When you work in the city or an office, a lot of your daydreams often revolve around holidays and escapism from the mundane life. Nice is the ideal long weekend city break by the sea, and we will outline a sample itinerary of how to spend a relaxing weekend in our Nice while still seeing the sights.
Catch a 1.5-hour flight from London on Thursday night and you are already descending onto the runway over the Mediterranean Sea, it’s an impressive landing! Hop on the tram which takes you down via a change at the station the palm tree-lined promenade and into the old town. You have reached your Nice apartment holiday rental, and although there are some stairs to climb, it’s worth it for the money-shot view of the looming faded yellow buildings with contrasting turquoise shutters and a backdrop of the Alps.
Dinner: You have been travelling all day and you’re probably very tired so we have two nearby options for you. Walk down the stairs and right on the doorstep of the apartment building is Olive & Artichaut, a relatively new French restaurant that serves contemporary and aesthetic dishes such as foie gras soup, salmon gravlax and good quality meat dishes. If you want something more low-key, head to the street behind the flat and there is a pizza window where you can get delicious, oven-cooked pizza for under 10 euros. Take it back to the flat, wash it down with some local wine (from next door) and get energised for a weekend of activities.
Wake up and pull back the shutters to let the light fill the spacious apartment. Head down to a local boulangerie to get freshly baked pastries for breakfast, and when you’re fuelled with caffeine and croissants, it’s time to explore the Vieille Ville (Old Town). The apartment is in the heart of the old town so when you step out of the door you are in the charming and lively centre! Meander through the narrow, cobbled streets with towering buildings, and enjoy the boutique shops and bustling squares. Try the local delicacy, Socca, a chickpea flat bread. It’s slightly underwhelming in my opinion, but ‘when in Nice’ and all that!
Head to the Cours Saleya, a wide boulevard that runs parallel to the sea and hosts the wonderful flower and flea markets. Then continue through the archways and you have hit the famous Promenade des Anglais. Stroll down the promenade, avoiding the roller-bladers and cyclists, and check out the abundance of local beach restaurants and bars on the pebbled private and public beaches.
On the eastern side of the beach is Castle Hill, which provides an unrivalled panoramic view of Nice. With a park, botanical garden and café at the top of the hill, you could relax here for a while taking in the views of the city, port and the sea of terracotta roofs.
Walk back into the Old Town and have a traditionally French meat and cheese platter served on a slate with an abundance of bread at Les Distilleries Ideale’s. It’s a no fuss, authentic lunch where you can sit on the small circular outside tables and soak up the alleyway atmosphere.
Dinner: If you want Michelin star food, Jan is situated near the old port and serves a blend of South-African and French food inspired by local markets. See Culture Trip’s further recommendations on the best restaurants in Nice for more inspiration!
Always wanted to go to glamorous Saint Tropez but never had the chance? From Nice you can get a ferry (not a superyacht, sorry) which takes 2.5 hours but it’s a lovely sight-seeing journey along the Cote d’Azur! Take a stroll around the classy, harbourside town when you arrive, boasting a luxurious port, high-end designer shops and immaculate streets. Get an affordable taxi to Pampelonne Beach for a luxurious beach club lunch, sunbathe and swim at the truly stunning beach. If this isn’t really your scene, Minuty vineyard is situated at Saint Tropez and offers tours and tasting if you want to sip pale rosé in a gorgeous location.
Dinner: Check out our blog on Insider’s Guide to the French Riviera for our favourite dinner restaurants right outside the apartment. Head to Place Rosetti following your delicious meal and you will be spoilt for choice with 100 ice cream choices which make for the ultimate desert!
One of our favourite activities is heading to Saint Jean Cap Ferrat, otherwise known as ‘Billionaire’s Bay’ and walk around the headland. The best way to get there is the bus which you will find over the tram lines but in front of the park. This offers a cheap and scenic route and it hugs coastline, providing unparalleled views of the French Riviera.
You can pick the short or a longer route depending on your fitness and enthusiasm! Both walks are flat and take you around the headland at water level so you can soak up the sunshine and sea air while enjoying dramatic views of the Riviera. The walk will take you through Paloma Beach Club, a serene beach and restaurant with great ambience surrounded by trees and coast, where you can stop for lunch or a cold beverage if you choose.
Sadly your time in Nice has come to an end. There are myriad of other options for how to spend a long weekend in Nice with multiple towns on your doorstep including Monaco, Cannes, Eze and even Italy is just a train ride away if you want an adventure! Check out the map to see the wonderful towns around you.
If you’re longing for a weekend away that’s no fuss, but offers culture and variety get in touch to find out more.Back