Sainte-Maxime is a seaside resort in Provence, on the French Riviera, whose marina has been gaining success since the 1930s. Originally the city was a small fishing port, known for the parade of tartans, which transported wine, oil, cork, wood, grain and vegetables.
These origins are honored during Saint Peter's Day, which is held every year on June 29. It celebrates the patron saint of fishermen who protects the boats and ensures abundant fishing. For the occasion, a "pointu", the traditional local boat, is burned on the beach and all the spectators are invited to a sardinade.
The city is naturally resolutely turned towards the sea with a wide range of nautical activities: catamaran, boat trips, parasailing, flyboarding, board sports. More than 60 diving sites are listed in the region, easily accessible from Sainte-Maxime.
There are no less than 6 beaches in the area with very different atmospheres. The Elephant beach, which appeared in one of Babar's cartoons, is bordered by the house of the illustrator Jean de Brunhoff. La Nartelle beach is more suitable for families but is also renowned as a spot for surfing, wind surfing and bodyboarding.
The beach of La Croisette offers a beautiful panorama on the Gulf of Saint-Tropez. The Luc Provençal beach is the closest to the city center and offers a refreshing shade with its pine forest. The Garonnette beach will delight sand and pebble lovers and its rocks are home to many crabs, to be fished or simply observed.
Diving enthusiasts will be delighted to discover the creeks of the Madrague beach or the rocks of the Pointe des Sardinaux for snorkeling. For a walk away from the hustle and bustle of the city and the seaside, the latter offers an idyllic setting. Nicknamed Little Corsica, it offers a refreshing stroll between the umbrella pines and the rocks.
Sainte-Maxime offers the opportunity to explore history: from a Roman fishpond to the World War II bunker, the region is not lacking in variety. In the downtown area of the seaside resort, the Tour carrée and the Sainte-Maxime church are beautiful witnesses of the beginnings of the city. Along the cobbled streets, the mansions and bourgeois residences reveal their Belle Epoque architecture. Two other monuments are worth a visit: the town hall, a former silkworm farm, and the Tourelles castle.
As for gastronomy, Provencal products are in the spotlight: olives in all their forms, fishing products, local cheeses, honeys, pastis... The covered market and the fish market are full of delicious products that can also be found on the menu of the many restaurants.
Around Sainte-Maxime, several farms offer to discover the local products. The Beaucas estate and the Clos de Sainte-Maxime reveal the secrets of the making of Côtes de Provence wines. The Pierre Plantée estate produces olives as well as many by-products, which can be tasted on site after a guided tour.
From Sainte-Maxime, various water shuttles allow you to explore the surrounding towns and villages. Grimaud, nicknamed the Venice of Provence, will surprise the travelers, Gassin is classified among the most beautiful villages of France. The islands of Hyères, Porquerolles and Port-Cros, are also only a short distance away.
With its ideal activities throughout the year, Sainte-Maxime is the ideal place to invest in seasonal rentals. There are no less than 1780 properties dedicated to this activity in the town, both by the sea and in the town center.
The average price per night is over 100 euros throughout the year, with an average of 134 euros per night. The average price peaks at 146 euros in July and drops to 123 euros in March.
The occupancy rate is more variable: from an average of 65% occupancy per month, it drops to 17% in November but reaches almost 90% in August. This high occupancy rate in August is reflected in the average monthly income of 2,500 euros during that month.
The properties for seasonal rental are varied: while there are many houses or apartments with 1 to 2 bedrooms, there are also a large number of studios and apartments with more than 3 bedrooms. These properties are generally equipped to accommodate an average of 5 to 6 travelers.
Sainte-Maxime is a family-friendly destination and welcomes travelers for stays of 2 to 3 nights in majority. Stays of more than a week are also common with more than 30% of the reservations concerned.
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