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The following is an overview of some of the essentials, including flights, transportation and emergency numbers. Each of our holiday rental apartments and villas at Sunlight Properties has a booklet containing all the information to be found in this website, including of course emergency numbers, but for those cautious souls and ex Boy Scouts who like to be prepared, listed below are some important numbers you can program into your phone before leaving home.
Nice Côte d'Azur Airport (www.nice.aeroport.fr) with 10 million tourists passing through its gates each year, it is France's second largest airport. Built on land reclaimed from the sea, it plays an important part in the tourist industry of the ever glamorous French Riviera. It is now easier than ever to get to Nice with the number of fights and destinations increasing every year. One can fly to 103 cities in 29 countries from Nice with 62 scheduled airlines. Getting to your holiday apartment in Nice or your villa in the South of France couldn’t be easier. Two excellent websites you can visit to compare the cheapest and most direct flights are: www.edreams.com and www.skyscanner.net
If flying from Ireland Aer Lingus travels to Dublin 8 times per week during peak season and 3 times to Cork. Ryanair flys daily from Dublin to Nice. Flying from England one can choose from an abundance of airlines including Easy Jet, who fly 4 times daily to Nice during the summer season. British Midland, BMI Baby, British Airways, FlyGlobespan, and Jet2 fly from 13 UK destinations to Nice 146 times per year. Flights to Nice from Australia, the United States and New Zealand are available on all major national airlines via their partner airlines. For lost and found, complaints, reimbursement of VAT, parking, public transport, air cargo, Tel: +33 (0)8 20 42 33 33
The following buses leave regularly from both airport terminals to Nice's city centre.
Bus Route 23 (Airport - SNCF train station) Departs from: Terminal 1 every 20 minutes between 6am and 8.50pm. Costs: €1.30 for a single journey; €4 for a day pass.
Bus Route 98 (Airport - Bus Station in Old Nice via Promenade) Departs from: Terminals 1 & 2 every 30 minutes from 6am to 11.50pm. Costs: €4 for a day pass.
Bus Route 99 (Airport - SNCF train station) Departs from: Terminals 1 & 2 every 30 minutes from 7.53am to 09pm. Costs: €4 for a day pass.
Taxis stop outside both airport terminals and generally cost €30 to €40 to the city centre. In the city centre taxis may be found at the Gare SNCF, avenue Felix Faures, Place Garibaldi, rue Hotel des Postes, and Promenade des Anglais. Taxi drivers have a reputation of overcharging tourists, so watch the meter and beware. If you are searching for a reliable, English speaking taxi service contact Mira at Friend in France (email: firstname.lastname@example.org); or for an environmentally friendly option you can try:
BioMotion Tel: +33 (0)4 93 17 57 89 www.bio-motion.fr
All the main car rental companies have offices in Nice. A car is the best way to explore some of the more remote Provençal villages and countryside not serviced by buses or trains. You can contact Hertz, Budget, Avis or Europcar. Each of these car rental companies has offices in the centre of Nice as well as at Nice Airport, and the main train station Nice-Ville.
Nice and the French Riviera benefit from an excellent public transport system. Whether travelling to the nearby towns or throughout Nice, one can choose to go by train, bus, tram, electric car, or bike. The wealth of options available means that when you book a holiday apartment in Nice there is no need to bring your car (unless you are intent on exploring the hinterland, however you can always rent a car as detailed above). Even some of our holiday rental villas are easy to get to via public transport, click here to view. Discounts apply to students and seniors.
Nice's public bus system is known as the Lignes d'Azur and will get you to most parts of the city and beyond. Tickets are sold at ‘tabacs’ and kiosks in the city centre as well as on buses. What make the buses such a good option is that tickets are only €1 for a single journey anywhere in the Alpes-Maritimes department! Multipass options are also available: €10 for 10 trips, or €4 for a day pass. Most of our holiday rental apartments in Nice are a couple of minutes walk from a bus stop, click here to view: Property Search (2). Local buses start at around 6am, but please be mindful that many finish as early as 7pm. Routes to the outskirts of Nice may run only three or four trips a day, and some don't run on Sundays.
The towns along the Riviera between Menton and Cannes are connected to Nice by a bus service called the Trans Alpes Maritimes (TAM). These coaches depart from the central bus station (Gare Routiere). The ticket prices are the same as the regular Lignes d’Azur buses. The most useful of these coaches is the frequent TAM 100, which runs between Nice and Menton, taking in the popular destinations of Villefranche, Beaulieu and Monaco, and generally finishes at around 8pm.
The Noctambus (routes N1 - 4 night bus) starts in Nice at 9pm and finish around 2am; one an hour, and serves the outerlying areas of Nice with an infrequent service.
There are long distance bus services - the Lignes Express Regional (LER) which offer excellent value for fast Autoroute connections like Nice to Aix en Provence, Toulon, Hyeres or Marseilles. The operating company for Nice is Phoceen Cars based at the Vauban tram stop. These run three or four trips a day, for which reservation prior is required.
From late November to early April Ski Buses run to various resorts near Nice. The price of a return journey including a ski pass to Isola 2000 or Auron is €30. Buses run from the Gare Routiere at 7.20am, and 7.30am from the Gare SNCF. It is essential to book in advance.
Tickets and information for any of the above services can be obtained either at a Lignes d’Azur agency (located at 3 Place Massena and 4 blvd Jean-Jaures), online or via telephone (+33 (0)8 10 06 10 06). NB. The old Gare Routiere has been demolished and the new location is to be found at the Vauban stop accessed by Tram Line 1.
Trains connect all the neighbouring towns from Ventimiglia across the Italian border through to Cannes, St Raphael, and Marseilles. The national railway network known as SNCF uses the main railway station Nice-Ville (ave Thiers, North of the Musiciens Quarter) and runs frequent services to all stations (Gares). It is generally reliable, though long ticket queues can often build up at popular times. There is a second train station located behind the port area (Gare Riquier) with easy access to the old town and port of Nice. If you are flying into a major city in France and wish to take a fast train from there to Nice your best bet is the efficient TGV, however it may prove more cost effective to arrive by air.
Completed in 2007 Tram Line 1 is 8.7 kilometres long, forming a 'U' shape and runs from the Northern suburbs to the city centre and continues onto the Eastern suburbs. It has 21 stops in total with an average of 350 to 400 metres between each stop and serves over 90,000 people a day. At peak times trams run every 4 minutes. Price of a ticket is only €1 and can be purchased from machines located at each stop. Original artwork has been installed at many points along the tramline, to enhance the aesthetics of the city. Many of our holiday rental apartments in Nice are a few minutes walk from a tram stop, click here to view. A second tramline is due for completion in 2015 and will run East to West from the airport to the Port.
The recently launched Auto Bleue service is both environmentally and user friendly. The city of Nice has made available 84 electric cars conveniently located at 28 stations throughout the city which you can rent 7 days a week, 24 hours a day. You register online and pay a one off fee of €25, and then select the program that best suits the frequency with which you intend to utilise the service. The website is available in English and is very easy to navigate. Once you have registered you will receive a user guide and badge allowing you access to your car. You can then reserve a car online, at any agency, or by phone up to 20 minutes before you wish to use it. The cost including insurance is €8 per hour, €20 for 4 hours, or €50 for 10 hours on the casual program. Fully charged you can travel up to 100 kilometres. This is a good alternative for those guests who will be renting holiday apartments in Nice at multiple times throughout the year or who are staying for extended periods. Sunlight Properties is always on hand to assist you with joining Auto Bleue, click here.
The Velo Bleu service is very popular with both locals and tourists. With 175 stations throughout the city you can rent one of 1750 bicycles for a day, week, month or year; paying only €1 per day, €5 per 7 days, €10 per month, or €25 for an entire year. The system works on a similar basis to the electric cars whereby you can register online or by phone, however once you have your ‘badge’ you can simply rent your bike at your station of choice with no need to reserve beforehand.
Please note, that the following three emergency numbers can only be called from a French landline or public payphone (at no charge). There is one emergency number available throughout Europe, which you can utilise for making calls to any emergency service from your mobile phone. Tel: 112
Calling from a Landline Tel: 17
Calling from a Landline Tel: 18
Calling from a Landline Tel: 15
5 rue Pierre Devoluy (pedestrian entrance)
Tel: +33 (0)4 92 03 33 75
Services Urgences Enfants (Children’s Emergencies)
Hôpital Lenval, 57 ave de la Californie. Tel: +33 (0)4 92 03 03 03
Nice Médecins (24h Doctor Service)
Tel: +33 (0)4 93 52 42 42
Tel: +33 (0)4 93 76 53 53
Pharmacie De Nuit (Night Pharmacy, 7 Days A Week/24 Hours A Day)
7 rue Massena. Tel: +33 (0)4 93 87 78 94 66