The St. Marguerite Island (Île Sainte-Marguerite), the St. Honorat Island (Île Saint-Honorat) and the smaller Îlot Saint-Ferréol and Îlot de la Tradelière are the four islands the Lérins Archipelago (Les Îles de Lérins) consist of. This archipelago is, administratively speaking, the proud possession of the commune of Cannes, standing out, at the same time, as a hotspot which amasses interesting landmarks, being invaluable for Cannes in terms of tourist relevance.
To begin with, the St. Marguerite Island is only 30 minutes away from the mainland, and the distance can be easily covered by the boats which regularly service tourists interested in making a trip to the biggest and the nearest island of Cannes. St. Marguerite is covered by a lovely scent-laden eucalypt forest, but its main landmark is represented by the Maritime Museum (Musée de la Mer), hosted by a former fort where the legendary Man in the Iron Mask is said to have been jailed. The Museum has a rich display of underwater archeological findings, more precisely, wrecks dating from ancient to more recent times. Different spots on this island are worth visiting, as they offer great views of both Cannes and Cap d’Antibe. In addition, sunbathing and swimming are enabled by the several facilities on the island, and the several coffee shops, pubs, the one disco and the restaurant in the port make possible lovely moments of relaxation.
The St. Honorat Island, though not as modernly arranged as its counterpart, is still a must-see since it features a rather particular peculiarity. The island is a place charged with an extremely rich historic and religious background, being replete with numerous chapels and other religious establishments speaking about the rough past of the place. Having been exclusively inhabited by monks since the 5th century AD, the island underwent both periods of fame and of carnage. It has been a place of virtually uninterrupted pilgrimage since the 6th century, except for a period of several centuries, during the Middle Ages, when the island was repeatedly devastated by the conquering Saracens. Being founded as a place of refuge as solitude by the monk Saint Honoratus and its companions, the community of monks who have found their home here produced many bishops which had a great impact on the religious life of the entire region of the Metropolitan Sea of Arles. Subsequently to the French Revolution, the island had been secularized for about a century, and nowadays is hosts the Cistercian Congregation of the Immaculate Conception. Historic background aside, a trip to the St. Honorat Island is worth making, only if just for tasting a famous local product, Lérina, a herbal liqueur, which might open the appetite and the curiosity for other locally produced goods: wine, lavender oil or honey.
The other two smaller islands of the Lérins Islands, namely, Îlot Saint-Ferréol and Îlot de la Tradelière are not inhabited.Go to top