In line with its status as France’s fifth largest city – Nice still has an undeniably sophisticated touch, with its café terraces and emblematic, palm-lined seaside promenade stretching for several miles along the water. Nice City may have changed over the years – gaining something of a reputation for its graffiti-covered urban ghettos – but it remains consistently popular with tourists, on account of its enviable climate and beautiful setting against the « Baie des Anges« .
The heart of the old town – Nice’s most colourful quarter – lies behind the seafront, along cours Saleya. A tour on a mini-train from the seafront, in front of Hôtel Meridien, takes in the flower market, the old town and Castle Hill gardens. Lively cours Saleya has a daily market selling fruit, vegetables and flowers, and antiques on Mondays. The Chapelle de la Miséricorde offers shade, tranquillity and a wonderful example of baroque architecture, with frescoes, gilt inlay, lavish chandeliers and a magnificent Bréa altarpiece.
North of the market lies the lovely 17th-century baroque Cathédrale de Ste-Réparate (place Rossetti), flanked by its own 18th-century bell tower and known for its glossy ceramic-tile dome. North-east is the quirky, Genoan-style Palais Lascaris , a treasure trove of 17th- and 18th-century furniture and paintings. Westward, Nice takes on a very different look, featuring 18th- and 19th-century stucco villas, neo-classical hotels and a series of garden squares with fountains.Research : - nice city -