Getting Around Cannes With Limited Mobility

City of Cannes in summer on the French Riviera
City of Cannes in summer on the French Riviera | © Manjik / iStock
Siobhan Grogan

Although Cannes is famous for its historic cobbled streets and winding, maze-like alleyways, the chic city on the French Riviera is unexpectedly disability-friendly. From transport suggestions and inside tips to hotel options, here’s a guide to Cannes for those with limited mobility.

Known for its lively nightlife, charming harbour and annual film festival, Cannes is a seaside resort on the Côte D’Azur that is synonymous with glamour. Though the cobbled streets of its quaint old town remain difficult for people with reduced mobility to navigate, Cannes is an increasingly accessible city with wide, flat boulevards along the seafront, dedicated public transport, disability-friendly accommodation options and beaches adapted for easy use by wheelchair users.


The TER (Transport Express Régional) provides regular service to all the coastal towns between Saint-Raphaël and Ventimiglia

Cannes is a compact city, so public transport is sparse and not usually needed to visit most places. However, accessible bus service Handi Palm is available on demand for those with limited mobility, and can take passengers anywhere they want within the city.

To explore the rest of the Côte D’Azur and beyond, the regional train line from Cannes is excellent, and French rail network SNCF provides a free Accès Plus service for anyone with reduced mobility. This includes escorting passengers from the station to their seat on the train and meeting them at the destination, if the arrival station also offers the service.


Promenade de la Croisette in Cannes is world-famous

Most tourist sights are close together and easy to reach. The city’s famous seafront boulevard La Croisette is smooth and flat with grand Art Deco hotels and upmarket boutiques lining the promenade next to the water. The boulevard leads directly to the picturesque old port and the famous Palais des Festivals, home to the city’s famous film festival and a convenient ground-floor tourist office. The main shopping and restaurant areas centred around Rue d’Antibes and Rue Hoche are all also within easy reach of the seafront and packed with dining options with convenient step-free outdoor seating.

Visiting Cannes’ Old Town, Le Suquet

Board Le Petit Train in Cannes for a tour of the city centre

The winding cobbled streets of Cannes’ beautiful old town, Le Suquet, lead steeply upwards to the Musee de la Castre, a medieval castle housing an extensive collection of Mediterranean art. However, the cobbles and steep inclines make this part of Cannes very difficult to access for anyone with limited mobility. Instead, take the motorised road train Le Petit Train de Cannes from opposite the Majestic Hotel on La Croisette all the way to Le Suquet. Though there is a step to board the train, you can ask the station staff for assistance. The train then travels to the top of the old town where visitors can disembark and enjoy the panoramic views across Cannes and the sea beyond. “If you are able to get in and out of the carriage, this is a good option if you want to explore Cannes,” says Tina Hodgkinson from disabled access review site Euan’s Guide.


Cannes is known for its golden beaches

With miles of golden sand and sweeping sea views, the beach along La Croisette is the city’s most beautiful attraction. Look for the sign marked handiplage near the Palm Beach harbour to indicate the area adapted specially for disabled users. The facilities include adapted toilets, accessible showers, reserved car parking, shaded areas and specialist equipment like tiralos, which roll over sand and float in the water. “The equipment is available at the aid station,” advises Provence-Alpes-Côte D’Azur tourism committee. “Total autonomy is not guaranteed on all beaches from the parking lot to the swimming area, but their facilities facilitate access for people with reduced mobility.”


Cannes has plenty of accessible accommodation options

Most of the best-known hotels in Cannes are now accessible for those with limited mobility with several specially adapted rooms available. The difficulty is finding one that won’t blow the budget as all the big names on La Croisette – including Hôtel Martinez, Hôtel Barrière Le Majestic and the InterContinental Carlton Cannes – have sky-high prices to match. However, it is still possible to find a good deal in the city without sacrificing a central location at these properties.

Novotel Suites Cannes

In the very heart of Cannes, this three-star all-suite hotel is perfectly located to reach the city’s best sights, but offers a little more space for your money. All simply furnished rooms come with a microwave, fridge and kitchen while an on-site 24-hour restaurant in reception means you won’t have to go far if you don’t feel like cooking. All public areas are wheelchair accessible, and there is a disabled toilet and four reduced mobility rooms with audio induction loops and visual alarms.

Radisson Blu 1835 Hotel & Thalasso

Radisson Blu 1835 Hotel & Thalasso is adapted for those with limited ability

Overlooking the marina and Le Suquet, the Radisson Blu 1835 Hotel & Thalasso commands some of the best views in Cannes over the rooftops of the Old Town and the Esterel Mountains in the distance. With contemporary interiors, an exceptional thalassotherapy spa and a must-visit rooftop bar, this is a good bet if you want to enjoy your time in the hotel just as much as in Cannes itself. Public areas are all wheelchair accessible and the hotel has five specially adapted rooms for those with limited mobility.

Hotel Splendid

Hotel Splendid in Cannes is close to the beach

The centrally located Hotel Splendid is opposite the Palais des Festivals and minutes from the beach, the main shopping street of Rue d’Antibes and the train station. A friendly family-run property, the hotel is excellent value for the area and offers a buffet breakfast, free Wi-Fi and a sunny terrace for relaxing. Rooms are traditional and homely and many have sea views, with one adapted for those with disabilities. There is a lift designed for wheelchair users and ramp access to the entrance.


For stress-free specialist tours and day trips around the Côte D’Azur, Sunny Days can provide adapted minibuses and an accompanying driver. Note that the wheelchair ramp is only available with advanced reservations.

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