Nice, France


The drive along the sweeping arm of the French Riviera has burned itself into my brain with indelible colors, awash like an artist’s palette, of the Mediterranean Sea. We drove on to Nice with it’s breathtaking cliff views.  The port was as full of huge sailboats and Super-Yachts as a French bakery is of baguettes.  We parked at the harbor (only possible because of off-season) and had a lovely time wandering the narrow ancient streets. The buildings were such lovely pastel colors with contrasting shutters, many with wash hung out to dry. 

I bought a creamy peach colored scarf, talking the girl down to 5€ with such pride. It went with my grey and peach outfit. My Michael Kors sandals have held up wonderfully. We actually walked up the hill to the Point of Monument aux Morts and then down to the rocky shore. I took those sandals off so I could put my feet in the Mediterranean. 
We crossed the street to the Old City where we wandered around about six centuries back in history. I bought some lavender soap. Circling the old city and Le Château de Nice, we returned back at the harbor passing people lunching in view of that amazing waterfront. 
We drove along the winding coast  and finally on to Monaco and Monte Carlo.  The view from the cliffs over the sea were dazzling with the bright sun and the azure sea. In Monte Carlo, where it is all diamonds and Ferraris,  we tried our luck at the casino where I ran the slots for half an hour. I only spent 10€ but because I kept winning, we were there for a while. It was fun. Our friends had gone into the cafe and ordered lunch. We joined them, but I only wanted dessert and tea, still being full from that amazing Cannes breakfast. I wandered around looking for something luxe to buy but I really couldn’t find anything small. Finally, we found some gorgeous shops I hadn’t seen right on the shoreline. We ended up in Gucci where I chose a tiny Gucci coin purse. Not exactly French, but then, Monaco is not exactly French either! 

From that vantage point, I took a few more photos in the late afternoon light of the palace, the fabulous buildings, the lemons heavy on the trees and that beautiful blue sea. It was getting late so we left Monaco and drove along the cliffs into Italy. The terrain immediately changed to thousands of terraced gardens filling the hills the down to the sea.  A testament to the industry of Italian gardening. We followed the coast until it got dark and finally turned north when we were nearly in Genoa, Italy. Of course later, at one of the famous petrol stations, we bought a stick of salami, Italian cookies, a 2007 bottle of local Amerone wine, and the most delicious espresso I had the entire trip!  It was a long dark drive all the way back to Switzerland but we saw glimpses of the Italian Alps and the gorgeous dramatically lit churches on the steep hillsides before it dark settled in. But I can safely say, I left my heart at the edge of the French Riviera Sea.

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