Top 10 Instagram Spots in Nice, France According to a Local

Ahhhh Nice , the beautiful city I grew up in. Even though I moved to Prague 5 years ago, I go back there quite often to see my parents and friends. I always considered myself lucky for being from such a charming Mediterranean city. And due to my local status, you can definitely take the recommendations in this article seriously!

Due to its perfect location, Nice is the ultimate summer destination. However, I would recommend you to go in May, early June or September to avoid the crazy tourist crowds during July and August.

1 • Russian Orthodox Cathedral

Recognized as a national monument of France, the St Nicholas Orthodox Cathedral is an impressive orange and turquoise church located in the city center. To provide a little historical background, Russia and the French Riviera have had a tight connection dating from the mid-19th century. The Russian nobility often visited the South of France and eventually a railway connection was established between Moscow and Nice in 1864. When he visited by train, Tsar Alexander II loved Nice so much that he decided to build an Orthodox Cathedral there.

St Nicholas Orthodox Cathedral 

2 • Le Vieux Nice

Le Vieux Nice or just Le Vieux for locals is the Old Town of Nice. It is a maze of narrow cobbled streets and alleys that you will love to get yourself lost in. The main street of the Old Town, called the Cours Saleya hosts a colorful flower market daily with the exception of Monday when there is a flea market instead.

Filled with cafés, bars, restaurants, and cute shops, Le Vieux is a perfect place for a relaxed lunch or an evening stroll and a night out! Note that it can get super touristy and there are a bunch of tourist traps in my opinion. Do not hesitate to ask me or locals where to go to get authentic Niçois food there.

The old streets of Vieux-Nice

3 • Promenade des Anglais

If you’ve seen photos of Nice before, the chances are they are from this Promenade. This 7 km (5 miles) main avenue is a gorgeous walkway along the beach. On one side you have fancy hotels and expensive housing (sea view comes with a price!) and on the other side, there is an immense pebble beach strip made into a mosaic of private and public beaches. At the end of the Promenade, you can find what is called the Quai des États-Unis which is a road section at the bottom of the Castle’s Hill.

Locals and tourists alike love taking a stroll on this boardwalk, admiring the azure sea. It is a place you definitely cannot afford to miss and one of the most Instagrammable places in the city.

 Quai des États Unis

4 • Le Port de Nice

If there is a place in Nice that embodies the dolce vita, it is le Port de Nice (Nice Port). Often forgotten by travelers, this area shouldn’t be overlooked. The port is a very trendy and vibrant neighborhood where you can find typical Mediterranean houses, colorful boats, antique shops, and thrifts stores. It is ideal for fleeing the busy city center and relax while watching the ferries sail across the Mediterranean Sea. The port is also a famous local nightlife hub!

Le Port de Nice

5 • The Pebble Beaches

From the airport all the way to the port, Nice has an endless strip of pebble beaches. The pebbles are actually grey stones we call galets. They are part of Nice’s history and help make the sea this vibrant azure color. Thanks to galets, you don’t have to cope with sand going everywhere (which can be super annoying!). On the other side, it’s pretty hard to walk to the sea and also to relax on a beach tower laid over those stones.

If you want to do like locals, I advise you to invest in a fold-up beach mattress that will make your beach trip a lot more comfortable (oh and you can buy water shoes but that’s really up to you!) If you want to splurge a little, you can go to any private beach and rent a chaise lounge for the day.

6 • Le Negresco

This luxury 5-star hotel is the most iconic and famous sight in Nice. Located right on the Promenade des Anglais, Le Negresco, was listed by the government of France as a National Historic Building and is a member of Leading Hotels of the World. This hotel is the perfect photo backdrop!

Le Negresco

7 • Monastère de Cimiez

One of the lesser touristic areas of Nice is called Cimiez. The Monastère de Cimiez is an active monastery sitting atop a hill overlooking Nice. The small monastery is surrounded by amazing gardens kept up by the monks. It is a relaxing and quiet place to go to if you want to escape the busy city center.

Monastère de Cimiez

8 • Le Plongeoir

Not far from the port, you can find Le Plongeoir which is a famous fancy restaurant located above the sea on a pillar of rock. There, the #viewsfordays will take a whole new meaning. If you dream about eating above the waves, there’s your spot!

Le Plongeoir

9 • Place Masséna

Another iconic part of Nice is called the Place Masséna. It is an impressive and often busy square. Surrounded by red buildings, this plaza hosts a monumental fountain with a marble statue of Apollo on top. What makes this area recognizable is its checkerboard and super trippy ground.

Place Masséna

10 • La Colline du Château

If you are expecting a castle, well prepare to be disappointed! La Colline du Château (meaning the Castle’s Hill) is nowadays only a hill. Even if we still call it Le Château, this place used to be a military citadel that was destroyed under Louis XIV. It is still worth going up there though because of the breathtaking panoramic views. I would advise you to go up the stairs instead of taking the elevator. Even if it is a long walk, it is a lovely hike!

The view from la Colline du Château

Have you been to Nice? What are the most Instagrammable places in the city for you? Let me know in the comments below!

Want to keep reading? You might like those articles as well:
The Ultimate Guide to the Lavender Fields in Provence
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Top Dreamy Beaches in Southern Corsica
Best Hidden Gems in Malta
Top Most Instagrammable Places in Malmö, Sweden

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  1. Vicki Rutwind
    August 24, 2018 / 10:12 PM

    I was thinking of heading to Nice for a couple of days toward the end of September. Do you think it will be crowded? LOVE this post!

    • The Travelling Frenchy
      August 29, 2018 / 2:26 PM

      Ohh thank you so much Vicki I am so happy you liked this post! Actually the end of September is a great time to go, all the tourists will be gone! But it might be too cold to swim. However it is always a lovely city to visit 🙂

    • Eve
      June 8, 2019 / 5:41 PM

      i really love your dress on the picture with le negresso. mind sharing where you got it?

      • June 10, 2019 / 9:28 AM

        Hi! It is from Melli Mellow. It was gifted to me! However I wouldn’t recommend getting it, it is really low quality, the straps broke very easily…!

  2. Milly
    September 2, 2018 / 10:03 PM

    This is such a great post and you’ve definitely given me some ideas for my trip!

  3. jillian
    September 7, 2018 / 8:07 PM

    Love your photo tips and advice! I will be travelling with my teenage daughter, and we’re not sure how to pack/dress for October in Nice. Any suggestions?

    • September 14, 2018 / 5:12 PM

      Hi Jillian! Thank you! Usually Nice stays pretty warm during September October but if can get windy and chilly during the night. Pack Fall outfits with some light ones too but no need for hats or gloves 😊

  4. Lucy Crivelli
    April 1, 2019 / 7:39 PM

    Hi do you have any restaurant recommendation?! I’m going in May for my honeymoon ✨

  5. Meredith
    April 24, 2019 / 12:47 PM

    I am traveling to Nice at the end of September with my husband and two teenagers. We will be staying in the Old Town. I would love suggestions in that area on non touristy places to eat. Thank you

    • April 24, 2019 / 1:19 PM

      Hi Meredith, I am not sure which type of cuisine you are looking for but I can recommend checking out Oliviera, La P’tite Cocotte, and Le Comptoir du Marché. Enjoy Nice!

      • Meredith
        April 28, 2019 / 8:33 AM

        Thank you 🙂 I will make a note of them and check them out.

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