Walk from Nice to Villefranche-sur-Mer Using the Scenic Route

Situated less than 10 kilometers away from Nice, Villefranche-sur-Mer makes an ideal day trip from Nice. While it is possible to visit Villefranche by car and public transportation, this post focuses on the walk to Villefranche-sur-Mer from Nice using the scenic, coastal path.

I’ve lived in Nice for a few years now and I can honestly tell you that the route between Nice and Villefranche-sur-Mer is absolutely beautiful. The path between Nice and Villefranche-sur-Mer, two coastal cities, offers stunning panoramic views of the Mediterranean Sea. This route is so picturesque, I can’t help but make several stops to snap some photos – and I know you won’t be able to help it either!

Whether you’ve got a half or full day available, walking to Villefranche-sur-Mer is a great way to spend your time.

Distance: 6 kilometers (one way)

Time: 1 hour 30 minutes (one way)

Things to keep in mind before the walk

  • Pack bottled water for the walk. My preference is a reusable bottle. Fill it up at your apartment, hotel, or drinkable water fountains (eau potable) found around French cities.
  • If you visit during summer, I recommend walking to Villefranche-sur-Mer from Nice in the morning or late afternoon to avoid the harsh midday sun.
  • Give yourself enough time on your walk to take some photos or take a break.
  • This path is not suitable for people with mobility difficulties due to the numerous stairs you’ll have to climb up and down to access Cap de Nice.

To discover more walking trails in and around Nice, download the AllTrails app. I talk about it in my guide on the best apps to download for travel in Nice.

Nice Port: the Starting Point to walk from Nice to Villefranche-sur-Mer

The best starting point to walk from Nice to Villefranche-sur-Mer is Nice Port.

If you’re staying on the Promenade des Anglais or near the airport, then take tram line 2, direction Port Lympia, getting off at the last stop. The stop puts you in the heart of the Port and makes a great starting point for the coastal walk to Villefranche.

Walk from Nice Port to Cap de Nice

Once you arrive at Port Lympia, you’ll go east following the port towards Coco Beach (see map above). You’ll just follow the path until you reach Boulevard Franck Pilatte, on which you continue your walk. 

Boulevard Franck Pilatte will eventually turn into Avenue Jean Lorrain. Stay on this road. On your right, you’ll pass Coco Beach Nice. In about 200 meters on your right, you will find a staircase going down to Cap de Nice. On Google Maps, this point is identified as Coastal Path, 8 Avenue Jean Lorrain, 06300 Nice, France.

Once you get down to the bottom of the stairs, turn right. There should be a sign pointing you towards Cap de Nice or Sentier du Littoral. You’ll stay on this path for 550 meters. It’s an easy path to follow.

You’ll be treated to breathtakingly beautiful white jagged cliffs against a deep blue sea backdrop. As you walk along the path, look behind you to see the wide panoramic view of Nice!

After walking the Cap de Nice for 550 meters, you’ll come across a high staircase on your left. The staircase is identified with a sign pointing you in the direction of Mont Boron. To continue your coastal walk to Villefranche-sur-Mer from Nice, take this staircase. Depending on your physical abilities, it can be intense so be sure to pace yourself!

Follow M6098 Until Villefranche-sur-Mer

Once you reach the top of the stairs, turn right and follow the road until you reach M6098 / Boulevard Maurice Maeterlinck. This is a major road so you will not miss it!

Please note that Boulevard Maurice Maeterlinck will eventually change to Boulevard Princess Grâce de Monaco. Nonetheless, stay on this road. 

Once you get to M6098, turn right. You will stay entirely on this road until you reach Villefranche-sur-Mer.

From the point you get onto M6098, the distance to Villefranche’s Old Town is about 3.2 kilometers. If you want to go straight to Villefranche-sur-Mer Beach, the distance is 4 kilometers.

The views along M6098 are really remarkable. The boulevard follows the edge of a cliff which gives you uninterrupted views of the sea and of Nice as you walk to Villefranche-sur-Mer.

As you approach the port of Villefranche-sur-Mer, you’ll pass a memorial statue for Princess Grâce on your right. Make a quick stop here to take some gorgeous photos of the port and yachts out at sea.

After the statue, you will stay on M6098 for 1 kilometer, then make a slight right onto M225. This turn will be near the Octroi / Libération bus stop. From here, as you walk towards the sea, you have entered Villefranche-sur-Mer and, very soon, the Old Town.

If you wish to continue on to the Villefranche-sur-Mer beach, follow the seaside street (M225) until you reach Les Marinières Beach or Plage Villefranche-sur-Mer.

Getting to Nice from Villefranche-sur-Mer

Whenver you’re ready to get back to Nice from Villefranche-sur-Mer, you have 3 options: 

  • Take the train with SNCF
  • Take the bus
  • Walk

Walking from Villefranche-sur-Mer to Nice

To walk back to Nice from Villefranche, follow the same path you took to get to Villefranche.

Train from Villefranche-sur-Mer to Nice

A train from Villefranche-sur-Mer to Nice will cost you between €1-3. It lasts 5-15 minutes depending on the Nice train station you’re headed to: Nice Ville, Nice Riquier, and Nice Saint-Augustin. 

Bus from Villefranche-sur-Mer to Nice

To get to Nice from Villefranche-sur-Mer by bus, take line 15 towards Promenade Des Arts. You can catch this bus at the Léopold II, Barmassa, and Madone Noire bus stops.

The bus journey lasts about 20 minutes and a one-way ticket costs €1.50.

I recommend downloading the Moovit App to have the latest bus timetables.


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