The whole coastal region of the French Mediterranean is popular, from the Côte d'Azur located by the border with Italy to the Côte Vermeille in the Langudeoc on the border with Spain. Every year, many people go on holiday to one of these regions and enjoy the stunning beaches, the lovely seaside resorts and the azure blue sea.
The nature in this region is also very beautiful, especially if you travel a little further into the hinterland. There is also another place where you can enjoy stunning nature: under water! Whether you are an experienced diver or not, there are possibilities for all levels. You can go diving with or without supervision. Along the entire coast there are companies that rent out the necessary equipment required for diving and snorkelling.
Snorkelling in the Mediterranean Sea during your holiday
You can snorkel without a diving suit if the water is not too cold. In the period from June to September, the water temperature in the Mediterranean is 20 degrees or higher, this is a good temperature for diving without a diving suit. Outside the summer months it is possible to snorkel, but you are advised to put on a suit.
Underwater nature in the South of France
The subsoil of the Mediterranean coast is very varied. There are sandy beaches, pebble beaches and rocky beaches. The areas with rocky beaches are the most suitable for diving and snorkelling. The rocky beaches have the most stunning nature and you will undoubtedly have a beautiful day during your holiday. There are beautiful fish, octopuses, barracudas, perches, sea urchins and many other animal species you should try to spot when diving. You can also see ship and aeroplane wrecks.
Most beautiful snorkelling spots on the Mediterranean Sea
The most beautiful snorkelling spots can be found along the rocky beaches where stunning flora and fauna has developed. The crevices in the rocks provide a place for sea creatures to live undisturbed. There are also good growth opportunities for the underwater flora. The Languedoc region the southernmost part of France, near the Spanish border, is most ideal for snorkelling. In the Provence and Cote d'Azur there are several places where snorkelling is excellent. In the northern part of the Languedoc there are no large rock formations in the sea thus you can certainly dive there, but the underwater nature is less spectacular.
Snorkelling and diving near the Côte Vermeille
The Côte Vermeille is the southernmost part of Languedoc. This is where the foothills of the Pyrenees transcend into the Mediterranean. Famous places are Banyuls-sur-Mer, Port Vendres and Collioure. In these villages there are diving schools and companies that rent out diving equipment. You can start your snorkelling journey from the beach or from a bay. There are also boats that can take you further out to sea where you can snorkel in deep waters.
Snorkeling in the Calanques near Marseille
In the south of Marseille there is a national park called the Calanques. It is known for its beautiful coves with steep cliffs. Due to its isolated location, the wind has hardly any effect on the surrounding area and thus the visibility in the water within the Calanques is very clear. There are a number of spots in the Calanques that are very interesting for snorkelers the Calanque d'En Vau, the Calanque de Port-Pin and the Calanque de Sugiton. To get to the water you often have to take a long hike, but it is definitely more than worth it.
Snorkelling in Provence at Iles d'Hyères
The Iles d'Hyères archipelago is located near Hyères, a coastal town east of Toulon. This archipelago has a beautiful underwater world. The islands belong to the French national park Port Cros. Due to strict safety regulations, the archipelago has remained untouched and is surrounded by a beautiful flora and fauna. If you dive just a few meters underwater you can already find the most beautiful fish and corals. For wreck divers there is also plenty to find here: the U-boat "Le Rubis" and the cargo boat "Donator" are two of the most interesting wrecks in the area.
Esterel massif near Saint Raphael
Saint Raphael is situated on the Mediterranean Sea and at the foot of the Esterel massif; a forerunner of the French Alps. The rocks of the Esterel massif extend into the Mediterranean Sea and provide good underwater flora and fauna. Around Saint Raphael there are a large number of dive sites. Some of these sites are suitable for shore diving and other sites are only accessible by boat.
Snorkeling and diving at Antibes
There are many diving schools in the area of Cap d'Antibes. In several areas there are rocky coves that are suitable for snorkelling. The beaches Côte Plongée and Cap Gros are famous due to their beautiful underwater life.
Snorkelling on the Côte d'Azur at Plage Mala in Cap d'Ail
The beach "Plage Mala" is located in an inlet of the bay of Saint Laurent. To reach the beach, you need to climb down a stairway with 120 steps. The sea water here is particularly clear and the many rock formations that can be found here make for wonderful underwater life.
Snorkelling and diving at Nice in the South of France
East of Nice the coast is rocky and suitable for snorkelling. The beaches Coco Beach, Pointe de Gaton and Cap de Nice are very popular among snorkelers.