"Saint-Honorat - Little sister of Saint-Margueritte" Île Saint-Honorat by NiceLife

Île Saint-Honorat Travel Guide: 31 reviews and 62 photos

Get the Abbey habit

The smaller and more distant of the two Iles des Lerins off Cannes, St Honorat is home to a working monastery, which combines monastic silence with tending vineyards and selling hugely expensive wine and obscure paphlets on the lives of saints from its tourist shop. The monks are not a "silent" order - they seem quite happy chatting away to attractive young tour guides.

The island is about half the size of Marguerrite and has only one snack bar - the only commercial premise - La Tonelle - which sells the Trappist beer "Orval" and other cold drinks and snacks. The Orval beer is 6.7% proof - and more than one is most definitely NOT recommended if you want to remember your visit. There are no roads, no cars (hurrah!) and no smoking.

The island has far fewer visitors, and is therefore even more "get away from it all" than its sister island. You can generally find your self your own personal rocky inlet for a swim. The air is thick with the sound of cicadas in heat, and the Abbaye battlements cut a striking figure on the bare sea facing landscape.

Pines bent with the search for the sun

You can still claim the shade of your own personal Allepo pine tree at the waters edge, and also a personal rock pool for swimming. Travellers on the boat all had coolboxes - you need to be prepared for your brief stay here.

The Abbey St Honorat

Beautiful setting with palms and oleanders in profusion, to complement the silence of the monks. The Abbey is architecturally very picturesque and shouts to be photographed, especially against a blue sky. In fact I'd go so far as to say a visit to the island should be reserved for one of those "perfect blue sky" days. This is no place to sit huddled in the rain waiting for the boat home.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Peaceful secluded and pretty
  • Cons:Little else to occupy you
  • In a nutshell:Interesting excursion away from Cannes
  • Last visit to Île Saint-Honorat: Jul 2006
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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“Despite the cost of living, it seems popular. Enjoy.”

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