Top 15 Tourist Attractions in Nice, France

Nice is one of the favorite destinations for French people to go on vacation. Despite the permanent world in summer, some still decide to remain faithful to their flagship place. And you will understand why!

It is a perfect summer destination, it is beautiful, it’s hot. There are magnificent beaches, a large range of activities for the young and the older ones, and plenty of other activities for people of all ages.

Besides, Nice is one of the sunniest cities in France. It is a city renowned for its festivities. Between parties, bars, and restaurants, the nightlife is very hectic. And there are also many festivals, concerts, etc.

In Nice and the French Riviera, you will find many unmissable places to visit. We all heard about these places as they are to be seen at least once in his life: the Promenade des Anglais, Old Nice, the Negresco Hotel, and many more. The city of Nice offers exceptional landscapes throughout day and night.

1. Le Vieux Nice

Le Vieux Nice

Called “Old Nice,” or “Old Town,” it fully deserves its name as it is the oldest part of the city between the hill of castle, the sea, the Paillon (a small river crossing Nice), the Acropolis, the gardens and Place Garibaldi.

This district is lively by day with many shops, and, at night, it is a meeting and outing place for the people of Nice. Its narrow streets are dotted with restaurants, pubs, and nightclubs of all kinds.

2. Place Rossetti and Sainte Reparate Cathedral

Place Rossetti and Sainte Reparate Cathedral

Near the sea, the Cours Saleya with its market, its stalls, its restaurants, which a large crowd travels through in summer until late at night. A little further west, you will find the Opera then the Town Hall.

In the center, you will find the Place Rossetti, on which the Sainte Reparate Cathedral stands, built in its current form in the 16th century. This is the perfect spot to eat the best ice cream in the world.

All around, many Hotels and Palaces which have a double function: residence for rich families who resided usually on the 1st floor, and, for a high rate, to host guests on the ground floor and under the eaves.

This place embodies the dolce vita in Nice. Located in the south-east of the city, behind the Castle hill, these 18th-century buildings with Genoese architecture accommodate hundreds of boats, dozens of yachts, and small ocean liners

3. Promenade des Anglais

Promenade des Anglais

Promenade des Anglais is very popular as it runs for eight kilometers along the immense Baie des Anges. The water is paradise blue!

It is impossible not to be impressed when you arrive at the seaside. The palm trees dancing to the rhythm of the sea breeze are always pleasant. But here, it is the Promenade des Anglais which attracts all the attention.

Almost 200 years ago, the English aristocrats who came to spend their winter holidays here financed the construction. Now widened, the modest path has given way to a wide promenade, seven kilometers long, which borders the Baie des Anges.

On the one hand, the elevated layout of La Prom allows you to take a look at the pebble beaches and their occupants who are sunbathing. On the other side, the palaces follow one another, like the Mediterranean Palace and the Negresco, which light up in the evening.

4. The Negresco Hotel

The Negresco Hotel

The Negresco Hotel has become an emblem of the city of Nice. Its unusual architecture, its surprising colors, its decoration, and its impeccable façade are part of the best tourist sites in Nice. Located on 35 Promenade des Anglais, the Negresco offers its wealthiest occupants an exceptional view of the sea.

With rates ranging from 250 euros a night in a single room in an indoor position to 2.000 euros a night for a luxury suite with sea views, few lucky people will be able to afford a night there.

For travelers, in addition to being able to admire its beautiful façade, can enter the lobby, as well as go to the oval lounge, at the end in front of the entrance. You will discover a beautiful glass vault and a permanent exhibition of art objects. Like a museum, the room is commented on by a sign at its entrance.

The lounge is lined with luxury goods shops such as bags, clothes, paintings, etc. Don’t hesitate the entrance is free and you can also have a drink at the bar or on the terrace.

5. Castle Hill Park

Castle Hill Park

It is a park built in more than 19 hectares, that overlooks the city of Nice and offers a splendid view of the Baie des Anges but also the port and the north of the town.

On this 93-meter-high hill was once a castle-fortress. Built-in the 11th century, it was destroyed 700 years later on the orders of Louis XIV. It was only from the following century that the present Garden was landscaped.

Once out of the elevator, take the stairs on your left to reach a path that quickly takes you to the first lookout. The view of the old town and its orange tiled roofs is breathtaking! You  can see how it is bordered by the Promenade des Anglais, which describes a curve around the Baie des Anges.

Retrace your steps by the same path to go east this time. Go past the elevator and continue on your way on this path that goes around the Hill.

On the hill of the castle, you will find peace because cars are prohibited there. For lovers, you can get lost in the maze of paths that lead to viewpoints, each one more beautiful than the other. Do not miss the waterfall, which is at the top of the hill.

6. Cours Saleya Market

Cours Saleya Market

The Cours Saleya is a fantastic food market and a real Provençal market, where you will discover the local lifestyle. Zucchini, tomatoes, gariguette, olive oil, melons, peaches, eggplant … there is something for everyone and all colors on the stands.

Here you will find all the local productions from the Nicaean country. Without forgetting the thirty flower stalls which bring greenery.

The market opens weekly from Tuesday to Sunday – 6.00. to 1.00 pm, on Monday morning, it gives way to a flea market.

7. Nicaean Markets 

Nicaean Markets

The flea market is a paradise for bargain hunters which opens only on Monday from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Then, from June to September, a craft market animates the course every night, except Mondays.

In a rapidly developing district, where the most diverse stalls rub shoulders with contemporary art galleries, the most important market in the city is located, which includes a wide range of local products: the Liberation Market: open Tuesday to Sunday from 6 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

8. Arenas of Cimiez

Arenas of Cimiez

Move a little away from the city center of Nice to discover the park of the arenas of Cimiez. A lovely place for a family picnic on its vast green areas dotted with century-old olive trees.

It takes no more than 5 minutes to go around and discover remains that are well preserved but ultimately quite devoid of tourist interest. The place is of course to be seen but as part of a global tour of the Boulevard de Cimiez as well as to discover the Arena Park, the Matisse Museum, and the Cimiez Monastery.

The Arenas become much more interesting at the annual events, including the Jazz Festival, one of the largest in Europe. There are 75 concerts for over 8 days that attract more than  50,000 visitors each year. These concerts are organized in the last two weeks of July.

If you like gardens, go to the rose garden of the Cimiez Monastery located nearby. It is one of the oldest gardens in Nice, which overlooks the city of Nice on the east side.

9. Matisse Museum

Matisse Museum

The Matisse Museum in Nice is dedicated to the work of the French painter Henri Matisse. It brings together one of the most important world collections of his works, which allows you to retrace his artistic journey and his evolutions from its beginnings to its last works.

The collection was made up of various donations, first that of Matisse himself, who lived and worked in Nice from 1917 to 1954, then those of his heirs as well as deposits of works made by the country.

10. Modern & Contemporary Art Museum 

Modern & Contemporary Art Museum

The MAMAC has a permanent collection of landmark works of contemporary art by famous artists like Ben, Niki de Saint Phalle, through Klein, Arman, Warhol, Rosenquist, Christo, and others.

Around 1300 works and more than 300 artists present European and American artistic creations from the end of the 1950s to the present day.

Works like experiences, challenges, performances: how to package the Arc de Triomphe, how to make art with our daily life, why cut a cello into strips?

Sculptures, paintings, engravings, drawings, assemblies, and visual and sound installations question the visitor on the consumer society, on the object, and the use of traditional codes.

11. Musée Marc Chagall

Musée Marc Chagall

Marc Chagall National Museum was born from the artist’s imagination where he wanted to bring his most popular artwork in one place. The museum houses 17 paintings that illustrate the Biblical Message.

Many works of secular or religious inspiration complete this permanent collection. In total, there are more than 400 paintings, gouaches, drawings, washes, and pastels! It is quite simply the most extensive public collection of works by Marc Chagall.

12. Beaches of Nice

Beaches of Nice

Listed under top 10 most beautiful beach cities in the world, and just below Barcelona in Spain, Cape Town in South Africa, and Honolulu in Hawaii, is a French city of Nice!

Impossible to miss the famous Promenade des Anglais which follows the entire seaside for 8 kilometers. For swimming, do not opt ​​for the beaches in front of the Albert-1er garden as that’s always crowded. Continue a little west towards Fabron to reach much quieter beaches.

Nice has 35 public and private beaches over a distance of 8 kilometers! Following is a list of beaches for you to enjoy your summers.

Lido Beach

Opposite the Palais de la Méditerranée, this beautiful round pebble beach is both public and private! After enjoying seafood in the nearby restaurant, you can take a dip or try your hand at parasailing!

Hi Beach

This beach provides equipment for holidaymakers: fins, masks, snorkels, buoys, balls, and more. This place of relaxation is also composed of a yoga and rest center, a restaurant, and a hotel!

Centenaire & Carras Beach

These two public beaches next to Old Nice are accessible for disabled people thanks to the beacons positioned at sea!

Sporting Beach

In front of the Westminster hotel, it will be possible to eat in a refined setting after having tasted some prepared fish in front of the customer!

Neptune Beach

A playground is offered to children on this private beach, which is one of the most popular in the city! A public beach with pebbles is also accessible.

Opera Beach

One of the oldest and cheapest beaches you can find is Opera beach which is situated right in front of the Nice Opera. Opera beach offers more than 400 deckchairs per day.

Bamboo Beach

Both entertaining (with the children’s playground) and intimate (the deckchairs are spaced out, and there is a VIP area), this beach on the edge of the Promenade des Anglais has everything for you!

Beau Rivage Beach

In addition to renting mattresses and parasols, the beach offers various body treatments: relaxing massages, spas, jacuzzi! Ideal for relaxing after sunbathing for a few hours!

Blue Beach

All year-round, it is possible to play different sports such as aquaerobics, while leaving the children in a nearby kids-friendly swimming pool!

Miami Beach

After enjoying a cocktail by the water, you can play a few games of pétanque on affected grounds!

13. Place Massena

Place Massena

Place Massena is located in the heart of the city’s tourist attraction. It offers a rare sense of space and tranquility in Nice, whose buildings and alleys are usually piled on top of each other.

Hereou will discover the arches typical of Nice architecture as well as a splendid fountain. The place is very pleasant for its sunshine, its numerous benches and its aesthetics.

Massena Square is connected to several important tourist spots:

  • Jean Médecin Avenue, one of the city’s main thoroughfares. It has a large number of clothing shops, snacks, bars, and restaurants.
  • On both sides, the Albert 1st and Massena gardens.
  • La Rue de France, a pedestrian street in Nice lined with restaurants and shops of all kinds,
  • The bus station from which you can take the bus to any place in the city,
  • The entrance to old Nice.

14. Lascaris Palace

Lascaris Palace

The Lascaris Palace is a 17th century building stands in a row with other tenement houses and from the outside does not particularly stand out. However, inside it conceals richly decorated aristocratic chambers, and the second largest collection of ancient musical instruments in France.

Once privately owned by the Ventimiglia-Lascaris family, the Palace, of Genoese Baroque architecture, was bought by the city of Nice in the mid-20th century.

Open to the public after 7 years of restoration, it is now a museum that is free for the public. It takes less than 25 minutes to walk through the entire palace. The museum is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., except on Tuesdays and some public holidays.

15. Local Nicaean Food

Local Nicaean Food

Discover the gastronomy of Nice. It is when it gets complicated: if you only stay for one day or just for a meal, the choices become difficult. The cuisine of Nice is rich, varied, and delicious!

You cannot leave without having tasted:

  • Zucchini flower fritters
  • Pissaladière, a variant of the pizza with a bed of caramelized onions.
  • Daube ravioli (the best thing in the world, believe us, and not found elsewhere)
  • Small stuffed: round zucchini, eggplant tomatoes, and onions stuffed with meat.
  • Pan bagnat, traditional fisherman’s sandwich.
  • Socca – It is a pancake made from chickpea flour!

According to locals, the socca was invented during the siege of Nice by the Turks in 1543 when the Nicaean people spilled boiling olive oil and chickpea soup on their attackers. Original and delicious technic!

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