The most popular months to book flights to Nimes are May to September, with the peak being between June and August. Prices rise to match demand, so if looking for a shoestring budget, be sure to avoid the peak period and plan your trip when cheap flights to Nimes are easier to come by. Those not restricted by time or finances may wish to plan their visit around the city’s wealth of special events. The year kicks off with the annual Nimes Flamenco Festival, among the largest festivals of its kind in France. Musical artists and fans from across Europe descend on the town to enjoy a week of performances of all sizes and styles, helping to warm-up the cold January chill.
The next major event is the annual Féria festival, held in late May or early June. A traditional celebration, Féria includes bullfighting and folk events, as well as expositions showcasing local cuisine, makes it a great time of year to plan flights to Nimes.
Boasting one of the best preserved Roman amphitheaters outside of the Coliseum, Nimes has long been heralded as a city where the Ancient World comes to life. Located in the coastal province of Languedoc-Roussillon, Nimes is also famous for Les Quais de la Fontaine, the first civic gardens of France, as well as its delicate Mediterranean cuisine. Local specialties are many, but most attention goes to the fragrant fish dish of chopped cod mixed with mashed potatoes, milk, garlic and olive oil, and gardiane de taureau, a ragout with bull meat and vegetables.
But it is the city’s Roman heritage that makes Nimes what it is. The amphitheatre, Les Arenes, was built in 100AD, and is considered by many as in better condition than its more famous counterpart in the Eternal City. Visitors can pop along between 9 am and 12.30pm, and 2pm and 6 pm for guided tours. Alternatively, wait until September to get a feel for the arena’s historic past by becoming one of 10,000 spectators who attend the annual bull fighting festival in September.
Another popular destination is Maison Carré, a first century Roman temple that has changed little in the years since it was built. Elsewhere, Jardin de la Fontaine is home to the city’s other important Roman monuments, including ornate statues and the Temple of Diane, which is to the left through the main entrance. The gardens are free to explore, and remain open until 10pm between May and August. Finally, Le Pont du Gard is an impressive Roman aqueduct located 15.5 miles from the city centre.
Nimes is served by a regular and wide-reaching bus service, but due to its intimate size, it is also readily accessible on foot.
Flights to Nimes arrive at Nîmes-Alès-Camargue-Cévennes Airport (FNI) which is located 5.5 miles southeast of the city centre. The airport is served on a seasonal basis. A regular shuttle bus operates between the airport and the city centre, picking-up and dropping-off at the train station. Car hire is another option, as are private taxi companies.