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French Riviera (Cote d'Azur) Weather And Best Time To Visit French Riviera (Cote d'Azur)
Côte d’Azur, when literally translated, means the coast of azure. Now imagine the Mediterranean Sea with a backdrop of a clear sky, shimmering powdery sand on the shore and tiny boats bobbing up and down on the docks in the distance. Now imagine there is a town behind you, one that is ancient in its make, with cobble-stoned paths and medieval churches and houses.
That is most of Côte d’Azur for you, which is best visited in summer time, when the weather is at its most exuberant and the beaches are spectacular. Read on for a seasonal guide.
Summer (May to September)
Summer makes for the best time to visit Côte d’Azur, what with all the Mediterranean sun and perfect weather for seaside fun. The biggest draw for crowd is the Cannes International Film Festival held in the city of Cannes, bringing the media and film industry folks down to the coast in all their glory. The period of this festival is undoubtedly the busiest and most bustling time here, when everything becomes super expensive. So if you wish to choose summer, then choose the months before or after Cannes. The temperatures are usually maintained at around 30°C with zero rainy days.
Spring/Autumn (March-April, October-November)
Côte d’Azur experiences a mild Mediterranean climate and hence sees very little of the shoulder seasons of spring and autumn. These are, however, good times to visit, as the temperatures are not completely cold and crowds are considerably less. In these months, you may enjoy the daylight as it warms everything up, but come sunset and everything becomes chilly. But to avoid too much expense and crowds, this is a good bet to pull. Autumn months here are also mildly disrupted by rainfall and beaches may not be very welcoming. So spring is a better option among the two for a holiday.
Winters (December to February)
December onwards winter comes to Côte d’Azur, but it does not always snow or become bitter cold. In fact, winters are mildly welcoming, even though the temperatures drop considerably (lows of 3°C). The sun still shines at noon and the water’s effect keeps the weather calm. Winters are not ideal for beaches or swimming but you may explore the towns, quaint villages, and off course, the Southern Alps for skiing. Isola 2000 is one of the most coveted ski resorts around.