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Generally a disappointment - dirty sea, exhaust-filled air and virtually nothing left of the charm the town must once have had. Except for the Corniche, which still gives a stunning view over blue, blue sea and covetable white villas.

A character in one of Dirk Bogard's admirably-written novels has said it all for me; as soon as I've found out which novel, I shall conscientiously update the reference. In the meantime, here at least is what she said about the whole of the French Riviera.

For some strange reason... Leni had got it firmly fixed in her mind that this golden length of coastline was a paradise of hidden coves, wine-scented air, deserted beaches and what the travel-writers call 'sleepy little fishing villages' ... She was deeply shocked to find ... that the whole agglomeration from Nice to Cannes was really nothing but a gaudy, hot Watford. The traffic terrified her, the beaches were jammed with bloated red bodies and crushed paper cups, the air heavy with the rancid smell of chips, sun oil and petrol; and the sleepy fishing villages, if they had ever existed in the first place, were long since demolished and smothered in concrete blocks twelve storeys high with rubber plants on every balcony and television aerials on every roof.