The last leg of our European itinerary, we chose Nice -the beach city of France. The landing is beautiful, surrounded by the beautiful ocean. It gives a perfect kick-start to the beach holiday. We chose, Westminster Hotel and Spa(got a good deal on Booking.com), bang opposite to the Blue Beach. It is centrally located, with most of the attractions nearby. You can take Bus number 98 from the airport, but for some reason 3 bus routes(one of them being 98) were on strike that day. So we had to shell out (60 euros) to reach the hotel.
Nice, as a city has a lot to offer in terms of food, drinks, architecture and of course beaches. Monte-Carlo, Eze, Cannes are one hour drive away.
What to see:
Walking is an ideal way to explore the city.
Old Town: Visit the old town. Walk in the by lanes and try out different cafes and restaurants. Check out the “French Windows” as you pass the houses. Shop from the local stores. The old town comes alive in the night with bars playing music and loads of people coming to unwind and relax.
Castle Hill- Walk up the castle hill, to enjoy the unparalleled view of the city against the ocean. Photographers take your tripods and go clicking. There is a park, waterfall, kids playground. Everything is well maintained and worth a visit.
Promenade-Des-Angles -Anytime in the day, walk or bike along the Promenade-Des-Angles. When tired, sit and enjoy the views. The beaches are stony, but the beautiful blue sea makes up for it. Watch the sun rise or the sun set. Check out List of Nice Beaches
Place Massena-A good photo spot. It is centrally located. Watch the statues change color in the night. It is a busy street, but people will happily make way for you to click photographs. There are fountains and gardens close by. The tram runs through the place making it easily accessible.
Cannes and Monaco are both an hour drive from the city. We chose the Monaco way. You can drive down or take the bus. You will be driving along the French Riveria and needless to say the view will be picturesque. Stop by Eze and check out the medieval coastal village architecture. Further ahead is Monaco, the second smallest country in the world. Check out Monte-Carlo, GrandPrix Circuit and spend some time at Casino Square. Many luxury brands have their stores here. Take a peek into the lives of some of the richest people of the world.
The 100 bus goes further until Menton. Check out the beach there as it less crowded. There are number of restaurants along the beach to satiate your taste buds. We ate at La Vita E Bella. The host was really sweet; she cooked some of her speciality especially for us in vegetarian style. Really good food, must visit.
What to eat:
Nice has a lot of multi-cuisine restaurants catering to tourists from all parts of the world.
1) Socca- Pancake made from chickpea flour. Chez Pipo is where we tried.
2) Crepe- Try the crepes
3) Ice-cream – Try the desserts at Amorino Café. You can choose the size of the cone and then take all the flavours they offer.
4) Wines- To all the wine lovers and haters -try the wines. My husband is not a wine drinker, but he developed a liking after he tasted the wines of France.
Where to Shop:
My friend said it is not as good as the Fashion Capital, nonetheless we found some really good stuff from the small shops at Place Massena and Old Town. Keep looking you will find reasonably priced shops.
Our holiday was nearing its end. Last night is always a mixed feeling. For one moment you are happy to go back home and another moment you wish to extend it by a day. Since the start of the year, this trip had kept us occupied. A satisfactory but an empty feeling filled us. However, we wanderers have promised to take another epic trip together. Hopefully, we would all be able to fulfill our promises.
European Diaries Collection: