Nice

With its peach-coloured façades, azure waters and gorgeous weather, Nice has a rosy, always-on-holiday glow.

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Known as the capital of the French Riviera, the coastal city is home to world-class art museums, bustling markets and pretty hiking trails. The best way to experience Nice’s many delights is to slow right down and enjoy them at a leisurely pace.

Arriving at Nice Côte d’Azur Airport

Nice-Côte d’Azur Airport (NCE) is five miles (3km) from Vieux-Nice, the city's historic city centre. This large and modern airport is the gateway to the French Riviera, with two terminals connected by a shuttle bus. The airport offers unlimited free Wi-Fi, VIP lounges and plenty of dining and shopping options before and after security.

Two express buses make frequent trips into central Nice. Bus 98 runs along the Promenade des Anglais to the Promenade des Arts near Vieux Nice, with stops along the way, and bus 99 goes to Nice-Ville train station. The €6 fare includes a free transfer to the tram or the city bus to get you exactly where you need to be. Buses 52, 59 and 70 all terminate centrally too.

If you’re travelling with a few suitcases, taxis are available, though they can be pricey. Taxis stop near Gate A1 in Terminal 1 and near Gate A3 at Terminal 2.

The most affordable route is local bus 23. This costs just €1.50, but the bus does not stop directly at the airport. You need to walk a short distance down the main road to the bus station.

Essential sights

Promenade des Anglais

Set alongside the scenic Baie des Anges, the Promenade des Anglais is the most iconic vista in Nice. The four-mile paved promenade is the perfect place for a seaside stroll, a leisurely bike ride or a run.

Musée Matisse

Henri Matisse spent nearly 40 years in Nice. The Musée Matisse is an homage to the artist, displaying many of his works alongside photographs and objects from his time on the Riviera. Don’t expect his most famous paintings – they’re housed in larger museums elsewhere – but the collection includes many interesting drawings and sculptures.

Musée d’Art Moderne et d’Art Contemporain

Set in a modern white marble building just outside of Vieux Nice, the Musée d’Art Moderne et d’Art Contemporain (MAMAC) displays European and American works from the 1950s to the present. Be sure to visit the rooftop terrace for a picture-perfect view of Nice.

Castle Hill

There’s no longer a castle on the hill known as the Colline du Chateau – only the 16th-century tower is still standing – but the incredible views over the bay and the red rooftops is well worth the climb to the top. You can ride up on the free lift if the sun is too hot.

Musée Marc Chagall

The Musée Marc Chagall houses one of the most impressive collections of works by the artist. Chagall himself curated and installed the collection, the highlight of which is the series of 17 biblical paintings done in his colourful, dreamlike style.