French Riviera - Compelling Places In France

The Cote d’Azur near Nice, France.
The Cote d’Azur near Nice, France.

5. Description

The French Riviera or the Cote d’Azur is the Mediterranean coastline which runs along the southeast corner of France. It also borders the nation of Monaco, and the Riviera is considered to be stretching from the Italian Riviera in the east to Hyeres, Toulon and Cassis in the west. The coastline was said to be the first modern resort in the area and the largest city located by it is Nice, which has a third busiest airport named Nice Cote d’Azur Airport, and the second airport which is at Mandelieu and used for the commercial purpose. The area has a total population of over two million. There is a high-tech and science park in the north of Antibes at Sophia Antipolis, and also has a research and technology center.

4. Historical Role

The area has been inhabited since the Bronze Age as many stone dolmens, and the monuments can be found here. The outdoor religious sanctuary also has a drawing of nearly 40,000 animals and people, which dated back to 2000 BC. After this, the area also became the Roman colony and before that, it also saw the Greek influence in the coastal area. The Germans invaded this region and Christianity also followed because in the 4th Century, the first cathedrals were built in the area. Cote d’Azur also became popular amongst the high-class Britishers in the 18th and 19th Centuries for olive groves, production of flowers for perfume and fishing. The railway arrival in the 19th Century made it a vacation spot for the Russians, Britishers and many other aristocrats. In the 20th Century, many great artists thronged this area, including the likes of Pablo Picasso, Aldous Huxley, and Somerset Maugham.

3. Modern Significance

The French Riviera has many seaside resorts for the tourists like Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat, Juan-les-Pins, Cannes, and Frejus. The region is also a major yachting area as it hosts 50% of the super-yacht fleet, has cruising area and also the marinas along the coast. It is also a major tourist center with 14 ski resorts, coastline and beaches and nearly 3,000 restaurants. The tourists also visit the art museums, fishing ports, film booking during Cannes International Film Festival, bonbon color palaces, time-stained old town and much more. You can also visit the Calanques National Park, family resorts like La Ciotat, Roman Frejus, and St. Raphael.

2. Habitat and Biodiversity

Many species of animals are said to have got extinct from the region so the conservation in the area is being introduced. One can see European Bison, bears, deer, boars, wolves and the Przewalkski Horse can be found in the area. The sustainable ecosystem is being developed for these animals in the Reserve Des Monts D’Azur, which is a kind of small-scale conservation.

1. Environmental Threats and Territorial Disputes

The refinery located to the north of Genoa is responsible for the oil spill in French Riviera where a large amount of oil was leaked into the coastline. This has further increased the danger of pollution in the area. The fear of gravel loss and nourishment has also affected the area as it is said that, especially during winter and autumn storms, it can be lost permanently and worsen erosion.


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