Ile-Sainte-Marguerite-vue-du-Fort-Sainte-MargueriteIle-Sainte-Marguerite-vue-du-Fort-Sainte-Marguerite
Lérins Islands

the practical guide to a successful excursion

The Lérins Islands are a real gem of nature, culture and history, and are one of the exceptional sites to discover. Just a stone’s throw from Cannes, Sainte-Marguerite and Saint-Honorat offer a new experience, a relaxing break from the hustle and bustle of Cannes. Let’s remember these tips and recommendations to make the most of this green trip.

Getting to and around
the islands

Embark for the Lérins Islands

From the Port of Cannes, several shuttles take you to the magnificent Lérins Islands. In 15 to 20 minutes of crossing, you will be on the ground of these small natural paradises. The companies Trans Côte d’Azur, Riviera Lines and SARL Horizon serve Sainte-Marguerite. The Planaria company allows you to go to Saint-Honorat. All the boats of these companies are accessible to people with reduced mobility. If you want to visit both islands on the same day, there is no direct shuttle service, you have to return to the pier to change boat companies.

When you go on an excursion to the islands, it’s best to check the shuttle return times. If, by accident, you miss the last boat, there are however taxi boats to contact such as Taxi de Mer at the Old Port / Majestic pontoon (on +33(0)6 11 50 77 53 from March to the end of October) or Black Tenders at the Port du Béal (on +33(0)6 30 83 88 72). The rates are of course higher than for the shuttles, but isn’t that the price to pay to find one’s cosy bed at night?

Getting around the islands

 

On the Lérins Islands, no cars, motor vehicles or any other wheeled machines! Here, the emphasis is on the long way around, walking! and soft mobility. All the more so as the islands are not very large and it is very easy to cover them on foot. With a length of 3,200 metres and a width of 900 metres, the tour of Sainte-Marguerite is 9 kilometres long.

The smaller Saint-Honorat is 1,500 metres long and 400 metres wide, making it only 3 kilometres long. A great opportunity to enjoy the sights, sounds and scents of these paths lined with pine and holm oak trees.

Sleeping on the islands

 

The Lérins Islands are protected sites. The state forest of the island of Sainte-Marguerite is classified as a “directed biological reserve” by the ONF, which is why it is strictly forbidden to camp there. For those who wish to spend the night, it is possible to reserve a place in the Fort Royal dormitories.

Saint-Honorat is a private island belonging to the Cistercian monks. They offer hospitality to those who wish to make a retreat in a monastic cell.

A simple but all-purpose equipment

The perfect explorer’s outfit 

 

Sport and relaxation go hand in hand on the Lérins Islands. To walk the paths and explore the smallest corners, good shoes are required. When it’s time to take a dip in the turquoise waters, water shoes are a must. Naturism is forbidden on Sainte-Marguerite and Saint-Honorat, so don’t forget your swimming costume. Don’t forget that Saint-Honorat is home to a monastery, so it’s important to keep a decent outfit when travelling on the island.

 

A little advicefor marine adventurers

A mask and a snorkel will be precious allies to unearth the submerged statues of the underwater eco-museum on Sainte-Marguerite Island.

Pets are welcome but must be equipped with a leash. Smokers can leave their cigarettes at home as smoking is not allowed on either island.

 

Great memories to take home

The landscapes of the Lérins Islands are truly enchanting. Every corner is a little postcard of an authentic and preserved nature. This is why it is preferable not to pick or collect plants on the islands.

Savouring every moment on these islands of paradise is already a precious memory. Although drones are strictly forbidden, it is still possible to take beautiful photos. To post them on social networks, you will have to wait until you return to Cannes, as the Lérins Islands do not offer public Wi-Fi. Only the customers of the restaurant La Guérite on Sainte-Marguerite and the people staying or in seminar at the Fort Sainte-Marguerite can have Wifi.

And for objects or souvenirs of any kind, there is no shop on Sainte-Marguerite. On Saint-Honorat, the monastery shop offers their famous production of wines and liqueurs and monastic products.

Visits and services to suit all needs

A unique heritage

 

The Fort Royal is a must-see place to explore on Sainte-Marguerite Island. It contains the cell of the famous and mysterious Man in the Iron Mask as well as a museum with precious archaeological remains from the Roman era.

On the island of Saint-Honorat, you can visit the abbey church. Every year, the European Heritage Days are an opportunity for the lucky ones to enter the Abbey Cloister. At the Saint-Honorat monastery, the faithful attend mass at 11:25 am on weekdays and at 9:50 am on Sundays and public holidays. Another appointment on the island of Saint-Honorat, and not the least for wine lovers, is the tasting sessions organised for groups by reservation or on the occasion of the Vignes & Vins days every first Friday of the month.

Learn all about the Islands with a greeter

These enthusiasts of Cannes’ heritage and historical anecdotes will happily accompany you on a tour of the islands and help you discover all their riches.

The essentials for savouring the moment

 

On the Lérins Islands, nature is king and simplicity is the order of the day. Several picnic tables are available to break your fast food between two walks or two swims. In the shade of the pines, in the relaxing calm of nature, you can enjoy sandwiches and salads bought before embarking or at one of the 2 kiosks at Lerõnos in Sainte-Marguerite. As we are on sites protected by the ONF, it is naturally forbidden to make fire or grill.

For those who prefer to enjoy the flavours of a good restaurant, there are some on each of the two islands: La Guérite or L’Escale on Sainte-Marguerite, Les Canisses or La Tonnelle on Saint-Honorat.

 

A small but importantpractical point

The Lérins Islands are provided with public toilets and water fountains. As far as rubbish is concerned, visitors to Saint-Honorat are invited to take their rubbish back to the coast and dispose of it in the containers provided for this purpose. These are useful precautions to preserve these beautiful islands.