A day to explore Nice was on the agenda, so off we went, this time by train from Monaco station. The train ride was quick, efficient and relatively cheap, as the helpful ticket man behind the counter gave us an all day pass at 5 euro each, which we didn’t know about. The day was off to a good start!
Once arriving at Nice train station we walked out and were a bit shocked by the grimy seedy look of the city. I guess all areas around city train stations are usually dodgy affairs, but the one in Nice is particularly unpleasant to the eye! I didn’t remember it being so bad back in 2002, but alot of time had passed since my youthful sorjourn (and I guess when you are younger you dont notice things like this!)
Once we took a quick left we got to the main shopping street and things looked better. Further on we got to the beautiful Place Massena, which I definitely remembered from 16 years ago! Nearby the square we saw water jets shooting up, so miss A wanted to check them out. It’s here we discovered an awesome park full of climbing frames and water fountains, so we sat here in the heat for a good while and let miss A blow off some steam.
After our play break, we went on to the old town, the original heart of the city. Here we had a great time exploring alleys, seeing little baroque churches, savoring some delicious ice cream (you must try Fenocchio’s!) and doing a spot of window shopping. We then went towards the Bellanda tower, and to the eastern edge of the main beach which is up high and offers a sweeping view over the Promenade des Anglais, one of Nice’s most recognisable photo stops. The view over the beach and the famous belle epoque architecure is definitely worth it.
From here we had a lazy lunch at a restaurant on the Cours Saleya, which is a large street one street back from the beach and is packed with a variety of restaurants. We took our chances at Le Safari and were pleased – I had the best pizza I’ve ever had in possibly the whole of europe ( a big call i know!) and husband had a local specialty pasta dish which he said was awesome. We needed a long lunch break because by now it was stinking hot and we had walked alot. Miss A was getting a bit grumpy too so we knew a long stop with icy cold drinks was needed.
After lunch we took our time walking back to the train station. Another stop at the playground to please miss A and by now in our exhaustion we jumped on a tram to take us the 1km up the avenue Jean Medecin to get back to the train station. We were going to call it a day, but it was still relatively early, and we got a second wind, so on to Cannes we went.
At Cannes we just strolled along, seeing where we would end up. Luckily for miss A (and for us!) there was a little fun fair with a few rides and games, so we indulged her a few rides on the mini rollercoaster. This kept her happy enough while we sat and watched the interesting characters along the Croisette promenade and beachfront. It was cool to see where they host the famous film festival, which you see on tv every year. Nearby the Palais des Festivals building there is a little playground, so while husband stayed behind with Miss A I took the hard slog up the hillside into the old town to see the church and medieval laneways. After the old town in Nice the one in Cannes is not so appealing and does not offer as much, so after a short walk I made my way back down and we made the train journey back to our base in Monaco.