Paragliding (or parapente in French) is a popular sport in our region, which is particularly well suited for this activity.
Updrafts occur in all mountainous regions, and the Cote d'Azur is no exception.
They are due to thermal drafts when warmer air rises and due to other wind patterns where the wind is forced up against a mountain face blocking its path.
The pre-alpine region, to the north of Grasse and Nice, has got several mountain ridges that often have near vertical cliff faces rising several hundres metres high , sometimes much more.
The presence of the Mediterranena Sea to the south, and the towering mountains of the Alps in the north, ensures for continuous movement of air.
Paragliding is practiced on several locations across the French Riviera. There are also several companies and organisations offering both flights and training.
Some places to practice the paragliding sport are:
Among several that offer courses for beginners and experienced gliders, one company I know and have used is "Ascendance 06", based near the village of Gourdon.
They can teach you the art of paragliding, and you can also simple book a single flight as a paragliding passenger!
(you can find their website here).