Exploring Cote de Azur

Day 1

  • 12:00pm: Check into a room at Hotel Suisse. Being perhaps one of our favorite accommodations while in France, this hotel is absolutely perfect. From the location to the stunning views of the beach from our balcony, the hotel is hard to top. Hotel Suisse is located right below castle hill, one of the main attractions of Nice and perched high enough above the Promenade for a spectacular view of the Cote de Azur. With an outdoor balcony room, you’ll have soft, milky blue views of the coast and be able to listen to the pedestrian foot traffic of Promenade des Anglais.

It's so niçoise #frenchriviera

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  •  1:00pm: Drive along one of the scenic “corniche” or Cliffside routes from Nice to Monaco for a day trip. Pay a worthwhile visit along the regional coastal cliff sides to get. Monaco is a small town full of glitz and glam, with Lamborghini’s, Ferrari’s, and Rolls Royce’s more common than Prius’ in San Francisco. Park nearby and venture up the cliff to the Monte Carlo Grand Casino. From there, you’ll have a magnificent view of the port filled with hundred million dollar yachts, and the Monaco Cliffside to your left. It’s touristy, but worth an hour of your time. Perhaps the greatest part is people watching as well as half-a-million dollar cars zip by. People come here to be seen, so be prepared for this. The casino itself is underwhelming at best, so while worth saying you went in the Monte Carlo, I’d skip the gambling and associated entry fee.

Saturdays in Monaco at the Monte Carlo 🏆🏎

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 Quick Tip: The Corniche Roads of the French Riviera consist of three routes following the mountainous stretch from Nice to Menton. The Corniche offers dramatic coastal views which can be discovered by car through three scenic roads: the Grande Corniche, the Moyenne Corniche and the Corniche Inférieure. Be careful on these roads, particulary as you descend through the winding tunnel through Monaco. A navigation app like Waze will tell you where all the speed traps are throughout France, the one in particular you have to watch out for here being on the decent to Monaco.

  •  4:00pm: If you are driving between Nice and Monaco, a “must-stop” location is the town of Eze. It’s a small, medieval village along the French Riviera located on the Moyenne Corniche which is the middle cliff-side road hacked out of the steep hill side that runs from Nice to Monaco. The town itself mixes perfume outlets, upscale boutiques, cobblestone streets and alleyways all with breathtaking views of the Cote de Azur.

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  • 5:00pm: Upon returning to Nice, a must visit location for tapas and drinks is Movida. Grab a seat on the upstairs patio has picturesque views of the Cliffside, promenade and of course the ocean. Perfect for people watching, there is also an excellent selection of tapas, cocktails, beers and wine. This was perhaps the most happening bars in Nice all evening long with music blasting until the late hours of the morning.

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  • 7:00pm: There are plenty of dining options in Vieux Nice. You can enjoy yourself simply wandering the tiny alleyways of the Vieux Nice area to check out a variety of options. One good Italian option is La Favola. Think big portions and bring a heady appetite. In general, dining in Nice offers a wonderful fusion of French and Italian cuisine given its proximity to both countries.
  • 9:00pm: Check out the outdoor cafe for a cafe and night cap. You’ll sit in the center of the main walking street admiring the foot traffic as people enter and leave dinners at the nearby restaurants.

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  • 10:00pm: Visit Le Distilleris for one of their many beers au presse (or on tap). It’s located just around the corner from the stunning 17th-century Cathédrale Sainte-Réparate, and holds a great selection of beer, both local and global. It has a local vibe, and boasts traditional décor.

Day 2

  • 8:00am: Wake up and go for a morning run along the Promenade. If you’ve already walked the Promenade, consider going east towards the port. You’ll see multi-million dollar yachts along this way and take a look at Coco Beach, featuring memorizing crystal light blue water. Atop of the hill is an old restaurant, with a wonderful view over the sea and Angels’ Bay.

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  • 10:00am: Stop by the farmers market in Vieux Ville, (old town of Nice) during the morning and grab yourself a few of Nice’s local specialties. You’ll absolutely want to try Socca, a traditional chickpea breaded dish served in the form of a pancake with blackened, toasted edges. It’s seasoned with a bit of salt and is absolutely delicious. Another must-try in Nice is Pissaladière. This is Nice’s form of a a tart, or pizza, topped with anchovies, onions, and olives. It is salty, tart, and intense.
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