Last week we rented a scooter at the port and headed north into the hills behind Nice. The weather was perfect with blue skies and still not cold, at least where the sun was shining. In the deep valleys it got quite cold and we were glad we decided to take our leather jackets with us. We headed up the valley from Nice on 2204 and took the D15 in the direction of Contes. Not much to see up to this point, gets more interesting after Coaraze.
Coaraze is one of medieval towns noted for being worth visiting and they have done a good job of keeping it up. Rather empty though, not a lot of people around and no restaurants, at least we couldn’t find any, so keep that in mind if you’re planning lunch there.
After Coaraze we continued north on D15 (or 2566 as it is also called), until we reached the left turn on 273 towards Lantosque. On Google Maps it doesn’t show the highway going all the way through, but it does now and it’s a lovely drive.
We had lunch in Lantosque at a bar/restaurant in town just off the highway, and afterwards explored the town. Parts of it are fine but other parts have been closed off and the buildings are just falling apart. Seems there are not enough people in the town to need these buildings and definitely not the funding to fix them. Someone could probably buy half the town for a cheap price.
We continued north along 2565 to Belvedere, which is a lovely hilltop town, well taken care of and fun to walk its very narrow streets and pathways. The views are quite something as well, of the whole valley and overlooking the town of Roquebilliere below. We drove back down through Roquebilliere (good place for lunch as well) and then it was time to head back. We followed 2565 and wanted to take the turn-off to Levens (M19), but missed it (next time) so ended up going back along 6202 into Nice. Not as scenic, but quick as we were starting to get cold.
Lovely gorge drive but still not quite as spectacular as Dalius or Cains. But still worthwhile, especially if you’ve already done them.