Itineraries29 September 2014

Picturesque weekly markets in Riviera

Shopping strolling along the seafront in French and Italian Riviera

bordighera_market Credit Judit Neuberger

bordighera_market Credit Judit Neuberger

All the little towns along the coast of the Riviera and Côte d'Azur hold weekly markets, which offer any kind of merchandise: clothes, leathergoods, kitchenware, toys, costume jewellery and food (mostly coming from the market gardens of the surroundings),etc. It's not only a question of good prices, but rather the fact that some of them (for instance Bordighera, Ventimiglia, and Nice) are held along the seafront, giving the opportunity to enjoy, at the same time, the wonderful landscape.

The atmosphere is very international, with stall owners as well as clients and visitors coming from different parts of the world.

Nearby are many cafes and restaurants with outdoor tables with onlookers who bask in the sun, for a snack or lunch. Normally these markets take place during the mornings and every town has a fix day of the week: Sanremo Tuesday and Saturday; Bordighera Thursday; Ventimiglia Friday, are some examples.

In a few words: good shopping in a very picturesque frame and wonderful view.

The market in Cour Saleya, Nice, needs a special mention: it is near the Promenade des Anglais in the old town part of the city and every day beautiful flowers, fresh vegetables, fruits, fish, cheese, bakery, etc are offered in its stalls. But on Monday mornings, lovers of old furniture and knick-knacks as well as lovers of curios will be in their element in this market where all sorts of objects can be found.

At the far east end you can also find Place Charles Félix. From 1921 to 1938, Matisse lived in the imposing yellow stone building at Number 1, and you don't really need to visit the local museum that bears his name to understand this great artist: simply stand in the doorway of his former home and study the Place de l'Ancien Senat 10 feet away—the scene is a classic Matisse.

The secondhand market takes place at the Cours Saleya on Mondays from 7.30 am to 6.00pm except on the day before a national holiday. It is also held at Place Garibaldi (new and secondhand) every 3rd Saturday of the month.

Judit Neuberger

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