I know I’m super late with this, but I still wanted to share my Christmas vacation adventures with my parents. Better late than never, right?
After our train ride back to Nice on December 26, we took the afternoon and evening to settle in and go to dinner on the Cours Saleya and then to the Christmas market. The next day, I showed them the medical school where I work, and we continued up the hill to Cimiez, where we visited the Franciscan monastery, museum, and garden, which was really beautiful, even in December. Then we made our way over to the Matisse Museum, which was really cool and reminded us of some of Cat’s work 🙂 After a picnic lunch, we walked down to the Promenade des Anglais to sit on the famous blue chairs and grab a drink at one of the beach restaurants. Pizza and pastries for dinner! 🙂
I really wanted to show them the fruit/vegetable/flower market so we walked to the market in the morning and enjoyed a few breakfast pastries. In the afternoon, we took the bus to Monaco, where we walked around the Christmas market and indulged in some waffles, typical French carnival food… yummm! We walked around for the afternoon and saw the Monte Carlo casino (and actually went inside!), the palace, and the cathedral where Prince Ranier and Grace Kelly were married. On the way back to the bus stop, we saw the most beautiful sunset, and the Christmas lights were spectacular!
Saturday morning started with a trip to my favorite museum in Nice— le Musée d’Art Moderne et d’Art Contemporain (MAMAC), followed by a picnic lunch and a walk up to and around the chateau. The chateau is my absolute favorite view of Nice, and we even saw a rainbow in the waterfall! A trip to Fenocchios for some ice cream before watching the sunset on the Promenade des Anglais was the perfect end to the afternoon. Once again, an amazing dinner on the Cours Saleya.
On Sunday, we decided to spend the day away from “tourist-y” Nice on the small island of Ste Marguerite, which is a 15 minute ferry ride from Cannes. There are no cars allowed on the island and since it was December, there weren’t many people there either. It was beautiful! There’s a small fort on the island, which we visited, as well as a museum. We also visited the building where the Man in the Iron Mask was imprisoned before he was transferred to the Bastille. We ate lunch on a little beach and took a walk around the island and down the Allée des Eucalyptus. Chinese for dinner 🙂
We managed to find a few places open on New Years Eve, so we spent the morning at the Chagall museum (the only museum in Nice that isn’t free), which is very nice. But this afternoon was my favorite part of the week. We went to St. Paul de Vence, which is a little walled village at the top of a hill with a bunch of little artist galleries, candy shops, and cafés. We walked around looking at the art galleries for a few hours and watched the sunset from the hill. We went home and made dinner (chicken and leek pie) and walked down to the Promenade des Anglais to see the few (measly) fireworks at midnight. I missed our big family celebration, but to make up for it we went back at the apartment and indulged in pastries and champagne 🙂
The last few days of visiting were spent mostly relaxing and hanging out, doing some souvenir shopping, walking around the Christmas market again, and eating more delicious food. Then it was time to say goodbye 😦 I loved hanging out with my parents for a week. It was a different, but fantastic and memorable way to celebrate the holidays! 🙂
Our French word of the day:
congélateur (con-JAY-la-tour)- freezer
Je garde toujours des viandes, des légumes, et des pâtes dans le congélateur pour un repas vite.
I always keep meat, vegetables, and pasta in the freezer for a quick meal.