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15 October 2015 / leggypeggy

Saint Tropez shows us something of her maritime history

St Tropez view

The view from St Tropez’s citadel

St Tropez's citadel

Looking up at St Tropez’s citadel (and maritime museum)

Saint Tropez in the south of France may be the playground of the rich and famous, but it’s also home to a wonderful maritime museum.

Located in the dungeon of the town’s old citadel, the museum is only two years old, but it feels like it’s been there since ships first sailed into the town’s harbour. The views are great and the exhibits are beautifully done with explanations in both French and English.

As an aside, I’m always super impressed when museums in non-English-speaking countries go to the trouble of translating their display cards into English. You don’t see institutions in English-speaking countries translating their display cards into any other languages very often.

But back to the museum—or shall I say into the museum? We crossed a drawbridge to go in, and got one of those rare benefits in France—a senior’s discount. Libby and Daniel had to pay full price, but then we paid for them, so our reduction didn’t matter much.

The museum is well laid out, with simple but effective displays that showcase the everyday lives of those who went to sea, and the men and women who lived and worked around the harbour.

St Tropez maritime museum

Watching a film at the St Tropez maritime museum

Near the end of the tour, there’s a remarkable film showing a ship sailing through calm waters and then surging through a terrible and frightening storm. The display is especially clever. There’s a place for four to six people to lie back and watch the film being projected onto the ceiling. My photo is a bit out of focus, but I’m using it anyway because I really wanted to share the cleverness of the presentation. I think one of our party dozed off during the film, but i was spellbound.

Looking back over my photos, I’m surprised that I took so few in the museum—must have been mesmerized.

And if you’re new to the blog, you should check out the great meal we had in St Tropez or another great ‘seafood-y meal’ from my cooking blog.

St Tropez chapel

Chapel at the citadel

24 Comments

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  1. tthetraveler / Oct 15 2015 9:50 pm

    Wao! I am amazed

    Like

  2. chattykerry / Oct 16 2015 1:44 am

    Wonderful – I didn’t have time to look past the fancy yachts in St. Tropez (tour).

    Like

  3. lambieland / Oct 16 2015 5:39 am

    Thanks for sharing your beautiful photos, Peggy. I have not had the pleasure to travel as much as you do, but at least I can live vicariously through you! You bring the world to my fingertips.

    Like

    • leggypeggy / Oct 16 2015 6:59 am

      You are most welcome. Writing the blog is a good way for me to re-live my travels. Being able to share is a bonus.

      Like

  4. Yvonne / Oct 16 2015 11:00 am

    Some museums just ‘get it’, don’t they? This one looks like it deserves a gold star or two.

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    • leggypeggy / Oct 16 2015 11:03 am

      It sure does. Really beautifully done. We stayed longer than we expected.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Curt Mekemson / Oct 16 2015 2:51 pm

    First time I have ever see a couch bed as a viewing platform. I might have fallen asleep as well had it been my nap time. 🙂 –Curt

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    • leggypeggy / Oct 16 2015 3:46 pm

      First time I’ve ever seen one too. Luckily for me, the film was riveting.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Jane / Oct 17 2015 1:01 am

    Oh dear, not sure how I’d feel having a rough sea simulated. I got terribly sick on a trip once as a child. Heheh. I think it’s a great idea to have that set up though. I’m also surprised that they had signs with English translations and it did make me think. We’re not very kind to our foreign tourists here with that kind of thing. What a great museum and once again the weather looks beautiful. Thanks for another interesting post, Peggy! 🙂

    Like

    • leggypeggy / Oct 17 2015 10:31 am

      Maybe the potential for seasickness is why you have to lie down to watch the film. Hadn’t thought of that. As for the translations, I can understand English-speaking countries not doing them. What language/languages would they choose? In the US, it would be Spanish, but I don’t know what would be best elsewhere.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Jane / Oct 17 2015 11:23 am

        In my community it would probably be Chinese. We’re a very multicultural country though and as you say, it would be difficult to decide which one. Many of our tourists in Queensland are Japanese and now that I think of it, we do have signage with other translations in some tourist destinations. I don’t often go there and don’t need to use it myself so I suppose I don’t take notice of it. 🙂

        Like

      • leggypeggy / Oct 17 2015 7:03 pm

        Have a look next time and let us know! Multicultural signage in tourist places is commendable and a good start. Thanks for pointing it out.

        Like

  7. Zambian Lady / Oct 17 2015 9:42 am

    All I have heard about St Tropez is that celebrities visit it a lot, so I am surprised to hear that the beaches are not as nice as I thought – not that I am a beach expert. The photos are very nice, especially the chapel one.

    Like

  8. Curious to the Max / Oct 17 2015 11:51 am

    The picture with the flags – it’s so perfect that it looks like they are starched!

    Like

    • leggypeggy / Oct 17 2015 6:55 pm

      Good spotting. I have three more pics that are similar but the flags aren’t so nice.

      Like

  9. thegreyeye / Oct 17 2015 9:44 pm

    Wow, never been in Saint tropez. But did visit the maritime museum in Barcelona and it is also very beautiful and very big. I don’t know if you have been there this time!

    Like

    • leggypeggy / Oct 18 2015 7:28 am

      Thanks for the tip. I didn’t get to Barcelona’s maritime museum this time, but it’s on the list now.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. susan@marsha'sbungalow / Oct 18 2015 2:15 am

    I don’t know what to think of the theater seating in the museum. Perhaps they are overly-polite curators who want you to be able to fall asleep if you find their film a bit dull.

    Like

    • leggypeggy / Oct 18 2015 7:30 am

      I’m guessing it’s so you don’t fall over from shock. The rough sea in the film is quite frightening.

      Liked by 1 person

      • susan@marsha'sbungalow / Oct 18 2015 10:15 am

        Now I understand – it would be quite inconvenient to have to deal with seasickness in that nice museum!

        Like

      • leggypeggy / Oct 18 2015 10:18 am

        Precisely. 🙂

        Like

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