If you come to Nice on vacation you definitely need a list of sights in Nice. There are so many places to visit in Nice and on the French Riviera! But do not be discouraged! It is better to visit fewer places, but make your vacation conscious, unhurried, a real celebration of life! What sights in Nice are still worth visiting, read below!
In the beginning, the whole city was located on a hill. Then they began to build up the city below, and only the castle remained at the top. It was well fortified and modernly equipped. However, it was destroyed in the early 18th century. Now there is a park on top of the hill. You can climb the hill from different parts of the city. If you find yourself entangled in a maze of stairs and paths, don’t worry. Go up, and wherever you are, you will find magnificent views of the sea, Nice, the Bay of Angels, the airport, port, hills and mountains around.
The central square of Nice with the buildings of the nineteenth century and modern art installations (like the Buddhists on the poles symbolizing different continents). In the south part of the square, there is a fountain with an Apollo statue, which became a landmark of the city and a popular meeting point.
This strange name is translated from the local language as “the hat thief”. It’s windy enough here that your hat can really fly away. But what a beautiful view from this place!
The old town of Nice
Nice’s old town is a labyrinth of narrow streets and old houses painted in warm, pleasant colours. It’s so nice and interesting to get lost here. Find the way. Look for local shops or authentic restaurants with delicious food. Walk slowly, fold, raise your head. Sights, baroque cathedrals, palaces or small monuments await you on every corner.
Promenade des Anglais
The Promenade des Anglais is so-called because its first part appeared on the money of rich Englishmen who spent their winters in Nice. Today it is the most popular place for walking along the sea. Endless beaches, sports paths, emblematic blue chairs, luxury hotels and an impossible sea view.
Palais de la Mediterranée
It was a luxury casino and concert hall built in the 1920s by an American billionaire. Movie and stage stars, the most influential businessmen and eminent aristocrats spent their evenings in this entertainment complex. Charlie Chaplin, Edith Piaf, Josephine Baker. This list is far from complete. Now it houses a luxurious five-star hotel.
It is probably the most beautiful hotel in Nice. It is located on the Promenade des Anglais. Its façade, designed in the style of the Belle Époque, has seen many celebrities, including Dali, Picasso, Rockefeller, The Beatles, Brigitte Bordeaux, Marlene Dietrich, Ernest Hemingway and many other artists, politicians, actors, writers, millionaires. The interior of the hotel combines the styles of different historical eras. Each hotel room is different. The interior design does not repeat. The luxury of this hotel has been filmed in over 30 movies.
Sainte Reparate Cathedral
The main cathedral of the old town of Nice. It was built in the 17th century and dedicated to the patroness of Nice – Saint Reparate. Inside there is a beautiful baroque interior. Outside, step back a little to see the beautiful dome made of colourful tiles. Then, enjoy the bustle of the cramped old town. Do not forget to taste some ice cream from one of the Italian gelaterias.
Monument to the Dead
This is one of the most beautiful and largest monuments to soldiers in France. Carved into the rock of the Castle Hill, it is beautifully decorated with sculpture and architecture and perpetuates the memory of local soldiers who died in world wars.
The harbour for the port was created artificially in the 18-19 centuries. There used to be a swampy mouth of a small river here. The port of Nice is small. Here you will find private yachts, tourist boats, a couple of fishing boats. No cargo transportation. A huge ferry from Corsica pulls in once a day. But the area around the port is cute and well worth a look.
The name Saleya can be linked to the ancient wine cellar located here. There were city walls demolished in the XVIII century to build storages and fishermen cottages. Cafes, shops appeared here and attracted wealthy tourists. You will find a market here now at day time (vegetables, fruits and flowers from Tuesday till Sunday; antiquity market on Monday). You can also taste slow food on the market. At night the street is very lively occupied by the tables of numerous restaurants.
Garibaldi square was built as a royal entry to Nice from the side of Turin. Now it is named after Guiseppe Garibaldi, a hero of uniting Italy, born in Nice. The square attracts you with its ochre facades and frescos with optical illusions (trompe-l’oeil). It unites baroque and neoclassical features in architecture. The planning is very typical for great Turin squares.
The museum was open in 1973 and inaugurated on Marc Chagall 86th birthday. It is a rare case when a museum dedicated to certain artist was opened during his lifetime. Chagall lived on French Riviera from 1950s and he wanted to leave the majority of his art pieces here. He used many technics in his art: paintings, murals, etching, lithography, ceramics, sculpture, stained glass, tapestry and mosaics. “Perhaps the young and not so young will come to this House in search of an ideal of Fraternity and Love, such as I have dreamt with my colours and my lines”. It is a lovely minimalist style museum in the Mediterranean garden.
The Matisse Museum is located at the park and borders roman ruins under the olive trees. Inside the amazing collection of Henri Matisse artworks.
Place St Francois
A pretty square in the old town of Nice appeared in the XIII century as a part of Franciscans monastery. The city hall was also located here from the XVI century. Nowadays you will find a fish market in the morning.