Nice is in the southwest of France on the Mediterranean Sea. It’s situated in a region called the Côte d’Azur, also known as the French Riviera.

It has a population of approximately 340,000, making it the 5th largest city in France. It receives around 4 million tourists a year, making it the second most visited city in France, behind Paris.

With a Mediterranean climate, Nice enjoys mild winters and little rainfall (but when it rains, it pours!). Average highs in the summer are around 27C/81F, with average lows in the winter around 6C/43F.

Nice is a city that lives and breathes class, serving incredible food, fashion, and cultural experiences. It has thriving nightlife, dozens of museums, and an international vibe. Many cruises and yacht charters start in Nice, cruising along the coast of France and Italy.

If you’re traveling to Monaco for gambling, or to Cannes for their famous film festival, Nice is not only a fabulous city to soak in the culture and food of the Côte d’Azur, but a steppingstone to other world-class destinations.

Popular routes to Nice, France

While there are direct flights from North America, they are seasonal. If traveling from the United States, you will typically connect in a major European hub, like Amsterdam or Frankfurt.

Nearly every major European airline flies to Nice, and you can even connect with a regularly scheduled helicopter for a luxurious transfer to Monaco!

RouteAirlinePricing
New York City (JFK)Delta Air LinesContact us
Newark (EWR)United AirlinesContact us
Montreal (YUL)Air CanadaContact us
Paris (CDG/ORY)Air FranceContact us
London (LHR/LGW/LCY)British AirwaysContact us
Amsterdam (AMS)KLMContact us
Frankfurt (FRA)LufthansaContact us
Munich (MUC)LufthansaContact us
Dubai (DXB)EmiratesContact us
Doha (DOH)Qatar AirwaysContact us

Lounges at Nice Côte d’Azur Airport (NCE)

There are four Business Class lounges at the Nice airport. There are no dedicated First-Class lounges.

Each lounge is privately operated and serves multiple airlines. You can also access each lounge using Priority Pass.

LoungeLocationAmenities
The Canopy LoungeTerminal 1, Non-SchengenComplimentary food, drinks, WiFi, business center
The Library LoungeTerminal 1, SchengenComplimentary food, drinks, WiFi, business center
The Levity LoungeTerminal 2, Non-SchengenComplimentary food, drinks, WiFi, business center
The Infinity LoungeTerminal 2, SchengenComplimentary food, drinks, WiFi, business center

Brief history of Nice

The city of Nice was founded by the Greeks around 350 B.C., and archeological evidence suggests that the area was populated over 400,000 years ago. It was later conquered by the Romans, and you can see Roman evidence throughout the city in its museums and archaeological sites.

Throughout the Middle Ages, control of Nice frequently switched between Italy and France. In 1861, France took control of Nice. Today, Nice is a cosmopolitan city, and a playground for the world’s rich and famous.

Top 5 things to do in Nice

1. Stroll the Promenade des Anglais

Along the Mediterranean Sea, the Promenade des Anglais (“Walkway of the English”) is a stunning pedestrian route along the seawall that stretches 4 miles from the airport to the Quai des États-Unis (“United States Quay”).

Credit to Jimmy Harris under CC BY 2.0 license

Spend your days soaking in the sun and sea breeze, watching glamorous people tanning on the beach, bicycling, or enjoying the many restaurants and cafes dotting the Promenade.

2. Explore the Vielle Ville

The old town, or Vielle Ville, is in the heart of Nice right by the water. You can spend days exploring its winding cobblestone streets, world-class restaurants, fashion houses and cute shops.

Credit to Cheryl Fuerte under CC BY 2.0 license

Unique things to purchase are bags of dried lavender, olive oil, and textiles. The Pinocchio Gelateria is a special treat, offering unique flavors like tomato and cactus.

Instead of staying at a hotel, it’s highly recommended to rent an apartment in the Old Town to best embrace the history and culture of Nice.

3. Hike Castle Hill

At the center of Nice, a short walk from the Old Town and the Promenade des Anglais, there’s a hill (more like a small mountain!) that has one of the most beautiful hikes in Europe. An old military citadel, the 92-meter-high hike is dotted with gardens, fountains, and historic sites.

Credit to TravelEden under CC BY 2.0 license

From the top of the hill, you have an amazing view of Nice and the Mediterranean Sea.

There is also an important Jewish cemetery, the Cimetière Israélite, Allée François Aragon. You’ll also find the Cascade Dijon, an artificial waterfall constructed in 1885.

Admission is complimentary. Pack lots of water and plan for a half-day hike, at a minimum.

It’s recommended to complete the hike twice, once during the day and once at twilight, to best enjoy the scenery.

4. Visit Monaco

Located 25 minutes by train from Nice, you can visit the Principality of Monaco. A microstate with its own government, it is one of the smallest countries in the world. It is one of the wealthiest places on earth, home to billionaires and royalty.

Considering its size, you can easily visit Monaco in a day. Stroll around the harbor and admire some of the finest yachts in the world. Spend time gambling at famous casinos, like the Casino of Monte-Carlo or the Casino Café de Paris. Finally, walk around the city streets and lookout for celebrities – they’re always there!

5. Visit the romantic city of Saint-Paul-de-Vence

Saint-Paul-de-Vence is a castle commune about 1 1/2 hours by public transport from Nice (you can also take the train and do a very challenging but beautiful hike). It’s one of the oldest medieval towns on the French Riviera, which is evident in its winding cobblestone streets. Spend your day visiting art galleries that line the town.

Credit to dynamosquito under CC BY 2.0 license

When exploring the city, you’ll find incredible restaurants, five-star hotels, and breathtaking scenery. The views from Saint-Paul-de-Vence over the Mediterranean Sea should be on your bucket list!

(Cover image: “Nice, France” by Kristoffer Trolle is licensed under CC BY 2.0)