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One of my favorite ways to see a city when my time is limited is through a tour. While many larger cities have Big Bus tours, smaller cities tend to have other options like horse & carriage rides, river cruises, or train tours. When we only had one day on the French Riviera, we chose a Little Train Sightseeing Tour in Nice, France.
This train is picked us up along the French Riviera at Promenade des Anglais. Since it was along the coast, prior to boarding, we went down to the water to check out what the locals consider a beach.
While the water was beautiful, the rocks were a little hard to maneuver across without shoes. If you are travelling with children (and we were) you may want to prepare them in advance for the topless sunbathers as this is very common for this region.
We booked our Little Train Sightseeing Tour in advance so all we had to do when we showed up was check in. This tour is a audio guided, so all you need to do is plug in your headphones (provided) and choose the language. The train will take you to The Flower Market, Massena Square, the Old Town, the Castle Hill, the Front de Mer seafront esplanade, the Bay of Angels, the Promenade des Anglais, Prince Albert I Palace Gardens. The trains run every day and departs every 30 minutes from Promenade des Anglais.
What You May See on the Little Train Sightseeing Tour in Nice, France
Statue of Liberty Replica on the Quai des États-Unis (across from the Opera of Nice). This 4.5′ tall statue was designed by Frédéric Auguste Barthold to commemorate 100 years since World War I.
Prince Albert’s Palace of Monaco. While you can tour the inside for an extra cost (and pick the train back up later), be prepared for it not to be fully opened. When Prince Albert or his wife are there certain wings are closed off to the public.
Castle Hill (Colline du Chateau) is the highest altitude in Nice at 92 meters above the sea level and the best spot to view the French Riviera. You can view Promenade des Anglais and Baie des Anges on one side and Port de Nice on the other. There is simply nothing quite as stunning in Nice as the views from Castle Hill.
Monument aux Morts at Castle Hill This war memorial, which is one of the largest in the county, honors the nearly 4,000 people in Nice who lost their lives in World War I. On the memorial (significantly carved into the wall of the city) reads:
“La ville de nice a ses fils morts pour la France. Souvenez vous des oeuvres que nos peres ont accomplies de leur temps et vous recevrez une gloire et un nom immortels.”
“To the city of Nice whose sons died for France. Remember the works that our fathers accomplished in their time so that they will receive glory and an immortal name.”
When time is of the essence in a city, you really can’t see everything. The Little Train Sightseeing Tour in Nice, France gave us a good glimpse at this beautiful region of France and still allowed us time to venture to see all the sites in Monte Carlo.
Have you had a chance to go to the French Riviera? Did you do the Little Train Sightseeing Tour in Nice, France? What are your thoughts?