Exploring Castle Hill Nice, France


On our recent trip to Nice we were surprised to find more hustle and bustle than we expected. Although Nice is the fifth most populated city within France it's southern coastal location left us expecting the city to be tranquil and peaceful. However we found the city to be busy with people and lots going on to see and do. With a city and beach full of people you need somewhere to escape to for some peace and relaxation. 

Castle Hill is the hill located just on the edge of the city. Positioned on the coast the hill is home to views across the city; out to sea and above the harbour. Being on top of the hill high above the city and the hustle and bustle you are able to feel a sense of peace and tranquility. Due to the height of the hill you are unable to hear the noise of cars or people below. With not much noise and lots of areas to relax and unwind the hill is the perfect place to escape the city. 
How to get to Castle Hill . . . 

Due to the location of the hill being along the coast it is easy to access by foot or by public transport. The type of transport you use to get to the hill depends on where you are travelling from. Although the bay doesn't look too big to walk around with its calm blue waters it can be as far as three miles if you are walking from as far as the airport. 

  • Walking - If you are walking along the promenade to Castle Hill it can be a very relaxing and pretty walk. However on a hot day the walk can be very tiring and with not much shade along the way. And even though the hill is rather large it can seem so far away. But when you reach the hill you will soon realise that the walk was all worth it. 

  • Tram - The closest tram station to Castle Hill is the Garibaldi station. This is just under half a mile from Castle Hill and only takes approximately ten minutes to walk to. The station is a middle stop on the line, so you will have to make sure that you get off at the right stop. Although Nice does not have a confusing tram system it can still be rather confusing if you are not used to using the tram. 

Once you are at the bottom of Castle Hill you have the decision of how you will get to the top. You have the choice of either walking to the top which entails a lot of steps or taking the elevator which can get you to the top for minimal effort and in no time at all. Although both are completely different it is still a hard decision and depends on why you are visiting the hill and how much time you have to get to the summit. 

  • Walking - Walking to the top of the hill can be rewarding with the breathtaking views as you get higher but it can also be tiring with the 426 steps that you will have to climb. Although on the way you will find seating benches and viewing bays where you can take your photos. The walk can take longer than the elevator but will be worth it for the breathtaking views along the way.

  • Elevator - The elevator is located at the bottom of the hill on the side, just off of the road from the beach. Pictured below the elevator is called Ascenseur Du Chateau. From first impressions you would not think that this is the elevator until you are inside. Inside you will find a long tunnel, which at the end the elevator is located. The due for the elevator can get large as it is free to use, however it does move fast as the elevator does not take long and fits up to 8 people inside. In just 50 seconds you will be at the top of  Castle Hill. 

At the top . . . 

Once at the top whether you walked or took the elevator you will be welcomed by breathtaking views across Nice beach and out to sea. The top of the hill is peaceful and quiet due to it being away from the everyday noise and hustle and bustle below. The top of the hill has a variety of sights to see and things to do. Whether you have ventured to the top for a relaxing afternoon or to experience the views across the city you will be sure to find what you are looking for. At the top you will find stunning views; a breathtaking waterfall; a cafe to grab lunch and parks and green areas to relax. 
Tip:: If you don't fancy walking or getting the lift to the top of the hill then you can always get the road train. 
We would love to know if you have ever visited Castle Hill? Do you have any recommendations for getting to the top?

Love Chloe and Megan

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