Placeholder Image

Subtitles section Play video

  • We are taking you to Nice along the beautiful shores of the French Riviera. We will walk

  • the little lanes and look at some shops, we will show you the beach, the open market Cours

  • Saleya and bring you on a walking tour through the old town. We will be spending three days

  • in Nice, because there is so much to see in the city and also in the nearby towns along

  • thete d'Azur. Here we are arriving in Nice now.

  • During the program will be sharing with you detailed tips on how to get the most out of

  • your visit. Great station, it's a more of an old-fashioned

  • station and so you'll probably have to carry your suitcases down the staircase and then

  • you walk through the underground corridor, but fortunately there's an escalator that

  • will bring you up into the main station area. And it's on the north edge of the city so

  • get a taxi. In our case will be staying at a hotel down by the seaside at the Beau Rivages,

  • ideally located near the old town, the water and the new town.

  • The first thing we want to do is head down to the waterfront to the beautiful beach and

  • take some pictures. It's a lovely long and broad beach and we've

  • got a sunny day in November to enjoy it. The beach itself is lined with hotels and apartment

  • buildings for about 2 miles. It's not exactly a fine sand beach it's more of a pebble beach.

  • And the water is quite clean, you see they're fishing out there. Nobody is swimming in November,

  • nobody's even sunbathing, but just enjoying the sunshine and the sights around it.

  • One of the greatest waterfront strolls to be found anywhere is this Promenade des Anglais.

  • It's a broad, pedestrian, paved area running right alongside the beach with beautiful views

  • out to the blue sea on one side and the grand old buildings lining the street on the other.

  • It's been the main center of attraction in Nice for the past 150 years ever since visitors

  • have been streaming in. You see the Negresco Hotel in the background,

  • one of the great five-star institutions of the city.

  • Here's the Opera Nicete d'Azur. The first opera here opened in 1776 and this building

  • was created a century later. The south coast of France along the sunny

  • Mediterranean Sea is one of the world’s most beautiful destinations dotted with colorful

  • seaside towns and inland villages. You'll find that Nice makes the perfect home base

  • from which you can easily reach those other destinations like Cannes and Monaco. Nice

  • has got the biggest collection of hotels, it's got a wonderful old town, a very attractive

  • new town, great transportation with the tram and the major train station and just a beautiful

  • place to be. At the East End the Promenade changes name

  • to Quai des Etats Unis, the United States of America, and there's a lovely memorial

  • in Greek revival style there to thank the United States back in 1918 for their help

  • in ending World War I. At this end you'll find the Cours Saleya,

  • just behind that memorial a block inland from the water, one of the great outdoor food markets

  • and picturesque spots of Europe. One of the great street markets of France

  • is located here in the wide Cours Saleya. This plaza features fresh produce and flowers

  • throughout the day and many the stalls are open right into the early evening, except

  • on Mondays when it becomes an antique market and some other used goods peddled by colorful

  • vendors. They've got a whole variety of furniture,

  • there's clothing, jewelry, the usual, the bric-a-brac, the old books, antiques, electrical

  • items, you've got old cameras. Well when I travel I am just a sucker for

  • antique markets. I rarely ever buy anything and am really not there to shop, to purchase,

  • it's just to look around to enjoy the people, to look at the other shops nearby have a look

  • at all of these hundreds and thousands of items on sale. Inevitably there are going

  • to be some cafés near the open market as well, so you can stop for a break if you like

  • or just take a walk on by and check it out for later. Back into the market, you might

  • even find something here that you want to purchase - it could be something authentic

  • from the region. The flower shops are one of the most interesting

  • features of Nicebouquets composed of the most exquisite flowers of every size and

  • description from tiny buttonholed sprays to masses of blossoms 2 feet in diameter.

  • Flowers are so important to Provence, not just for decoration for your table at home,

  • but even more important because of the perfume industry. Grasse is the capital of that, we

  • will show you that as part of our series on Provence as well..

  • Chocolate lovers should look for the famous store Maison Auer in it's landmark Belle Epoque

  • building at the West End. The most famous artist who lived in Nice,

  • Henri Matisse, lived right here at the Cours in the yellow building at the far end of the

  • plaza. He had a great view out his window which he depicted in many paintings. He moved

  • to a larger mansion now converted to the Matisse Museum.

  • Matisse lived in and around Nice for his last 37 years about which he said "I couldn't believe

  • how lucky I was." And then there is socca. This is one of the

  • great foods of the South of France and Chez Therese is the place to go. Here I am with

  • Teresa herself, that was a treat. Socca is like a crepe, a flatbread, and it's

  • quite unique because it's made from chickpea flour, and it’s especially found in the

  • Ligurian area, anywhere from Nice around the coastline into Italy and down to Pisa.

  • Well of course it's a food market so there are lots of other eating options here at the

  • Cours. You'll find bread and cheese and of course always lots of fresh fruits, ingredients

  • for an instant picnic. It's nice to take a little time to sit down

  • and relax at a café for a drink and a rest and some people-watching. Instead of being

  • in a constant rush while you're traveling stop and take a look at the passing scene.

  • The church facing the Cours is the Chapel of the Misericordia, or the Chapel of Mercy.

  • It's built in the Italian Baroque style constructed between 1750 and 1770 by some architects from

  • Torino nearby. It has a very elaborate Baroque interior.

  • You can even buy some original paintings directly from the artist depicting the scenes all around

  • you that will go nicely with the photographs that youre taking.

  • Of course olives are essential to the cuisine of Provence so it's only natural you're going

  • to find a shop selling olives and olive oil and balsamic vinegars of all kinds - a great

  • variety here. Just inland from the Cours Saleya you'll find

  • the Old Town of Nice. For many visitors it will be the highlight of the city, wandering

  • through these narrow pedestrian lanes lined with historic buildings and shops, lots of

  • restaurants, bars, town squares with fountains and statues, a church here and there. It's

  • just a great spot to explore and hang out. Called the "Vieux Nice," the old town is home

  • to art galleries little shops small restaurants bars and cafés making it the perfect spot

  • for strolling. The old town maze of narrow lanes occupies

  • a triangular slice about 300 yards long on each side.

  • We're going to walk you through it day and night.

  • So this old town is not a huge area that you're going get lost in but you'd be amazed at how

  • big it seems as you're walking around because of all the little lanes and alleys that somehow

  • connect and interconnect, so you might end up walking around in circles a little bit,

  • which makes it seem much bigger than it really is.

  • In the off-season the character of view niece is quite peaceful with not many people and

  • no cars but in the summer it gets very crowded. There's a map of the old town with a suggested

  • easy route that'll take you right through and around the heart of the old town. You

  • could do this in one hour if that's all the time you got, or you could spend one day.

  • As you enter the old town from the end of the Cours Saleya one of the first streets

  • you'll come to is the very atmospheric Rue de la Poissonnerie. And this has got more

  • of the shops and restaurants that you'll find throughout the old town.

  • The Old Town of Nice has a special charm you just do not find in the rest of the modern

  • city, so you really want to focus a lot of time in this fascinating pedestrian zone on

  • the east end of the waterfront We will point out a nice way to navigate through

  • this labyrinth to get you in and around show you the main highlights. There are a couple

  • of main lanes there is Rue Droite that will take you right through the center of the old

  • town, and then you take a left and walk along Rue de la Boucherie and that'll bring you

  • down to the Place de Palais and then back to Cours Saleya. So it's kind of a round-trip

  • right through the town and feel free to wander up these little side lanes.

  • The old town consists of narrow labyrinths, not really streets, more of a maze with blocks

  • of shops of every kind along these narrow twisting lanes.

  • If you come in the summer time it will be a lot busier, so you take your pick.

  • We suggest that you might visit during the off-season instead to avoid the crowds and

  • enjoy the cooler weather. Europeans crave that brief summer sunshine, so work around

  • their schedule and come between November and April when the weather is still wonderful.

  • You will be wandering this way and that is your meander through the Old Town but you'll

  • always come back to Rue Droite which goes like a straight line through the middle of

  • the old town. It's a good axis to get your bearings, to go out to the left, go to the

  • right and then come back to this central spine. The old town of Nice is something very special

  • - not so much because of historic monuments or great churches or important single buildings

  • that are inside the old town, but just the total atmosphere, the environment, the simple

  • walking lanes, the shops and the people. There are actual locals living here, there are kids

  • out playing, the residents are upstairs looking down from their windows and you really get

  • a feeling of community here, of authenticity, especially in the off-season when it's not

  • too crowded with tourists walking through the lanes - that helps quite a bit.

  • There's a typical example of a staircase street: it branches off from Rue Droite, this is Rue

  • Molinaro and there are several of the side lanes that go up the hill. They are regular

  • streets down on the flatland, and then go up so there's no cars, well a few scooters

  • perhaps, motorcycles and bicycles, but largely were entering a pedestrian zone, a typical

  • residential neighborhood. It's interesting to see here the working population at home

  • - comfortable affordable housing in the middle of the city. Another steep lane, Rue du Château,

  • and there are several. These lanes are some of the most picturesque streets in town but

  • don't worry, you don't have to climb them. And if you don't feel like walking you can

  • take this little tourist train on a route that will bring you through the old town and

  • then up onto the hill for a view. Most of the shops in the old town are independent

  • and unique. You've got boutiques, you've got crafts, you've got all kinds of great browsing

  • to doso different than modern shopping malls.

  • You'll find souvenir shops with the typical Provençal items especially the colorful fabrics

  • and the pottery. There's also lots of food in the stores, go for the cookies maybe. Were

  • just rolling along together, this is part of our visit to the south of France a small

  • group of us traveling together and sharing in the sites.

  • We especially enjoyed the local cuisine of this casual restaurant. They specialize in

  • crepes and socca and salads and that's really all you need for a very nice lunch. Creperie

  • Breton. And the friendly couple running the place

  • really made us feel welcome. They are the ownersthe cook, waitress and the food

  • was delicious. You might be surprised at the variety of crêpes on offer and that socca.

  • And then we continue wandering about through this endlessly fascinating maze of lanes.

  • The Palais Lascarais is the largest civil Baroque building in the old town and the region.

  • It perpetuates the reputation of Charles Emmanuel the second, who was Duke of Savoy, considered

  • one of the principal families of the Nice nobility of the 17th century. The palace was

  • influenced by the Genoese Baroque and unites a set of 17th-century embellishments and some

  • changes from the 18th century. The building encloses two small courtyards

  • on which arched bays open up a monumental staircase. This lobby is free and open to

  • the public. Rue Rosetti is another one of these picturesque,

  • steep planes coming up from the old town. Notice the sidewalks are staircases - in this

  • case there is a little road one lane road down the middle and local folks hanging out.

  • Rue Rossetti is just a few blocks long but it changes character several times along the

  • way from the hills, swooping down and then it leads into Place Rossetti, kind of an Italian

  • style architecture as you find throughout the old town, and this is a great gathering

  • spot. We will show you more of this Place in the evening

  • You can see on the map how Rue and Place Rossetti are right in the middle of the old town, very

  • easy to find. Another major gathering point in the old town.

  • You'll find here bars and restaurants, little shops, there is a fountain and cafés in this

  • Italianate architecture of the old pastel colored buildings around the Place.

  • Because of its central location with so many roads going through you'll probably return

  • here a few times during your visit. The Cathedral of Nice is located on this square.

  • It's Cathédrale Sainte-Réparate, and this is something that could be in northern Italy.

  • It's beautiful with these colors in the Baroque styles. It was built during the second half

  • of the 17th century, a time when this area was more Italian than French.

  • The interior of the church has 10 chapels with a floor plan in the Latin cross that

  • was based somewhat on the church of Santa Susana in Rome. Typical of the Italian Baroque,

  • it's highly decoratedmany paintings and architectural flourishes.

  • At twilight the beauty of the building is at its best. In fact anywhere you go at twilight

  • it's a wonderful experience. Here in the old town you've got that ambient lighting on the

  • buildings and shops. And we are going to take you around through the same places daytime

  • and nighttimegive you that contrast. Walk along Rue de la Boucherie to find the

  • other great focal point, Place du Palais de Justice, which retains an Italian feeling

  • that once permeated the town. It's got French sidewalk restaurant serving

  • crêpes and wine, and a neoclassical courthouse looking like a Greek temple.

  • It is definitely worth visiting in the daytime when it's quite busy, and then again in the

  • evening when it's even more busy. This Justice Square with the courthouse looming above has

  • got very popular restaurants all around it and in the nearby lanes. It draws a lot of

  • people. Quite close to Place Rossetti, it just takes

  • a few minutes to walk over here from practically anywhere in the old town.

  • It's very safe walking around in the evening in this old town area, especially on the main

  • lanes where you've got the shops, you've got the people. Everybody's out and about, as

  • long as you're out there a reasonable hour from twilight right on up through the end

  • of dinner. The social life here at the Place du Palais

  • de Justice is even busier at night than during the dayin fact so popular that at 9 PM

  • many of these bars raise their prices, so you might want to get in and have your drinks

  • by 8-8:30 and then settle in for dinner somewhere. Of course the hour of sunset varies considerably

  • during the year, for example in December it gets dark at 5 PM and in the middle of June

  • it gets dark at 9:30 PM. Either way you're sure to enjoy an evening

  • stroll. We'll continue our look at Nice in the evening later in the movie, but now, were

  • going to bring you downtown, the next morning after breakfast at our hotel. In this case

  • were staying at the Beau Rivage Hotel, a delightful spot right down by the waterfront

  • next to the Old Town and Cours Saleya, a very convenient location.

  • We're going to have a look at the very attractive downtown of Nice. We'll take you down the

  • main shopping street, show you some of the side lanes and do a little winetasting.

  • You'll obviously take time to explore Nice’ s main commercial Street, Avenue Jean Medicin,

  • stretching about 10 blocks from Place Massena north to the train station and packed with

  • many boutiques and anchored at the lower end by the large department store, Galleries Lafayette.

  • You can see on the map of downtown how the main street goes right through the middle,

  • just near the old town and the busy shopping hub of Place Massena, and we will also take

  • you over to another great pedestrian street Rue de France.

  • There is a convenient tram service in nice running along the main avenue, practically

  • from the beach and all the way to the train station and beyond, which makes it very easy

  • to get from one end of town to the other. So it’s really not too critical that you

  • stay at a hotel down by the waterfront but of course it is more pleasant to be down by

  • the shore. Riding along on this new tram is a very smooth

  • experience - the tracks are still quite level so you have a nice view of downtown passing

  • by as you look out the windows. The tram is convenient because it's right

  • at street level so it's easy to just walk right on, and there are stops every few blocks,

  • so it's easy to catch. And trams like this have become quite popular once again in Europe,

  • it's sort of a rebirth of an old idea. A lot of money has been spent by the government

  • to upgrade and improve the city with the new tram, the new parks, really enhancing the

  • quality of life. Here's a quick flash back to the year 2006

  • showing the amount of construction work necessary to create this tram line down the main street.

  • It's all finished now. It's really quite wonderful to see how this

  • main street has been transformed in recent years by the tram. All the automobiles of

  • been removed, except service vehicles. Sidewalks widened. Now it's a great place for pedestrians

  • and bicycles and people, and