In this article we’ll show you around Nice in just 48 hours to give you a sense of what holidaying in one of France’s most famous resorts looks like!
10 am – Discover Nice from Castle Hill
Start your visit of Nice at the Parc du Chateau (Castle Hill) right in the center of the city. This park is located on a hilltop, and it has some of the most striking panoramic views of Nice and the Mediterranean Sea. It’s best to visit the park early in the morning before it gets too hot, as it’s a bit of a climb to get to the top (you can also choose to take the elevator). The views at the top are absolutely worth the climb. Looking out over the city and sea is a great introduction to Nice: west of the park you’ll see the Vieille Ville or old town of Nice, to the east you’ll have a great view of the Old Port of Nice, and to the south you’ll see the magnificent blue water of the Baie des Anges. The old citadel that used to be located on the top of the hill is all but in ruins, but it’s still very pleasant to walk around Castle Hill. The park offers nice shade beneath the trees and features a beautiful waterfall. Bring some drinks and snacks to enjoy a morning picnic!
12 pm – Explore the Old Town of Nice
3 pm – Stroll along the Promenade des Anglais and go Shopping
7 pm – Go Home to your Vacation Rental Apartment
Preparing a French dinner yourself is not only a great experience, but it can also save you a lot of money! By staying in a vacation rental apartment in Nice you’ll have access to your own fully equipped kitchen. Try your hand at a traditional French meal such as the Salad Nicoise, which was named after Nice! For some culinary inspiration, see our recipes at Famous Southern French Cuisine. Enjoy your home-cooked dinner with a glass of local wine in your own vacation rental apartment and feel like a true Nice local.
10 am – Pay a Visit to the Cimiez Neighborhood
From the city center of Nice you can easily catch a bus to Cimiez. Cimiez is home to the Ruins of Cemenelum, an Ancient Roman town that used to rival Nice. Nowadays, Cimiez is a district of the city of Nice, but you can still see the ruins of thermal baths, a Roman arena and an amphitheater at the Ruins of Cemenelum. The beautiful Cimiez Monastery is also well worth a visit, as you’ll have a great view of the city and the Mediterranean Sea from here. French artist Henri Matisse was buried in a cemetery near the monastery. Nice was very popular among many famous painters of the 19th and 20th century, because of its beautiful landscape and soft light. See how Henri Matisse was inspired by the city at the Musée Matisse located in a small park encircled by olive trees – and completely free to visit! Another beautiful museum in the neighborhood is the Musée Marc Chagall on the Avenue Docteur Ménard.
If you feel like going out into the countryside, a great alternative to visiting Cimiez is to take the Petit Train des Pignes to the picturesque valleys just north of Nice. The train ride itself is quite an adventure as both the train and the stations it stops at are old and historic. The train goes all the way to Dignes, but you can choose for yourself how far through the amazing landscape you’d like to travel.
2 pm – Take a Trip out of Town
Because of Nice’s ideal location, it’s very easy to take a daytrip out of town. There are several options to consider for a great afternoon of exploring the surrounding area. Monte Carlo and Monaco lies just 20 kilometers (12 miles) to the east of Nice, so you can easily catch a bus to the famous resort. Even closer is the town of Eze, located on the top of a hill and offering panoramic views of the surrounding countryside. The city of Cannes, famous for its festival, and the town of Grasse, famous for its perfumes, are a bit further off but still great options for a day trip. You can even go across the border to visit Ventimiglia in Italy for a day!
9 pm – Watch the Sunset over the Mediterranean Sea
Whether you decide to spend the evening in Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat or return to Nice, end the evening on a beach or the Promenade des Anglais to watch the sun set over the Mediterranean Sea and have the perfect ending to your holiday in Nice.
We hope you’ve enjoyed this introduction to Nice! Have you ever been to a city next to the Mediterranean Sea?