When one thinks of Nice, the first thing that pops to mind is summer. With its beaches, palm trees and festivals, it is natural to associate the French Riviera’s capital with summer holidays. But if you ask locals, they will tell you that the best season to enjoy the city is in the Autumn. There is something eerie about Nice after the Summer, when the seasonal turmoil is finally letting it catch its breath, and the streets’ heartbeat slowly goes back to normal.
Here are five reasons why Autumn offers the best prospects for a luxury holiday in Nice:
Summer weather, without the scorching heat
Although temperatures go down gradually from September on, the air is still warm, between 20 and 25°C on average, and the sun never seems to realise that summer is over – Nice is famous for having 300 sunny days a year. This type of weather makes walking along the Promenade des Anglais a lot more enjoyable, and still allows for long days at the beach.
As pupils reluctantly go back to school and tourists catch their flights home, the atmosphere quiets down enough to ease road traffic and make holidays relaxing, while all the shops and restaurant, still running on summer hours, offer entertainment for when you want it. Less crowds, but just as many things to do as in the heart of summer; September is when Nice strikes the perfect balance.
Local culture at its best
Autumn is also the season to discover more of Nice’s culture, with events targeted at locals, and residents taking more time to enjoy the city they feel so lucky to live in. Amongst favourites , the Festin dou Pouort (port festival) is a popular celebration with street performers, traditional musicians and dancers, as well as fireworks. Gather with the local residents around a plate of socca (Nice’s most typical dish; a sort of chick pea flour pancake, wood oven-baked and sprinkled with salt and pepper) and discover the region’s folklore on the 8th of September.
Return of the sports season
If you are a sports fan, September is definitely the season to go to Nice, when the cooler temperatures make it possible to resume activities. This year the programme features sailing championships, rally and the much-awaited Nice triathlon – why not give it a go yourself?
Just like Monet, Picasso or Matisse, you will be inspired by Nice’s scenic landscapes when autumn paints them with its golden palette. There is a reason why the French Riviera fascinates so many artists, and autumn is the best season to learn more about it. If seeing it with your own eyes is not enough, you can learn more about the art history of the region through a number of seasonal exhibitions. This year, discover Riviera-born Louis Cane at the modern art museum, and explore the theme of exile with a Picasso, Chagall and Léger exhibition at the Marc Chagall museum.
Melodie Michel is Marketing Manager at Riviera Rental Guide.