Nice, the Riviera’s Unofficial Capital

Nice, the fifth largest city in France, is considered to be the unofficial capital of the Riviera – offering a perfect location from which to explore the Cote d’Azur and the South of France.

The French Riviera

Cote d’Azur, also known as the French Riviera, is the area of France that runs along the country’s lower southeast Mediterranean coastline – bounded by Hyeres to the west and Menton to the east. Once a remote and impoverished area of France, the area was transformed into a playground for European and American aristocracy in the late 19th century; it also became a haven for artists and writers, serving as inspiration for the likes of Picasso and others.  Today, Cote d’Azur is well-known all over the world as a place of luxury and glamour, playing host to the star-studded Cannes Film Festival and offering St Tropez and Monaco as splendid holiday destinations.

Nice, the hub of the French Riviera

The city of Nice, located within the French Rivera between Cannes and Monaco, serves as a major European transportation hub and favoured location from which to explore the French Riviera.  From the city, day trips to Monte Carlo and Monaco or the seaside town of Antibes can be enjoyed, as well as visits to Cannes and other areas along the Cote d’Azur.

Things to do and see in Nice

Known for its warm, dry weather, among the many attractions Nice has to offer are its gorgeous beaches.  Stretching for miles along the coastline, visitors can enjoy a day in the sun or rent a boat for an excursion into the Mediterranean.  Restaurants serve up wonderful seafood, accompanied by French wines while Marche aux Fleurs, one of Nice’s many local markets, offers fresh fruits, vegetables, and flowers amongst other wares and goods.

The city also offers several museums to explore, including the Musee Massena, Musee d’Art Moderne, and Musee Picasso, which serves as home to The Goat and La Joie de Vivre.  For those seeking a vibrant nightlife, Nice does not disappoint, with many wonderful restaurants, bars, and clubs offering plenty of entertainment.

For the traveller interested in experiencing the finest in French hotels, the Palais de la Mediterranee is an exclusive hotel and casino located on the Promenade des Anglais, offering wonderful ocean views. For those more interested in cheap hotels Nice, the Quality Inn Acropole is situated in the heart of Nice within walking distance of beaches, restaurants, shopping, gardens, and other attractions and activities.  Other city centre hotels include La Perouse, Hôtel Lafayette, and La Malmaison.

Nice as a Tourist Destination

As a tourist destination, it is difficult to beat Nice – the weather is fabulous, the beaches are amazing, the markets are fantastic, and the food and accommodation is offered up in a variety to suit every taste, desire, and pocket.  Plus, you are in the perfect location from which to set off and explore other amazing, exciting, and/or relaxing places along the Cote d’Azur.  And, who knows, you may just see someone famous while you are there.