Ile Sainte Marguerite

A short ferry ride away from Antibes and Cannes, there is the island of Sainte Marguerite.  I had been there two years ago and the smell of the pine and eucalyptus trees brought me back this summer.  The island is small enough in size that you can walk around it during your day trip there, but unless you want to camp there for the night, be sure and catch the last ferry back to the mainland which leaves around 6pm in the summer.  It is pretty remote apart from a few buildings, a millionaire's private garden estate, and the most famous attraction on the island- the Fort Royal where the Man in the Iron Mask was held several centuries ago.  
A view of the fort while approaching the island makes for a dramatic start of the day.
Beautiful flowers cover the island.

The water is crystal clear and clean- perfect for an afternoon dip before heading back to the mainland.
Many of the island's paths are covered with tree canopies.
The exterior of a private estate is tempting...
An old eucalyptus tree damaged from the December 1999 storm

The most 'cultivated' beach lies not too far from where the boats dock.  It has the most space for lying on the shore, although the whole island is pebbly so be forewarned.  Some visitors find large rocks around other parts of the island and lay their towels there for the day.

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