Autumn and winter are traditionally viewed as ‘quiet’ seasons for tourism, however the Côte d’Azur has a number of activities and events which a visiting tourist may not be particularly aware of.
The big festivals such as Nice Carnival, Fête du Citron and Fête du Mimosa get a lot of coverage, however there are a few events and activities happening in the near future worth considering.
Fête Nationale Monégasque : 19 November 2018
Many people are familiar with Bastille Day (Fête Nationale) in France held on July 14 each year, however did you know that Monaco also celebrates their own national day?
Fête Nationale Monégasque is held on November 19 each year and is an important date in Monaco, known as ‘Prince’s Day’ by locals with celebrations including a Te Deum at Cathedrale Notre-Dame, concerts, fireworks and games.
Many tourists aren’t aware but the day is significant for awarding national honours, whereby individuals are recognised with medals for their services to the State and/or Prince. The 2 awards of the highest distinction are the Order of St Charles (which is the equivalent of the Legion d’honneur in France) and the Order of Grimaldi.
The programme for Fête Nationale Monégasque 2018 is:
Sunday 18 November 8.15pm Free public fireworks display at Port Hercules
Monday 19 November Military parade at the Palace Square from 11.30am, mass at the Cathedrale and balcony appearance at the Palace from the Royal Family.
You can follow the day’s progression live from 9.25am on Monday 19 November via Monaco Info (local Monaco television), or on Radio Monaco live from the Palace from 10am-1pm.
Top Tips: Due to the Monaco National Holiday, all Monaco buses with CAM and the Bateau Bus will be free for the day. There will be a bus leaving at 9.15am from Saint Roman and the Jardin Exotique for Monaco-Ville, returning at 12.45pm. No other vehicles will have access to Monaco-Ville, except delivery vehicles for the Palace and authorised vehicles with badges.
Happy Spa Week : 19 to 25 November 2018
Happy Spa Week is a promotion running from 19 to 25 November that offers special deals at 8 locations with spas, health or wellness facilities.
The aim is to encourage winter visitors to take advantage of mild weather on the Côte d’Azur and experience some of the region’s best wellness offers. Each establishment will offer 2 deals – a B&B offer for 2 people with spa/beauty packages, and a day offer. Alongside the spa packages, Côte d’Azur Golfs will have discounted green fees at regional golf courses.
Participating locations include Thermes Marins Monte-Carlo (Monaco), Cap Estel (Eze), Grand Hotel Cap Ferrat – A Four Season Hotel (St Jean Cap Ferrat) and the Majestic Barriere in Cannes.
See all the offers here: Happy Spa Week Packages
Sales and the City – Shopping sales in Cannes : 11-13 January 2019
Cannes will have a dedicated shopping weekend in January whereby there will be fashion shows and shopping discounts galore.
Over 350 stores will participate with 100 stores earmarked to stay open for Sunday trading, with carparking at Interparking, Pantiero and Effia proposing a rate of just €5 from 8am to 8pm.
On Friday and Saturday afternoons, there will be catwalk displays with current fashion trends between 71 rue d’Antibes and rue des Serbes. Crazy Horse Paris, known for their cabaret shows, will also present 2 shows at the Palais des Festivals at 8pm on 11 and 12 January.
Top Tips: The Sales and the City weekend runs in parallel with the annual winter sales from 9 January to 5 February, so if you intend on shopping this will be the weekend to do it! Ask Cannes retailers for your ‘Sales and the City’ loyalty card whereby once you spend €100 you are entitled to free gifts from participating restaurants in Cannes such as kids toys etc
Thanks for reading!