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Bus Travel on the Riviera

 
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Nice Airport Bus
Nice Airport Bus

 

 

The entire Cote d'Azur is linked by comfortable buses and it's an excellent way to get around, particularly if you're travelling along the coast. Riviera buses schedules go where the traffic is which, for the most part, means along the coast. To that end, the most frequent buses link the coastal towns from Cannes to Nice and Monaco and reach their peak frequency during rush hours from Monday to Friday. Bus service from the coast to inland villages is much spottier, especially on weekends.

The main selling point of bus travel along the French Riviera is how cheap it is. Each ride is €1.50 no matter whether you're travelling from Nice to Monaco or from Nice to neighbouring Cagnes-sur-Mer. If you buy a booklet of 10 tickets, the price is only €10.

The bus is far cheaper than a train although slower, and certainly cheaper than the tolls you could pay if driving. Buses are more reliable than trains which are often beset by strikes.

Planning the Bus Trip

Below you'll find the major companies handling intercity bus routes along the Riviera. You can get an overview of all the lines and download their schedules (in French) here on the Alpes-Maritimes site. Be aware that these schedules do not include last-minute changes and detours often due to road work and municipal construction. I recommend using the search engine on this site which is in English. It includes local buses that take you to the intercity bus as well as maps and walking instructions. Another good source of up-to-date schedules is the Alpes Maritimes hot line at 0800 06 01 06. It's a free call from a land line and you can ask for an English-speaking operator.

It is not necessary or possible to make advance reservations or to reserve on line. For major events such as the Cannes Film Festival, Nice Carnival and major events in Monaco, arrive well in advance to be assured of a seat.

On the Bus

All bus rides are €1.50. The bus drivers give change. After buying the ticket, you must "validate" it by inserting it into a machine otherwise you are subject to a fine.

Tips

Avoid Sunday. The frequency is far less than on weekdays and less than Saturday. Some lines don't run at all on Sunday.

Avoid rush hours. It can be unpleasantly crowded and traffic along the coast can substantially prolong your journey. Rush hours would be from 7 to 9am into major towns (Nice, Cannes, Monaco) and 4.30 to 7pm out of the major towns.

Most Scenic Bus Rides

Line 112 from Nice to Monaco along the Moyenne Corniche. Get the schedule here.

Line 116 from Nice to Peille, stopping at La Turbie, which runs along the Grand Corniche. Get the schedule here.

Line 114 from Monaco to La Turbie on the Grand Corniche. Get the schedule here.

Bus Companies on the French Riviera

RCA (Rapides Cote d'Azur)
This is the main regional bus network. The main lines are:

  • Line 100 connecting Nice and Menton

  • Line 100Xpress connecting Nice and Monaco

  • Line 200 connecting the coastal towns between Nice and Cannes

  • Line 600 connecting Cannes and Grasse

Other lines connect Nice Airport with various towns along the coast as well as connecting Nice with La Turbie and Beausoleil.

Noctambus
This is the service throughout the night from Nice Airport to Nice, Cannes, Grasse and Menton via the Noctambus.

BusAzur
This company serves Cannes, connecting it with nearby towns as well as La Turbie.

Envibus
This company connects Antibes with Biot, Villeneuve-Loubet, St-Paul de Vence and other inland towns and villages.

Sillages STGA
This company provides bus service for Grasse, Le Tignet, Pegomas, Antibes, Valbonne and Cannes central.

Ligne d'Azur
In addition to providing local bus service in Nice, this company connects Nice with the nearby towns of Cagnes-sur-Mer, St Laurent du Var and Vence.

 

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