Do you like the coastline of the French Riviera, its beaches, its capes, cruises and walks, from Nice to Cannes? You will also love the hinterland, its villages perched on a balcony with breathtaking views of the Mediterranean and the Alps
, a few kilometers from the coast. To take the fresh air at high altitude, laze at a café terrace, stroll through shady alleys and discover beautiful museums
and heritage places … Here is our selection.
Vence, the essential
In front of the sea
, leaning against the baous, these cliffs with flat summits, Vence seems to have been spared by the weather. We walk in picturesque narrow streets, from a medieval house to a charming little square, between shops and galleries. Like Saint-Paul de Vence, stronghold of the Maegh foundation, a few kilometers away, the small Riviera city is the darling of artists and artisans. Matisse has erected its Rosary Chapel, white and touching with its blue glazed tiles and stained glass windows filtering the beautiful light of the Côte d’Azur.
Eze village, the eagle’s nest
It is a medieval city perched in an eagle’s nest above the Mediterranean with a garden
exotic coiled in the ruins of an ancient fortress. The site of Èze village is one of the most beautiful of the Côte d’Azur and the panorama undoubtedly the most extraordinary of the Côte d’Azur, embracing the Mediterranean to the Gulf of Saint-Tropez. Shops, artisans, perfume factories, hotels and restaurants
stars complete the decorum. Below, Èze seaside does not mismatch, small seaside resort with the coquettish villas Belle-Époque.
Gilette, the sweetness of life
We only see them at the turn of each turn, approaching this beautiful village perched at 400 m altitude. On their rocky outcrop, the ruins of the old Aiguille Castle look after Gilette and its inhabitants 800 years ago. It is accessed by quiet and colorful streets, telling the sweetness of life and the taste of tradition. Wash houses, fountains, oil mills and a small museum of trades of yesteryear are all refreshing and interesting stops. From the belvedere and the esplanade of the castle, spectacular views of the village, the mountains, the surrounding rivers and even the Mediterranean, in the distance, reward the brave.
Cagnes-sur-Mer, the esthete
In Cagnes-sur-Mer, there is the beach and Polygone Riviera, the first outdoor shopping center. There is also, on the heights, an authentic medieval village with its castle-museum Grimaldi dominating the sea of all its crenellations. The Haut-de-Cagnes has attracted many personalities and artists such as the painter Auguste Renoir, whose beautiful home is visited at Domaine des Collettes. On the main square of the village, lined with pedestrian streets with pretty flower houses, it is good to linger to attend a game of petanque with the southern accent or admire the sunset.
Carros village, the picturesque
With the peaks of Mercantour National Park as a backdrop, its traditional medieval architecture, its old houses and its castle housing an International Center for Contemporary Art, Carros Village has earned its ranking in the inventory of the picturesque sites of the Alps. Maritimes. At 400 m altitude, it offers its visitors a sublime panorama on the plain of Var, from the sea to the peaks of the Alps.
Visit Carros (External link)
Tourrette-Levens, the white
On one side the sea, on the other side the mountain. Wherever the eye is from the heights of Tourrette-Levens, the panorama is exceptional. Nestled around the square tower of its former castle which was said to be one of the most beautiful in the region, the village seduced at first glance. Ramparts and old houses in white stone are arranged in a perfect composition. So much harmony gives you the desire to linger. This is good, several museums, natural history and butterflies, traditional crafts or Prehistory, welcome visitors for free.
Visit Tourrette-Levens (External link)
Falicon, the fortified
On a hill planted with olive trees and fig trees, overlooking the city of Nice, Falicon seems to watch over his big neighbor. Behind its ramparts still pierced by fortified gates, the village is discovered by the force of the calves but the sweetness of the place makes you forget the climb between alleys in staircases, paved squares, vaulted passages and baroque houses with pastel facades and surprising frescoes in trompe-l ‘eye. Since the well-named plateau Bellevue, the panorama is simply breathtaking.
Visit Falicon (External link)