The most famous stretch of seafront in Nice – if not France then it’s the vast paved Promenade des Anglais which gets its name from the English ex-pat patrons who paid for it in 1822. It runs for the whole 4km sweep of the Baie des Agnes with a dedicated lane for cyclists and skaters; if you fancy joining them, you can get skates, scooters, and bikes on rent from a nearby Roller station.
In Nice, we can also call it Prom but still its full name is the Promenade des Anglais which is a walkway of the English. Its name comes from the English aristocrats who came to Nice in the 18th century to enjoy the health benefits of the local climate. At that point in time, the shoreline was not so regular, and because the lords of their wives wanted to walk comfortably, a seaside promenade was built. The English names of the hotels nearby, such as Westminster and West End, still bear witness to the influence of the islanders on this place.
The ex-pats began the custom of walking up and down the beautiful coastline, taking in the scenery, and were keen to build a formal walkway. There was one particularly harsh winter in 1820, after two bad harvests when many beggars came to the town in search of work, money, and food. The Anglican Church had built up a very large congregation at that point and believed that – instead of offering them handouts – they should be allowed to work for a living. They basically believed that handouts were bad for morale and that it was better to work for money. The Reverend Lewis Way, who was very senior in the Church, was staying in Nice at that time on his way to Lebanon and paid for the construction of the route. It was earlier known as the “Camin Deis Angles” in local dialect but was later rechristened La Promenade des Anglais in 1860. Since then the town has taken it under their wing and extended and developed it. Now it is used for many cultural events such as the Nice carnival.
Promenade des Anglais Location
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