You set off for a ride! Might be first thing that you do in the morning, might be a mellow afternoon ride, might be an all-day-out cycling. Sooner – or later. One question pop into a lot of cyclists’ minds: where can we stop for a coffee?
A few factors take part of the equation of a good coffee stop:
- Where is it on your planned route?
- Is it open when you pass?
- Is there a decent bathroom (especially for all the ladies)?
- How is the coffee?
- How is the ambience (is it people in lycra friendly)?
- Can you park your bike in sight?
Cycling in the Côte d’Azur can be made into a discovery of local cafés and restaurants. There is at least one café or tabac in each village and there are plenty of villages.
We have picked a few of the favorite coffee stop places in the Nice area. They are mentioned in no order of preference!
One of the most frequented cycling café corners at the Côte d’Azur is located next to the round-abound that connects the roads to Saint-Jeannet, La Gaude, Vence and Gattières. It is on the way to Col de Vence and on the Ironman routes. The place is called Auberge des 4 Chemins. A friendly service comes to your table, you will always meet fellow cyclists and you only get a frown, when you with a poor French ask for the bill for the bottle of Bandol (a red wine brand) instead of the Badoit (a sparkling water brand) that you had!
Continuing down the same path through Vence you come to another popular coffee stop town, Tourettes-sur-Loup.
The café just next to the fountain always welcomes a cyclist! However, for a bit more off-the-road feel, we recommend you make a visit into the little bakery at the square to get your coffee and some lovely cake! If you do so, there is no bathroom – but you can use a very high-tech public toilet that is across from the tourist office at the square.
On this side of the Var Riverdale, you will also find a tabac and a bakery in nearby Gattières that are less busy and still good for a little break.
On the roads further into the western mountain side of Nice, you will also find charming cafés and restaurants in places like Gourdon, Gréolières and Coursegoule. One time that we waited for a pit stop until Bouyon however, all we could find was a pizza-car! It served the best pizza but if you need a bathroom, you may have to try your luck asking a local to use their private one J
For your rides up to Col d’Eze and further to Menton or Col de la Madone, and all of the other beautiful routes East/North-East of Nice, La Turibe is the one town for every cyclists’ stop. People travel from afar to buy croissants in one of the bakery’s here, and the tiny town has quite a few very cyclist friendly cafés. One of the region’s most famous restaurants for a lunch is here as well. Keep this for a day off the bike, as we are not sure if they tolerate lycra in the Michelin star Café de La Fontaine….
If you are further in-land, perhaps cycling back from Col de Turini or Col de Braus, we recommend you stop in Sospel. At the small town square there are lunch and coffee places and a very relaxed atmosphere.
For a day out along the coast road through Monaco and or to Menton, you can 100% find a place to stop in Menton with its many beach front cafés and restaurants. A hidden gem is the bakery in Cap Martin called Délices Café du Parc des Oliviers.
As important on your ride as to know where to get a good coffee, is to know where to find a fountain! In our region you will find fountains with fresh drinkable water in nearly every village and sometimes where you do not expect them.
We have a short list here:
Aspremont: On the photo you see the fountain in Aspremont, which is a good place to meet local cyclists as you feel your bottle.
La Turbie: A classic fountain in the Nice area is the fountain in La Turbie, which is nearly 200 years old.
Vence: There is a fountain in the round about just before you start the climb to Col de Vence.
Bouyon: If you cycle the half Ironman route and continue on the other side of Col de Vence, you find a fountain in Bouyon on the side of the road.
St. Agnes: On your ride up to Col de la Madone from Menton, it can be good to know about the fountain that is in the intersection of a road up to St-Agnes on your right and your left turn to Col de la Madone.
Sospel: There is a fountain on the square.
Note! If you see a water tap along the road side and there is a sign “Eau non potable” it means that you CAN NOT drink the water.
We hope that you have found inspiration for a coffee break on your bike tour and where to fill up your bottle. There are so many more places not mentioned here – go discover them!