The French Riviera’s sun-splashed cosmopolitan capital and France’s fifth-largest city is often hailed as the birthplace of tourism on the Côte d’Azur. Easily the Riviera’s most vibrant nightlife spot, elegant Nice has plenty of other charms, ranging from sunset views along the Promenade des Anglais and baroque and Belle Époque buildings around the Garibaldi and Massena squares, to the peerless Chagall and Matisse museums, along with some of the region’s most scenic strips of boutique and café-lined sand.
Socialites have been flocking to the resort’s renowned film festival since 1946 – and come May it’s still as busy as ever. Although this is the best time for star-spotting, there are always plenty of celebrities hanging around Cannes: you’ll spot them taking selfies along the beautiful Promenade de la Croisette, flashing platinum credit cards as they shop in designer boutiques, or slipping out of their palatial hotels to chill incognito in one of the Lérins Islands’ hidden coves.
This town has Brigitte Bardot to thank for its reputation as a glitzy tourist magnet. When she frolicked on its beaches in the 1950s, Saint-Tropez was just a tiny fishing village. Now it draws a wealthy bohemian crowd, with everyone who’s anyone coming here to strip down on ‘clothing optional’ beaches, buy chic beachwear and go clubbing. St Trop’, as it’s fondly known by habitués, also has a world-class art scene and a string of Michelin-starred restaurants.