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There are a variety of "webcam" methods being used, not all what we would consider "web cameras". They range from live video images to still photos with uncertain updating schedules, and worse.
We've found a few real webcams of our favorite parts of Provence and a bit of the rest of France. Close to home, the camera at the CERGA observatory gives us a live view across the Plateau de Calern, where we frequently start local day-hikes.
Beyond Friend Shin has installed two high-definition webcams on the Riviera:
Beaulieu-sur-Mer Webcam captures the bay of Beaulieu-sur-Mer towards Eze Village and La Turbie.
Villefranche Webcam looks out onto the Rade at Villefranche-sur-Mer.
The Apt-Luberon webcam is a bit boring, but it's live and you can see the weather and if the lavender is in bloom, and we do appreciate very much having it available.
The Toulouse Capitale webcam lets you watch people walking across the town's central square, or see the market being set up in the morning, and of course check on the weather.
Still Photos - updated every few minutes during the day, aren't as good as live cameras, but if they're really updated frequently we can't complain. We check out the Saint Martin-Vésubie webcam from time to time to check on the weather here, since we begin many of our Mercantour hikes from the Saint Martin-Vésubie area.
Worst case for the still-photo webcams are the ones that don't seem to change, and don't give any information about if or when they will change.
Repeating Loops - These seem a bit of a rip-off mainly because they pretend to be live. Only if you watch for awhile do you realize the same people are passing across the scene again, and again, and again... Some do have the date and time indicated in the corner, so if you think to look at that detail you see what's happening. Still, the images are interesting. On the Promenade des Anglais view of the Nice - Promenade des Anglais site we watched the early-morning beach-goers, and some creative driving with the passing traffic.
Repeating Historical Loop - This one is so bad it's fascinating. We discovered this "webcam" last winter, intrigued by the sunny blue sky on a rainy day. The Ville de Grasse webcam is a repeating loop - for about 11:35 AM on the 13th of June 2006! We returned regularly to this site as the summer approached, waiting to see if the image would update to 13 June 2007. But no, we're stuck in the past. At least it was a nice day on that Tuesday. Grasse is Beyond's local town, so a blooper of this magnitude is embarrassing.
You'll find a list of our favorite webcams on Beyond's Links-Media page.
Links verified 21 December, 2009, updated 2 June, 2011.