Saint Raphael has long been the preferred Riviera holiday spot for Europeans seeking sun and sand on the shores of the Mediterranean. In particular it's popular for sailing, offering a fantastic choice of sailboats and watersports of all kinds. Situated on the coast some 30 km from Saint Tropez, St Raphael has a large port and about 42 km of sandy beaches spread over the small villages which make up the commune of Saint Raphael. It's a picturesque coast of beaches and pretty coves shaded by distinctive parasol pines and gourmet restaurants overlooking the sea. Behind Saint Raphael is a peaceful Provencal countryside of vineyards, olive groves and cork forests. The resort is known for its 19th century 'Belle Epoque' villas, elegant white stucco villas with crenellated balustrades giving onto the sea. Some are available for holiday rental which, combined with beautiful seascape and lively nightlife, make St Raphael a choice Riviera destination.