Welcome to a new feature on the blog – photo diaries! I find that when I’m travelling, I take so many photos and don’t end up doing anything with them. Some will make it to my Instagram page, but most of them are confined to the security of my external hard drive and never get seen by even my own eyes, let alone by others. As photography becomes more of a passion for me, I’ve decided the time is right to find a place to share my favourite photos from my travels.
Dating back to the medieval period, this charming little village is often described as a ‘jewel’ along the French Riviera. Just 30 minutes from Nice, Eze-Sur-Mer is a cluster of stone buildings and winding, narrow streets, topped with the spire of l’Eglise d’Eze. The village is situated on a hill, proudly showcasing the blue hues of the Mediterranean Sea which surround it.
Before visiting Eze, I didn’t know much about this seemingly magical place. As usual, I had decided I wanted to visit after seeing photos on Instagram and Pinterest, and wondered if it would live up to the fairytale status everyone seemed to give it. We arrived on a warm day in late April, when our first obstacle was finding a place to park. I squeezed into a gap that may or may not have been a legitimate parking space, but that’s a perk of having a Fiat 500 as your rental car!
Tourism is quickly increasing in Eze, so I suggest you go sooner rather than later. Leaving the car and paying the ever-so-slightly-too-expensive car parking charge, it seemed every other tourist in the vicinity had also decided to visit the village that day. I was pleased to see there were groups of people of all ages: families, elderly couples, and groups of young friends were clearly all excited to see the beauty of this intriguing village.
Eze-sur-Mer is undoubtedly best enjoyed in the early hours of the day in the summer months (like, before 10am) or during the shoulder seasons. Numbers of tourists are much lower at these times. Undeterred, we tagged along behind one of the many tour groups, their shepherd holding their flag high to direct their herd through the tiny streets.
I’ve never been a fan of tour groups as I much prefer to visit a place of my own accord. One of the best things about the village, in my opinion, is that, despite its small size, Eze-sur-mer is a nightmare to navigate, with it’s labyrinth of streets merging in and out and around each other. Getting lost in this charming village is a must.
True, this is a real-life village that locals live and work in. But with such an enormous amount of visitors descending on this tiny town every day, I hesitated as to whether Eze-sur-mer may have lost its charm.
A restaurant or café takes its pride of place on every street corner, and the once-sparse boutiques are popping up in every nook and cranny of the stonework. Art galleries are everywhere, but the unique, hand-crafted souvenirs you can find here are treasures you’ll prize forever. It seemed we couldn’t walk more than a few hundred metres without seeing a notice for a room or apartment to rent, some on AirBnB but mostly private lettings. It seems the locals have noted there is money to be made in this town.
Everyone who visits Eze will tell you to go to Les Jardins, the botanical gardens located at the top of the hill. I won’t, as I didn’t visit them myself, however I do believe they are worth seeing especially given Eze’s optimal location atop the hill overlooking the Med. And be sure not to miss l’Eglise d’Eze, the beautiful yellow Church located at the top of the hill.
There are limited accommodation options within the village of Eze-sur-mer itself, however it would be the most charming place to spend a night or two!
Expectedly, with its beautiful location, room rates for Eze-sur-mer are quite high. I always used Hotels Combined and Booking.com when searching for rooms online to find the best deals. AirBnB prices are usually more reasonable, with rates around £150 a night for an ‘entire home’ (private accommodation). Get £30 off your first booking by signing up through this link, or use the form below to browse accommodation listings on booking.com.
Driving to Eze-Sur-Mer is easy and the village is situated just 30 minutes from Nice. The views are beautiful en route so make sure your passenger has their camera at the ready! There is a car park right outside the entrance to the village and overflow car parking is signposted from here.
You can reach Eze from Nice on the #112 and #82 buses (on Sundays and bank holidays only the #82 runs). All bus routes to Eze can be found here.
They say that sights popular with tourists are popular for a reason. Eze-sur-mer is a prime example of that; the number of tourists did not deter my appreciation for this charming, historic town. It’s a perfect weekend getaway from many destinations in Europe, being only 30 minutes from Nice and the airport, or it’s a worthwhile stop on a longer trip in the South of France. Put it on your wander-list!
Thanks for reading and happy travels!
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