Showbiz Traveler: Cannes 2012
After a fortnight inside the confines of the Palais, some R&R is in order. Outdoor enthusiasts have many activities to choose from in the South of France — be it on land, sea or the F1 circuit.
Drive an F1 car
Get behind the wheel of an F1 car after a day-long intensive training course run by AGS, located near St. Tropez. Outfit offers an F1 experience on a Grand Prix-style practice track. The day ends with a Champagne toast. Program rates start at €1,300 ($1,700); car insurance is additional.
Info: AGS Formule 1, Circuit du Var, Gonfaron, France
Phone: +33 (0)4 94 60 97 00
Tour the coast on a Jet Ski
Jet skis are the zippy alternative to a boat charter. At Glisse Paradise on the beach near Nice, rent by the hour or book an extended voyage to Cap D’Antibes ($171) or the Italian border ($752). Passport and deposit required; with passenger, the cost is slightly more. Parasailing and wake boarding are available at the same beachside kiosk.
Info: Glisse Paradise, Plage du Cocody Beach, Saint Laurent du Var
Phone: +33 (0)6 13 24 04 87
Hike a canyon
U.K.-based tour company Undiscovered Alps leads backcountry trips through the Southern Alps. Snowmelt creates dramatic waterfalls and narrow gorges provide the scene for canyoning, where participants slide, jump and swim through cold streams and pools (wetsuits included). The firm also organizes zip-line tours, high ropes courses and climbing trips.
Info: Undiscovered Alps
Phone: +33 (0)6 77 36 29 42
Trek in Corsica
From Nice, it’s a six-hour ferry ride to the pristine scenery and under-populated beaches of Corsica. Run by an Anglo-French couple, Corsica Aventure organizes multi-day guided and self-guided trekking tours across the island’s interior and other hiking itineraries. Overnight stays and meals are arranged along the trails; luggage is transferred, too, so hikers don’t need to worry about humping heavy backpacks.
Info: Corsica Aventure
Phone: +33 (0)4 95 50 72 75
Ride a bike
Depending on a rider’s comfort zone, suitable tours are available, either on scheduled departure dates or customized itineraries. Founded by a French cyclist, Cyclomundo arranges personalized bike trips from three to five days throughout Provence; avid bikers can book more strenuous routes. U.S.-based DuVine Adventures arranges guided deluxe tours that combine vineyard and winery visits, biking and hotel stays. New this year: a loop that begins with a visit to Bandol vineyards.
To take a practice spin around the Croisette for the day or the hour, check out Elite Rent a Bike, but know that rates go up precipitously during the festival.
Info: DuVine Adventures
Phone: (888) 396-5385
Info: Elite Rent a Bike, Cannes
Phone: +33 (0)4 93 94 30 34