Visit Bandol (Provence, France)
Bandol is a popular coastal town and wine growing region in the western part of the Cote d'Azur and to the west of Toulon. As a tourist destination, Bandol is not a newcomer to the scene: Thomas Mann, Aldous Huxley, Marcel Pagnol, and D.H. Lawrence all spent time here.
Bandol is many things to many people. For example, to boating enthusiasts it is a vibrant harbour accommodating about 1500 boats of all sizes at any given time. Visitors arriving by boat are within a close sail of the magnificent white chalk calanques along the coastline between here and the port of Marseilles some fifty kilometers to the west.
The streets immediately surrounding the harbor are packed with fine shops and restaurants as well as a casino for those who come ashore.
To land-based vacationers Bandol is a beach town and buzzing hub of activity to which they can return each day after exploring the diversity of the Var, the department of France along the Mediterranean coast roughly bordered by the maritime center of Toulon to the east and Marseille to the west.
The promenade around the harbour is an attractive palm-tree lined walk, backed by some lovely pastel painted houses, and around Bandol port there are also several bars and restaurants, perfect for people watching (and eating!).
Easy access to good beaches, separated by rocky coved sections of coastline, and the hills behind the town, further contribute to making a very pleasant setting for the resort.
Beach lovers can enjoy a leisurely change of scenery from day-to-day between the busy beaches of Bandol and those of Sanary-sur-Mer slightly to the east, and more down-to-earth Saint Cyr sur Mer slightly to the west. saint-Cyr-sur-Mer has a charming central market and a traditional boules court shaded by plane trees where locals gather for friendly camaraderie and fierce competition on any given afternoon.
There are also many small villages in the Bandol area that are worthy of a look around, and a visit to Bandol should include a visit to the city of Toulon where Jacques Cousteau set out on a lifelong exploration of the sea and where the military traditions of the sea are everywhere evident.
Less crowded in the high season than the more popular neighbouring department of the Alpes-Maritimes, the Var and coast around Bandol has every bit as much to offer and may just provide a better insight into the authentic culture of this wonderful and diverse country.
Photos taken within 10 km
Address: Bandol, Ollioules, Toulon, Var, Provence, 83150 || GPS: latitude 43.1333, longitude 5.75
Map of Bandol & places nearby
Highlights close by
La Ciotat 12km
Suggested tourist attractions to visit near Bandol, France
- Sanary-sur-Mer - ville fleurie 4* (4km)
- Saint Cyr sur Mer - recommended detour (6km)
- Ollioules - recommended detour (8km)
- Parc du Mugel - site of natural beauty (12km)
- Parc municipal du Mugel - remarkable garden (12km)
- Cap Sicié - site of natural beauty (13km)
- Zoo du Mont Faron - zoo or wildlife park (16km)
- OK Corral - theme park (16km)
- Domaine d'Orvès - remarkable garden (19km)
- Jardin de Baudouvin - remarkable garden (19km)
Market days in Bandol: Regular market(s) are held in Bandol each Tuesday. (Markets are held in the morning unless stated.)
The French version of this page is at Bandol (Francais)