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Yacht charter, snorkeling and scuba-diving the French Riviera
Yacht charter, snorkeling and scuba-diving the French Riviera

Yacht charter, snorkeling and scuba-diving the French Riviera

22 March 2023

Snorkelling and scuba diving the French Riviera: if you’re a keen diver or just an amateur snorkeller looking for your next underwater adventure, the French Riviera is the perfect destination. With its crystal clear waters, diverse marine life and stunning underwater landscapes, diving in the French Riviera offers a unique and unforgettable experience. 

What are the best dive sites of the French Riviera ?

  • Villefranche sur Mer for scuba diving (gorgona valley)
  • Cap d’Antibes and Lerins islands for snorkeling (underwater eco-museum)
  • St-Tropez area for avid scuba diver (the Rubis submarine wreck)
  • Port-Cros and Porquerolles (wildlife)

French Riviera snorkeling and scuba diving: understand Rendez-vous diving

For those who are looking to do only a few dives during their yacht charter, and have already found the perfect boat to charter, it can be disappointing to learn that the yacht does not offer SCUBA diving (except if your rent a megayacht with a scuba diving instructor…). In such cases, Rendezvous Diving can be a great alternative option.

Rendezvous Diving is an ideal choice for those who have rented a mid-size yacht  and want to do a dive or two, but don’t want to rent the gear and go out on their own. With this type of diving, you can simply call up one of the local dive shops and arrange for them to take you out for a dive.

There are two options for Rendez-vous diving. The first option is where the dive shop comes out to your boat and picks you up, takes you to the dive site, and then returns you to your boat. The second option is where you go to their dive store and arrange for them to take you out for a dive.

Rendez-vous diving is a great way to experience diving on your yacht charter, even if your chosen yacht doesn’t offer scuba diving. You can still enjoy the underwater world without having to worry about equipment rental or navigating the dive sites yourself. So, if you’re planning a yacht charter and want to experience some diving, consider Rendez-vous diving as a convenient and hassle-free option.

French Riviera snorkeling for kids: Cannes underwater eco-museum

The Cannes Underwater Eco-Museum (Écomusée sous-marin) is Jason deCaires Taylor’s first installation in the Mediterranean and took over four years to develop. It comprises a series of six monumental three-dimensional portraits, each over two metres high and weighing ten tonnes. The sculptures are located near the island of Sainte-Marguerite, one of the Lérins Islands, off the coast of Cannes, France.
For children and adults with proper snorkelling equipment
More info

French Riviera scuba diving for experienced diver: Rubis submarine near St-Tropez

French Riviera scuba diving for experienced diver: explore a submarine wreck...

According to, “Located around Cap Camarat, between Cavalaire and Saint Tropez, the wreck of the Rubis is a ‘must dive’ in the Mediterranean Sea. It is a mine launcher submarine that left Toulon in 1931. Measuring 66m long over 7m wide and 8m high, it could have set 32 mines in one mission”

For advanced scuba diver only.

More info

French Riviera snorkeling paradise: Port Cros and Porquerolles

The Golden Isles consist of Porquerolles, Port-Cros, and Le Levant, and are widely regarded as having some of the best diving spots in Europe. As a National Marine Park and Nature Reserve, the area is home to an abundance of diverse marine life, shipwrecks, and scenic drop-offs that make for a fascinating diving experience.

Dive sites are easily accessible via dive centers in Hyeres, Bormes Les Mimosas, La Londe Les Maures, and Le Lavandou. Amongst the many dive sites, there are several shipwrecks to explore, each with a rich historical background.

These include the likes of Le Donator, Le Grec, and Le Ferrando, as well as two aircraft wrecks – Hellcat and Wildcat.

However, the most sought-after dive site is undoubtedly La Gabiniere, situated just off Port-Cros. This location boasts an unspoiled and untouched marine environment that promises to leave divers in awe of its beauty.

The Golden Isles have a reputation for having the most diverse marine life in continental France. Divers can expect to come across barracudas, nudibranchs, crabs, eels, octopi, and multi-colored gorgonian sea fans and sponges. You may even encounter some of the larger species such as the inquisitive groupers, eagle rays, and Mola Molas.

What to expect while scuba diving in the French Riviera ?

When scuba diving in the French Riviera, you can expect to encounter a diverse range of marine life. From colorful fish and octopuses to seahorses and even dolphins, the underwater world of the French Riviera is full of surprises. You may also encounter some of the region’s more unusual species, such as sunfish, barracudas, and even sharks.

Credit: Charterminute

When to dive in the French Riviera ?

The best time to go scuba diving in the French Riviera is from May to September, when the weather is warm and the water is clear. During this time, the water temperature ranges from 18-25°C, making it comfortable for divers to explore the underwater world. However, even in the winter months, the French Riviera still offers good diving conditions, with water temperatures rarely dropping below 14°C.

Updated on May 3, 2024
About the author:
Remi van der Deure – French Riviera Charter broker.


I am the senior Yacht Charter Broker at Charterminute, a well-known yacht charter boutique in Antibes.

I have served in the yacht charter industry for over 15 years and have gained a strong reputation among my clients, as evidenced by consistent 5-star ratings on Google Reviews and TripAdvisor.

My specialty is organizing corporate yacht charters for startups and large companies during popular events like the Cannes Lions Festival, MIPIM, TFWA, and MIPCOM.

I am also proud to be a member of esteemed yacht broker associations, e-MYBA and ECPY, demonstrating my unwavering commitment to providing exceptional yacht charter services and memorable experiences in the French Riviera.

You can contact me directly at +33 (0)662.465.991 or

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