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  • Nicole Ruskell

Where to celebrate the holidays in the French Riviera

So many Christmas markets, villages, ice skating and holiday concerts... Here is a selection of the largest family festivities within the Alpes-Maritimes.


Antibes Juan-les-Pins

10 Dec - 02 Jan

A wide-ranging program for its 2022 Christmas festivities, including a Christmas village, an ice skating rink, a Ferris wheel and many activities:

Esplanade du Pré des Pêcheurs

The Christmas village returns with gourmet and artisanal chalets, decorations, games, the Ferris wheel, and the Carrousel. New this year, a new free interactive animation on a big screen is also proposed to the children:10:30 am to 9:00 pm (10:30 am to 9:30 pm on Fridays and Saturdays); new ‘swan fishing’ and a little Christmas train will complete the village.


Pinède Gould Ice rink (JLP)

The 525m² natural ice rink (+105m² reserved for the little ones) is back. The animals of the small farm await young and old as well as pony rides and two Christmas food trucks.


Ice rink open from 9:30 am - 8 pm. Fridays and Saturdays, until 9pm.

The last access to the rink is 40-45 minutes before closing time. Free for children under 10 years old and 3€ for children over 10 years old. Gloves must be worn.


A small petting zoo pony rides from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. (with lunch break for the ponies). From 3 to 10 years old accompanied by an adult.





Beaulieu-sur-mer

01 - 31 Dec

Skating rink, shows, musical parades...


Santa's mailbox

Installed at Carrefour des Héllènes from December 1st to 21st


Lightshow

Video Mapping : "Light projection in music".

Tuesday, December 20 at 6:00 pm / 6:30 pm / 7:00 pm / 7:30 pm on the Marinoni square

Wine and hot chocolates offered


Ecological ice rink

21 - 31 Dec (except 25 Dec)

Place Marinoni from 11am to 6pm - 5€ Place Marioni


Carriage rides

Wednesday December 21 & 28 from 10H to 13H and from 14H to 17H

(free) - Departure tourist office


Musical parades

  • "Magic Christmas" - Friday, December 23rd from 4:30 pm to 6:30 pm in the streets of the town

  • "Benty Brothers Music" - Friday, December 30th from 4:30 pm to 6:30 pm in the streets of the town

  • "World Music Band" - Saturday December 31st from 10H to 12H30 in the streets of the town

Wine and hot chocolates offered at Marinoni square


Kids show

"Allumette" of the Cie B.A.L

Thursday, December 29 at 3pm Church crypt - free - from 6 years old

Biot

01 - 30 Dec

The magic of Christmas will once again invade the Cité des Verriers. Illuminations, shows and entertainment for all will be on the agenda, as well as the traditional Christmas market and its charming chalets. Not forgetting ... the snow that will be in the village throughout the month of December. A new feature of this year's event is a toboggan run on the Place des Arcades from 17 to 23 December.


"Biot I love Christmas"

  • Inauguration 01 Dec with Speech by Jean-Pierre Dermit

  • Launch of the illuminations

  • Opening of the 1st Christmas section

  • Wine and hot chestnuts offered by the Amicale Biotoise des Traditions

The Christmas shutters!

01 - 25 Dec

When the streets of the village are transformed into a giant advent calendar. From December 1st to 25th, the shutters decorated by the little biotois open day after day, forming an open air exhibition.


Saint Lucia's Day

13 Dec

  • Saint-Philippe lights up on Saint Lucia's day from 5 pm

  • Ambulatory light show with the Moon Parade of the Indigo circus

  • Performance of song and dance by the Espace des Arts et de la Culture

  • Distribution of lanterns to children and lantern parade

  • Snack offered to children

Christmas show

14 Dec

Christmas show of jazz dance by the Espace des Arts et de la Culture at 7:30 pm

Paul Gilardi Hall

Free admission

Christmas Market

16 - 24 Dec

The big Christmas market of Biot will be inaugurated on Friday, December 16th at 6pm, place de Gaulle.


Toboggan run and donkey ride

17 - 23 Dec

For the first time, a toboggan run will be set up on the Place des Arcades, with the traditional wooden games and creative workshops around it. Another novelty, a donkey ride will be proposed by Ane Tond in the alleys of the historical centre.

Christmas tales and meeting with Santa Claus

17 - 23 Dec

Visit of Santa Claus to meet the children in the village: from 3pm to 6pm.


Christmas story told by Santa Claus

  • Saturday 17 and Sunday 18 December: from 11am to 1pm and from 2pm to 6pm

  • Monday 19th to Friday 23rd of December : from 2pm to 6pm



Cannes

26 - 2 Jan

The city is decked out and celebrating the holidays with a Christmas village, an amusement park, a pop-up art & cultural centre, light shows on all the church facades, concerts, film screenings, fireworks and so much more!


Allée Felix Faure

The Christmas village has 46 little Alpine chalets with warm foods, goodies and artisan crafts. Treat yourself and buy your Christmas gifts. You will also be able to sample various specialties, such as the traditional roasted chestnuts, mulled wine and sweets to take away…


Father Christmas welcomes children and their parents on the Allées de la Liberté.


Schedule:

From 2:30 pm to 6:30 pm

On 10, 11, 14 Dec and each day from 17 - 24.

Sat. Dec. 17, 2022 at 4pm

Musical animation with the Espérance de Cannes.


Ice skating

The ice rink, with its 350 m2 of natural ice, located in the Christmas village with a varied program of activities for young and old.


From 10am to 1pm:

Free for children from 4 to 10 years old (3 € for accompanying persons).

An instructor will be present every morning and lessons will be offered to beginners (registration on site).


From 1pm :

3 € entry for all, 45-minute session, equipment included. Gloves required (not provided).


Esplanade Pantiero Funfair

The funfair will offer everyone moments of laughter, thrills and emotions with no less than 55 attractions.


New Year's Fireworks

Saturday December 31st at midnight

New Year's Eve fireworks on the theme of rock'n roll.

Details on www.cannes.com


Gare Croisette

8 Dec - 22 Jan

A cultural and artistic haven in Cannes bringing shopping, food, music, artists and more… Vintage shops, tattoo artists, DJs, gourmet sandwiches, vinyl shops and art exhibitions.

Read about it here: https://www.bonvivantmag.com/post/gare-croisette-a-crossroad-of-art-culture-and-music-in-cannes

Cagnes-sur-Mer

10 - 24 Dec

Christmas Market - December 10 to 24, 2022

Gift ideas, mulled wine, chestnuts... with Christmas approaching, there's nothing like hanging out in the markets to soak up their conviviality and magic. They are also an opportunity to find original gift ideas.


Opening on Saturday, December 10 at 10:30 am

Every day from 10am to 7pm Place De Gaulle

Nocturne on December 21, 2022 until 22h


Christmas Tree Fair - December 1 to 23, 2022

From December 1 to 23, 2022: sale of natural fir trees from 9am to 7pm, parking of the Rotonde.



Grasse

17 Dec - 01 Jan

Grasse has numerous events planned from concerts and parades to ice skating, markets and the arrival of Father Christmas! All festivities centre around Cours Honoré Cresp.

Download the full programme in PDF here.


From 01 Dec

Santa's letter box - Rue Dominique Conte, in front of the Arbell Chaussures store


16 Dec

Inauguration of the festivities and the Christmas market

  • 6:00 pm: Torchlight procession from Notre-Dame du Puy Cathedral to Cours Honoré Cresp

  • 6:00 pm to 6:45 pm: Sunny Swing Street Jazz Concert Cours Honoré Cresp

  • 6:45 pm: Children's choir from the Conservatoire de Musique de Grasse - Cours Honoré Cresp ice rink.

  • 7:15 pm: Inauguration of the Christmas Market by the Mayor 7:30 pm to 8:15 pm: Sunny Swing Street Jazz Concert Cours Honoré Cresp


Ice Rink

17 Dec to 01 Jan

Accessible to adults and children from 4 years old. Children under 10 years old must be accompanied by an adult. Price: skate rental 3€ / Gloves mandatory


Father Christmas

24 Dec

Arrival of Santa Claus in a horse-drawn carriage Cours Honoré Cresp and throughout town - From 11am

Lucéram

3 Dec - 8 Jan

Circuit des Crèches de Lucéram


The most Nativity scenes you can fit in one town!

Come to discover the 25th Crèches de Lucéram with more than 450 traditional nativity scenes realised by the residents of the village and displayed all along a walkable route!


Christmas market on Sunday, 11 & 18 Dec

The Three wise men arrive on 8 January with gifts and a giant galette du Rois.

https://www.maisondepaysdeluceram.fr/



Mouans-Sartoux

04 Nov - 24 Dec

Foire aux Santons

One of the largest Santon fairs in the world! A collection of thousands of the most intricately painted figurines from traditional Provencal life. See all the different characters and artisans who make them under one roof. Open daily from 2 - 6pm at the Cinema Médiatheque, free entry.

Mougins

19 Nov - 30 Dec

Santa Claus has settled in Mougins! Visit his house...

Oh, oh, oh, great news! This year, tired of the freezing cold of Lapland, Santa Claus and his elves have left everything behind to come to Mougins. They fell in love with a little house in the old village, a cosy place in the old bread oven... which is never locked! Without Not forgetting the mailbox in which the lists of toys can be directly deposited.


Santa's House

A magical immersion in the daily life of the most of the most endearing hero of little & big children!

Old village of Mougins - Four à Pain, rue des Mûriers

Open Wednesdays, weekends & school vacations, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. & 2-6 p.m. (Closed on 12/25) "Chalet des gourmandises" with pancakes, waffles & hot drinks pl. des Patriotes*.

"Christmas Boutique" corner at Santa's House & at the Tourist Office.

Free admission


Ice rink

From 07/12, each Wednesday, w-e & school vacations.


Christmas spirit in the neighborhoods

12 - 24 Dec

The Spirit of Christmas also invites itself into the neighborhoods and in Mouginois shops. Take part in the great Christmas game and win great gifts: your Christmas Eve meal, a beauty treatment and lots of other prizes... It's simple: do your shopping at your Mougins shopkeepers and scratch your Christmas ticket!



Nice

1 Dec - 1 Jan

Christmas in Nice! The city has gone all-out with a huge Eco Christmas village with dozens of artisan chalets with workshops, food and candy and lots of entertainment, free concerts and activities for the whole family. Open every day in Place Massena and the Albert I gardens.



08 - 22 Dec

After Work Party

  • DJ AFROMAN : December 8, 9, 15 from 6pm

  • THE FRENCHY'S APERITIF ! December 16th from 6pm

  • LE STOCKFISH " the smallest of the big rooms " celebrates Christmas with : DJ Afroman / DJ Fausto : December 22 from 6pm

13 Dec

St. Lucia: Swedish Light Festival

Traditional Swedish songs and treats in partnership with the Swedish Consulate at 5pm.

Activities for children

Santa Claus House

Jardin Albert 1er

Open every day from 11am to 8pm (Fridays and Saturdays until 10pm)

While waiting patiently for Christmas morning, come and whisper your wishes in Santa's ear.

Presence of Santa Claus until December 24th every Wednesday, weekends and every day during school vacations from 2pm to 7pm.

Souvenir photo with Santa Claus until December 24th every weekend and every day during school vacations from 1:30 pm to 7:30 pm.

Children can visit his house until January 1st included.


Santa Claus scene - 2pm

Albert 1st Garden

Concerts

There is no Christmas magic without music! Come and share these musical moments with groove, rock, jazz, gospel and of course listen to Christmas carols!


Free shows at 3pm, Albert 1er Garden

Free shows, specially designed for young audiences, are offered every weekend and during the school vacations in the heart of the Christmas village.


The sugar shack

As if by magic, your children can become one of the famous Christmas characters. Your children can choose the makeup of their dreams at a small price.

Weekends and school vacations from 2pm to 7pm

For more details, visit the city’s website.

The Nice Christmas Train!

17 Dec - 02 Jan

Departing from the Promenade des Anglais, at the foot of the Centennial monument, young and old alike, board the 100% electric Nice tourist train and discover the city of Nice and its treasures through one of our two commented tours, available in 8 languages. The "downtown" tour (45 minutes), will give you time to admire the must-see monuments of the old town, from the Masséna square to the Notre-Dame du Port de Nice church, passing by the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art.


The "castle" tour (50 minutes) will take you to the castle hill, where you will enjoy a 10-minute stop to admire the superb panoramic view of the entire Baie des Anges.

Take advantage of it, during all the Christmas vacations: 1 adult ticket bought = 1 child ticket offered! (Up to 12 years old).


Information and ticket purchase at the ticket office, located at the train departure.

www.francevoguette.fr


For more markets, activities and celebrations in other towns and in Provence, visit Noël en Provence.

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