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Nice Old Town

Vieux Nice is the city’s picturesque Italianate district, with flower and food markets, narrow streets and piazzettas.

TravelCurious Tip

Savour some some crystallised fruit from the chocolaterie-confiserie Maison Auer, whose gorgeous façade and interior (as well as many of its recipes) date back to 1820.

The heart of Nice

Nice’s Vieille Ville is a warren of colour and atmosphere. Bars, restaurants and shops can be found round every corner of its winding streets, which are labelled in both French and the Niçois dialect.

Running through it is Le Cours Saleya, a bustling open market selling flowers as well as fruit and vegetables - bric-a-brac on Mondays. Also worth visiting is the morning fish market at Place Saint François, offering an extensive range of the very freshest seafood.


Niçois specialities

Make sure to try the local dish socca: known as farinata over the border in Italy, this is a delicious peppery pancake made from chickpea flour.

Also unmissable is the Italian-style ice cream at Fenocchio Glacier, which is the best in Nice and gets very busy in high season. A great way to cool down - though the streets of the Old Town are surprisingly shady and well-ventilated, keeping some of the Riviera scorch at bay.

The Old Town is buzzing at night, with restaurants and bars competing for custom and some hosting live music. This is the place to tantalise your tastebuds and really get to the heart of Nice’s unique Mediterranean character.

Nearby Attractions

See all attractions in Nice
Castle Hill
Once the city’s citadel, Castle Hill is the best place for a breathtaking panoramic view of Nice and the French Riviera.
Le Cours Saleya
A busy and beautiful open-air market in the heart of Nice’s Old Town.
Palais Lascaris
A magnificent collection of musical instruments housed in a stunning Baroque palace.
Cathedrale Sainte Reparate
Nice's cathedral is one of the city's architectural gems, honouring its patron saint.
Chapelle de la Miséricorde
Chapelle de la Miséricorde is a beautiful Baroque church inside and out, dating from the mid-18th century.
Place du Palais de Justice
At the heart of Vieux Nice, Place du Palais de Justice is a wonderful display of the city's Neoclassical heritage.

Related Tours

The Essential Highlights of Nice
Ancient Beginnings

In this comprehensive tour of Nice, you will have the pleasure of visiting Mont Boron, where you will enjoy a breathtaking panoramic view of the Bay of Angels and Nice Old Town. You will then move on to explore the Castle Hill, original site of the trading town founded by the Greeks 2,500 years ago. Interestingly enough, this ancient town was entirely dismantled by the soldiers of the French King, Louis XIV.

Venturing onwards to beautiful Cimiez, you will discover the former Roman settlement of Cemenelum, and learn how the area would later become the winter home of Queen Victoria. Spoilt for choice, you will see the Roman amphitheatre and ruins, you will enjoy the Belle Epoque architecture, and see the famous Cimiez Franciscan monastery with its stunning garden. Indeed, you will not be surprise that Cimiez would become home to Henri Matisse, and would be where he would get much of his inspiration for his fabulous work. 

Colourful Old Town and Beyond

One of the main highlights of the French Riviera capital is the prestigious Promenade des Anglais, a favorite walk-way of European nobility in the last century. Here you will find the magnificent Hôtel Negresco and art deco Palais de la Méditerranée. 

A tour of Nice would not be complete without a visit to the Italian-influenced, picturesque district of the Old City, where you can enjoy the many beautiful Baroque churches, cobbled streets, and small colourful squares. On the Saleya square, you will enjoy the famous colourful flower market as well as having the opportunity to experience gourmet specialties, including the famous socca or pissaladière, artisanal olive oil and delicious local wine. The elegant Masséna, on the border of the Old and Modern Town, will impress with its elegant style and faultless atmosphere.
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