• Help Ukrainian Families in Need: World Central Kitchen Donation Match
  • Newsletter
  • Write a Review
  • Boards
  • Deals
  • Find a Cruise
  • Reviews
  • News
  • Cruise Tips

Cruises to Nice

Nice (Photo:S-F/Shutterstock)

About Nice

Nice is the biggest city on France's glorious Cote D'Azur and the second most-visited French destination after Paris. With its intriguing old town, fabulous shops and stylish inhabitants, Nice provides the perfect springboard to sample the French Riviera.

The French Riviera stretches 80 miles along France's Mediterranean coast and is home to some of the world's most sophisticated resorts, such as Cap d'Antibes and St Tropez, as well as the small but very chic principality of Monaco, where America's darling, Grace Kelly, was a fairytale princess.

Grace certainly wasn't the first celebrity to fall in love on -- and with -- the French Riviera. In the 19th century the region played host to Queen Victoria and her son, King Edward VII, and was a favourite haunt of the Rothschilds.

Later visitor lists read like a who's who of the 20th and 21st centuries. Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Edith Wharton, Somerset Maugham, Scott & Zelda Fitzgerald and Aldous Huxley were all Riviera fans; more recent celebrities including Elton John have bought homes in this spectacular part of the world, which effortlessly retains its reputation as a magnet for the mega-rich of all nationalities.

The Cote d'Azur Economic Development Agency reckons that every year, the coast attracts at least half of the world's superyachts, while an estimated 90 percent of all superyachts visit it at least once. But despite its reputation as the playground of the beaux monde, there is also a very down-to-earth aspect to the Cote d'Azur.

Many residents zip about on local buses or low-priced trains; sleepy medieval villages perched precariously on the side of mountains are full of craft shops selling locally-made soaps, scented candles and other goodies at perfectly affordable prices. And in harborfront cafes, you can gaze at gleaming mega-yachts while tucking into a cheap-and-cheerful croque-monsieur, salad Nicoise or steak-frites.

Nice is bordered by Provence to the west, the Alps to the north and Italy to the east and epitomizes this blend of starry glamour with "all comers welcome" pragmatism. It's easy to explore on foot, has some excellent street markets and is an excellent -- and surprisingly affordable -- place in which to spend a few days at the top or tail end of a Mediterranean cruise.

  • Why go to Nice?

  • Nice Cruise Port Facilities?

Loading...
Loading...

We found you 65 cruises

Loading...
Loading...
Azamara Pursuit
Azamara Pursuit (Photo: Azamara Cruises)

9 Night
Med Highlights VoyageDetails

115 Reviews
Leaving:Lisbon
Cruise Line:Azamara
Mar 23, 2023
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • Price Tracker
  • Fare Insight
  • View All Deals
  • Cruise Tips
Emerald Azzurra
Emerald Azzurra (Photo/Fran Golden)

7 Night
French & Italian Rivieras With CorsicaDetails

11 Reviews
Leaving:Nice
Cruise Line:Emerald Cruises
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • Price Tracker
  • View All Deals
  • Cruise Tips
Le Lyrial (Ponant)
Le Lyrial

7 Night
Mediterranean CruiseDetails

50 Reviews
Leaving:Malta
Cruise Line:Ponant
May 17, 2023
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • Price Tracker
  • View All Deals
  • Cruise Tips
Le Lyrial (Ponant)
Le Lyrial

8 Night
Mediterranean CruiseDetails

50 Reviews
Leaving:Malaga
Cruise Line:Ponant
Apr 26, 2023
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • Price Tracker
  • View All Deals
  • Cruise Tips
Sponsored

The Dreamy Getaway w/ Virgin Voyages

  • Book by 8/31 and your partner will get 50% off their voyage
  • Receive an extra $100 toward your prepaid Bar Tab
  • Cruise Critic Editor's Choice for Best New Ship in the US for 2021
  • Over $600 in value always included - 20+ Eateries, Tips, WiFi, & more

Virgin Voyages

Cruise Critic Favorite

6 Night
Mediterranean - Western CruiseDetails

50 Reviews
Leaving:Nice
Cruise Line:Ponant
May 4, 2023
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • Price Tracker
  • View All Deals
  • Cruise Tips
Cruise Critic Favorite

17 Night
Rhine & Rhône Revealed With 1 Night In Amsterdam &...Details

87 Reviews
Leaving:Amsterdam
Cruise Line:Avalon Waterways
Oct 28, 2024
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • Price Tracker
  • View All Deals
  • Cruise Tips

16 Night
Grand France With 2 Nights In Nice For Wine LoversDetails

91 Reviews
Leaving:Paris
Cruise Line:Avalon Waterways
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • Price Tracker
  • View All Deals
  • Cruise Tips

10 Night
Nice & Sensations Of Lyon And ProvenceDetails

138 Reviews
Leaving:Nice
Cruise Line:Emerald Cruises
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • Price Tracker
  • View All Deals
  • Cruise Tips

7 Night
Sensations Of Lyon & ProvenceDetails

138 Reviews
Leaving:Lyon
Cruise Line:Emerald Cruises
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • Price Tracker
  • View All Deals
  • Cruise Tips

11 Night
Burgundy & Provence With 2 Nights In Paris & 2 Nig...Details

61 Reviews
Leaving:Paris
Cruise Line:Avalon Waterways
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • Price Tracker
  • View All Deals
  • Cruise Tips

10 Night
Mediterranean CruiseDetails

50 Reviews
Leaving:Nice
Cruise Line:Ponant
May 29, 2023
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • Price Tracker
  • View All Deals
  • Cruise Tips

7 Night
Mediterranean - Western CruiseDetails

Leaving:Malta
Cruise Line:Ponant
May 17, 2023
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Price Tracker
  • View All Deals
  • Cruise Tips

17 Night
Burgundy & Provence With 2 Nights In Nice, 2 Night...Details

61 Reviews
Leaving:Nice
Cruise Line:Avalon Waterways
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • Price Tracker
  • View All Deals
  • Cruise Tips

9 Night
Burgundy & Provence With 2 Nights In Nice For Wine...Details

61 Reviews
Leaving:Nice
Cruise Line:Avalon Waterways
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • Price Tracker
  • View All Deals
  • Cruise Tips

14 Night
Discover The Highlights Of The MediterraneanDetails

11 Reviews
Leaving:Nice
Cruise Line:Emerald Cruises
Apr 25, 2023
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • Price Tracker
  • View All Deals
  • Cruise Tips

Why go to Nice?

Pros:

The coastline offers a choice of upscale resorts or laidback cafes; artistic haunts lie in between

Cons:

Keep an eye on the VAT or tax that can rack up dining and shopping bills an additional 20 percent

Bottom Line:

The largest city on the Cote D'Azur offers the glamour of the French Riviera with sentimental charms

Nice Cruise Port Facilities?

Port facilities include a tourist information office, bureaux de change, toilets and a taxi rank. (NOTE: all taxis are metered and drivers are obliged to display their rates on a card. Before setting off, check that the correct rate is being applied and that the meter is on).

Good to Know?

Heavy traffic. Take care crossing the busy roads

Thieves. The Riviera is a wealthy area and attracts a criminal element known for their boldness in breaking into cars and even opening the passenger doors of cars in transit to snatch bags from the front seat. Lock all valuables out of sight and keep passenger doors locked when traveling. And always keep an eye on your bags when using public transport.

Getting Around?

On foot: Pick up a local map at one of the many tourist info offices and kiosks and head off on foot. A simple stroll along the Promenade des Anglais, with occasional detours to roam the winding streets of Nice Old Town and sip coffee, citron presse or pastis at one of the many streetwalk cafes, is a delight.

By car: You can hire a Mini or small Peugot from Nice Airport and zip around the Riviera and the Cote. All major car rentals companies are represented in Nice, including Hertz, Europcar and Avis.

NOTE: Check whether your rental car runs on diesel or gas -- confuse the two and you could end up with a big repair bill. Ensure, too, that you have the right licence to drive in France. Your regular license is fine if you come from an EU country but travelers from outside the EU need an International Driving License. French law dictates that all drivers must be over 18; all car travelers (front and rear) must wear seat belts (where fitted) and children under 10 cannot travel in the front seats.

By bus: If you're spending a few days in Nice and don't want the hassle of driving (and more particularly, parking), exploring the Riviera by bus is a good idea as local services, run by various companies including Lignes d'Azur and Autobus de Monaco are frequent and affordable.

The Sunbus (Tel: +33 (0)4-9313-5313) is the city's most popular public transport; services run from Station Centrale, on General Leclerc Square, to Nice Ville railway station and Vieux Nice. Single trip tickets are available. You can also buy a one or five-day pass. Routes 8, 9 and 11 run along the Promenade des Anglais and all buses heading down Avenue Jean Medecin from the Nice-Ville railway station go to the centre of Nice, Place Massena (which is also the hub of the city's tram network).

To get from Nice to Monaco by bus costs about the same as by train. To go further afield, head for Nice's central bus station on Boulevard Jean Jaures, as services run from here along the Mediterranean coast to Cannes, Menton and other resorts. (For information call +33 (0)4-9385-6181)

By train: The SNCF railway station (Gare Nice-Ville) is on Avenue Thiers, roughly 10 minutes' walk from the Port of Nice. Frequent services run eastwards to Monaco and Menton, or westwards to Juan-les-Pins, Cannes, Antibes and other Riviera destinations. There are also fast (TGV) services to major French and Italian cities, including Paris, Marseilles and Rome.

By bike: Nice is heaven for cyclists as the city has an ever-growing network of bike routes, including one running the length of the Promenade des Anglais. Bike hire (pedal powered and otherwise) is a growing sector of the local economy.

Options include Elite Rent a Bike (21 rue de Rivoli, Tel. 33(0)4 93 81 09 41) and HOLIDAY BIKES (23 rue de Belgique, Tel. : (0)4 93 16 01 62 ). Both rent out motorbikes, scooters and buggies as well as bicycles, Be prepared to pay a hefty deposit -- anything up to E4,000 -- for a top-end machine.

Other: Roller Station (49 quai des Etats-Unis, Tel 33(0)4 93 62 99 05) rents out roller skates as well as pushbikes, so is a good option for the fit and the family-oriented.

Currency & Best Way to Get Money?

The official currency is the euro (for the latest exchange rate, visit oanda.com or xe.com).

There are plenty of banks with ATM machines and exchange bureaux in Nice and at the airport, railway and bus stations. Major credit cards are also widely (but not universally) accepted. Carry some cash just in case.

Note also that France applies VAT (Value Added Tax) to most goods and services, currently at the rate of 20 percent, which adds a hefty surcharge to restaurant and shopping bills.

As a tourist, you can claim a tax refund on any goods bought for deportation, so keep all receipts and be prepared to present them -- possibly with proof that you are taking the goods out of the country -- at a VAT refund station. You'll find these at airports, railway stations with international links and most tourist offices.

Language?

While English is widely spoken and understood -- particularly at main tourist attractions – do not assume everyone speaks it. Many taxi drivers, waiters and shopkeepers speak only French, so it's worth taking a phrase book or language app along.

Where You're Docked?

Some (smaller) cruise ships dock at the Port of Nice on the Quai du Commerce pier, about a half-hour walk away from the city centre. Others anchor in neighboring Villefranche Bay and tender passengers ashore into the delightful little port of Villefranche-sur-Mer. This is worth exploring in its own right but is also a short (and regular) train journey from Nice.

Conventional and fast-ferry operations to Corsica also operate from Nice.


Nice Cruise Reviews
Great port, easy to embark the ship. Nice is wonderful, especially the flower market and the old town. Took trips to Monaco and St Paul de Vence, both spectacular.Read More
User Avatar
Ex-vogue model
We were scheduled for an excursion to Cannes, but found out when we got on board that RC cancelled the excursion (how come we have to give them 48 hours notice but they can cancel with less than 24 hours notice?). WRead More
User Avatar
shiphound
Lovely city very nice placeRead More
User Avatar
Thebluey
Just tendered over and walked aroundRead More
User Avatar
mskcart30

Related Cruises

Cruises to Tampa

Cruises to Tampa

658 Reviews
Cruises to Hilo

Cruises to Hilo

626 Reviews
Cruises to Athens

Cruises to Athens

1,392 Reviews
Cruises to Ensenada

Cruises to Ensenada

611 Reviews
Cruises to Saint John (New Brunswick)

Cruises to Saint John (New Brunswick)

423 Reviews
Cruises to Izmir

Cruises to Izmir

184 Reviews
Cruises to Portland (Maine)

Cruises to Portland (Maine)

377 Reviews
Cruises to Osaka

Cruises to Osaka

46 Reviews
Cruises to Mumbai (Bombay)

Cruises to Mumbai (Bombay)

76 Reviews
Cruises to Great Stirrup Cay

Cruises to Great Stirrup Cay

1,379 Reviews
Cruises to Vienna

Cruises to Vienna

395 Reviews
Cruises to Kobe

Cruises to Kobe

41 Reviews
Cruises to Glacier Bay

Cruises to Glacier Bay

943 Reviews
Cruises to Iles des Saintes

Cruises to Iles des Saintes

13 Reviews
Cruises to Nha Trang

Cruises to Nha Trang

106 Reviews
Cruises to Picton

Cruises to Picton

161 Reviews
Cruises to Toulon

Cruises to Toulon

358 Reviews
Cruises to Tournon

Cruises to Tournon

35 Reviews
Cruises to Cinque Terre

Cruises to Cinque Terre

347 Reviews
Cruises to Vilshofen an der Donau

Cruises to Vilshofen an der Donau

10 Reviews
Want to cruise smarter?
Get expert advice, insider tips and more.
By proceeding, you agree to Cruise Critic’s Privacy and Cookies Statement and Terms of Use.