1. Nice to Monaco
Separated by just 13 miles, the independent state of Monaco is well worth a visit. Pack your credit cards and wear your finest clothes – all pre-requisites on day trips from Nice to Monaco. Easy to navigate by foot, see how the other half live as you ogle superyachts in the marina, before scaling the hill to Saint Nicholas Cathedral. This famous church is the final resting place of Grace Kelly and Prince Rainier, which still brings the crowds from all corners of the globe.
Meanwhile, you might feel like you’ve stepped inside a Bond film at the world-famous Monte-Carlo Casino. Have a flutter, but take time to enjoy a coffee and people watch from one of the many cafes nearby. As you walk back through the beautiful gardens and streets, it may all seem familiar – that’s because the roads double up as part of the famous Grand Prix F1 circuit.
Getting there – take the train from Nice Ville to Monaco Monte-Carlo in just 19m. Or, do as the uber-rich and charter a helicopter!
2. Nice to Saint-Jean Cap Ferrat
On the outskirts of Nice, dangling out to sea, Saint-Jean Cap Ferrat is a sun trap surrounded by natural beauty. If you’re into rambling, this is the perfect day trip from Nice, since it’s a stone’s throw away, and a haven for hikers. If you have a head for heights, then Chemin des Douaniers is a well-worn route, that leads to the pebbly beaches below. Walk the paths that Charlie Chaplin and David Niven once trod with previous homes in the area and soak up views of the unspoilt coastline.
Finish your day with a walk in the stunning gardens of Villa Ephurissi de Rothschild followed by a sneak peek at the impressive art collection indoors.
Getting there – drive here or take a taxi in less than half an hour.
3. Nice to Cannes
Famous for its A-list clientele, boardwalk of boutiques, first class beaches and some of the best hotels, bars and restaurants in the Riviera, Cannes makes an unmissable day trip from Nice by train. Best discovered by foot, take a stroll on the Boulevard de la Croisette. Start at Palais des Festivals, home to the world-famous Cannes Film Festival (returning 14-25 May 2019), soaking up the famous hotels on this beach-laden strip.
If you stop at just one hotel, make it the InterContinental Carlton – steeped in prestige since it opened in the early 20th-century, it still has a buzz about it. But many who visit, come for the beach. Take your pick from the many luxurious resorts offering sun loungers for hire at a premium, or perhaps just stay for a glass of something chilled. On the other side of La Croisette high-end shops, from Chanel to Balenciaga draw in the well-heeled crowd. Alternatively, Le Suquet is a bustling backstreet with pastel-coloured buildings, shops and plenty of restaurants to discover.
Getting there – the train from Nice to Cannes takes 24m.
4. Nice to the Alps
Come at the right time of year, and you can enjoy the slopes on a day trip from Nice. In close proximity to the Alps, there’s plenty of options to fly, train or drive here. The beautiful ski resort of Auron is one of the easiest to get to, just 60 miles north of Nice. Available at half-day and full day rates, a ski pass starts from 28€ for adults. Get involved in one of the 46 slopes for all levels – there’s even a snowpark for beginners.
Getting there – travelling from Nice to Auron takes 1h 35m by car.
5. Nice to Toulon
If you’re looking to be inspired, Toulon offers one of the most cultural day trips from Nice. Home to the country’s naval base, and as an epicentre for fishing, Toulon Port remains a bustling hive of activity for a leisurely stroll, and a great spot for seafood restaurants. More culture awaits at nearby Hôtel des Arts - a free exhibition with modern art on display. Follow this with a walk through the Old Town complete with narrow cobbled streets and buildings harking back to a bygone era.
One tourist attraction not to be missed is the cable car which transports you to the top of Mount Faron in just six minutes. Before coming down, soak up the panoramic views, take a hike in the beautiful grounds, or seek out Musée Mémorial du Débarquement – a war fortress paying tribute to its fallen heroes and the liberation of Provence. Back down to sea level, and if your schedule allows, Plage du Mourillon is the perfect way to round off a busy day at this beautiful beach.
Getting there – take the train from Nice to Toulon in 1h 45m.
6. Nice to Antibes
Day trips from Nice by train don’t get better than a visit to nearby Antibes. This Mediterranean jewel brings the best of local culture to life. A favourite is the Picasso Museum offering more than 250 works from the famous artist, as well as Nicolas de Staël, all housed in an impressive château.
If you have restless kids, then Marineland is the answer! This sprawling water park deserves a day trip in itself, with sharks and dolphins as well as water slides. But if there’s one thing Antibes does well, it’s beaches; Plage du Ponteil and Plage de la Gravette both offer sandy shores with stunning views, perfect on a day trip from Nice.
Finally, do as the beautiful people and swing by Hotel Cap-Eden-Roc. This renowned luxurious hotel in immaculate grounds, has seen everyone from The Kennedys and Rita Hayworth and Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Cruise.
Getting there – take the train from Nice to Antibes takes 15m.