Worth getting out of bed for
The Maeght Foundation in the village contains an impressive art collection. The beautiful gardens are studded with sculptures by Miro and Chillida, and there are drawings by Bonnard, Braque, Calder, Chagall, Giacometti and Léger (+33 (0)4 93 32 81 63; www.fondation-maeght.com). Buy a holiday perfume at Grasse – visit the Fragonard museum at 20 boulevard Fragonard (+33 (0)4 93 36 44 65) and you’ll even learn how your scent is made. Be sure to wander around Nice and explore the beautiful boutiques tucked away within the narrow streets. If you’re here on a Monday, head for the famous antiques market in the Cours Saleya, and stop for some food at one of the restaurants clustered around the square. Visit the Picasso museum in Antibes, inside the Grimaldi castle (+33 (0)4 92 90 54 20; www.antibes-juanlespins.com). The sea-views from the ramparts vie with the paintings for your attention. For a shot of glamour, walk the famous Croisette in Cannes, and lust after (or invest in) the designer threads. The Côte d’Azur’s coastline beckons, so pack a picnic and set off for a day of sun, sand and sea.
Try some Provençal fare cooked with exotic influences at Le Tilleul Menthe, on Place du Tilleul (+33 (0)4 93 32 80 36). The starter of crisped Pont l'Évêque cheese with apples, caramel and peppered cider is the stuff of daydreams, and the tuna with wasabi and coriander is equally delicious. Sit under the century-old lime tree and admire the beautiful setting. Le Vieux Moulin on Rond Point Sainte-Claire (+33 (0)4 93 32 10 45) is a more traditional affair, with hearty specialities from Nice and Provence. The restaurant is housed in a mill dating back to the 17th century, and the menu changes daily, depending on what the chef has plucked from the market. Head to La Cocarde at 23 rue Grande (+33 (0)4 93 32 86 17), for enticing Mediterranean dishes – onion soup, feather-light omelettes, daily specials and moreish ice-cream, at prices without a sting. The legendary restaurant at the Colombe d’Or (+33 (0)4 93 32 80 02) has fine food, a stupendous art collection, and a long lead time for bookings – lunch of a lifetime is the phrase that springs to mind for this former haunt of Picasso, Matisse, Miro and Cézanne.
Stop for a refreshing, sherbety citron pressé at Café de la Place, on Place du Général de Gaulle (+33 0(4) 93 32 80 03), and watch the locals playing boules on the square.