10 largest cities in France




Nice is a commune in the south-east of France, prefecture of the Alpes-Maritimes department and second city in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region behind Marseille. Located about thirty kilometers from the Franco-Italian border, it is established on the shores of the Mediterranean Sea, along the Baie des Anges and at the mouth of the Paillon.

According to the 2017 census, with 340,017 inhabitants, it is the fifth largest municipality in France in terms of population (after Paris, Marseille, Lyon and Toulouse). It is located in the heart of the sixth largest agglomeration in France with 942,886 inhabitants and the seventh attraction area in France, with approximately 600,000 inhabitants. The city is the center of a metropolis, Nice Côte d'Azur, which brings together forty-nine municipalities and approximately 540,000 inhabitants.

Located between sea and mountains, economic and cultural capital of the Côte d'Azur, Nice benefits from significant natural assets. Tourism, commerce and administrations (public or private) occupy an important place in the activity of the city. It has the second largest hotel capacity in the country, which allows it to welcome around 4 million tourists each year. It also has the third airport in France (the first in the provinces) and two convention centers devoted to business tourism.

The city has a university, several business districts, many museums (it is even the city that has the most in France, after Paris), a national theater, an opera, a regional library, a regional conservatory and concert halls.

Capital of the Viguerie of Nice, it was once part of ancient Liguria between the Var and Magra rivers, of the Roman Regio IX Liguria, of the Kingdom of Italy (Holy Roman Empire) between the ninth and the eleventh century , of the Ligurian League and of the Republic of Genoa, before choosing in 1388 the protection of the County of Savoy following the war of the Union of Aix (dedition of Nice to Savoy). In 1526 it became the capital of the County of Nice. In 1720, following the Peace of The Hague, Savoy ceded Sicily (which it had acquired in 1713 by the Treaties of Utrecht) and received Sardinia giving birth to the Kingdom of Piedmont-Sardinia. This new group thus forms one of the pre-unitary Italian states, the capital of which is set at Turin. Nice became French in 1860, after a plebiscite.