Journées Européennes du Patrimoine : 21 and 22 September

This weekend throughout France, you can visit many monuments, museums and places of interest for free or at reduced cost as part of the Journées Européennes du Patrimoine (European Heritage Days).

For families, it’s a great way to introduce your children to history, art and culture with lots of activities on offer and guided tours, seminars or workshops.

As well as well-known tourist attractions such as the Matisse Museum in Nice, many of the locations are only open on these special European Heritage Days so you can visit historic villas or places that don’t often have public access.

The French Ministry of Culture hosts a website especially for the Journées de Patrimoine so you can search for what’s on.

Some of the participating locations on the Côte d’Azur include:

Musée Picasso in Antibes

Musée Renoir at Cagnes-sur-Mer

Moulin Forville – Musée Victor Tuby in Cannes

Musée de la Castre in Le Suquet in Cannes

Abbey de Lérins on Isle Saint-Honorat

Abbey de Lérins is participating in the European Heritage Days 2019 (image: Ministry of Culture)

Musée Bonnard in Le Cannet

Les Jardins du Musée International de la Parfumerie in Mouans-Sartoux 

Musée Matisse in Nice
Château de Vaugrenier at Villeneuve Loubet
For the full programme throughout France, go to the official Ministère de la Culture website where you can geo-localise your area to find what’s happening:  Journées Éuropéennes du Patrimoine


When to get free entry at French Riviera museums/historical sites – Les Journées Européennes du Patrimoine 2014

Every year in France there is a fantastic initiative called the European Heritage Days (Les Journées Européennes du Patrimoine) and the theme of these days is ‘cultural and natural heritage’.

This year the days are held on the weekend of Saturday 20 September – Sunday 21 September 2014, and it gives residents and tourists the opportunity to access many historical, cultural and architectural sites for no entrance fee.

Here are some of the participants in 2014 across the French Riviera:


  • Archaeology Museum, Fort Carré, Peynet Museum, Picasso Museum
Fort Carré, Antibes (image:

Fort Carré, Antibes (image:


  • Château Grimaldi, Musée Renoir
Musée Renoir, Cagnes-sur-Mer

Musée Renoir, Cagnes-sur-Mer


  • Abbaye de Lérins (Ile Saint-Honorat), La Malmaison art centre, Musée de la Castre (Le Suquet), Musée de la Mer (Ile St-Marguerite)


  • Grotte du Lazaret archaeological site (guided talks), MAMAC art gallery, Matisse Museum
Matisse Museum, Nice (image: destination360)

Matisse Museum, Nice (image: destination360)


  • Saorge monastery

Villeneuve Loubet

  • Medieval fortress (guided tours)

**Transport note:  In conjunction with the Heritage Days, various companies are offering free or reduced tickets for travel exclusively on the Saturday 20 September including:

Free bus travel all day in Antibes on Envibus routes

€5 unlimited travel train tickets on the TER network on the French Riviera coast (for example, a return ticket Juan les Pins to Monaco is approximately €15, or a ZOU! daily pass is usually €15 until 30 September so make use of this deal!)

See here for transport offers:

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