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Think it’s all pastels and panama hats? Think again! Today’s Nice is glam with an urban edge. Veer off Promenade des Anglais for a beachfront encounter, devour the city’s signature Italianesque cuisine in New Town, or max out your credit card on Rue Paradis… Just chalk it up to the heat!
Chess, anyone? Place Masséna isn’t often the site of game playing, but the chessboard-patterned ground around the ‘Sun Fountain’ may inspire a spontaneous game of hopscotch. A giant nude statue of Apollo stands centre-fountain. The statue was restored after 30+ years in obscurity - the “League of Feminine Virtue” had earlier deemed it unsuitable for public viewing.Accommodations near Place Masséna
Think ‘urban garden’. This twelve-hectare public walkway went through a lengthy renovation recently, beautifying the heart of Nice. The results are fantastic - freshly mowed parkland that’s flanked by palms, pavilions and pathways that run deep into the city. Year round, the fountains erupt with water, making it a fun splash pad for kids and savvy skaters in summer.Accommodations near Promenade du Paillon
Pull&Bear, Zara, H&M – the gang’s all here! This lengthy pedestrian avenue is a hub for mid-range clothing brands and home to Nice Etoile Shopping Centre. However, if it’s cigars, champagne and caviar you’re after, hotfoot it to nearby Rue Paradis. Chanel, Gucci, Christian Louboutin, Mont Blanc, Kenzo, Versace and Dolce & Gabbana all reside here.Accommodations near Avenue Jean Médecin
Flowers and food, coming right up! If you're lucky, you’ll be visiting for the Nice Carnival in mid-February, when the whole city becomes awash with mimosas during the 'Bataille de Fleurs'. However, a stroll along this long pedestrian street anytime of year is a close second. Oriental lily, lilac and rose perfume the air, while vendors offer gobble-worthy gourmet delights.Accommodations near Cours Saleya
What’s in the box? One of Andy Warhol’s mysterious ‘time capsules’ was opened here recently. Old ads, dental moulds, nail clippings and the minutiae of Warhol’s life were among the box’s quirky contents. Why? Just because. Get into the spirit of abstract art with works by Warhol, Yves Klein (founder of the nouveau réalisme movement) Lichtenstein, Miro and Haring.Accommodations near MAMAC (Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art)
Don't go chasing waterfalls. Unless it’s a man-made waterfall that flows from the site of an ancient keep. Today, there’s not much left of the fort, but Castle Hill’s garden is a picture-perfect picnic spot. Sway with the coral-tree flowers and oleanders as you ascend the 300 steps, or take the free lift up to pour over the Old Town and Baie des Anges from atop the cascade.Accommodations near Castle Hill
Place Garibaldi is iconic Nice. The namesake of this monumental square is a general who unified Italy centuries ago. Yet it’s the whimsical arcades and canary-coloured baroque buildings that make this square so iconic. Circle the square beneath the vaulted arches, eat socca (a crêpe-like food specific to Nice), or mimic the statue of Garibaldi's strident pose.Accommodations near Place Garibaldi
Yacht-lot for the rich and famous. This is where tourist boats dock and Europe’s movers-and-shakers drop anchor for the weekend. Yet it’s also surprisingly low-key at times—its atmosphere swings wildly between ‘frenzied’ and ‘unhurried’. Admire the faded beauty of its Venetian-style houses, or enjoy fine dining and a lively bar scene around the docks.Accommodations near Port of Nice
This monastery-come-art-museum houses a skulk of Franciscan friars. Christian frescoes and masterworks by Matisse and Duffy in bold, joyous colours adorn the galleries, which also include three paintings by Louis Brea - the Crucifixion, Pieta and Deposition. The friars turn an ordered and harmonious hand to the landscaped gardens, which have achieved a fame of their own.Accommodations near Cimiez Monastery
Introducing Phoenix Park - home to black swans, meerkats, iguanas, caimans and a troop of hooting and hollering lemurs that enthral visiting children. This verdant park also contains Europe's largest greenhouse, which could be mistaken for Mother Nature's summer home – African succulents, Madagascan palms, tree ferns and foliage galore. Pack a picnic and bring the family!Accommodations near Phoenix Park
Centre Ville’s magnificence is best seen from the breezy comfort of a Vélo Bleu bike. Arcaded 17th-century buildings, painted in shades of gold and terracotta, border Place Masséna. Cross the square for a trio of commerce, culture and fine dining, or head to Promenade de Anglais to breath in the real-deal – a vibrantly azure Mediterranean Sea.Accommodations in Nice City Centre
‘Old Town’ has amazing light in every season. It casts shadows of the baroque Cathédrale de Sainte-Réparate, refracts from the ochre-and-harvest coloured houses along its narrow lanes, and swathes in to Place Rossetti. Once here, buy a gelato in classic or new-fangled flavours at Fenocchio, then fan out for dinky boutiques and gourmet eats.Accommodations in Nice Old Town
Scarf, Chanel shades and game-face – check! This 6 km palm-lined coastal promenade has a reputation for glitz. Browse the shops around Cours Saleya, or catch some rays on one of the Mediterranean-facing blue chairs. Then dine at one of Nice’s nicest eateries – Koudou for some colonial chic, Le Méridien for its rooftop terrace, or Le Negresco hotel for Michelin-star cuisine.Accommodations in Promenade des Anglais
Gambetta is a sleepy suburb of Nice. Locally referred to as the ‘Russian District’ after the shops here that cater to the community, it’s also home to a handsome Russian Cathedral on Rue Tsarewitch. Lemon-coloured lo-rise apartment blocks, palms swaying in the breeze, and cheerful mums with kids are ubiquitous sights.Accommodations in Gambetta
Vieux Port is a sepia-toned postcard from the past. European aristocracy came here for getaways during the 19th century and today it's like they've permanently relocated here. Spot the million-dollar yachts, exclusive seaside diners in and around Rue Bonaparte, or shop for curios in the Quartier des Antiquaires ('Antiques Quarter').Accommodations in Nice Port
The biggest draw card of this primarily residential area is the Musée des Beaux-Arts (Fine Arts Museum). Its small but uplifting collection includes the likes of Fragonard, Monet, Degas and more. For the rest, it’s sweet and sleepy – you’re likely to see mothers push their baby buggies gingerly uphill along streets lined with trees.Accommodations in Les Baumettes
Riquier is slightly grittier than the suburbs that surround it. However, a recent revitalisation project has injected the area around Palais de L'Esplanade with new life. Sushi shops, no-frills eateries and low-key cafes cater to the large student population. It’s also within easy reach of the centre and the coast.Accommodations in Riquier
Fancy a taste of Provence? Le Marché de la Libération is a bustling morning market in Place de la Libération. You’ll find the essential ingredients for your Niçoise salad, plus regional artisanal honey and all manner of ‘fromage’ (try anything stinky!). Afterwards, enjoy the earth and heavens as painted by Marc Chagall in his eponymous museum.Accommodations in Gare de Provence Nord
An elegant strip within shouting distance of Old Town. The quirky Tête Carrée (‘Blockhead’) sculpture-come-house sets the avant-garde tone for the area. Try the MAMAC (Museum of Contemporary and Modern Art) for its Warhol’s, Klein’s and Lichtenstein’s. The Nice Acropolis satiates the commercial appetite with its constant rotation of trade shows.Accommodations in Palais des Congres
Everything in Arenas circles around Park Phoenix’s gravitational pull. The parkland has fabulous manicured gardens, zoological and botanical gardens, containing rare blooms that will enchant even the most seasoned gardener. The Kenzo Tange-designed Museum of Asian Art - filled with treasures from the far east - lies within the park.Accommodations in Arenas
Poetry-fan Rebekah moved to Nice in 2014 and loves photographing the great outdoors.
Follow the scenic GR5 trail out of Nice up past Mont Chauve Mountain and on towards Aspremont or Saint-Blaise, before catching the bus back into Nice's city centre. In both summer and winter you can admire the beautiful panoramic views of the French Riviera and the Southern Alps.Accommodations nearby
Linda was born and raised in Nice but loves spending time in the countryside.
If you want to dance salsa and enjoy a cheap cocktail, this is the place to be in Nice. You can even take dance lessons at the beginning of the evening and practise what you've learnt on the dance floor later on in the night.Accommodations nearby
Hélène moved to Nice 12 years ago and loves to picnic in the city’s gardens with her daughter.
If you feel like escaping the hustle and bustle of the city centre, go and relax under the 1000-year-old olive tree in the Estienne d'Orves Park, where you can enjoy the beautiful panoramic views over Nice. Let the kids enjoy the playground before exploring the forest trails.Accommodations nearby
Sport-mad Louis likes spending a casual evening with friends and good wine in a street café.
Fred’s Bar takes you back in time with its Art Déco-inspired décor, great service and casual atmosphere. If you want to enjoy a few great cocktails and chill out with your friends, this old-fashioned place is the perfect spot. Have you ever tried a mojito with basil, pepper and orange?Accommodations nearby
Chloé has lived in Nice for 2 years and loves discovering new places and cultures.
These beaches are located in the eastern part of Nice, after the port. It's where locals go to escape the crowded beaches of the Promenade des Anglais. They are ideal spots for snorkelling but also for watching the sunset.Accommodations nearby
Marine moved to Nice 4 years ago and is ever-curious about the city's medieval architecture.
Explore the depths of the city! Take a guided tour in the 2000 m² underground archaeological crypt to discover the remains of the former fortified city of Nice. It’s like travelling back in time to the 14th century!Accommodations nearby
Audrey has lived in Nice for several years and enjoys a work-out followed by dinner with friends.
The Modern Arts Museum’s rooftop terrace offers a 360° view of Nice. If you want to take some great panoramic pictures this is definitely the place to go!Accommodations nearby
After 2 years in Nice, Béranger enjoys feeling like a true local.
Mont Boron is a hidden gem located a 30-minute walk from the port. Get your running shoes on and jog via Mont Boron’s hiking trails to Villefranche-sur-Mer, where you can enjoy a picnic lunch on the beach before taking the train back to Nice. You are guaranteed to have a great day outdoors.Accommodations nearby
Cécilia has spent her entire life in Nice and loves discovering new restaurants.
The path that runs along the Gairaut Canal is lined with small bridges, fig trees and olive trees. It is popular among joggers and offers beautiful panoramic views of the city.Accommodations nearby
Adrien was born in Barcelona and loves exploring Nice’s culinary world.
Taking a stroll down the alleys of Cours Saleya’s fragrant flower market is a great way of getting your sense of smell going. Stop at Le Coin Quotidien’s terrace for a post-market coffee in the sun.Accommodations nearby
Tiffany fell in love with Nice after coming here from the UK for an internship.
Every week 'Franglish' hosts a French and English language exchange in a bar or café in Nice city centre. Participants must register online in advance and the event takes place from 19:00 to 21:00. It is a great way to connect with the locals whilst improving your French!Accommodations nearby
Originally from the US, Thomas is inspired by Nice’s food, art and street performers.
Place Rossetti bubbles with energy over the summer. Street performers, bands and artists come one after another to sing, dance, juggle, do acrobatics and perform magic - everything from afternoon folk songs to evening capoeira and even a drag show on Sunday nights!Accommodations nearby
Booking.com asked travelers...Why do you recommend Nice for food?
We used local supermarkets, markets, fruit shops and patisserie s to but lovely fresh food as we were self catering. We bought a great lunch deal from one of the many little sandwich shops located on the Gambetta Boulevard. The market in the old town has a wonderful array of fresh food inc; olives, cheese, meats, breads. Ideal for making up a picnic for the beach.See all 22 answers
Booking.com asked travelers...How can you enjoy the sights in Nice while avoiding the crowds?
There were many parts of Nice that were easy to get to, and less packed with holiday makers. Public Beaches were easy to get to, although very stony, more sandy beaches in Entibe. Numerous parks which gave you a sense of freedom, even though there were quite a number of people about.See all 21 answers
Booking.com asked travelers...What were the best places for wandering in Nice's old town?
The central street of the old town has a market in the middle and great cafes and restaurants on the two sides. Lovely for shopping, eating, drinking and falling love with narrow little streets.See all 12 answers
Booking.com asked travelers...Where should people go if they don't want to eat in a tourist trap?
Plague Beau Rivage. It's expensive but so very worth it. Best service I've had in Europe. Very well run establishment with a great view. Also eat from the markets, I loved that market!See all 13 answers
Booking.com asked travelers...The beach means different things to different people. What did the beach in Nice mean to you?
Beautiful blue sea, fresh air, sun, warm weather. It's just great. The private beaches especially. They're about 20 EUR per day per person but it's totally worth it.See all 40 answers
Booking.com asked travelers...Why is the atmosphere in Nice something people rave about?
It's quite a big city, with plenty of shops and historic places to visit but because it's on the coast there is a spacious and relaxed feeling to the place.See all 8 answers
Booking.com asked travelers...Describe what other people like you would like about shopping in Nice.
There are a wide variety of shops in Nice and the surrounding towns. The Monday antique market is great for bargain hunting.See all 10 answers
Booking.com asked travelers...Which fine art museums should a first-time visitor to Nice start with?
United States of America
The Chagall Museum is fabulous! Also the Maight Foundation Museum in St. Paul de Vence. And...the Matisse Chapel in Vence.See all 22 answers
Getting to the centre from Côte d’Azur Airport is easiest by bus. Buses depart every 30 minutes from 05:52 to 23:50, cost EUR 6 and take about 20 minutes. The fastest way of reaching the centre is by train, however the train station is a 15-minute walk from the airport. The 5-minute train ride costs around 2 euros. Taxis are available outside both terminals and cost roughly 35 euros for a 15-minute ride to the centre. Few taxis accept credit cards so bring cash.
Nice’s train stations mainly provide access to other parts of France and the Riviera. Nice-Ville is the main station, with links to Paris, Marseille and a multitude of smaller destinations on the Riviera coast. Monaco is a 20-minute ride away, and Ventimiglia on the Italian coast is reached in just 45 minutes. Gare Saint-Augustin links the airport with the centre, while trains from Gare des Chemins de Fer de Provence go to the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence.
The well-organised bus system connects the entire city and branches out to neighbouring towns. Buses are in service from around 07:00 until 20:00, and special night buses operate after this. A one-way ticket within the city limits costs EUR 1:50, while a 1-day pass is EUR 6. Tickets can be bought from dispensers, directly on the bus in cash, or at Lignes d’Azur ticket offices. Bus lines 98 and 99 bring you straight to Nice Côte d’Azur Airport for EUR 6.
Taxis are easiest to hail down at the city’s 17 designated taxi stands, outside the airport and next to Nice-Ville Train Station. A few taxi stands are found along the Promenade des Anglais, but if you can’t find one you are best off placing an order over the phone. Taxis generally only take cash, and the minimum fare within the city is EUR 6.86. An extra fee is charged for over-sized suitcases, and the rate goes up at night, on Sundays and on public holidays.
Tram stops are found all over the city under signs marked with ‘T’. Services operate every 6 to 20 minutes from around 05:00 to roughly 01:00 depending on the direction. Single tickets (EUR 1:50), 1-day passes (EUR 5) and 7-day passes (EUR 15) are bought from dispensers at the platform or at Lignes d’Azur ticket offices. Your ticket is valid once it’s been inserted into one of the ticket terminals located on the platform or inside the tram.
Cycling is a popular way to get around and see the sights – the cycle lane along Promenade des Anglais has stunning sea views. Rent a blue bike (Vélo Bleu) from one of 175 self-service bike stations, open 24/7. Bikes are free for the first 30 minutes, then EUR 1 for the next 30 minutes and EUR 2 for each additional hour. Use your credit card to buy a ticket from the meter, pick up a bike and drop it off at any station when you’re done. Alternatively, sign up online to save time.
Getting central Nice by car can be slightly confusing. Many streets are one-way and tram tracks take up most of the space. Street parking is rarely available and often at an extra charge. Some car parks offer the first hour for free. A sustainable alternative to normal car hire is the Auto Bleue electric car rental service. Vehicles are plugged in at over 60 self-service stations around the city, available by the hour or day to anyone with a licence valid in France.
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