Coming from Nice generally, the lure of a trip to St Tropez is hard to resist. If the timing of the daily boat from Nice Quai Lunel (or less frequent out of season) doesn't suit, independent travel is still a viable option.
The most flexible way is the fairly frequent train from Nice Gare Ville to St Raphael, which breaks the back of the journey, and then change to a few options for the final approach. At St Raphael Port there is the Bateaux St Raphael who run 5 - 6 round trips a day in high season.
There is also a local bus service connecting St Raphael with the main towns of the gulf to St Tropez, which is a viable option outside the car-madness of peak season. Likewise taxi is not impossible, but pricy.
my way to st.tropez from nice is to rent a car, drive up the freeway to st. maxime, get off and park in the village. It is a very short boat ride across the gulf to st. tropez and unlike St. Raphael the boats fro, st. maxime leave every hour in both directions.
High speed boat taking two and a half hours from Nice Port to St Tropez.
The boat leaves Nice at 9.00 am, so they tell you to be there at 8.30. Forget it. At 8.30 seventy people are aleady waiting. Arrive by 8.00 am if you have a hope to sit down.
The boat clips the coastline all the way around Cap d'Antibes to Cannes where it make a stop to load and unload passengers, then briefly stops at the Iles de Lerin for those taking a leisurely day on these tranquil two islands which offer a brief respite from high season Cannes. Then its off intent on pleasure to St Tropez. The two and a half hours passes quickly enough, with people watching par excellence.
On arrival check your essential equipment: dark glasses and wallet or purse thick with euros. Now your adventure can begin.
Schedules and ticket prices from Trans-cote-azur, Quai Lunel, Nice
The relative inaccessibility of Saint Tropez and its gulf by road and rail makes a motorcycle or scooter the ideal form of transport.
Its amazing, no depressing, how many French and American visitors to the Riviera think "Yo lets go St Tropez - just get in the car and drive!". With one road in and out in summer it is frequently paralysed - tortuous hour after hour inching along, and nowhere to park if you eventually make it. The fact its not the way to do it doesn't faze thousands of motor-neanderthals from trying it, every summer.
The scooter - or its macho big brother, the "bike" - is an ideal way to zip in and out and gives you access to surrounding villages and towns.
If not arriving by helicopter, the stars simply hire a big boat to park off-shore, and arrive by tender at their favourite beach, restaurant or nightclub. Now why didn't you think of that? Oh, the $200,000 a week charter cost, forgot to mention.
If you happen to have a boat, then you are in luck. St. Tropez is a yaghties paradise.
If like me you don't have a boat, you can get to St. Tropez by bus or by driving yourself. There is no train station here.
Follow the coastal road towards St.-Tropez and park your car at the spacious Parking du Port. We arrived early and had no trouble whatsoever parking our car.