Including trips to Antibes, Cannes and Monaco
22.05.2012 - 25.05.2012
While trying to find accommodation for Nice, we were kinda shocked at the prices. It was going to cost us €450 for three nights in a hostel. So we kept searching all different ways and came across a unit available for those three nights that looked unreal and for only €300! Was this too good to be true?
Once we arrived and got in contact with the guy, he came and showed us through and it was amazing. “You are very lucky this became available” he said to us, “we had a cancellation as the weather has not been too good”. “Excellent!” we both replied. “So… which are you here for, The Cannes Film Festival or the Monaco GP?”
No wonder everything was booked and/or overpriced! We had no idea either was on. The GP didn’t start though until the Thursday which was our last full day there. We set in motion a plan to see as much of Nice as we could for the rest of the day, hit Cannes the next day with a stop off at the town in between called Antibes, and then go to the first practice day of the Grand Prix the following day.
The sun had come out just as we arrived in Nice, so we just walked down to the beach. The water is the most beautiful blue! We continued up the beach and up a heap of steps to a lookout and gardens atop of the headland. We walked back through the older part of town and checked out some markets. We had our own kitchen in the apartment so we stopped in at the supermarket and had a home cooked meal! So good, they are definitely cherished when we get to have them.
Our first stop the next day was a town called Antibes, halfway to Cannes on the train. We were recommended to stop here by the guy who looked after our apartment and it didn’t disappoint. It was another great day and we walked around the marina and out to the fort on top of the hill. We have been to a few forts now and this one was clearly a winner so far for us. It was very well preserved and offered some amazing views up to Nice and over the town, looking over the billions of dollars sitting in the marina. It was interesting as a long time ago it was a very strategic point as it was located on the French border until later when the border was shifted and Nice became part of France.
In the town we visited a Picasso museum. Picasso spent a few years here and painted a lot of works in this building by the sea, which is now the museum. He has even painted straight onto the wall in one spot! We had a drink outside a pub and it was sweet watching all the VERY expensive cars try and squeeze past each other, and past the Toyota Yaris that a snooty lady parked right in the middle of the road and then just walk off. Random!
We jumped back on the train to head a few minutes up to Cannes. Cannes immediately reinforced to us that France is the country of minimal toilets or waiting excessively long periods to use one. After sorting ourselves out, we saw where the red carpet area was and all the people starting to line up to grab a good vantage point. We weren’t sure who was attraction this evening, but we grabbed a spot to find out. We heard hysterical screams and saw on the big screen that it was Rob Patterson (some vampire movie guy). This was really quite funny to us as Kate was not into him at all and I haven’t even seen any of the Twilight movies. Many girls would’ve killed to be in our position. To make it even better, Kristen Stewart turned up a bit later too! Kate managed to squeeze into a premo area that was heaps closer and I had to wait a few minutes to take my opportunity and jump in there too. We also got to see Kirsten Dunst and Ewan McGregor.
After all that excitement we walked up along the boulevard where all the beach parties happen on one side and all the huge Hotels are on the other. There people breakdancing on the side road and the amount of ridiculous cars was almost unbelievable, the best being a Bugatti Veyron parked out the front of the Ritz where “The Dictator” was staying. We didn’t quite fit in wearing our pluggers around here, so we went back a few streets towards the train to have a few beers in the pub before going home.
We organised tickets for the first day of the GP. €75 each, which sounds expensive but Sunday tickets for the same stand were €600! We had to pick up our tickets from an office when we got there which proved to be pretty difficult to find, the streets were very confusing there and very steep! The tickets were pretty awesome, looking over the Marina where boats can reverse right up to the side of the track. We could see from the chicane, up to where we were sitting and the next few corners and the start line was over the back of our stand. Ear plugs proved to be a great investment, especially when the were cars going past behind us, next to us up the hill and in front of us! We got a bit of rain so the cars were in and out a lot. Was a great experience, we were so close to the track. Maybe next time we can be on one of the luxury yachts?
Our trip to Nice (and surrounding areas) proved to be very successful!
The photos of NICE
The photos of ANITBES & CANNES
The photos of MONACO GRAND PRIX