Jellyfish sightings and stings on the rise in the French Riviera

jellyfish sting

Over the last few days, sightings of jellyfish up and down the coast have been proliferating. Here’s what to do if you get stung. 

The scourge of local beaches in the summer, jellyfish populations appear to be on the rise. From Menton in the east to La Seyne sur Mer in the west, an ACRI-ST map noting recent sightings in the region is dotted with warnings about the pelagia noctiluca or mauve stinger.  

This species is a regular visitor to the French Riviera, particularly in August, when it is fairly common to see swarms of them in the water.  

Numbers have been on the rise in recent years, and this is thought to be due to a combination of warmer temperatures, declining natural predators and less competition for food from plankton-eating fish, whose stocks have been depleted from over-fishing.   


Since these sea pests seem to be here to stay, measures are being put in place to safeguard beachgoers from the worst of their effects. Some coastal towns and villages have gone as far as to put up barrier nets in an attempt to keep the bulk of them at bay, such as in Villefranche sur Mer, Cap d’Ail, Saint Jean Cap Ferrat and even Monaco’s Plage du Larvotto. The effect is limited, but it does offer some shield against them.  

Another more scientific method is also being put into play. The Oceanological Institute in Villefranche-sur-Mer has a 48-hour forecast, which aims at predicting an influx before the presence of the jellyfish becomes an issue. The predictions are based on an observed link between the breaching, or the shore invading behaviour of the jellyfish, wind and currents.  

There is a five-point probability rating system used, with zero being no threat to five, meaning there is a strong likelihood of a jellyfish “invasion”. This early warning system has been helpful for towns who can now alert tourists to a jellyfish risk before they get into the water.   


Whilst more of a nuisance than a nightmare, getting stung by one of these slippery creatures is still an unpleasant experience and best to be avoided.  

Some people have resorted to wearing protective clothing or wetsuits, but let’s be honest, this isn’t ideal when temperatures are in the upper 30s and a suntan is in the making.   

Another solution has come in the form of sunscreens containing ingredients that “deactivate” the stinging mechanism of jellyfish tentacles. Medusyl is one brand that is easy to get in France, and has been proved efficient, though there are plenty of others on the market.   


Sometimes, despite being careful, people get stung. Most people will only experience a certain amount of discomfort, which will fade in a short period of time, but others may feel the effects for up to a month, so quick action is the best way to lessen the after-effects of a sting.  

The goal of treatment is to neutralise the nematocysts, the small capsules containing a venomous barb. To do this, and to lessen the pain, there are a few things that can be done. Immersing the area with hot sea water for at least a half hour or pouring vinegar over the sting has been known to help take the burn away faster. If any of the barbs are visible, remove them with tweezers or the edge of a bank card. Applying sand to the affected area and allowing it to dry is another tip suggested by the Prefecture of the Alpes Maritimes. 

Contrary to popular myth, urinating on the area does not help, nor does alcohol or dousing the sting with fresh water. Rubbing will only make the pain worse, so avoid this.   

Finally, take a painkiller like paracetamol or ibuprofen to reduce any residual discomfort.   

Jellyfish need not ruin a beach day, and can be avoided with a bit of vigilance, foresight and preparation!  


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Photo source: Jane Ta, Unsplash

Art news: ‘Destination: Monte-Carlo’

Style and glamour are in abundance in Alan Walsh’s latest collection ‘Eleanor’, currently showcasing in his Monaco gallery.

The works feature an immaculately dressed fictional female named Eleanor who jets into the Côte d’Azur on vacation.

The hero piece of the collection is aptly titled “Destination Monte-Carlo”. Her elegant journey of the Principality continues to wow viewers, with games of ‘Tennis at the Country Club’, ‘Stepping out in Monte-Carlo’ and ‘Meeting a Racer at the Grand Prix’, before Eleanor heads along the coast to Cap Ferrat, Saint Tropez and Provence.

Alan Walsh describes the personality of his work as “art with playful elegance”, leaving the canvas clean and uncluttered, which allows the characters or subjects to breathe.

“In the turbulent world we live in, hopefully my work helps people resonate with uplifting feelings and it brings a smile to their face,” says Walsh, whose works have become hot property since the British artist relocated to Monaco in 2019.

Alan Walsh painting in his gallery on 47 Rue Grimaldi, Monaco

His signature pieces brighten the walls of royalty and A-list stars both on the Riviera and internationally – although he’s not one to name drop.

“One of the reason’s we build relationships with our clients is trust. We remain tight-lipped and don’t feel the need to share everything on social media. Word of mouth locally is an extremely important part of my growth as an artist and many of our clients have become friends.”

Since 2020, Walsh has been the resident artist of the legendary Hôtel Martinez in Cannes, currently sharing the residency with fellow Yorkshire man Damien Hirst.

His original works sell for between €11,000 and €16,000, with prints priced very reasonably at €300.

To find out more visit

See more of Alan Walsh’s work in the gallery below…

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All photos source: Alan Walsh Gallery



European Commission to adopt common sustainability reporting standards

In another step towards the goals of its Green Deal, the European Commission has announced it will implement a uniform set of sustainability reporting standards for companies in the EU in the hopes that a common system will help investors and other important stakeholders better evaluate the performance and activities of businesses, as well as clarify green financing possibilities. 

A new system called the European Sustainability Reporting Standards (ESRS) is being put in place by the European Commission (EC) for use by all companies that are required to report certain sustainability information to authorities.


The existing system has had its issues. Stakeholders, including potential investors, often aren’t privy to a consistent overview of “sustainability information” due to the multiple voluntary standards currently in existence. 

“There is ample evidence that the sustainability information that companies currently report is not sufficient,” read the EC’s report. “They often omit information that investors and other stakeholders think is important. Reported information can be hard to compare from company to company, and users of the information, such as investors, are often unsure whether they can trust it.” 

The new system should help companies to “communicate and manage their sustainability performance more efficiently” as well as ascertain if sustainable or “green” financing could be available to them.  


The aim of these common standards is to guarantee companies across the EU report uniform and reliable sustainability information, as well as to save them costs in the medium- to long-term by reducing the volume of voluntary reporting standards they are expected to abide by today.  

The new set of standards will oblige companies to report on their environmental impact as well as on how their practices affect people, and there are 12 topics covered in the ESRS, ranging from climate, pollution, biodiversity and water resources to business conduct, circular economic practices, workforce and consumers. 

“The ESRS take a “double materiality” perspective – that is to say, they oblige companies to report both on their impacts on people and the environment, and on how social and environmental issues create financial risks and opportunities for the company,” read the report. “High quality and reliable public reporting by companies will help create a culture of greater public accountability.” 

As reporting will be mandatory, there will be a phase-in period, notably for smaller companies with less than 750 employees, to decrease initial costs.  

The system was developed with the input of investors, auditors, civil society, trade unions, academics, EU authorities and companies concerned by the new guidelines.  

To read the full report, please click here



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Photo source: Margot Richard, Unsplash  


Rugby World Cup coming to Nice next month

Japan v Russia 2019 Rugby World Cup

The Rugby World Cup is quickly approaching, and England, Wales and Scotland will all be in action in Nice come September.

The France Rugby World Cup is a little over a month away; the hosts feature in a mouth-watering curtain raiser against New Zealand at the Stade de France on Friday 8th September.

The France national team’s preparations have been in full swing, with Fabien Galthie’s men spending two weeks in the Principality, where the team notably held an open training session at the Stade Louis II in July.

The session was but a taste of what is to come with rugby returning to the French Riviera in September.

Home nations in action

Three group stage matches will be held in Nice’s Allianz Riviera. The stadium is the home of OGC Nice, and whilst the Ligue 1 season will be in full swing, the pitch will be shared for the duration of the group stages.

Home nations England, Wales and Scotland will also feature, and tickets are in short supply, but there are still some available for Wales’ match against Portugal on Saturday 16th September. England’s tie against Japan a day later is already sold out on the World Cup’s official ticketing site.

The Allianz Riviera, Nice by Luke Entwistle, Monaco Life

Given Nice’s proximity to Italy, the Gli Azzurri’s game against Uruguay on Wednesday 20th September promises to provide a thrilling atmosphere, and tickets are still available for that one. There is also some availability for Scotland’s match against Tonga on Sunday 24th September.

Whilst group stage matches will take place across the country, including in Nice, the knockout matches will take place at just two venues: the Stade de France and the Stade de Marseille. Rugby fans in the region will therefore have to venture a little further down the coast for their fix. Tickets for the semi-finals and final, all to be held in Paris, are already sold out.


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Photo credit: 江戸村のとくぞう

All the places it is forbidden to wear a swimsuit on the French Riviera

swimsuit french riviera

For a nation with almost 500 official nudists sites, the French can be a little prudish when it comes to showing a bit of skin away from the beach. Here’s a list of all the French Riviera communes that have banned the wearing of swimsuits in their streets and shops. 

Laws governing “decent” clothing are believed to have existed in France since the 17th century, with the final official rules on an appropriate public dress code coming to an end in a surprisingly recent 1994.  

While there is no centralised legislation that governs swimwear today, numerous towns and cities across France, from Arcachon on the Atlantic coast to Deauville in the north, Ajaccio in Corsica and more than a few in the Côte d’Azur, have adopted an arrêté municipal that formally bans the wearing of a swimsuit – for men and women – “en ville”.  

Locally, Menton, Nice and Cannes all have some form of the ban in place. In Nice, for example, a fine of €35 can be applied to those flouting the rules.

Meanwhile, in another of the popular beach resorts in the Alpes Maritimes, Antibes, where it is a fairly common sight to see beachgoers wandering through the old town in a pair of boardshorts or a bikini top coupled with a floaty skirt, no such rule exists. According to the town’s mayor, the issue has simply never been brought up by residents.

Over in the Var, Bandol, Saint Tropez, Sainte Maxime and Saint Raphaël have all enacted a ban. In the latter, anyone wearing clothing deemed to be “obviously contrary to decency” can be slammed with a €150 fine. According to France 3, 25 of these fines were issued in Saint Raphaël last summer.  

The volume and level of the fines might vary from commune to commune, but one thing that these beachside locations can agree on is that walking around town or popping into shops with a “bare torso”, which includes the wearing of a bikini top, is just not publicly acceptable.  


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Photo source: Oscar Nord, Unsplash

Sailing: Monaco Classic Week to pay homage to Prince Rainier III

Monaco Classic Week 2021

The Monaco Classic Week – La Belle Classe, a celebration of the tradition of yachting, will make its return to the waters of the Principality in September.

Every two years, and for a limited time only, the Yacht Club de Monaco (YCM) is transported back in time to celebrate the rich heritage of yachting. This year, classic sailing boats, motorboats and dinghies will contrast with the iconic luxury modern yachts of Port Hercule from 13th to 16th September.

Photo source: YCM

Launched in 1994, the Monaco Classic Week is now in its 16th edition. For the 2023 event, 110 classic sailing and motorboats will be present alongside 20 clinker-built 12′ dinghies. 50 vintage motorboats, including around 30 Rivas and three powerboats from the early 20th century, as well as 50 classic sailing yachts, will all be moored at the YCM and will be free to view for the general public from Wednesday 13th September.

A homage to Prince Rainier III

The event sees classic boat owners and their crews take to the waters for a range of different contests, including regattas, with some races heading down the coast to Ventimiglia. The evenings will unite participants to celebrate the traditional “art de vivre de mer” that the YCM holds so dear.

Photo source: YCM

As this year marks the centenary of the birth of Prince Rainier III, a photography exhibition, dedicated to the former Prince of Monaco, will also be on display. Prince Rainier III was the founder of the YCM and a keen sailor. Access to the quays, as well as the exhibitors’ village, is free to the public.


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Photo source: YCM