- Location: Near Nice, southeastern France
- Significance: Medieval village
- Attraction Type: Medieval Village, fortress, Ancient Settlements, hiking, Perfumes
- How to Reach: Eze Village is beside the Moyenne Corniche Road between Nice and Monaco-Menton. You can take a train to Eze-sur-Mer on the Nice and Monaco-Ventimiglia line. There are plenty of trains everyday. You can drive through D48, the road connecting Basse Corniches and the Moyenne Corniche. Bus services are also available. To reach the village from Eze-sur-Mer on the coastal side, follow the Chemin de la Mer footpath.
- Nearest Airport: Nice International Airport
Almost like a magical land that is more likely to exist in one’s imagination than in reality, Eze combines the best of coastal and mountain landscape, the medieval and the modern, the exotic and the commonplace in a kind of unbelievable co-existence. It is the tourist destination of one’s dreams. Eze is beautifully laid out. The castle stands atop the cliff like an eagle’s nest, the village radiates from the base of the castle. On one side, you can have a view of the magnificent Mediterranean beaches, and on the other side, you can reach the higher parts of the cliff where the oldest settlements are located.
History of Eze
Located high on the hill overlooking the blue Mediterranean, Eze was attacked and conquered many times throughout its long and eventful history. The strategic location and the sheer beauty of the place lured invaders and visitors for a long time throughout its history. The first people to settle were Neolithic people about 2500 years back who built constructions in the highest part of the hill. However, it was during the Middle Ages that Eze really came to its own. Enduring various attacks by French, Spanish and Turkish troops, Eze somehow managed to maintain its unique calm lifestyle despite torrential uprisings and attacks from the outside. From the 19th century onwards, Eze became the favorite of poets, philosophers, and painters. It is also a favorite haunt for lovers, who find this place to be the ultimate romantic setting. It is a great destination for family holidays as well.
The old medieval village of Eze is where most of the attractions are. The old street sand fairly authentic buildings immerse you in one of your truest medieval experiences. Although the village can now seem to be a little overcrowded with souvenir shops and touristy restaurants for some, yet it is definitely worth a visit. The old stone churches, the beautiful gardens surrounding the Chateau de la Chevre d’Or are excellent places. You will also find the usual medieval constructions, small narrow roads, archways, wide and shady squares, fountains and stone houses that are perfectly restored.
Fort Revere: Located on the mountain ridge above the Col d’Eze, this is one of the most picturesque spots in Eze. It provides great views of the village and the coast. The Fort River Botanical Area is a lovely walk because of the fragrant plants and a large number of migratory birds that visit the garden.
Things to do in Eze Follow the Friedrich Nietzsche path to reach Eze bord-de-Mer. It is a beautiful place full of olive and pine trees, the place where Nietzsche composed ‘Thus Spoke Zarathustra’. It is about an hour’s walk, but the beauty of the place makes a visit worth the effort. You can climb higher to reach the ‘Maison de la Nature’ and the ‘oppidum du Col d’Eze’, where you will find signs of the oldest settlements in the region.
From the village, follow the signposts reaching the Jardin Exotique Panorama. You will get a wonderful view of the Mediterranean from the top. There is an entry fee of 12 F to reach there, but the view makes it worthwhile.
Perfumery is one of the oldest specialties of Eze. You can feel the strong presence of perfume culture the moment you enter the village with the presence of fragrant herbs in the gardens. You will also find many shops selling fabulous fragrant herbs to interested tourists. Two Grasse perfumeries are also represented in the village: the Perfumerie Galimard and Parfumerie Fragonard. You can visit it, and get some perfume on interesting discounts.
Eze is a wonderful hiking destination. You can hike between Eze Village and the new town of Eze-sur-Mer. You can also follow the local trail marks to reach the Oppidum de Mont Bastide and check out the earliest settlement in the region.
Shopping in Eze
Shopping is one of the most favorite activities that tourists indulge in during their visit to Eze. The entire village area is full of shops and small storehouses that deal with a large number of handcrafted souvenirs and other crafts. Perfumes are also widely available. Some of the shops are almost as interesting as the products. So, do not forget to carry something back for you and your loved ones as you leave Eze.
Accommodation in Eze
There are quite a few luxury accommodations in Eze. Many of them are located within the fortified area of the village itself. Chateau Eza and Chateau de la Chevre d’Or, where famous personalities once resided are glad to extend their hospitality services for guests. There is a spectacular hotel in the Bord-de-Mer region. Relax on the beach as you enjoy the pleasures of this luxury hotel. However, there is a number of other less exclusive, more budget-friendly hotels located in the Eze town area. Some of the most popular ones are the Cap Estel Hotel, Chateau Eza, Hotel Hermitage Eze and Eza Vista.