As winter was coming, we felt the need to prolong the nice days before the cold weather. We regularly heard good things about the Toulon area but going there in the summer when the streets and beaches are crowded, very little for us. We don't particularly like the crowd during the vacations. So we took advantage of the November 11th bridge to escape for a weekend in Hyères in front of the Almanarre beach.
Guided tour of the Almanarre beach hotel
The building was bought a few years ago by the current owners. They immediately thought of the renovation under the angle of the eco-responsibility. In a permanent concern of constant improvement of the comfort of the vacationers, the renovations continue. This year, during the annual closure, the owners are working on the last bathrooms.
This does not prevent this accommodation from already being multi-awarded for its environmental efforts. In 2019, it received the Esprit Parc label from the National Park of Port-Cros and Porquerolles as well as the Clef Verte label. We presented the latter in our article on the various sustainable tourism labels. Last consecration, the Almanarre beach hotel benefits from the environmental label A since June 2020.
The establishment offers two types of accommodation:
- of the rooms
- studios with a kitchenette
For each one there are several levels of service: sea view, garden, eco... In any case each room benefits from an outside space (balcony or terrace). To learn more, we invite you to discover their dedicated page.
We opted for a studio with a sea view. The studio option seems perfect if you don't want to eat every day at the restaurant. In spite of the studio option, it is completely possible to benefit in addition from the home-made and local breakfast. A treat, I had a crush on the pudding!
Its location facing the sea is a real plus. We feel immediately in vacations. It should be noted that it is outside the city. What is good for the peace and quiet but if you want to move, you will have to think about a means of locomotion. And there again several solutions are offered to you:
- The establishment has a parking lot. If you choose to spend your weekend in Hyères by car, you will not have any parking problems. There is also a plug if you have an electric vehicle.
- You have the possibility to rent bikes at the reception, this is the choice we made and we did not regret it. It was really convenient for our daily trips. Moreover if you want to go further, don't hesitate to consult our article on soft mobility on vacations.
- A bus also stops in front of the establishment and takes you either to Toulon or to the center of Hyères. There is a bus every 30 minutes depending on the day and the time slot.
As I just said, you can easily reach the hotel by car, because it is located along the road that runs along the coast. If you come from further away or without a car, here are the other solutions:
- the airport of Hyères is 5 minutes away by cab
- It is also possible to come by train and this is what we did. We took the train to Toulon and then took the famous bus that stops right in front of the hotel. It is the line 39 and it leaves from the bus station of Toulon which is just outside the train station. The journey takes 45 minutes, costs 1.7 € and the stop in front of the hotel is Port Helene. The other solution is to take the train directly to Hyères. Coming from Marseille it's direct, for those like us coming from Paris you have to change in Toulon. After the TGV, you will take a TER for about twenty minutes. Once you arrive at Hyères station you will find the famous bus 39 which will take you to your destination.
To conclude this responsible hotel is really well placed for a vacation or a weekend in Hyères.
I have already mentioned it above, the owners have set up many actions to limit the ecological impact of their guests' vacations. I won't be able to mention them all here, but some of them caught my attention and I wanted to share them with you. They come in addition to the Ethik Hotels selection criteria that you will find on their detailed page:
- At the level of the gate you have the possibility of taking with you to the beach small glass jars which will be used as ashtray
- Above the breakfast buffet, small posters present each of the partners, suppliers who intervene to provide us this local and tasty breakfast
- The water from the outside shower is recovered to water the vegetable garden with drip irrigation
- The choice of plants in the garden is not insignificant. Indeed, the owners have opted for plants that consume little water
- the shower heads are luminous and change color according to the quantity of water used. This makes it possible to become aware of and better control its consumption...
What to do during a weekend in Hyères ?
Many possibilities are available to you, so you will find below a non-exhaustive list. And if you're looking for inspiration, don't hesitate to check out our article dedicated to ecological activities on vacation.
Activities offered by the hotel Almanarre plage
First of all, I invite you to get in touch with the establishment, which will be able to make many suggestions:
- bike, kayak, paddle or snorkeling equipment rental
- yoga or sophrology classes
- well-being with facials and massages
- zero waste picnic basket to go enjoy the sunset on the beach...
Discover the region
We took advantage of the bicycle rental offered by the establishment and used them to discover the surroundings. I would like to point out that we were lucky because in winter the authorities close the salt road, which makes it really easy to get around by bike. Otherwise for the rest, and in particular to reach Giens in summer, there are not yet bicycle paths everywhere so be careful.
The old Hyères
It was the nice surprise of our weekend in Hyères! I confess I was not expecting anything and had no idea that the city center was so charming. We really found the spirit of the southern villages. I really invite you to stroll the steep streets to discover the charm. There are also several historical points of interest not to be missed:
- a very beautiful wash house which has just been renovated
- the ruins of the medieval castle of the Lords of Fos
- la Villa Noailles from where you will have a breathtaking view of the sea and the islands
There are also many squares with cafes that invite you to sit back and enjoy the moment.
The peninsula of Giens
As I said before, we were lucky enough to be able to benefit from the pedestrian version of the salt road during our stay. This allowed us to go easily to the peninsula of Giens located at 6 km. We took the opportunity to discover the Madrague beach and a part of the coastal path. The total distance is 7 km, before you start, I invite you to discover the complete topo.
On our side we explored some parts of the path. The one between the beach of Escampo-Barriou and the one of Darboussières and a part of the one that goes along the one of Madrague. We didn't do it all for several reasons:
- The first day when we went to La Madrague we were on our bikes and they were forecasting rain at noon. We didn't want to go too far away and be back close to the hotel when it started to rain, but it never did.
- the second day going back to the Giens peninsula was not our initial program (I explain this just below) so the time to set up the plan B we didn't have much time
However the 2 pieces we had the opportunity to discover made us want to see more during a next weekend in Hyères. The viewpoints are superb. It really looks like the creeks.
The villages of the Var
Why should a weekend in Hyères prevent you from venturing out on the roads of the Var? Indeed, if you are motorized you will also have all the leisure to discover the beautiful villages in the surroundings. Here is a non-exhaustive list to give you some ideas:
- Bormes les Mimosas
- Le castellet
Looking for a sporting vacation?
You are also in the right place! The beach of Almanarre is a famous spot of kitesurf and windsurf. Indeed during our stay we had the opportunity to see the numerous practitioners sliding on the sea. If you don't have your own equipment, there are stores near the hotel that can rent you some. You will also have the possibility to book lessons or training courses whether you are a beginner or want to improve.
By reading these lines, I hope to make you want to discover this beautiful French region. If this is the case, the Almanarre beach hotel is waiting for you to fully enjoy your weekend in Hyères. Do you already know this area or do you want to go there now?