Les îles d’Or, or ‘The Golden Islands’ as they are sometimes called, is a name given to a group of four islands located just off the coast of South-East France, right in the Mediterranean. The ease of access to the islands coupled with the fact that they are quite far removed from the glitzy lifestyle that the French Riviera boasts, results in Les îles d’Or being a popular destination for many tourists who want a bit of a break from the ‘hustle and bustle’ of city life.
As I said before; there are actually four islands that make up Les îles d’Or. You will however only be able to access three of them. One of the islands, which is incidentally the smallest one, cannot be accessed at this time. This means that you will see no trips to Les îles du Bagaud.
This is the largest island in the group. It is also one of the most popular amongst tourists as it is the easiest to reach from France. Around 80% of this island has been designated as a national park. This means that most of Porquerolles is currently undeveloped. This makes the place absolutely fantastic for those want to walk through nature. At the south of the island you will find gorgeous, looming cliffs. The north is where you will be able to relax on the beaches. There is a single village on Porquerolles which is a true delight to explore. I do suggest you check out the church whilst walking around the village. It is stunning. A large proportion of the island is dedicated to vineyards. If you are heading here in the summer then you may be able to view the Jazz Festival that takes place each and every year.
This island is tiny. At the moment the vast majority of the island is dedicated to being a national park. It does have quite a history though. For example; there is some evidence that a Roman colony used to call this island home. The island used to regularly come under attack from pirates too. As a result you may spot a few defences peppered around the area. Port-Cros also played a major role when the Allies took back Provence during World War II. If you are going to travel to Port-Cros, and I suggest you do, then make sure you have a camera in tow as you will want to take a lot of photographs.
Ile du Levant
This island is slightly different from the other two. For a start; it is a military island (the other two islands are mostly privately owned). This means that you may not always be able to get onto the island. The village located on the island is mainly a nudist colony too. In fact; it was the first dedicated ‘nudist village’ in the world, so if that sort of thing offends you then you may want to steer clear. Being nude is actually expected in many areas. The area is quite a relaxed place and it does give off a good vibe, but you really do want to steer clear if you are not completely into the ‘nudist’ world.