Perhaps the Greeks who colonized Nice in 350 BC did not visualize the glamorous future of this resort, but they knew enough to honor the settlement with the name of a goddess, Nike. The setting is incomparable, sheltered by an amphitheater of hills and overlooking the Mediterranean. Over the years, Nice has been passed back and forth from Sardinia to France, where it has remained since 1860. Today, the palm-lined Promenade des Anglais, the flower market ablaze with color and the wonderful climate draw visitors from around the world.
Off the Beaten Track
Sospel: This peaceful Alpine village, perched at 3,000 feet, is a mere 30 minutes from Nice by train. Beautiful facades decorated with excellent trompe l'oeil designs, Gothic houses and medieval streets welcome you to this hamlet, once completely surrounded by ramparts. The recently restored baroque Saint Michel cathedral is home to two 16th-century triptych paintings.
Throw out the table etiquette lessons you may have learned . In France, your hands are expected to rest on the table while you dine, wait for your host to place his/her napkin in his/her lap before doing the same with yours, and wait for your host to give a toast before offering one. With regards to your bread, place it directly on the tablecloth unless it's a very formal meal and a bread plate is present, and tear it into bite-sized pieces before eating it. Gently wiping your plate clean with a piece of bread on the end of your fork in preparation for the next course is customary.