Exploring the Culinary Side of Nice – Food Tour in Nice

Although I studied in Paris for a while and visited both larger and smaller towns around France, I never had a chance to explore the French Riviera until this year (2015). The south of France doesn’t need much of an introduction. It’s one of the most popular, luxurious, and therefore expensive places in the world.

Even before I landed, the descent on the plane was already incredible! The runway is right next to the sea, making the view one of the most gorgeous I’ve ever seen. But I knew the best part was going to be food, and this is why I signed up for a food tour in Nice

Exploring the Culinary Side of Nice
Nice food tour

The city was much cheaper than I expected, I actually thought it was more affordable than Paris. I should also mention that the locals in Nice are much nicer than Parisians and welcome you in a very pleasant way. Right after I landed I was directed to a local bus for just 1.50 euro instead of paying 6 euros for a tourist shuttle to the city center.

The moment I stepped onto the Place Massena I was amazed at how lively it was. There were a lot of kids playing in the local fountain, others dancing, and all of this was ‘observed’ by statues of naked men sitting on pillars above the square.

 Place Massena

In the old town I felt like I was walking around Florence. The streets were narrow, the buildings had tons of stairs, and the atmosphere was more Italian than French.Editorial Travel Photography: Street of Old Nice, French Riviera, Cote d'azur, France

Despite being known for its beaches, yachts, and famous film festival, Nice is also a dream destination for foodies. While the salade Niçoise with egg, Dijon, anchovies and tomato is Nice’s most well known dish, the jewel in the Côte d’Azur’s crown has an abundance of less famous local specialties just waiting to be discovered by hungry visitors.

tomatoes france
Fresh tomatos from the market

If you’ve been following this blog for a while you’ll know that I like food tours. Why? Mainly because I never have enough time to eat at every recommended restaurant and also try the local cuisine. Unfortunately, there is only a certain amount of food you can eat per day so food tours are a nice convenient way to sample a lot of different dishes at amazing locations.

Queen Victoria’s favorite candy store!
Hanging out at Queen Victoria's favorite candy store in town!
Hanging out at Queen Victoria’s favorite candy store in town!

A Taste of Nice was definitely different from every other food tour I’ve taken before. Instead of visiting a few places in the same area, the tour had a much more exploratory vibe. The amount of food we were given was decent, but I didn’t feel super stuffed.

Our wonderful guide Amanda showed us her favorite places to eat, told us where to get the best ice cream, and took us to a few places where tourists don’t normally go. Instead of hanging out at a famous market we took the tram to a local market and tried some homemade goat cheese. Funnily enough it was the only place where we got cheese as in the south of France cheese consumption isn’t as popular as in the rest of the country.DSC01089

My favorite part of the tour was actually a visit to the meat market where I could also get a drink at the bar inside. Apart from traditional rose wine we got a homemade pissaladiere, which is a tart with onions.

Drink while buying some meat for dinner!

After trying some oil from a spoon, which I found strange, our guide took the group for lunch. To be completely honest I had no idea what a traditional Nicean lunch was, but I definitely liked what I received. The main dish was a socca, a hot and crispy pancake with a soft filling.


On the side we got some grilled mushrooms, peppers, and small farcis – stuffed vegetables, mostly zucchini, with bread crumbs. We were all stuffed and satisfied after this light yet decadent meal.

with socca!

The tour finished with a generous portion of ice cream at Fenocchio which is probably the most famous gelato place in town. The line is always around the block, but it’s definitely worth it. As I’ve always been fascinated by weird flavors, I decided to give the cactus and violette flavors a try.

Violette ended up tasting like sweet soap, but the cactus was like a delicious sorbet. When I came back the following day I took my ice cream experience to the next level and ordered a vanilla-rose-pepper scoop and a tomato & basil scoop.

I have to say that the first one was probably the strangest thing I’ve ever tried and I don’t recommend it, but I’m glad I got to try it!ice cream in nice

After 3 days in Nice I felt like I was leaving Italy, not France. But don’t get me wrong – French food you can try elsewhere in the country is also good. I definitely would like to go back and maybe even live there for a while.

Categories France

21 thoughts on “Exploring the Culinary Side of Nice – Food Tour in Nice”

  1. .. the moment I arrived in Nice I realized that it’s not exactly how I imagined it would be…

    so what places have EVER been EXACTLY how you imagined they would be ? curious..
    in my experience NO place has VER been EXACTLY how I imagined it would be..

  2. Thats true what you write. Nice is not like France, same as Lille. Maybe it’s just Paris that leaves that “freench” feeling 😉 But ona thing i didn’t like in Nice was the dirt on the streets – but i was there about 10 years ago so maybe now it’s better.

  3. It’s hard to tell if Nice is or isn’t like France, because you didn’t tell a lot about the place. I may agree that it somehow resembles Italian city. I’d say more if I could see more pictures od Nice, not yourself. Please don’t get me wrong, I mean you look beautiful in this red dress (and I also love the color), but I thought it would be more about Nice, and it’s mostly about you. Maybe next time you could post more pictures of the city you’re visiting? Just food for thought.

  4. So it is not like Paris, basically..hmm. must all of France be exactly like Paris?

    it is apparent that you have a huge ego and believe yourself to be quite gorgeous, more photos focusing on you than on the places..almost soft core porn lol..not sure that is the best idea for a travel blog ?

  5. wow, I guess that every city in the USA should be like NYC, every city in France should be exactly like Paris..all of Spain like Madrid..I think that Brasilia does not seem Brazilian because it is not exactly like Rio de Janeiro..?
    or we could try changing our preconceptions of what we believe a place should be..

  6. I think there are also some similarities in your snobbish European preconceptions, but i is fine to think that you are better than others..most people do , we know that Europeans handled 2 world wars really well

  7. Hi Anna,
    I especially liked the part where you described all the different ice cream flavors. Though I thought some were a little weird, just the description made my mouth water. I have actually been to France, but I only visited Paris and DisneyLand. DisneyLand was a little far from our hotel, but it was easy to get there because Public Transport is good in France. It is much better than where I live in Oman. In your opinion, would revisiting France be worth it to see Nice?

  8. Thanks for the write up Anna. I am going to be living there for a whole year so i am little concerned about food options . Although i am not foodie, i don’t like sea food much which , i feel , will be available rather more easily. Did you find so?

    Oh and yes you look gorgeous !!!

  9. Thanks for the tip about A Taste of Nice! I’m planning a trip to Nice and Provence around New Year holiday. My 41st trip to Europe! Love the big cities and the small villages (which are much more charming than those here in US).

    You mention villages around Nice – which ones? And in Provence?

      • I’ve been staying here for 2 months and yes St Paul de vence is very beautiful. For eze village, make sure you don’t miss out the trekking. If you need any help , contact me 🙂

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