Right next to the harbour is the beautiful Chapelle Saint-Pierre de Villefranche-sur-Mer, dedicated to Saint Peter, the patron saint of fishermen.
The chapel has been completely renovated, but the original chapel probably dates to the second half of the 16th century.
Over time, in addition to religious purposes, the chapel began to be used as a shelter for fishing nets and equipment. As the inscription on the façade reveals, at the beginning of the 20th century it was even a fishing court where the fishermen of Villefranche settled their disputes.
The interior of the chapel dates from 1957. It was designed and created by artist Jean Cocteau, who created the painted decoration that covers the entire interior of the chapel. This is the first chapel that Cocteau painted. It has five main scenes, two of which recall life in the Mediterranean and the other three relate to episodes in the life of St Peter.
Since 27 December 1996, this chapel has been classified as a historical monument. On 1 March 2001 it was designated a ’20th century heritage site’.
Entrance to the chapel costs 3€ for adults, children are free. The chapel is closed on Tuesdays and at lunchtime.
For the frescoes of Saint Peter alone, this chapel is definitely worth a visit.