Despite the huge influx of day trippers (up to 6000 a day in July and August, joining similar numbers staying on the island), beautiful Porquerolles somehow remains unspoilt. Two-thirds of its sandy white beaches, pine woods, maquis and eucalyptus are protected by the Parc National de Port-Cros, and a wide variety of indigenous and tropical flora thrive, including Requien's larkspur, which grows nowhere else in the world. April and May are the best months to spot some of the 114 bird species.
Pottering along the island's rough unpaved trails on foot or by bicycle, breaking with a picnic lunch on the beach and a dip in crystal-clear turquoise water, is heavenly. The southern edge of the island is the most dramatic and uncluttered, but the inland vineyards and olive groves have a magic of their own, as do the gorgeous beaches of the northern coast.