Enjoying the Delights of Nice (By Day)   9 comments

Onwards on our journey through Europe and a very pleasant train ride through the Italian countryside and coast into France and the Cote D’Azure at Nice. Our apartment was superb, large spacious, air-conditioned and with a balcony overlooking Place Massena.

Early evening view.

IMG_5653

Nightime view.

IMG_5659

And morning view.

IMG_5654
IMG_5660

We had breakfast out there every morning and the odd meal. It was a great place to take in the atmosphere even if it was a bit hot most of the time.

P1010778c
P1010778e

The only downside was the Nice Jazz Festival across the square. When I say Jazz, as with most music festivals the theme is rarely supported by the music. In this case I heard no Jazz played and the the theme would be better described as pop and hip hop (I don’t recall the Black Eyed Peas ever doing Jazz). At the risk of turning into my dad the music was way too loud even though we were a couple of hundred yards from the arena.

P1010778d
IMG_5721

As soon as we arrived we were straight down to the beach for a swim. Another ideal feature of our base was that its only a 5 minuet walk to the beach.

IMG_5649

The beach at Nice used to be almost exclusively private bars with little public access but this has changed in recent years. There are now extensive stretches of public beaches which despite the crowds are clean and well provided.

IMG_5650

It surprises many to realise the beach here is pebbles and not sand. I prefer this as pebbles don’t get stuck in a variety of cracks and crevices and the water tends to be clearer. It does make for an awkward entry into the water though especially with a steep shelving shore and big waves.

IMG_5651

It was great to be able to pop down for an evening swim when some of the crowds had gone and the temperatures were a little more bearable.

IMG_5652

We went down here for a swim most evenings, one of the special memories of the trip.

P1010757d
P1010757e

Behind the apartment was the old town, the Vieux Ville and a marvellous place it is. A maze of narrow streets packed with shops and restaurants and a cool retreat from the power of the sun.

IMG_5655

This is the Place Rossetti. We spent many happy evenings here, eating in restaurants and tucking into crepes and ice creams.

IMG_5656
P1010741
P1010742
P1010743
P1010744

It was also the way through to the Castle Hill above the town (more on that in a later post) and a walk through the streets was always a pleasure.

P1010776a
P1010776b

The inside of the Cathédrale Sainte-Réparate.

IMG_5838
IMG_5839
IMG_5840

The Cours Salaya Market.

P1010756a

I grew especially fond of the Place Massena and the Promenade du Paillon. My research told me that it used to be an ugly eyesore, a heady mix of dilapidated buildings, a car park and bus station.

P1010756b

Enlightened planners have turned the area into a pedestrianised square (other than Nice’s sleek and modern trams) and park full of fountains, children play areas and statues.

P1010756c
P1010756e
P1010757a
P1010757b

Its utterly wonderful and a great example of how to create an green oasis in a urban sprawl. I walked through it many times and loved every step.

IMG_5694
IMG_5696

The fountains were especially fine.

IMG_5697
IMG_5698
IMG_5699
IMG_5700

Its completely free and there was always a vast number of small children playing from morning till night-fall. We could always hear the screams of delight from our balcony which is in the photo below, left centre, 3rd floor.

P1010936
P1010937

We walked along the Promenade des Anglais many times and the long sweeping curve of seafront is quintessential Nice.

IMG_5701
IMG_5701a

Nice also has its harbour at Port Lympia.

IMG_5702

We took a stroll around looking the lavish and luxurious yachts moored. A little research told us the bigger one’s cost just shy of 100m Euros!

IMG_5704
IMG_5705

Some less luxurious and more traditional sea faring craft.

IMG_5707
P1010759
P1010761
P1010762

A view across the harbour from the headland.

P1010763

A couple more posts to come from Nice as well as our travels in the local area to come.

IMG_5854

9 responses to “Enjoying the Delights of Nice (By Day)

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. Back in the 70’s the beach at Nice, was the first time I had experienced rocks and not sand. I was unimpressed. Your wonderful images have changed my view on this vibrant city. The fountain squares for children, are a wonderful, new concept, everywhere.

    Like

    • I much prefer pebbles to sand – at least for sitting and swimming (sandy beaches make much better photos!). Its quite odd that such a famous beach isn’t sandy but there you go! Nice is wonderful city, perfect combination of mountains, sea and an old town feel.

      Like

  2. Didn’t fancy buying one of those yachts then?
    As you say, “Jazz festival” doesn’t seem to mean jazz these days. The same when we were in Haarlem a few weeks ago. But at least there was some 60s style soul on the menu.

    Like

  3. Morecambe also has a children’s play area with fountains. Just saying. But then, it has always been know as ‘the Nice of the North’. Much as I like Morecambe, it’s hard to see any other similarities.
    Nice looks great – I’m quite surprised the beach isn’t sandy. Morecambe has brought in sand, but it looks like the beaches at Nice might shelve too steeply to have any chance of keeping any sand for any length of time?

    Like

    beatingthebounds
    • Its odd that most of the beaches along the coast are sandy (well a kind of coarse gritty sand anyway) except Nice. It does shelve very steeply and you need reef shoes on to get in the water. Better for sitting though, no sand in every crevice. I wonder if anyone, anywhere has mentioned Nice and Morecambe in the same sentence before?

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: