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Nice

Top Attractions in Nice

PROMENADE DES ANGLAIS

PROMENADE DES ANGLAIS

Following the length of the Baie des Anges, the palm tree-lined Promenade des Anglais is named after the Englishman who paid for the city’s shoreline to be transformed into a picturesque seafront boulevard. Popular with locals and tourists alike, the Promenade is lined with a medley of grand hotels as well as Nice’s casino and provides the most perfect setting for an atmospheric stroll in the sunshine or a romantic meander as the sun sets over the bay.
PLACE MASSÉNA

PLACE MASSÉNA

Centre point of the city, the Place Masséna is a vast and incredibly grand square, lined by beautiful, Italian-style arcaded buildings in fiery shades of ochre and red. Setting for many of the city’s main events including carnival and the Christmas market, the Place Masséna also boasts a number of sightseeing essentials including the timeless Hotel Negresco, the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (MAMAC) and the Musée Masséna, housed in a spectacular Belle Époque villa.
OLD TOWN

OLD TOWN

Nestling in the shadows of the hilltop Château and complementing the grandeur of the Promenade des Anglais is Nice’s atmospheric Old Town, where tiny lanes are packed full of charming boutiques, food shops, cafés and restaurants. Providing the backbone to Vieux Nice is the Cours Saleya, a bustling pedestrian thoroughfare and the vibrant setting for the city’s renowned flower, fruit and vegetable market (a flea market takes its place on a Monday). A Niçois essential.
PARC DU CHÂTEAU

PARC DU CHÂTEAU

Set atop a rocky hill overlooking Nice’s Old Town, bar the Tour Bellanda, very little actually remains of the city’s 12th-century castle for it was destroyed in 1706 by Louis XIV. And yet climb to the top of the hill and you’ll be rewarded with the most outstanding views over Vieux Nice, the Promenade des Anglais and the sweeping Baie des Anges. The perfect family picnic spot, for there’s a playground and artificial waterfall, too.
MUSÉE DES BEAUX-ARTS

MUSÉE DES BEAUX-ARTS

Situated a 15-minute (uphill) walk from the Place Masséna, the Musée des Beaux-Arts resides in a lavish Italianate villa built originally for a Russian princess. Transformed from a private residence to a public museum in the 1920s, today the collection contains a wealth of fabulous artworks including sculptures by Rodin and Dégas, paintings by Monet, Sisley, Fragonard and Dufy and exquisite Belle Époque posters by Jules Chéret. Definitely worth the walk.
CIMIEZ

CIMIEZ

Cimiez, Nice’s northern suburb, is worth a foray from your city-centre explorations for not only is it packed with grand, Belle Époque architecture, you’ll also find culture in abundance too, being the home of both the Matisse and Chagall museums. And if that’s not enough, Cimiez also plays host to Roman remains; the Monastère Notre-Dame de Cimiez, brilliantly decorated with murals and medieval paintings by Bréa; and Matisse’s simple grave in the cemetery next door.
MUSÉE NATIONAL MARC CHAGALL

MUSÉE NATIONAL MARC CHAGALL

Perhaps best known for its series of 17 paintings illustrating the biblical message, the Musée National Marc Chagall may be small, but it certainly contains an impressive collection of works by this celebrated artist. Indeed, the museum’s portfolio features sculptures, stained-glass windows, mosaics, tapestries, gouaches, prints and lithographs, making it one of the largest ensembles of Chagall’s work worldwide. You’ll find the museum in Cimiez, a 20-minute walk from the city centre.
MUSÉE MATISSE

MUSÉE MATISSE

Set in the quiet suburb of Cimiez (some 2km north of the city centre) in a beautiful 17th-century Genoese villa overlooking an olive grove is the delightful Musée Matisse, showcasing the work of this renowned artist who lived in the city from 1917 until his death in 1954. Representing every medium in which Matisse worked, the personal collection contains paintings, engravings, gouaches, cut outs and book illustrations and makes for a fascinating insight into his artistic career.
ST NICHOLAS RUSSIAN ORTHODOX CATHEDRAL

ST NICHOLAS RUSSIAN ORTHODOX CATHEDRAL

A National Monument, Nice’s Byzantine St Nicholas Cathedral dates back to the early 1900s and is the largest Russian Orthodox Church outside of Russia. Built to serve the swelling numbers of Russians who resided in Nice during the winter months, this distinctive cathedral, with its six colourful, onion-shaped domes and ornately decorated mosaic façade, makes for a great photo stop.
PORT LYMPIA

PORT LYMPIA

Separated from Vieux Nice by the hilltop Château, Nice’s Port Lympia dates as far back as the 1600s when it was a mere lagoon. Significantly expanded in the mid-1700s, today the port plays host to a mix of sailing vessels, from luxury yachts and traditional fishing boats to large-scale ferries set against the lovely backdrop of Venetian-coloured houses that line the waterfront. An amble along the quayside offers yet another picturesque view of Nice.

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