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Typically Alpine

Tende, like much of the surrounding territory and neighbouring La Brigue remained Italian until 1947. They were not in fact handed back to France with the rest of the County of Nice in 1860. To this day some local people speak Tendasque, a patois related to the old Ligurian language. In fact, many young people speak Italian as well as French!

A typical Alpine town

Located high up, (816m/2,677ft), in the Roya Valley on the old Route de Sel or Salt Road, this typical Alpine town has shingle roofed houses on steep terraces and is surrounded by mountains, more than 20 of which are higher than 2000m/6562ft. The modern road and rail tunnel of the Col de Tende leading into Italy is only 3km/2m up the road.

Check out the Merveilles!

The Vallée des Merveilles at the foot of nearby Mont Bégo in the Mercantour National Park is accessible from Tende and the Musée des Merveilles is located in the town.

Don’t miss: the chapels of the Black and White Penitents or the 15th century Collégiale Notre Dame-de-l’Assumption...

... and check out my Driving the Roya Itinerary in sister-app Nice's Best

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Département: Alpes-Maritimes.

Nice Beyond (L'Arrière Pays Niçois)

Text © Paul Shawcross

Images by Liz Lord, Paul Shawcross