Officially the season ends on September 20, at which point Nice begins to switch on its leisurely charm and provide joy at every turn

 

The bright azure color of the sea in Nice is only seen on special days, when there is a strong wind blowing. From the terrace of the Movida restaurant, one can endlessly watch the waves, the tousled canopy of palms, happily tanned tourists reluctant to say farewell to the summer, and raise a smile at a young couple determinedly dragging an inflatable Flamingo into the sea.

It's well worth taking a stroll to the port of Nice, where you can't fail to notice Les Pointus – a mooring for brightly painted boats. The owners look after them attentively and regularly freshen them up, maintaining a spotless appearance. If you fancy sitting on the pier and daydreaming about which yacht you'll choose for yourself, then order a pizza in one of the restaurants opposite – it’s much tastier by the water.

Nice is a city that likes to organize performances right in the middle of the street. There go a couple artfully dancing the tango in front of the café tables in Place Garibaldi. A little later, the musicians arrive to perform your favorite songs, and at some point you'll even find yourself singing along with them. To allow the atmosphere to wash through you, head over to Rue Cassini, which is something like the Parisian district of Le Marais, full of trendy bars and conceptual designer spaces.

At Promenade du Paillon, your kid's happiness gauge will jump off the scale, and even many adults can't resist dancing in the Water Mirror fountain. The best time for taking photos is just before the sun sets, when its smooth surface becomes golden. A little further along is the National Theater of Nice, followed by the MAMAC Museum, tucked into Place Yves Klein. Alongside the masterpieces of modern art there is an observation deck on the roof, where you can get an elevated view over the city.

Place du Palais de Justice is the heart of the Old Town, and it's well worth spending an evening there, getting lost in the narrow, colorfully lit streets. There are bars playing live music, designer shops and the LAC chocolate boutique with the most delicious macarons in the city. On Place Rossetti, you have to pop into the Fenocchiо ice cream parlor – the cafe has been operating since 1966. The variety of flavors on offer is unique, whose range extends from strawberries and mango to lavender and champagne.

Souvenirs including Herbes de Provence, Fleur de Sel de Camargue and lavender tea are for sale at the Cours Saleya market. The place transforms several times throughout the course of the day. In the morning they sell vegetables, flowers, olives and all kinds of goods, while in the afternoon and evening fish restaurants open up. When its time for an aperitif, a sacred time for the French, street musicians play here, and it is easy to forget about your plans and simply indulge in people watching. If you decide to stay for dinner then try Le Safari, an establishment that has won plaudits from the locals.

The history of the legendary Le Plongeoir restaurant is impressive. At the end of the 19th century, a fishing boat was anchored to the rock, where anyone could drink tea six meters up. Then, it was converted into a jumping post. In 2015, a decision was made to revive the restaurant, and it quickly became one of Nice's most popular hangouts. You can take lunch over the sea here until the end of December – but it's better to call in advance, and everything depends on the weather.

Apartments in Nice should be selected with a balcony, as September is a time for dining in the fresh air. The Old Town is the place to buy cheese, foie gras, olives, dried tomatoes and, of course, oven-fresh baguettes. If you get lost while selecting a wine, you can't go wrong with the exquisite pink from Château Roubine Côtes-de-Provence. Set the table and fill the glasses. Now, you're not just staying in Nice – you're living here.

 

By Alena Malysheva

Published on: June 24, 2018