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Riviera(rĭvēâr`ə), narrow coastal strip between the Alps and the Mediterranean, extending, roughly, from La Spezia (Italy) to Hyères (France). Famous for its scenic beauty and for its mild winter climate, and dotted with fashionable resorts, hotels, and villas, the Riviera is a major international playground. Genoa is the center of the Italian Riviera and divides it into the Riviera di Levante (east) and the Riviera di Ponente (west). Among the well-known resorts on the Italian Riviera are Bordighera, San Remo, Portofino, and Rapallo. Also noteworthy is the rugged Cinqueterre coast near La Spezia. The French Riviera, also called the Côte d'Azur [azure coast], has the famous resorts of Nice, Cannes, Saint-Tropez, and Monte Carlo (in Monaco). Flowers for export and for use in the perfume industry are grown throughout the region, particularly at Crasse (near Cannes). A panoramic highway runs along the Riviera from end to end; its section, the Corniche du Littoral, between Nice and Menton, France, which hugs the red cliffs of the coastline, is particularly famous.
a strip of Mediterranean seacoast stretching from the city of Cannes in France to the city of La Spezia in Italy. It is divided into the French Riviera, the Côte d’Azur, and the Italian Riviera; the last is subdivided into the western part—the Riviera di Ponente—and the eastern part—the Riviera di Levante, which are west and east of Genoa, respectively. Winters are mild (average temperature, 9.3°–12°C), and summers are hot (average temperature, 24°C). Annual precipitation totals 500–700 mm.
Before World War I, people often traveled to the Riviera for rest or treatment for tuberculosis. In the period between the two world wars, the sanatoriums were moved to the coastal mountains, and the former health resorts became mainly recreation and sports areas. Since the 1950’s, people convalescing from or afflicted with nervous disorders, anemia, and other ailments have come to the Riviera for rest. There are hotels, boarding houses, and camping sites. The resorts on the Riviera include Cannes, Antibes, Nice, and Menton in France, Monaco and Monte Carlo in Monaco, and San Remo, Imperia, and Rapallo in Italy.