Vieux Nice - Old Town, Nice
Just returned from a week in Nice. A truly beautiful city. We were fortunate enough to have the weather. So even though it was the start of Sept we could still swim.
Of all the things to do in Nice we found the most interesting were the guided tours. We did 3 which you can reserve from the Tourist Office. Each one offers an insight into the history and culture of Nice. After doing the tours you can revisit the same places with a better understanding of how the city of Nice is like it is.
The 3 tours we did were:
1. The walking tour of the Old Nice
2. Nice Cycle Tours
3. The small tourist train.
As I said each one can be reserved at the Tourist Office. Definitely recommended
Old Nice is downright dripping with atmosphere. Its narrow streets are a one-stop shop for take-home finds, such as Provençal wares, household items, wine, gourmet gifts, hip clothing and more. There are numerous restaurants in the area, as well as several fun bars and nightclubs. Be sure to stop off for a delicious ice cream in this neighborhood.
when I was in the Old Town, tired of walking in the summer heat I came across this little cool corner. A small take-away with few wooden tables in the street serving delicious "moules frites". that is mussels (and not muscles!) with chips!I am afraid I cannot recall the name of the place (but it was not expensive - that i would remember!), so I hope you get as lucky as I was and just bump into it!
In case you miss(ed) it, or don't plan to visit Nice soon, you can still bring the flavour to your home. Here's what you have to do:
- place the mussels in a saucepan with 2 finely chopped onions & 2 cloves of garlic, well crushed.
- cover with dry white wine, bring slowly to the boil, then simmer gently while stirring
- continue until the mussels have opened, discard the ones that don't open
- serve with french fries (or don't serve at all!) and white wine.
either way, enjoy!
This is one of the most well known landmarks in Old Town, located in the largest square of Old Town this Chapel has been prominently displayed in many different films, including most recently, the movie "Ronin", with Robert DeNiro. This is a excellent place to visit for the history and for the different cafe's that line the square. Its also a fun place to just sit and take it all in!
The best part of Old Town is walking the narrow streets that are really no more than corridors. Every turn brings something new to see and there are an endless array of unique shops that catch the eye and empty the wallet!
Old Town is, in my opinion, the only true way to experience Nice. With it's rich history and its quaint , winding corridors that open up into various plaza's, Old Town is a must see. The pedestrian only streets cater to small shops and cafe's and at night the town is dimly lit which gives it a very old world feel. While the hip night life and action may be in modern Nice, the heart and soul of the city resides in Old Town.
There are a plenty of beautiful art galleries in old town.You can actually see artists working even as you step inside.The artist in the picture below was probably talking to his client.I loved his studio and all the paintings he had on display.
Vieux Nice what I liked the most in Nice.
It is so characteristic that I sometimes think that it was built on purpose for tourists.
Viex Nice used to be the criminal area of Nice, but it was recently reclaimed in order to restore it to its original beauty.
There is nothing to do there, except walking down the narrow streets, enjoy the magic atmosphere and imagine how much these buildings could tell us about the past!
Walking through Old Nice was a great way to see and experience the charm of the city. Narrow streets with lots of shops, restaurants, bars and nightclubs were a delight for all your senses. If you're a shopper, you can find everything from household items and Provencal items to wine, clothing and jewelry.
This is also the area for some of the best nightlife, but take note, there are lots of dark alleys and streets so wandering through alone at night might not be the best idea.
Do make some time to walk through the old town, you won't be sorry.
Based around the Cours Saleya, the maze-like streets of the Vieux Nice (old town) are fun to explore, whether you are shopping, eating or simply just enjoying the 'buzz'.
Small, mainly independent shops fill the streets, selling food, clothing, jewellery, cds and local arts. In the mornings there is a colourful food & flower market in the Cours Saleya. There are plenty of outside cafes, great for people-watching or not doing much at all except being there. At every turn there is something new to see, sometimes you can forget quite where exactly you are!
At night, these little streets really come alive. Bars and restaurants are plentiful and people swarm there to soak up the atmosphere. (It was pleasantly busy at the beginning of Sept).
The vibe is very French yet also very Italian, with quite a few Italian restaurants. Go for menu of the day, it is by far the most economic option and just as good.
We noticed that many of Nice' waiting staff, tend to hum a little tune when serving, which was ever amusing.
'Le joie de vivre' is alive and kicking here!
Vieux Nice(the Old Town) is one compact area bounded by the Cours Saleya and the Albert 1st Gardens. Its very safe day and night. So, wander around the small streets, no buses here, so walk walk walk, and get lost in many small stores, boutiques, pubs/bars, restaurants, some beautiful churches! I bought some nice souvenirs here like two beautiful yellow and green bottles for olive oil and vinegar.
Of course other souvenirs like fridge magnets, postcards, posters etc are on your way!
Don't forget the markets! See my shopping tip.
What I liked most was some old buildings, the laundry hanging from some windows and some people looking out the windows! (see pic)
The outside cafes are great for people-watching during the day. The central square is place Rosetti. You can visit the Baroque Cathedrale de St-Reparate, the Palais de Justice, the Palais Lascaris etc
Old Nice was probably the best part, and a short walk from our hotel. Its buildings have a classic old Mediterranean style of architecture, and the cobblestone streets were filled with various food and crafts markets, outdoor cafes, and boutiques.
During a hot summer day it is a good idea to take a break and cool down by walking down the lovely narrow streets of the old town of Nice. In French the old town is called "Vieille Ville", it is perhaps good to know as it is written in many traffic signs too.
The streets itself are lovely, but for those wanting to buy their souvenirs from small handicraft or modern tourist shops -both types exist- this is the place. Sometimes the shops are narrow and tiny so that only one person can enter at a time and not many be inside at a time.
Some good bars are also located in the old town.
Remember that you cannot drive here, it is a pedestrian area.
Get out and have a wander, the old town of Nice is beautiful and has many things to see and do ranging from the wall to wall markets, museums and some of the most stunning buildings you will find anywhere!
In and around this part of town you will also find an array of bars and some top eating - i would suggest shopping around for the food as it does viery from one to the other (one place seemed to be the local drug dealer hot spot!)
The food generally is spot on and if you look where the locals go you will normally find the best eating around, they may not be as geared up for the tourist but if your brave you will enjoy some amazin food.
You should take some time to walk through the streets look in shop windows and sit and have a drink or ice cream in a street cafe. Also stand and watch the living statuess. Everything about Nice is so great i could just keep going back.