08 Mar Scenic Walks & Hikes
Mont Alban – Cap du Nice
This beautiful walk has it all, amazing views, forest and coastal paths and a lot of photographic opportunities to capture your unforgettable memories of French Riviera.
Firstly, take a bus number 33, from the bus stop called Promenade des Arts, located at the back entrance of supermarket Monoprix on Place Garibaldi. Take the bus for approximately 20 min and hop off on the stop called Chemin du Fort.
Don’t miss out on the Fort du Mont Alban* a military construction built back in the 16th century to help defend Nice against Turkish invaders. Thanks to its position, 220 m above the sea, this is one of the best look outs on the Cote d’Azur. You will get virtual views of the entirety of Nice to the west and the Baie des Angels to the east. And if you lucky you might even see Sir Elton John who has a house nearby the Fort.
After the short stop at the fort, turn back and look for a wooden sign for Villefranche on your left (at the moment the sign is missing, but you can’t miss the path) and start your walk downhill through the forest following the zig zagging pathway which will lead you to a set of steps that wind down to the main road the Boulevard Princesse Grâce de Monaco
Once you find yourself on the main road turn left and continue towards Villefranche-sur-Mer (see section 1 of our map below). In the village, you will find plenty of restaurants, bars and a lovely beach to refresh yourself.
Now you have two options, to take a bus back to Nice (bus number 100 or 15), both leave towards Nice from the main road Boulevard Princesse Grâce de Monaco at the bus stop Octroi or you can walk back to Nice (approximately 50 min), which is what we highly recommend.
If you do decide to walk back, from the heart of the village follow the coastline and head towards the old port of Villefranche along a pedestrian pathway from Place Wilson that wraps around the walls of the Citadel along the water (See section two of our map below). In the Old Port (Port la Darse) pass by the all the little fishing boats, diving school and Oceanologique Observatory (street name Chemin du Lazaret) until you reach the last building on the street. Walk through the narrow passage of the building close to the sea and this is where the magnificent coastal walk starts.
This ‘Rock Pool’ can be seen just at the end of your walk before climbing up to the main road, it will be filled depending on weather and tide © Dermot Mulhall
Keep on walking till the path brings you to the steps, leading back to the main road – Boulevard Carnot, from here you can walk back to the port of Nice (follow section 3 of our map below Naval Station to Ma Nolan’s Irish Pub for a well deserved drink) or you may hop on either the 100 or 15 bus from the stop just across the street close to where you climbed up.
*If you wish to take a tour inside the Fort Mont Alban you see what dates are available and buy tickets here http://centredupatrimoinevdn.tickeasy.com/Information.aspx