Advance Planning

Three months before Book tickets for major events such as Monaco Grand Prix and the Nice Jazz Festival. Book accommodation if visiting in peak summer season (July and August).

One month before Book tickets for seats in the stands at Carnaval de Nice.

One week before Make reservations at restaurants, especially in peak summer season.

Resources

Lonely Planet (www.lonelyplanet.com/france/nice) Destination information, hotel bookings, traveller forum and more.

Nice Tourisme (www.nicetourisme.com) Nice's official tourist information website.

Best of Nice (www.bestofniceblog.com) Tips on Nice from a local resident's perspective.

Top Tips

  • Sightsee on foot along the Promenade des Anglais, as well as in Vieux Nice and Le Port-Garibaldi, where all the attractions are packed into a walkable (and very enjoyable) few blocks.
  • Use Nice's superb tram system to get into town from the train station or airport, and use city buses to reach further-flung attractions such as the Matisse Museum.
  • Buses to neighbouring towns such as Villefranche-sur-Mer, St-Jean-Cap-Ferrat and Monaco are cheaper than the train (only €1.50 per ride, or €15 for a weekly pass including public transport in Nice).
  • A Nice museum pass costs €10/20 per day/week and covers all city museums, but not the Musée Chagall.
  • Nice's traditional street treats, including socca (chickpea pancakes) and pissaladière (caramelised onion tart) make an inexpensive, delicious snack.

What to Take

  • Electrical adapter
  • Sunscreen, sunhat and sunglasses
  • Pocket knife with corkscrew – most French wines have corks (pack this in your checked-in luggage)
  • Walking shoes – for cobbled streets, coastal trails and Nice's pedestrianised old town
  • Light scarf or sarong – to cover bare shoulders in churches
  • An adventurous appetite

What to Wear

As you are down south, the fashion is more relaxed. Even so, no bikini tops or bare male chests s'il vous plaît, unless you're on the beach.

Dress up rather than down in nicer midrange restaurants, clubs and bars – no jeans and sneakers (though black or 'smarter' jeans will probably be OK).

Pre-Departure Checklist

  • Make sure your passport is valid for at least six months past your arrival date
  • Arrange travel insurance
  • Check the airline baggage restrictions
  • Inform your debit-/credit-card company you’re heading away
  • Book accommodation; reserve at big-name restaurants
  • Verify whether your health insurance covers you in France and bring relevant ID cards