascinating perched village of Roquebrune towering above.

Cap Martin is both a suburb of Menton and a resort in its own right with villas, apartments and beaches. The Via Julia Augusta passed this way but there is little evidence of this old highway nowadays. An old beacon now used for telecommunications and the ruins of an 11th century Basilica are the main sights.

Village perché

From a touristic point of view, the village perché of Roquebrune itself is much more interesting. Its almost unique Carolingian castle keep dates back to the 10th century. Built by the Count of Ventimiglia to protect the village from Saracen raiders who once plagued this coast, it stands proudly guarding the village. Later it was owned by the Grimaldis, ancestors of Prince Rainier of Monaco.

Roquebrune’s other claim to fame is the Olivier Millénaire just out of the main village on the Chemin de Menton. This 1000 year old olive tree is one of the world’s oldest trees and seems in very good health!

Don’t miss: Corbusier’s Cabin in Cap Martin where the renowned architect once lived. Moreover, the view from the castle keep (entry charge) up in the old village is breath taking.

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Département: Alpes-Maritimes.

33 (0)4 93 35 62 87

Côte d'Azur In-A-Day

From Nice to Italy on the French Riviera

Text © Paul Shawcross

Image by © Paul Shawcross