Antibes is a busy nautical town on the French Côte d’Azur. Its port is home to grand yachts, sailors and bustling tourists. But turn your back on the shimmering sea, pass through the temptations of the market, and head into the twisting Old Town… There you will find a quiet warren of streets full of flowers and secret hideaways.
These are the streets Pablo Picasso once walked, finding inspiration from the serenity and vibrant colours. You will come across other artists now, busy painting away the day in their small ateliers.
Every sleepy doorway is different. The seaside noises, of the gulls and the breeze whistling around corners, is broken only by the occasional old song on somebody’s old radio.
You encounter no one but an elderly woman keeping watch from her doorstep and enjoying her first (or tenth) cigarette of the day. She eyes you suspiciously until you say, ‘Bonjour’ and are granted passage.
Looking up at the canopy of flowers, laundry and quintessential French shutters, you realise this was not the best place to come as a recovering property-porn addict. But you surrender to the relapse, all your senses aflame.
You wander, not lost, but eager to see what lies in wait behind each new corner. So you follow the labyrinth merrily, until your phone runs out of storage and you must concede defeat. These streets are too good for Instagram; the secrets of Antibes’ Old Town await the next traveller to stride over its cobbles, and see it for themselves.
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