Guide books list the ancient perched village of Eze as one of the sights along the Cote d’Azur, the
Rivera in English. They have it backward. Eze is THE sight to see, all the rest—Monte Carlo,
Nice, Menton, Cannes, etc.— are incidentals in the vicinity of Eze.
Eze is the best preserved of the “perched villages”, ancient towns built at the top of the cliff that
runs along much of the Rivera, some 1,200 feet above the Mediterranean. These fortified villages
were located, not on the coast, but high above the sea, for protection from raiding pirates
long ago. When the coast was clear, seaside settlements took over, leaving behind the old
perched villages, which was great for tourists since they remained frozen in times long ago.
Cars are banned from the narrow cobblestone streets of Eze, so park just outside the old city gate.
The 17th century gray stone, town wall, remains mostly intact. Inside the walls, the well preserved
old town is an obvious tourist trap, but it’s tasteful and impressively preserved, and wandering the
streets is a treat. Boutiques, art shops, and souvenir stores line the streets.
There are spectacular views from the church tower and square, the Botanical Gardens, and the nearby
Eze overlook, and the Trophee des Alps. On the other hand, they are all pretty much views of the
same thing, the coast, so there is no point doing them all on the same visit.
Getting there: When driving, the scenic way to Eze is to ascend the cliff from Monte Carlo, but traffic is terrible.
The easy way from the inland expressway (E80) that parallels the coast.
A meal at the Chateau de la Chevre d’Or (castle of the gold goat) is not to missed. Excellent food
and a drop dead view of the Mediterranean coast 1,200 feet below. Just make sure you dine during