The capital of the Côte d'Azur, Nice is set on the sweeping Baie des Anges. It is the second most-visited city in France, as well as being one of the oldest.
Most of the action all takes place around the elegant Promenade des Anglais, which runs along the edge of the beach, but Nice also has a charming old town area, Vielle Ville, whose narrow streets are lined with quirky shops and cafes.
Things to do in Nice
• Beaches The best place to see and be seen in Nice is on the beach, and the city's three-mile stretch of pebbled shores provides plenty of opportunities. Choose between private beaches, where you can hire sun loungers, umbrellas and make use of the restaurants and facilities, and public beaches, which you can access free of charge.
Castel Plage and Beau Rivage are two of the most popular beaches, while Le Sporting is a good place to try your hand at watersports.
• Museums Set in the Palais Fénelon, the Matisse Museum was established by Henri Matisse himself and boasts more than 170 of the artist's works. Other museums include the Musum of Fine Arts, the Natural History Museum, the Chagall Museum and the Museum of Modern Art.
• Cemenelum Located next to the Matisse Museum in Cimiez, Cemenelum was the capital of the Ancient Roman capital Alpes Maritimae. The ruins which can still be seen today include an arena, an amphitheatre, thermal baths and a basilica. The Nice Jazz Festival takes place here each year.
Hotels in Nice
Set in an elegant restored townhouse, Hotel Lepante offers comfortable accommodation and a friendly atmosphere close to all the attractions at the centre of Nice. The tastefully-appointed rooms are all comfortably equipped with air conditioning, en-suite bathrooms, LCD TVs, WiFi and more, and guests also have access to an attractive bar and terrace.Book Hotel Lepante in Nice
Perfect for exploring Nice on foot, Hotel de la Mer enjoys an attractive location overlooking the fountain on Massena Square, just a few steps from the beach and the Promenada des Anglais. The comfortable and stylishly decorated guest rooms are equipped with free WiFi, air conditioning and en-suite bathrooms, and a continental breakfast is included in the rates.Book Hotel de la Mer in Nice
- • Nice Carnival (February)
- • Nice Book Festival (June)
- • Nice Jazz Festival (July)
- • Crazy Week (July)
- • Nice Christmas Swim (December)
Getting around Nice
Nice International Airport (NCE) is located 6km west of the city centre, with buses, shuttles and trains running between the two.
Nice's central bus station, Gare Routière, can be found on Blvd. Jean Jaurès, while the main train station, Gare Nice Villa, is on Av. Thiers. Both provide regular local, regional and international services.
A ferry service also operates between Nice and Ajaccio, Bastia, Calvi and Ile Rousse in Corsica.
If you find yourself yearning for a sandy beach, fear not - the attractive little beach at Antibes is just half an hour from the centre of Nice and boasts all-day sunshine and sheltered waters that are perfect for bathing. Other popular beaches can be found to the west of Nice at Villefranche and Menton.
If Nice gives you a taste for the high life, why not take a day trip to Monaco, home to the world's rich and famous. The second smallest country in the world (after the Vatican City), Monaco is famous for its Grand Prix, the Monte Carlo Casino and an all-round glamorous lifestyle.
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Find out more information about travel in France at FranceGuide.com.
By: Eleanor Brown