Thinking of visiting Nice, France?

Parc du Paillon, Nice, France
Reflections of Nice, Place Massena

We’ve had a home in Nice for about nine years now, and it just seems to get nicer all the time. There are plenty of things to see and do here: we have the sea, sun, history, art, music… It’s also a great base with easy access to other areas along the Riviera, including Monaco and Italy.

Curious Histories of Nice, FranceSo if you are thinking of coming to Nice, here are a few resources:

In my book, Curious Histories of Nice, France, you’ll find the stories behind the buildings, monuments, food, and traditions of the city. It’s a light read that will help you enjoy your time in Nice.

For specific “what to do” advice, see Best of Nice Blog’s guides for eating, drinking, shopping, nightlife, etc.

Nice, France
Nice by the sea

For places to stay check out:

Luxury Apartments – Parler Nice Apartments has luxury vacation apartment rentals in Nice that will make your stay on the French Riviera as enjoyable and memorable as possible.

Airbnb Room Rent an airbnb room in Fiona’s well-located apartment in the center of Nice.

Self-Catering Gite – If you would like to stay outside the city in a self-catering gite, Lou Messugo might be what you are looking for. Located in a quiet village, 25 minutes from the Nice airport, it has a pool, and it’s ideally placed to explore the south of France.

Even more choices – See the “Best of Nice Blog” for Gail’s suggestions on where to sleep in Nice.

Parc du Paillon, Nice, France
Traditional festival in Nice

What have I been up to?

We have lots of travel plans for the summer, and we are looking forward to doing some really interesting things: a story-telling festival in Wales and the Fringe Festival in Edinburgh should be a lot of fun.

As far as writing goes, I think I need a break from the French Revolution as it can be a bit heavy going. So to lighten things up a bit, I have started researching legends of Provence.

As a little taster for you, here is the legend of how lavender came to be cultivated in Provence.

lavender field

The Legend of Lavender

Once there was a small, blue-eyed fairy called Lavendula. She was born high on a mountain in the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence where the wild lavender grew, and she had lived there her whole life.

One day, Lavendula decided she wanted to see more of the world, so she came down from her high perch to visit the plains of Provence. When she saw the dry barren fields burned by the unrelenting sun, her heart was so sad that she began to cry.

As the tears from her blue eyes rolled down her cheeks and landed on the soil, they made puddles of violet-blue colored water. The sadness of this empty land made her cry so much that she ended up standing in a small pond.

When she finally pulled herself together and saw what she had done, she tried to wipe up the blue water, but the more she wiped, the more the color spread. Soon the entire land was a blue-violet color, and out of this grew the lavender that has become one of the best known symbols of Provence.

*There are several versions of this tale and the above is mine.

Where to see lavender

There is nothing like seeing the purple fields in full bloom. You won’t see lavender in Nice, but you don’t have to venture very far to see it. It can bloom from the end of June to the beginning of August, depending on the weather conditions. You can create your own lavender route on this site:

Hope you are gearing up for a great summer.

Thinking of visiting Nice, France?
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Margo Lestz


  1. I have visited Nice several times and have always loved it, in fact I have a love of Provence in general, so I am not quite sure why I am living on the West coast of France, you’d have to ask my husband the answer to that! However, we can grow lavender here and our garden is full of it.

    1. Well, you can go out into your lavender-filled garden and pretend you are in Provence. 🙂 I imagine lavender would grow in Nice too, but I’m in the middle of a city in an apartment, so no gardening for me. I did have a pot of lavender of the balcony last year, but since I leave for weeks at a time, all my potted plants die while I’m gone. 🙁

    1. That sounds like a great idea, but we’ll have to plan for 2017 because this year is already full. I am thinking of going to Florence in the autumn though…

  2. Lucky girl! Good thing about the lavender too is that the mustiques and mouches hate it, but good for the honey bees. After 5 years dans the Chnord, at last going to visit the parents in law (yes finally got married 4 weeks ago) in the Vendée, near La Tranche-sur-Mer, and few days on way back to visit the sis in law and kids in the beautiful Morbihan. Enjoy the good life you windswept, interesting, and intrepid voyageur. Bon weekend from the Irish Wild Goose in the chnord (or should I use the new name “Hauts de France? – Daft name to me).

      1. Murky buckets Margo. The French a bit surprised a mad Ulsterman was able to teach them a bit about romance. Would have done it sooner if I’d known i was a widower. The difference the French way of life makes, despite it’s niggles, to one’s life is wonderful. Taken nearly 53 years, but finally found my place in life and the world. Don’t think I’ll ever speak proper French (Je parle Francais comme un bulledogue manchant une guepe!), but get by with subtitles, with my terrible accent. Finally had 3 nights in Paris as a honeymoon treat from the revered aged one. Lovely, but wouldn’t want to live there. My dad also paid for an old mate, who got mistaken for the singer Adele on the streets of Montmartre! Thanks again petal. At last French spring has arrived, so lets profit, before the drache returns! x

  3. Hi Margo,

    Love sweet Lavendula! Beautiful.
    On a day trip from Nice I remember I had a throbbing headache as I walked toward the field of violet lavender fresh in bloom. I knelt down and swept my fingers across a beautifully perfumed lavender flower. I gently massaged my bruised temple with the fresh sweet fragrance. Within minutes my headache was gone and I felt at ease.
    Enjoy all those blissful moments in Nice. She is a jewel.

    1. Lavender is certainly an amazing plant, besides being beautiful and smelling nice, it also has health benefits!
      I was in the lavender fields last year, but don’t think I’ll make it this year as we have so much travel planned… But you never know.

  4. Thanks for the plug!!! I’ll be in Nice 6/22-7/2 and hope to see you then! A

    1. You’re welcome, Adrian! Hopefully I’ll be around in late June. We are traveling a lot this summer, but I hope our paths will cross again soon.
      Best -Margo

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