Traditional Village Is Picturesque and Well Worth a Half-Day's Visit
Cruise ships sailing the Mediterranean often dock in Cannes or Nice on the French Riviera for the day. Passengers who wish to explore a traditional French village can take a half-day shore excursion to one of several nearby towns such as St. Paul-de-Vence or Eze.
I visited St. Paul-de-Vence for a few hours when our cruise ship was docked in Cannes, and found the picturesque 16th century village to be fascinating and well worth the time. Saint Paul de Vence sits high on a hilltop overlooking the surrounding French countryside. We strolled the cobbled streets and explored artisan's shops. The old buildings are fascinating, and the shops have many different types of handicrafts.
St. Paul-de-Vence is only one of the many similar villages in the area, but its views are much different than those at Eze since the town in inland and the Mediterranean Sea is not visible.
We also hiked the short distance (up a hill) from St. Paul to Fondation Maeght, a nearby modern art museum. The contrast between the old village and the modern museum was striking and made for a memorable day. The Maeght Foundation Museum is one of Europe's most famous modern art museums. The Maeght was built in 1964 and designed by Spanish architect Jose-Luis Sert, who worked with modern artists such as Miro and Chagall on the design.
St. Paul de Vence is a fascinating medieval French village to explore. However, its cobblestone streets are designed only for the able-bodied.
St. Paul de Vence Building with Flowers
Many of the buildings in St. Paul de Vence are decorated with flowers.
St. Paul-de-Vence Shopping Lane
Saint Paul de Vence has many small boutiques perfect for browsing. St. Paul can get very crowded in the summer.
Walled City of Saint Paul de Vence
Saint Paul de Vence sits high on a hilltop overlooking the French Countryside
Walking from St. Paul de Vence to the Fondation Maeght
It is only a short walk from St. Paul de Vence to the modern art museum of Fondation Maeght, but it is very hilly.
Maeght Foundation Modern Art Museum in Saint Paul de Vence, France
The Fondation Maeght is an amazing modern art museum located just a short walk from the medieval hilltop French village of Saint Paul de Vence. Cruise ships often include half-day shore excursions to St. Paul de Vence from Cannes, Nice, or Monte Carlo.
We explored the narrow streets and artisan shops of St. Paul and still had enough time to stroll through the museum and its lovely grounds while on a half-day shore excursion from the Crystal Symphony.<p>The Maeght Foundation Museum is one of Europe's finest modern art museums. Constructed in 1964, the Maeght was designed by Spanish architect Jose-Luis Sert, who worked with famous modern artists such as Miro and Chagall on his design. The Maeght Foundation Museum includes works by such artists as Bonnard, Braque, Kandinsky, and Chagall. Set high on a piney hill overlooking St. Paul de Vence, the grounds of the Maeght has many interesting sculptures, mobiles, and mosaics.