City Guide: Nimes

Nimes is a city in France, which is often a bit in the shadow of neighboring Arles. However, the city has a lot to offer and is a really beautiful touristic destination. In this city guide we’ll explain what you have to see when visting Nimes!

There are many cities in France offering a full range of interesting sights of all different kinds. There’s charming Strasbourg in the East or charming Dinard in the North. And then there’s the South, where you can find several very interesting cities. Nimes definitely is one of those and should be on your travel map. Why? Well, that’s how your visit starts when you walk from the train station to the city.

Avenue Feucheres Nimes

I think you can guess that it only gets better from here on!

Amphitheatre & Fontaine Pradier Nimes

Right after you are making it into in the city, you’ll find yourself at one of the most charming spots in town. I’m speaking of the Esplanade Charles de Gaulles.

Esplanade Charles de Gaules Nimes

Here, you can find the beautiful Fontaine Pradier, for example.

Fontaine Pradier Nimes

Even more important, the famous Amphitheatre of Nimes, which looks like a small version of the one in Rome, is located right here, too.

Nimes Amphitheatre

That’s not all though as you’ll also spot the Église Sainte-Perpétue, the Court of Justice and various other historic buildings on this spot.

I think it’s easy to tell that Nimes has some real highlights even after looking at the obvious, but let’s continue this City Guide!

Eglise Saint Baudile & Nimes Cathedral

Nimes is a city with a lot of historic and also very beautiful churches. My personal favorite isn’t the cathedral, but rather the Eglise Saint Baudile.

On the way there you can also spot the historic Temple de Nimes.

Grand Temple de Nimes

Another sight nor far from here is the historic Porte Auguste.

La Porte Auguste Nimes

It’s only a five minutes walk away from the former, which is located right inside the old town and looks surprisingly tiny for a cathedral.

Nimes Cathedral

That said, walking through the cute little streets in the city center is an experience of its own, even though Nimes might not be as charming as for example Aix-en-Provence in this regard.

Streets Nimes

Just around the corner you can find the Theatre de Nimes.

Theatre de Nimes

The main square in Nimes, where you can also find the famous Clock Tower, is really nice anyways.

Clock Tower Nimes

Here, you can sit down for a coffee and soak in the atmopshere. It’s worth it!

La Maison Carree & Jardins de la Fontaine Nimes

Nimes is home to several historic monuments, which are among the oldest of their kind. One of those is the ‘La Maison Carree’, which one of the oldest Roman temples in all Europe.

La Maison Carree Nimes

Interestingly, you can find the Art Museum of Nimes right on the opposite side.

Art Museum Nimes

From here, it’s just a stone throw to another beautiful area of Nimes, the Quai de la Fontaine.

Quai de la Fontaine Nimes

That’s a beautiful little river, which you can walk by and enjoy the atmosphere.

It will also lead you to one of the highlights in Nimes, the Jardin de la Fontaine.

Les Jardins de la Fontaine Nimes

It’s basically a large square with a river system as well as a large park.

Les Jardins de la Fontaine Nimes

It looks a bit like an old Roman aquaeduct, which isn’t surprising given that the spot has a lot of history. Thus, you can also find a few remainings of the Roman past like the Le Temple de Diane here.

Le Temple de Diane Nimes

All in all, a really beautiful area of Nimes you definitely shouldn’t miss.

Incredible views of town at the Tour Magne

If you don’t mind a little walk uphill, you should definitely go further up in the park at the Jardins de la Fontaine.

Les Jardins de la Fontaine Nimes

Here, you will not only find very nice paths and relaxing areas, but also a few cute buildings like the ‘Le Maset’.

Le Maset Nimes

The real highlight is waiting on the top of the mountain there. Here you’ll immediately spot the historic Roman tower with the name ‘La Tour Magne’.

La Tour Magne Nimes

While you have to pay an entrance fee for a rather bland tower as such, the views from the top are really amazing and are definitely worth paying for.

Even if you don’t want to pay for the view, it’s quite nice right next to the tower, too. Thus, definitely walk up here – it’s worth it!

Overall impressions of Nimes

Before I’ve lived in France for a while, I had never heard a word about Nimes. That’s quite sad as I really liked the city with all its history and the amazing remainings of the historic past. If you are into history or just like historic cities, then Nimes is definitely a great place to visit for you!

Do you have any questions about Nimes? Feel free to ask or share your impressions in the comments!

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2 Comments on “City Guide: Nimes”

  1. I finally visited Nimes a couple of years ago after driving past it many times on the motorway. The less thsn favourable impression of the town from the motorway is thankfully very different from reality. It’s a charming place, ideal for a weekend getaway and the dichotomy between very old and new is delightful.

    • You’re absolutely right. Many French cities don’t look particularly beautiful from the distance and / or in the suburbs, but Nimes is a great example of how different and beautiful a city center can still be!

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