PHOTO: Nice Port – Best things to do in Nice
1 Day in Nice Top 10 Things to Do:
- Visit Old Nice
- Cours Saleya Flower market
- Stroll or cycle along the Promenade des Anglais
- Shop in Carre d’Or
- Take photos at Promenade du Paillon
- Place Massena, check out Galeries Lafayette
- Visit Russian Cathedral
- Visit the Old Port and Castle Hill
- Lunch on the Beach
- Dinner at La Reserve
Top 5 Nicoise specialities to try:
2. Salad Nicois. Served all over the world but a good choice for lunch on the beach
3. A glass of Provencal Rose
4. Pissasaladiere. Find these at the bakers, yummy onion tart
5. Petit Farcie – stuffed tomatoes
Top 5 Favourite Restaurants:
- La Reserve de Nice, 60 Boulevard Franck Pilatte, 06300 Nice (My favourite)
- Plage Bleu Rivage, Quai des Etats Unis, 06300 Nice,
- Le Petit Ecailer de la Douce, 26 Cours Saleya, 06300 Nice,
- La Terrasse Restaurant, 1 Promenade des Anglais
- Castel plage – on the beach
PHOTO: Nice Port – 1 day in Nice
1 day in Nice is always a fun activity when I am on the Cote d’Azur. I like to visit the Old Town, stroll around the market, buy some flowers and plants for my garden, There is always something that will prove to be irresistible.
PHOTO: Cours Saleya Market, Nice Old Town
We pause for a coffee at one of the many restaurants lining both sides of the flower market. This is also a good place to stock up your picnic basket if you plan a beach picnic later. Yes, Old Nice is touristy and jam packed in summer with Instagrammers and selfie fans. BUT, it is still charming and a good place to buy things.
Matisse lived here and sought inspiration for many of his paintings here and looking out of his windows onto the sea.
PHOTO: Cours Saleya Flower Market and Matisse House
However, if this is too mundane an activity, just walk through the big archway leading onto Promenade des Anglais and hire a bicycle or some roller skates and whizz along the bicycle lane that runs all the way along the Promenade! It is 6 km long, so a bicycle is a good way to explore. You will find many Velo Bleu bikes for hire and you can drop off the bike at any bicycle point in the town. Hire a bike by paying with a Credit Card. Price Free for 30 minutes, then cost 1 euro for next 30 minutes then 2 euros.
PHOTO: Promenade des Anglais, Nice – pick up a bike
Also get around for a city tour on a french version of a Tuk Tuk. BE CAREFUL – agree a price before you get on!
PHOTO: Best things to do in Nice, France
Where to Shop in Nice:
PHOTO: The Golden Triangle, Nice – Best things to do in Nice France
Of course, we all shop online these days, but I do like exploring the shops in Nice from time to time. Here are some favourite shopping places:
- Carre d’Or. This is where you will find the posh shops. The usual french names such as Louis Vuitton, Chanel but also a some more unique little boutiques where you will find that gorgeous dress unlike any other!
- The Old Town has some interesting perfumeries, book stores and wine shops.
- Avenue Jean Medicin, leads off from Place Massena and has more of the high street type shops, A massive Sephora that is a treasure trove, especially during sale times.
- Galeries Lafayette, that eponymous french department store. I love this during sale time too! In France annual sales are strictly regulated and held twice a year on strict dates.
- Nice Etoiles. A big shopping Mall. Most of the clothes stores are o the top floor. There is a WIFI area here too, if you are desperately in need of some WIFI!
PHOTO: Place Massena, Nice with Avenue Jean Medicin straight ahead
Time to revive with a delicious lunch. I prefer to have a laid back, casual lunch and then a slap up meal in the evening.
TOP 3 PLACES FOR LUNCH
- Choose one of the fish restaurants in the Cours Saleya. I prefer the restaurants on the right hand side, facing Matisse beautiful, yellow house at the end of the Cours Saleya. He painted many famous paintings here.
- Lunch at a beach restaurant. There are many to choose! These also have the benefit of being able to hire a sunbed and Parasol for an afternoon siesta, just in case you are too tired to explore any more!
- Picnic on the beach. I sometimes like to catch up with friends, have a light picnic lunch on the beach. Everyone brings something along and we all share.
AFTERNOON IN NICE:
PHOTO: View of Promenade des Anglais, Nice
If you are not too tired, stroll to the Old Port (there is a car park right on the point, which is a perfect place to park if you are driving.) On the way, you will pass the Colline du Chateau, if you can face the hoards of tourists, climb up the steps or take the elevator to see the spectacular views of Nice, super photo opportunity to capture the whole of the Promenade des Anglais and the pretty old town with its terracotta roof tiles and brightly coloured houses.
PHOTO: Castle Hill, Nice
If you want to buy some antiques, this is the area, there is a Flea Market and lots of Antique shops. The Port area is now pedestrianised and looks amazing. You can also take a guided tour of Confiserie Florian and buy some Chocolates that are made here. Best things to do in Nice, France!
PHOTO: Nice Port
On the other side of the Castle Hill lies the Port of Nice, look out for some big yachts here in summer. The yachts wait for the owners to hop aboard and take off for a cruise around the Med.
PHOTO: Walk along the sea wall, Nice Port
Then stroll back through the old town to Promenade du Paillon and walk up the magnificent new area with its fountains and gardens. The Mirror d’eau, walk through fountains are stunning and a big hit with photographers.
PHOTO: Promenade de Paillon, Nice
How to get around:
Tram – The new Tram service is super! You can now take a Tram from Nice Airport to the centre of town. Find the Tram right outside Terminal one and two. Also, hop and off around the town. Trams run from 4.30am to 11.30pm. Tram tickets cost 1.50 euros. Buy a 10 trip ticket for 10 euros in a ticket machine or pay on the Tram when you get on for each trip, but you need coins for the machine.
PHOTO: Nice Tram, a good way to get around in Nice
Walk – Always my favourite option. Nice is not that big, so put on your walking shoes, you can always take a rest at one of the many Cafes.
Bicycle – Pick up a bicycle at any of the Bike stops. Just sign up with a Credit Card as payment and you are good to go. The best thing is that you can drop the bicycle off at any of the drop off points.
Note that I do not have a “Where to Stay” recommendation? This is a luxury blog and I really cannot recommend any of the Nice hotels. I would suggest renting a super apartment or villa instead!