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15 Best Day Trips from Nice: Exploring the French Riviera and Beyond

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Nice serves as the perfect base for exploring the stunning French Riviera and beyond. From colorful coastal villages to hilltop medieval towns, here are the 15 best day trips from Nice that you won’t want to miss.

15 Best Day Trips from Nice: Exploring the French Riviera and Beyond

No Time to Read? Here’s a Quick Highlight:

  • Villefranche-sur-Mer – Colorful harbor town just minutes from Nice
  • Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat – Picturesque peninsula with luxurious villas and beachesMonaco – Glitzy microstate known for its casino and royal family
  • Saint Paul de Vence – Charming hilltop village popular with artists
  • Cannes – Glamorous seaside town famous for its film festival

Now, let’s dive into the full list of 15 amazing day trip destinations from Nice

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Villefranche-sur-Mer:  charming places to visit around nice

Villefranche-sur-Mer is a picturesque harbor town nestled between Nice and Monaco. With its colorful buildings, sandy beaches, and charming old town, it’s a perfect destination for a relaxing day trip.

Villefrenche-sur-Mer Distance from Nice: 6 min by train, 25 min by car

How to get to Villefrenche-sur-Mer::

Things to do in Villefrenche-sur-Mer:

  • Stroll the colorful streets of the old town
  • Relax on the sandy beaches
  • Visit the 16th-century Citadel
  • Explore the Saint-Pierre Chapel, decorated by Jean Cocteau
  • Dine at one of the waterfront restaurants

Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat: french riviera day trip from nice

Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat is an upscale peninsula known for its luxurious villas, serene beaches, and scenic walking paths. It’s a perfect spot for a day of relaxation and exploration.

Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat Distance from Nice: 25 min by car, 50 min by bus

Villas by the Paloma Beach in French Riviera

How to get to Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat:

Things to do in Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat:

  • Tour the lavish Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild and its themed gardens
  • Walk the scenic coastal path around the peninsula
  • Go on a Private Boat Tour Nice, Villefranche, St Jean Cap Ferrat
  • Swim and sunbathe at the beautiful Paloma Beach
  • Visit the Villa Santo Sospir, decorated by Jean Cocteau
  • Explore the charming Port de Saint-Jean

Monaco: Day trips from Nice France

Monaco is a tiny independent city-state known for its glamour, luxury, and royal family. It’s a must-visit destination for those seeking a taste of the high life.

Monaco Distance from Nice: 20 min by train, 35 min by car

How to get to Monaco:

Day Trip to Monaco from Nice:

  • book a guided tour for the best day trip from Monaco

Things to do in Monaco:

  • Try your luck at the iconic Monte Carlo Casino
  • Watch the changing of the guard at the Prince’s Palace
  • Explore the oceanographic museum and aquarium
  • Take a walking tour of the Formula 1 Grand Prix circuit
  • Visit the exotic Jardin Exotique and its cave

Saint Paul de Vence – Places to visit near Nice France

Saint Paul de Vence is a charming hilltop village known for its art galleries, cobblestone streets, and stunning views of the French Riviera. It’s a favorite among artists and art lovers.

Saint Paul de Vence Distance from Nice: 40 min by car, 33 min by train + bus

How to get to Saint Paul de Vence

  • By train + bus: Take the train from Nice-Ville to Cagnes-sur-Mer (13 min), then take bus 400 to Saint Paul de Vence (20 min)
  • By car: Take the A8 highway towards Aix-en-Provence and exit at Cagnes-sur-Mer, then follow signs to Saint Paul de Vence (40 min)
  • By Tour: Book a private day tour or Group Day Tour.

Things to do Saint Paul de Vence :

  • Get lost in the cobblestoned streets of this medieval village
  • Visit the Maeght Foundation modern art museum
  • Have lunch with a view at the famous La Colombe d’Or restaurant
  • Explore the numerous art galleries and workshops
  • Walk along the ancient ramparts for panoramic views

Cannes: Day trips from nice to cannes

Cannes is a glamorous seaside town famous for its international film festival, luxury hotels, and designer boutiques. It’s the perfect destination for a day of glamour and relaxation.

Distance from Nice: 28 min by train, 1 hour by car

How to get to Cannes:

Day trips from nice to cannes

Things to do in Cannes:

  • Walk the red carpet at the Palais des Festivals, home of the Cannes Film Festival
  • Shop along the glitzy Croisette boulevard
  • Relax on one of the sandy beaches or trendy beach clubs
  • Visit the Suquet, the old town of Cannes
  • Take a boat trip to the nearby Lérins Islands

Antibes: nice france day trips

Antibes is a historic coastal town known for its picturesque old town, Picasso museum, and sandy beaches. It’s a perfect destination for art lovers and beach-goers alike.

Antibes Distance from Nice: 19 min by train, 1 hour by car

How to get to Antibes :

Things to do in Antibes :

  • Wander through the charming old town
  • Visit the Picasso Museum in the Château Grimaldi
  • Take a Private tour on a sailboat with apéritif at sunset
  • Stroll along the ramparts by the sea
  • Relax on one of the sandy beaches
  • Explore the Provencal market in the old town

Eze – best day trips from Nice by Train

Eze is a picturesque medieval village perched high above the Mediterranean Sea. It’s known for its charming stone houses, exotic gardens, and stunning views of the French Riviera.

Eze Distance from Nice: 13 min by train, 25 min by car

How to get to Eze:

Things to do in Eze:

  • Explore the charming medieval village perched high above the sea
  • Visit the exotic cactus garden with panoramic views
  • French Riviera Famous Cities Scoot Coupe Tour from Nice
  • Tour the Fragonard perfume factory
  • Hike the Nietzsche path from Eze Village down to Eze-sur-Mer
  • Have a gourmet meal with a view at the Chevre d’Or restaurant

Menton: Day tours from nice France

Menton is a colorful coastal town known for its sunny climate, beautiful gardens, and annual lemon festival. It’s a perfect destination for those seeking a laid-back Mediterranean atmosphere.

Menton Distance from Nice: 33 min by train, 40 min by car

How to get to Menton :

Things to do in Menton

  • Admire the pastel-hued buildings of the old town
  • See the Jean Cocteau museum
  • Relax on one of the sandy or pebbly beaches
  • Visit the beautiful botanical gardens, such as the Jardin Serre de la Madone and the Jardin botanique exotique de Menton
  • Attend the annual Lemon Festival in February

Grasse: places to go near nice 

Grasse is a historic town known as the perfume capital of the world. It’s surrounded by fields of fragrant flowers used in the production of perfume.

Grasse Distance from Nice: 1 hour by train, 55 min by car

How to get to Grasse :

Things to do in Grasse :

  • Tour a perfume factory, such as Fragonard, Molinard or Galimard
  • Explore the charming old town
  • Visit the International Perfume Museum and join a Classical Perfume Workshop in Grasse Tour
  • See the 11th-century Cathedral Notre-Dame-du-Puy
  • Take a stroll in the Jardin des Plantes

Saint-Tropez: day trip in nice france

Saint-Tropez is a glamorous coastal town known for its luxury yachts, designer boutiques, and famous beach clubs. It’s a perfect destination for a day of indulgence and people-watching.

Saint-Tropez Distance from Nice: 2 hours 30 min by boat, 2 hours by car

How to get to Saint-Tropez:

Things to do in Saint-Tropez:

  • Stroll the glamorous port filled with luxury yachts
  • Enjoy a Private Boat Charter in the Bay of St Tropez
  • Visit the 17th-century Citadel for panoramic views
  • Relax on the famous Pampelonne Beach
  • Shop in the designer boutiques and art galleries
  • Enjoy a gourmet meal at one of the trendy restaurants

Peillon: weekend trips from Nice

Peillon is a picturesque medieval village perched on a rocky outcrop in the hills above Nice. It’s known for its narrow cobblestone streets, stone houses, and stunning views of the surrounding mountains.

Peillon

Peillon Distance from Nice: 22 min by train, 35 min by car

How to get to Peillon:

Things to do in Peillon:

  • Explore this perched medieval village
  • Visit the 18th-century Chapelle des Pénitents Blancs
  • Hike in the surrounding hills for panoramic views
  • See the remains of the ancient castle
  • Try the local specialty, pumpkin ravioli

Peille

Peille is another charming medieval village perched on a hilltop in the mountains north of Nice. It’s known for its narrow streets, stone archways, and panoramic views of the valleys below.

Coco Tran — Curated Aesthetic Travel Blog By Film Photographer Coco Tran https://cocotran.com/day-trips-from-nice/

Peille Distance from Nice: 28 min by train, 35 min by car

How to get to Peilleo :

  • By train: Take the train from Nice-Ville station to Peille (28 min)
  • By car: Take the M2204 highway towards Sospel and exit at Peille (35 min)
  • By Tour: Book a private day tour or Group Day Tour.

Things to do in Peille:

  • Wander the ancient streets of this hilltop village
  • Visit the 12th-century Church of Saint-Sauveur
  • Take in the panoramic views from the orientation table
  • Hike in the surrounding mountains
  • See the ruins of the medieval castle

Gourdon

Gourdon is a picturesque medieval village perched on a rocky spur high above the Loup River valley. It’s known for its narrow streets, stone houses, and panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and Mediterranean Sea.

Gourdon Distance from Nice: 1 hour by car

How to get to Gourdon:

  • By car: Take the A8 highway towards Aix-en-Provence, then follow the D6 and D3 to Gourdon (1 hour)
  • By Tour: Book a private day tour or Group Day Tour.

Things to do in Gourdon:

  • Explore this picturesque medieval village perched on a rocky spur
  • Visit the 12th-century Church of Saint-Vincent
  • Enjoy the panoramic views from the orientation table
  • See the ruins of the medieval castle
  • Visit the Florian confectionery factory and museum

Castellane

Castellane is a charming town located at the gateway to the Verdon Gorge, known as the “Grand Canyon of Europe”. It’s a perfect base for exploring the stunning natural beauty of the region.

Castellane Distance from Nice: 1 hour 30 min by car

How to get to Castellane:

  • By car: Take the A8 highway towards Aix-en-Provence, then follow the D4085 and D952 to Castellane (1 hour 30 min)
  • By Tour: Book a private day tour or Group Day Tour.

Things to do in Castellane:

  • Hike to the Notre-Dame du Roc chapel for panoramic views over the town and surrounding mountains
  • Explore the stunning Verdon Gorge, known for its turquoise waters and dramatic cliffs
  • Go water sports on the Verdon River, such as kayaking, rafting, and paddleboarding
  • Visit the medieval town center with its narrow streets and colorful houses
  • See the 12th-century Church of Saint-Victor

Mercantour National Park

Mercantour National Park is a stunning protected area located in the southern Alps, known for its diverse landscapes, wildlife, and outdoor activities. It’s a perfect destination for nature lovers and hiking enthusiasts.

Mercantour National Park Distance from Nice: 1 hour 30 min by car to Saint-Martin-Vésubie

How to get  Mercantour National Park

  • By car: Take the M6202 highway towards Sospel, then follow the M2565 to Saint-Martin-Vésubie (1 hour 30 min)
  • By Tour: Book a private day tour or Group Day Tour.

Things to do Mercantour National Park

  • Hike the scenic mountain trails, such as the Lac d’Allos or the Vallée des Merveilles
  • See wildlife like ibex, chamois, marmots, and vultures
  • Visit charming mountain villages like Saint-Martin-Vésubie, Belvédère, and Roquebillière
  • Go skiing or snowshoeing in the winter months
  • Admire the stunning landscapes, such as the Boréon Valley and the Gordolasque Valley

Whether you’re seeking beaches, culture, nature, or glamour, the French Riviera has it all. With so many amazing day trip options from Nice, your only problem will be finding enough time to experience them all!

Helpful Tips for places to go near nice france and day trips from Nice France:

  • Check train and bus schedules in advance as they vary by day/season
  • Make restaurant reservations ahead of time, especially in high season
  • Bring layers as weather in the mountains can change quickly
  • Wear comfortable walking shoes as many villages have cobblestone streets
  • Rent a car for maximum flexibility to visit more remote destinations
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