Situated in the beautiful Côte d'Azur only 30 kilometres from the Italian border, Nice is a popular historic and leisurely tourist destination. Located between picturesque mountains and an inviting warm sea, the city sees approximately 4 million tourists visit each year. As well as its beautiful surroundings, numerous museums and a large annual carnival make France’s 5th largest city a popular tourist hot spot.
As the third largest airport in France, Aéroport de Nice-Côte d'Azur, transports roughly 11.5 million passengers a year and is the country’s busiest flight facility outside of the capital of Paris. Providers operating here include Air France, Air Berlin, Ryanair and British Airways. Popular locations that travellers fly to or return from to Aéroport de Nice-Côte d'Azur include Brussels, Madrid, London, Paris and Marrakech.The airport is within the city itself, located to the west of the city centre. Two bus lines run to the centre of the city; Line 98 Riquier, which runs every 20 minutes, and line 99 Gare SNCF, which runs every 30 minutes.
Situated in the city centre Gare de Nice-Ville station offers numerous connections with Italy (particularly Ventimiglia at around 40 services to here a day). The station also offers daily service to Genoa, Marseille, Brussels, Amsterdam and Milan. There is also a direct link available to Moscow via the Riviera Express, and numerous connections to Paris, Cannes, Antibes and Saint-Raphael. The station is located very close to the centre of the city, however if you would rather not walk the short distance to the very centre there are numerous bus lines which go into the centre.
The majority of regional and international buses now use the train station as a drop off and pick up point in the city. Main destinations travelled to by bus from here include the majority of large cities in Italy and Spain. Eurolines and iDBUS are some of the most well known providers who service here.
Public transport in the urban area of Nice is provided by Lignes d’Azur. Their network - which is very popular with visitors and locals alike - covers around 70 bus lines and 2 tramways.
Cycling is fairly common in Nice, with bicycles making up around 8% of the daily traffic. There are many bike lanes in the city equating to 70 kilometres of cycle paths in the city centre and 155 kilometres in the surrounding urban area. Velobleu is the municipal rental bike provider since its launch in 2009. It now has 175 stations and 1750 bikes across the city.
Although there are some roads in the city centre dedicated exclusively to pedestrians, much of the area is accessible to cars. Despite this it is often a good idea to avoid driving during rush hours. The cost of parking in the city begins from around 1.30 Euro/hour for a space in the street. These are often only allowed to be occupied for a maximum of 2 hours. Street parking is often cheaper outside of the city centre, beginning at around 1 Euro/hour. There are approximately 10 car parks in the city centre which all offer the first hour of parking free. Spaces are then charged at just under 2 Euro/hour.
With some pedestrianised streets in the city, along with lots of space near the seaside (such as the Promenade des Anglais) dedicated to walking, Nice is a city that is easily accessed and explored by foot. Those expecting to walk around here however should be aware that part of the city is built on a hill which can make walking strenuous for some visitors.