Traveling to Nice to enjoy the beaches is always lovely. However, don’t forget there’s a city side of Nice to explore, too.
City Side of Nice
In 1966, I traveled to Nice with two friends from UNC-Chapel Hill. It was a splurge on our “Europe on $5 a Day” budget. Nevertheless, we had to see the French Rivera. As I recall, it looked much like this.
Take a look now.
This was 1966.
While much has changed, the spirit of the city seems the same. It is still where you feel you can “hide out.” No one seems to care what anyone else is doing. And there are so many people of different backgrounds, cultures, and languages there’s no telling who “belongs” there and who is a tourist.
The European architecture and neighborhoods of Nice remind me more of Italy than France. I was reminded by my AIRBNB host that it was not by accident. Friendly was part of France until the mid-1800s. It was again occupied by Italy during WWII. (I guess I missed history class the day this factoid was taught.)
These are some of the city-side sights:
City Side of Nice Transportation
Getting around town in Nice is a breeze. There are public buses and trams if you aren’t up for walking, which is an excellent way to sightsee and stop along the way. You can rent by the hour or more for those who like to bicycle.
City Side of Nice Restaurants
Unfortunately, I didn’t do my homework on places to eat in Nice. Nor do I have the budget to dine on expensive French cuisine. Consequently, all of my meals were disappointing … except for dinner at La Favola.
My friends and I discovered it after we had a so-so lunch at a sidewalk cafe. La Favola was the one with the people standing in line waiting for a table. That’s always a good sign. We made a point to go by the cafe for dinner.
Here are two of the reasons why La Favola is popular. Lobster and pasta for the seafood lover. Gnocchi and Aubergine (eggplant) for the vegan.
We didn’t try the luscious antipasto displayed on tables at the front of the restaurant. That’s for the next trip. Any of the many choices is a meal in itself.
If you arrive too early for dinner before 7:00 p.m., plenty of cafes and bars are nearby. Some with entertainment and music like the Blues Brothers you’ll recognize.
Room with a View
Again, I was pleased with my AIRBNB choice in Nice. While my friends had booked rooms, not knowing I was definitely joining them, I was looking at the last minute for a place close to where they were staying. It was a holiday weekend in France, so I was fortunate to find a home… and such a good find.
The hosts were friendly and extremely helpful with touring suggestions. I felt like I was a welcomed guest and friend. Since I’m now living in France — a mere three-hour drive or train ride from Nice, I’ll definitely be back.
These are some views from the private room I found on AIRBNB.
City Side of Nice Markets
There are many market days in Nice, and I made it to one — the flower market. When I return to Nice again, the Brocante Antique Market is on my list. Maybe I’ll see you there!
Nice is for Dog Lovers
Since moving to France, I’ve discovered the French love their dogs. It’s common to find a “chien” sitting at a restaurant. If you look carefully at the diners at a sidewalk cafe, there’s often a pet at the patron’s feet. Waiters always accommodate the furry companion with a bowl of water.
Ready to relax?
When you get tired of city sites, you can always sit by the sea … the Mediterranean.
For more tips on traveling to Nice and other destinations in France, here are some ideas from Your RV Lifestyle. 100 Things to Do in France. A great resource!
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