Friday, June 15, 2012

South of France: Nice, Monaco, & Cannes

Finally the time had arrived. For months, two of my best girlfriends from college (Abby and Alyssa) and me had been planning our reunion in the South of France. It was the perfect place to meet because Alyssa was visiting Abby in Paris and both of us had never been to the South of France before. We met at our first stop Nice and spent two nights there.

Arriving in Nice was a great welcome to Cote d'azur- the runway was right next to the glistening water and pretty palm trees. As I was walking looking for my hostel, two familiar faces were popped out of   a window yelling "Michy michy," it felt good to be back with my best friends (let me mention we had our own private apartment room separate from the hostel- it was awesome). That night we went out to dinner and just talked for hours over pizza and wine (and of course got gelato for dessert)!! Then we went out to a fun bar where they literally made everyone get up on the tables and dance!
The next day we started off visiting a cute outdoor market, smelling the wonderful soaps, looking at the delicious food, and just starting at their crazy spices. We decided to see Musée Matisse and Musée d'art moderne et d'art contemporain, they were both good and free museums 
Then we headed to eat lunch and ordered what soon became our obsession: Moules Frites (baked mussels served in a delicious sauce with a side of french fires), which are so delicious and also got the typical Socca. After we went to the beach to sit for a while and made our way up to the viewpoint to see the city. It was absolutely beautiful. The ocean was three different colors, a dark blue, light blue, and turquoise color, we just admired the views for a while. We stopped in a delicious candy store on our way to happy hour-- mesmerized by so many different choices-- and then headed to drink some wine outside and read in the sun. We had a nice dinner in our apartment that consisted of wine, cheese, and baguettes. We went out on the town again to a fun bar! 
Moules Frites y Socca!

Pretty Nice
The next day was our Monaco day trip. I was very excited for this. I was so curious to see this rich and beautiful city. It was absolutely amazing. We went straight to the Monte Carlo Casino and stood outside watching the luxurious cars pass by. We got delicious panini sandwiches and headed for the viewpoint to have a picnic. We hiked our way up, and the higher we got the better the view. It was so beautiful. We ate our lunch in a park and then walked around the cute town, seeing the prince's palace, and taking in all the different views around. We then walked down and decided to try Monacos (when in Monaco right?), it is beer mixed with grenadine, a bright red drink and way too sweet for me. But as we sat outside drinking our Monacos in Monaco, we saw probably 40 extravagant cars drive was quite the view.
Monte Carlo Casino 

Prince's Castle

Monacos in Monaco!

We headed for Cannes that night. It quickly became my was a small ritzy town with luxurious restaurants, shops, and hotels on one side of a strip and on the other side the ocean. Cannes is also where the famous Cannes Film Festival is held every May (of course the girls and I took pictures all dressed up on the famous red stairs). We had an incredible hotel that had our own balcony with a view of the ocean. We ate great meals, partied both nights till 6 in the morning, and enjoyed lying out on the beach. We had 3 course meals for dinner where we couldn't resist the moules frites again the first night as the main course but also had french onion soup mmm and Crème brûlée (could we try to be any more french?), and I had the duck the second night. We ate the best french food in Cannes, had the best time at night dressing up and going to fancy clubs (reminded me of Las Vegas), and enjoyed meeting new people. We went to a cool bar/club the first night and met locals who ended up taking us to Baôli Club- a club on the water. They were both really fun places with great music. The next day we soaked up the sun on the beach, ate some crepes, went around the town, buying different macaroons, and then got ready to indulge in a great meal again. This night we got even more dressed up, stopped by the famous stairway on our way to dinner, snapped some photos, had a great meal and then went out to Les Marches Club. It is on the rooftop of the Palais de Festival and such a cool club. It had great DJs playing our favorite music, a nice view of the city, and kept us dancing all night long-- taking us back to our college days. It was a great weekend with my best friends, so glad I got to travel with them abroad and experience new memories together.

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