"The mystery of a man in the iron mask" Iles de Lérins Tip by Bilimari

Iles de Lérins, Cannes: 17 reviews and 29 photos

  Fort Royal
by Bilimari

Iles de Lerins are two small islands (Ile Ste-Marguerite and Ile St-Honorat) off Cannes, where you can take a short ferry ride over, and a perfect place to spend a sunny afternoon.

On the Ile St-Honorat, which is a smaller island of the two, you can visit a small chapel - St. Caprais, Abbaye de Lerins - the 19th century church, and the Monastere Fortifie - built in 1073 to protect the monks from Saracen pirates.

I visited Ile Ste-Marguerite to visit the Fort Royal where the man in the iron mask was imprisoned for 11 years. The island is covered with Eucalyptus trees. From the port, you walk up the hill to the fort. There are a few small restaurants and cafes on the way.
The Fort Ste-Marguerite was built under Richelieu in the 17th century, and strengthened by Vauban in 1712. Many of the original buildings are still standing there including a building now used for a Maritime museum, and a prison building where you can step inside the man in the iron mask's cell.

Warning! - No photographs inside the building. I didn't know that and wanted to take a photo of the cell sign, but right when I was ready to take it, a staff jumped behind me and said, "No photo!". He actually waited for me to put a finger on the shutter button to scare me. I put a camera away, and walked inside the cell. Then, he came inside and said, "Now, you are in jail with me." No one else was there... I walked right out. Maybe it's not a good idea to visit a prison alone...

Address: Ile Ste-Marguerite
Directions: About 15min. ferry ride from Canne's Vieux port.
Phone: 04 92 99 5400
Website: http://www.abbayedelerins.com/

Review Helpfulness: 3 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Sep 11, 2006
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