Nice or Strasbourg – Which city should you visit?
Nice, a jewel of the French Riviera, offers dazzling coastlines and an indomitable spirit of Mediterranean charisma. On the other hand, Strasbourg, with its remarkable blend of French and German cultures, promises unique architectural marvels and gastronomic delights. This guide will provide you with comprehensive insights into each city’s distinctive offerings, helping you make a decision for your next city break.
Nice, the jewel of the French Riviera! If you’re the kind of person who loves to bask in the sun while enjoying breathtaking views of the Mediterranean Sea, then Nice is your dream come true. It’s a vibrant, colourful city where the beach meets the streets, and there’s always something to see or do. Plus, the Old Town is just amazing – it’s like stepping back in time. And let’s not forget the food, which is a heavenly mix of French and Italian flavours.
Strasbourg, a city that straddles the border of France and Germany, offers an interesting fusion of cultures that’s definitely worth exploring. Its historic centre, known as Grande Île, is a UNESCO world heritage site and is filled with beautiful cobblestone streets and half-timbered houses. But Strasbourg isn’t just about visiting the past. It’s a dynamic city brimming with a unique culture. With plenty of museums, a great art scene and bustling local markets this is a city that caters to most travellers. Plus, the local cuisine is an interesting blend of French sophistication and hearty German food! If you’re looking for a somewhat different destination for your next holiday, Strasbourg should definitely be added to your list!
While we’re comparing Nice and Strasbourg in this post, we’ve also looked at how Nice stacks up against other cities like Lyon and Nantes. We’ve linked to those articles below if you want to take a look!
Pros and Cons of Nice and Strasbourg
- 🏖 Beautiful beaches: Nice boasts the mesmerizing pebble beaches of the French Riviera.
- ☀️ Mediterranean climate: Ideal for those who love warm, sunny weather, it offers a perfect vacation climate almost all year round.
- 🍺 Vibrant nightlife: It’s a great choice for party lovers with a bustling nightlife scene.
- 🏛 Rich culture: Nice is full of museums, art galleries, and historical sites.
- 🍤 Seafood cuisine: The city’s gastronomy is heavily influenced by the sea, making it a paradise for seafood lovers.
- 👫 Busy summers: The city can get crowded during the peak summer months.
- 💶 High costs: Nice, being a popular tourist destination, tends to be more expensive, particularly during high season.
- 🪨 Pebble beaches: Some might find pebbled beaches uncomfortable compared to sandy ones.
- 🇩🇪 Unique blend of cultures: As a border city between France and Germany, Strasbourg offers a unique blend of both cultures, especially noticeable in its architecture and food.
- 🎄 Christmas markets: Strasbourg is world-renowned for its enchanting Christmas markets.
- 🍷 Wine: Located near the Alsace wine region, it is an excellent destination for wine enthusiasts.
- 🏛 UNESCO Heritage site: Strasbourg’s Grande Île is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with stunning landmarks such as the Strasbourg Cathedral.
- 👫 Lesser crowds: Strasbourg tends to be less crowded than Nice, especially outside the Christmas season.
- 🌨 Weather: Unlike Nice, Strasbourg has a semi-continental climate, meaning colder winters and less predictable weather.
- 🛣 Distance: For those already visiting southern France, Strasbourg is quite a distance away, near the eastern border of the country.
- 🏖 Limited beaches: Strasbourg is landlocked, and while it has lovely parks and the River Ill, it can’t offer seaside experiences like Nice.
Which City Has Better Food? Nice or Strasbourg?
Ah, the culinary comparison! Now this is a subject that’s bound to get appetites stirring. Both Nice and Strasbourg offer delicious and unique food experiences that would surely win the hearts (and stomachs) of every foodie.
Nice, being a Mediterranean city, offers up a cuisine brimming with fresh seafood, sun-ripened vegetables, and fragrant herbs. Think salade niçoise, bouillabaisse, and socca – a chickpea pancake that’s a must-try street food. If you’re a lover of fresh produce, seafood, and olive oil-infused dishes, then Nice might just be your food heaven.
On the flip side, Strasbourg’s gastronomy mirrors its Franco-German heritage. If hearty, comfort foods are your preference, Strasbourg dishes out plates like choucroute garnie – a lavish pile of sauerkraut, sausages and other meats. Let’s not forget the flammekueche, a thin-crust pizza topped with crème fraîche, onions, and lardons. Oh, and Strasbourg’s close proximity to the Alsace wine region? That’s a pairing opportunity not to be missed!
In the end, it’s less about “better” and more about “different”. Each city’s cuisine reflects its distinct history and geographic location. So, if your heart is yearning for a Mediterranean spread, Nice it is! But if your stomach rumbles for heartwarming Alsatian comfort food, then all signs point to Strasbourg.
Which City is Better For Couples? Nice or Strasbourg?
Nice, with its breathtaking coastline and sun-kissed charm, is perfect for couples seeking a seaside escape. You can’t beat a romantic stroll down the glamorous Promenade des Anglais or sipping a glass of rosé on a sunny terrace. For those passionate about art, the numerous museums such as the Musée Matisse or the Musée Marc Chagall can be a delightful experience. And, as the sun goes down, the city’s vibrant nightlife awaits – perfect for dance-loving duos.
Strasbourg, with its beautiful old town definitely feels romantic! From leisurely boat rides along the city’s picturesque canals to romantic strolls through the enchanting Petite France district, there’s an undeniable charm that’s hard to resist. And as the ‘Capital of Christmas’, Strasbourg transforms into a winter wonderland come December, making it an ideal choice for couples seeking a magical holiday escape.
So, Nice or Strasbourg for couples? Both are truly amazing in their own ways. It’s all about choosing the backdrop that best fits your idea of romance.
Which City is Better For Families? Nice or Strasbourg?
Nice or Strasbourg for families? Now that’s a tough question! Both cities are great in their own right, offering a brilliant mix of outdoor adventures, culture and fun-filled activities for the kids.
Over in Nice, you’ve got the sun beaming down at you almost all year round, the beaches that stretch for miles, and the gleaming Mediterranean waters that are just begging for a swim. It’s the perfect spot if your family fancies swimming, or even just lazing around soaking up the sun. And let’s not forget the parks and gardens – perfect for when you’ve had your fill of the beach.
But, Strasbourg has plenty to offer too. It’s like stepping right into a fairytale with its cobblestone streets, timbered houses and a cathedral that’ll make your jaw drop. It’s a veritable feast for the senses with museums aplenty, oodles of history and magic that’ll have the little ones hooked. Plus, with it being a few miles away from Germany means you can easily pop over to Europa Park – one of Europe’s top theme parks.
So, which one to choose? If your brood is all about the sun, sea and sand, Nice will hit the spot. But if it’s history, culture and enchanting old-world charm you’re after, Strasbourg will tick all your boxes. Ultimately, the choice boils down to what your family enjoys the most!
Which City is Better For Partying? Nice or Strasbourg?
Now, if you’re wondering about which city to pick for partying, let’s delve into what Nice and Strasbourg offers. Nice, nestled along the French Riviera, naturally boasts of a vibrant nightlife. You’ll find a mix of upscale clubs right on the beach, alongside an array of bars strewn across the city, particularly in the Old Town.
Strasbourg is not just a city of history and charm – when the sun sets, it comes alive with a lively bar scene, especially around the Place du Marché Gayot. It’s a student city, which translates to some energetic nightlife that’s slightly less pretentious and more budget-friendly than Nice. If you’re into craft beers and cosy taverns, Strasbourg will feel like a playground.
If you’re after a more glamorous night scene, Nice may be your city. But if you prefer a laid-back and budget-friendly night out, Strasbourg should be your choice. Just remember, both cities know how to host a good time, so it’s more about your personal style of revelry!
Which City is Safer? Nice or Strasbourg?
Nice, nestled in the French Riviera, welcomes thousands of tourists each year and therefore has robust safety measures in place. You’ll often find a Police presence in the tourist areas. Nonetheless, remember to be mindful of your belongings as crowded tourist spots can sometimes attract pickpockets.
Strasbourg, a quaint city on the German border, has an air of relaxed security. The city centre and tourist hotspots generally feel safe during both day and night. But, like any city, it’s wise to avoid poorly lit or unknown areas late at night.
In summary, both Nice and Strasbourg maintain a good level of safety for tourists. Wherever you choose to go, remember that vigilance and basic precautions are your best companions. Stay safe and enjoy your travels!
How long to stay in Nice
Deciding on the perfect duration for a trip to Nice can be a bit difficult, given the city’s stunning beaches, rich history, and flourishing art scene. Ultimately, the length of your stay will hinge on your personal preferences and how leisurely you plan to explore.
If you’re all about soaking up the sunshine, meandering through the charming Old Town, and indulging in the Riviera’s culinary delights, a stay of 2 to 3 days should suffice. This provides enough time to bask on the beautiful beaches, get lost in the winding alleyways of Vieux Nice, and savour mouth-watering local dishes like ‘Socca’ or ‘Salade Niçoise’.
However, if you’re intent on immersing yourself in Nice’s rich cultural tapestry and history, think about extending your visit to 4 to 5 days. This way, you can explore the exquisite art at the Musée Matisse and Musée Marc Chagall, soak in the views from the Colline du Château, and visit the iconic Cours Saleya market, all without feeling rushed.
For those desiring a deeper dive into the Côte d’Azur lifestyle, spending a week in Nice can be a fantastic choice. This period will not only provide time to thoroughly explore the city’s attractions but also offer opportunities for leisurely strolls along the Promenade des Anglais, indulging in the café culture, and embarking on day trips to nearby gems like the glamorous Cannes or the independent microstate of Monaco. A week in Nice allows you to truly immerse yourself in the relaxed yet vibrant Riviera lifestyle.
How long to stay in Strasbourg
“Choosing the ideal duration for a trip to Strasbourg can be a bit of a challenge, given the city’s blend of German and French culture, its rich history, and captivating architecture. The length of your stay ultimately depends on your individual interests and the pace at which you wish to explore.
If your plan is to experience the city’s main attractions, wander through the charming La Petite France district, and taste the region’s mouth-watering dishes like ‘choucroute’ or ‘tarte flambée’, a stay of 2 to 3 days would be ample. This will provide enough time to marvel at the majestic Strasbourg Cathedral, get lost in the quaint, cobblestone streets, and savour the unique gastronomy that Strasbourg offers.
However, if you’re aiming to immerse yourself deeper into Strasbourg’s fascinating history and culture, consider extending your stay to 4 to 5 days. This will afford you the chance to explore the various museums and galleries, such as the Alsatian Museum or the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, visit the European Parliament, and take leisurely strolls along the scenic canals, all at a relaxed pace.
For those wanting to truly absorb the Alsatian lifestyle, spending a week in Strasbourg can be a fantastic option. This duration not only provides enough time to thoroughly explore the city’s nooks and crannies but also allows for relaxing café visits and day trips to nearby gems like the charming town of Colmar or the stunning Haut-Koenigsbourg Castle. A week in Strasbourg enables you to fully appreciate the unique blend of cultures and the relaxed pace of life in this beautiful city.”
Which City is More Budget-Friendly? Nice or Strasbourg?
For Nice, nestled in the glamorous Côte d’Azur, the city can strain the pocket a bit. You’ll find higher prices in restaurants and accommodations, especially those with beautiful Mediterranean views. However, Nice still has its affordable charms. Think low-cost leisurely strolls down the Promenade des Anglais or picnics with local market goodies on the beach.
Strasbourg, while still offering a captivating European city experience, tends to be kinder to the budget. The accommodations range is vast, and dining options span from pricier Alsatian gourmet restaurants to affordable yet delightful eateries. Plus, many historical and cultural gems like the Cathedral of Notre Dame or Petite France come free of charge for you to explore.
In a nutshell, if you’re a budget traveller, Strasbourg might just be your match. However, with a bit of savvy planning, Nice can also offer a good bang for your buck. It’s all about what you’re looking for in your getaway.
How much is food and drink in Nice and Strasbourg?
|€5 – €7
|€5 – €7
|Glass of Wine
|€3 – €10
|€3 – €10
|€1.50 – €3
|€1.50 – €3
|Meal at Midrange Restaurant
|€20 – €40
|€20 – €40
Please note that these prices are estimated averages and may vary based on factors such as the specific establishment, location, and menu choices. Additionally, prices can vary over time and in different locations within each city.
How much is it to stay in Nice or Strasbourg?
|€150 – €500
|€150 – €500
|€70 – €150
|€70 – €150
|€40 – €70
|€40 – €70
|€20 – €40
|€20 – €40
Please note that these prices are estimated averages and can vary depending on factors such as location, time of year, and availability. It’s always recommended to check with specific hotels or accommodations for the most accurate and up-to-date pricing information.
When is the best time to visit Nice?
Spring: From April to June, Nice enjoys a mild Mediterranean climate with temperatures ranging from 15-20°C (59-68°F). The city sparkles with the vibrant colours of blooming flowers, making it an ideal time to visit parks like the Colline du Château. Outdoor events and festivals also start popping up, creating an energetic atmosphere.
Summer: July to August in Nice is truly summertime. The temperatures can go up to 30°C (86°F), offering perfect weather for beach activities and enjoying the stunning coastline. However, be prepared for the crowd as these are the peak tourist months, and prices for accommodation and other services may also be higher.
Autumn: In the months of September and October, the temperature stays around 20-25°C (68-77°F). The city is less crowded during this period, and the changing colours of foliage give the city a beautiful look, ideal for walks and bike rides along the Promenade des Anglais.
Winter: From November to March, temperatures in Nice can drop to around 10-15°C (50-59°F). While it’s not the ideal time for beach activities, it’s a good opportunity to explore Nice’s museums, like the Matisse Museum, and enjoy indoor events without the tourist rush.
When is the best time to visit Strasbourg?
Spring (March to May) in Strasbourg is a delightful period, with comfortable temperatures and the cityscape coming alive with blooming flowers. This is an excellent time to explore the picturesque streets of Petite France or take a leisurely boat ride along the Ill River.
Summers (June to August) in Strasbourg are warm, ideal for outdoor exploration of the city’s rich historical sites and the stunning Parc de l’Orangerie. This season also coincides with several festivals such as the Strasbourg Summer Festival and the Longevity Music Festival, adding an extra layer of excitement for visitors.
Autumn (September to November) is a special time in Strasbourg, being a part of the Alsace wine region, it marks the period of grape harvest and wine-making. This season allows visitors to witness the wine-making process and taste some of the finest wines. The weather during this period remains pleasant, and the changing hues of the vine leaves create a stunning backdrop.
Winter (December to February) in Strasbourg is truly enchanting. The city is famed for hosting one of the oldest Christmas Markets in Europe, turning the city into a twinkling fairytale land. While it can be quite cold, the festive spirit and fewer tourists make it a unique time to visit.
Weather: The weather in Strasbourg is typically temperate, with mild summers and chilly winters. For the most comfortable weather, consider planning your visit during the shoulder season of April to June or September to October.
Average Monthly Temperatures
|Nice High / Low (°C)
|Nice Rainy Days
|Strasbourg High / Low (°C)
|Strasbourg Rainy Days
|12° / 8°
|5° / -1°
|12° / 7°
|7° / -1°
|14° / 9°
|12° / 2°
|16° / 11°
|16° / 5°
|20° / 14°
|20° / 9°
|24° / 18°
|23° / 13°
|27° / 21°
|26° / 14°
|27° / 21°
|25° / 14°
|24° / 19°
|21° / 10°
|20° / 15°
|15° / 7°
|16° / 11°
|9° / 3°
|13° / 9°
|5° / 0°
Getting around Nice:
Nice has a well-connected public transportation system, with trams and buses covering the city comprehensively. Tickets are interchangeable between buses and trams, making transfers easy. For those preferring a more active exploration, the city offers a bike-sharing scheme, Vélo Bleu, and plenty of bike lanes.
Walking is another great way to explore, especially in the Old Town and along the Promenade des Anglais. Taxis and Uber are also available, but keep an eye on fares during peak tourist seasons.
Getting around Strasbourg:
Strasbourg boasts an efficient public transportation system, primarily made up of trams and buses, operated by the Compagnie des Transports Strasbourgeois (CTS). The city’s tram network is one of the most extensive in France, connecting various parts of the city and making it easy to move around.
The ‘Strasbourg à Vélo’ bike-sharing scheme is an excellent option for those preferring a more active way to explore the city. The city is bicycle-friendly with numerous dedicated bike lanes and routes, making it a delight to navigate on two wheels.
Walking is another wonderful way to experience Strasbourg, especially within the Grande Île, which is a UNESCO World Heritage site and contains many of the city’s historic attractions.
Taxis and ride-hailing services like Uber are also readily available, but fares may be higher during peak tourist seasons or during rush hours. Be sure to check rates before your journey.”
Top things to do in Nice
- Promenade des Anglais: Stroll along this famous seafront walkway, taking in the stunning views of the Mediterranean Sea and Nice’s elegant architecture. Don’t miss the iconic Hotel Negresco, an architectural marvel.
- Vieux Nice (Old Town): Lose yourself in the narrow, winding streets of Nice’s old town, filled with vibrant markets, charming shops, and delightful eateries. Check out the Cours Saleya Market for fresh produce and local specialities.
- Colline du Château (Castle Hill): While the castle itself no longer stands, this hill offers panoramic views of Nice and the surrounding coastline. It’s also home to a beautiful park, ideal for a picnic.
- Matisse Museum: Art enthusiasts must visit this museum, housing an extensive collection of works by the French painter Henri Matisse, who lived and worked in Nice for many years.
- Take a day trip to Monaco: Only a short train ride away, this glamorous city-state offers a slice of luxury with its casinos, yacht-filled harbour, and the Royal Prince’s Palace.
Top things to do in Strasbourg
- Strasbourg Cathedral: The Strasbourg Cathedral, also known as Notre Dame Cathedral, is a stunning masterpiece of Gothic architecture. Its astronomical clock is an engineering marvel that shouldn’t be missed. Climb to the top for panoramic views of Strasbourg and the surrounding region.
- Petite France: This is the city’s most picturesque district, filled with half-timbered houses, quaint canals, and narrow streets. Petite France is a UNESCO World Heritage site and truly is the essence of Strasbourg’s charm.
- European Parliament: Strasbourg is home to the European Parliament, one of the main institutions of the European Union. When in session, you can take a guided tour of the Hemicycle – the parliamentary assembly room.
- Boat Tour: A boat tour on the Ill River is a perfect way to appreciate the city’s mix of French and German architecture, as well as the beautiful nature that surrounds it.
- Parc de l’Orangerie: A visit to this lovely park makes for a relaxing break from sightseeing. Here, you can find a small zoo, a boating lake, and beautifully landscaped gardens.
How to spend three days in Nice
Day 1: Discovering the Charms of Nice
Start your day with a stroll along the famous Promenade des Anglais, enjoying the stunning views of the Mediterranean. Follow this with a visit to the iconic Hotel Negresco, an architectural gem with a fascinating history.
Head to the Old Town, Vieux Nice, for lunch. Lose yourself in the narrow, winding streets filled with vibrant markets and charming shops. Don’t miss the Cours Saleya Market for some local produce.
In the afternoon, visit the stunning Nice Cathedral with its richly decorated Baroque interior. Then, make your way up to Colline du Château, or Castle Hill. Even though the castle is no longer there, the hill offers breathtaking panoramic views of Nice and the coastline.
Day 2: Artistic Endeavors and a Monaco Adventure
Kick off your second day with a visit to the Matisse Museum, showcasing a vast collection of works by the famous artist Henri Matisse who lived in Nice.
In the afternoon, take a short train ride for a day trip to glamorous Monaco. Explore the Royal Prince’s Palace, the luxurious casinos, and the yacht-filled harbour. Back in Nice, enjoy dinner at a chic restaurant on the beach.
Day 3: Riviera Relaxation
Your last day in Nice is all about leisure. Spend the day on one of Nice’s beautiful pebble beaches, soaking up the sun and swimming in the clear blue waters of the Mediterranean. For lunch, try a beachside café for some fresh seafood.
In the evening, enjoy some shopping in the city’s chic boutiques and souvenir shops. End your Nice adventure with a delicious farewell dinner in one of the city’s gourmet restaurants, reminiscing about the highlights of your visit.
How to spend three days in Strasbourg
Day 1: Exploring Strasbourg’s Historic Core
Begin your first day in Strasbourg by visiting the impressive Strasbourg Cathedral. Climb up the tower for a stunning panorama of the city. Once you’ve marvelled at the cathedral’s Gothic splendour, take a leisurely stroll through the charming district of Petite France, with its beautiful half-timbered houses and picturesque canals.
For lunch, savour a local delicacy like Tarte Flambée at one of the traditional Alsatian winstubs (wine lounges) in the area. Spend your afternoon exploring the museums around the city centre such as the Alsatian Museum or the Fine Arts Museum.
As the day draws to a close, enjoy a river cruise on the Ill for a unique perspective on Strasbourg’s beautiful architecture.
Day 2: A Day at the European Institutions
Start your second day with a visit to the European Parliament. Take a guided tour of the Hemicycle and learn about the workings of the EU. From there, head to the nearby European Court of Human Rights and the Council of Europe, which are also part of the European Quarter.
In the afternoon, relax in the Parc de l’Orangerie. Take a peaceful boat ride on the lake, visit the small zoo, or just enjoy a leisurely stroll in the gardens.
Day 3: Exploring the Surrounding Region
On your final day, embark on a day trip to one of the nearby attractions. The Haut-Koenigsbourg Castle, about an hour’s drive from Strasbourg, offers stunning views of the Alsace region. Alternatively, the city of Colmar, with its charming old town and the famous Unterlinden Museum, is also worth a visit.
Back in Strasbourg, conclude your visit with a farewell dinner at one of the city’s excellent restaurants, perhaps trying another Alsatian speciality, such as Coq au Riesling or Choucroute Garnie.
Gareth is an avid city adventurer with a particular passion for finding amazing food! There’s quite literally nothing he doesn’t like. He spends most of his travelling time trying to find great restaurants and cafes to eat at. Alongside trying local street food which he loves! He’s done most of his travelling in Europe so far but would love to visit Japan and Mexico
When not travelling you can find Gareth boxing, running, or in the gym. He’s got a passion for exercise and loves physical challenges.
You can contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org