The capital of the French Riviera and the second largest city after Marseille on the Côte d'Azur, Nice is a gorgeous town where the shimmering Bay of Angels stretches as far as the eye can see. One can understand how it has gained its nickname of ‘Nice la Belle’ (Nice the Beautiful), thanks to its stunning looks and its perfect climate with 300 days of sunshine annually and no precipitation.
Both a grand city by the sea and a beach-lover’s paradise, Nice is the interesting cousin of sophisticated Cannes. Boasting a thriving café culture and creative and cosmopolitan residents, it attracts a wealth of visitors including the discerning Riviera jet set.
As you explore the city, taking in the pastel coloured apartments and houses, you’ll often discover quirky touches, such as a pair of mannequins surveying the beach. Juxtaposed with blatant signs of wealth, thanks to a thriving marina bursting with expensive yachts and 21st century tall-ships, and its unique charms become evident.
Top 5 things to see and do in Nice
Where to stay in Nice – Hotel Bougainville
Named after 18th century explorer Louis Antoine de Bougainville, this charming hotel which is part of the Happy Culture Collection, has stacks of personality. Its design depicts the classic Masonry Belle Époque style and the flora and fauna décor found in the guest rooms is cheerful and inviting.
Rooms from €79-103 per night.
Villa Bougainville by HappyCulture
29, avenue Thiers
Where to dine in Nice - Sentimi Restaurant
The food at this buzzing Italian restaurant is out of this world. Much to my satisfaction, everything was smothered in garlic and the turbo charged flavours were divine. Try the local ‘Soca’ beer made with chickpeas, which pairs perfectly with pizza and is crisp, delicious and refreshing. Plates from €12.50.
2-4 Place Garibaldi
Getting around the Cote d’Azur
The quickest and most luxurious way to travel from Nice to Paris – Voyages SNCF
There is only one way to travel from France’s Cote d’Azur coast to its capital and that’s by the seriously speedy SNCF train service. These deluxe trains can take you to a variety of locations along the coast or to Paris (which is only a five-hour journey and the scenery along the way is extraordinary).
Rocket Train - The sound of Nice
To help get you in the mood to visit Nice, I’ve created a set of tracks inspired by my fantastic travels (click on play below). Enjoy!
For more information, visit: http://www.frenchriviera-tourism.com
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