Luxury Holidays Around Nice

August 28, 2011 · Posted in Europe, Travel 

The French Riviera or Cote d’Azur, the Mediterranean coastline of the southeast corner of France, has been an attractive luxury holiday villa location for the well off since the 19th century when the area was a popular health resort destination. In the first part of the 20th century, it’s a area frequented by the greatest artists and writers of the age. Since World War Two , however , the French Riviera has become preferred by a large range of tourists from businessmen and affluent Americans to families and those from the UK.

With 300 days of sunshine each year and 115 km of shoreline and beaches to draw a luxuriously varied mixture of visitors, the French Riviera is, in some ways, the crossroads to everywhere. Many people throughout the world call the region home and there are approximately 85,000 foreigners in residence there at any one time. The biggest city, Nice, is home to the Nice Cote d’Azur Airport, which is the second most busy in France. Via high-speed rail, the Nice-Ville station is a six hour trip from Paris.

There are top-flight resorts at Cannes, , St Jean Cap Ferrat, Antibes, Juan les Pines, Cap d’Ail, Saint Raphal, and St Tropez. The area surrounds Monaco, famous for its casinos and for the Monaco F1 Grand Prix held each and every year in May. This and the Cannes Film Festival, are the signature events of the Cote d’Azur, drawing big visitor crowds and attracting worldwide press coverage.

The hottest and busiest months on the French Riviera are July and August. Consequently many people in the region opt to visit in May and June or September and October. The area is known for its “Cuisine de Soleil,” featuring light, fresh fare mixing fruit and veg with a heavy emphasis on olive oil, garlic, and herbs. This regional cuisine is pared with the outstanding wines of the Cotes de Provence, particularly the fruity ros, which is the area’s speciality. Young Provencal ros is a beautiful aperitif in summer and also pairs wonderfully with the Mediterranean cheeses such as Feta, Plardon and Picodon.

Above all, a holiday on the French Riviera is an opportunity to savour a relaxed quality of life. The atmosphere is sophisticated and multi-cultural. In a lot of the resorts, tourists on holiday can get by with little or no French. From time spent lying on the beach to visits to the local market, museums and other attractions, there is no shortage of things to do and see. Do not be put off by the jet set reputation. There’s something for everyone on the Cote d’Azur, and if that involves a little celebrity watching, it is simply an added bonus to an already exceptional holiday location.

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