Travel There: Lunch and Shopping in Nice
Life on a cruise: another bus ride, another meeting point and another meal. That about sums it up, but come on with me and enjoy Nice. While I’d still take Cap d’Antibes over Nice, there nothing not to enjoy about the city.
An Dining Opportunity
One thing I can easily say about this trip is that we bought more food onshore than we usually do on cruises. Some of that may have been because our shore excursions were such marathons and not all of them included a meal. However, I think it also had a lot to do with Jim and Melanie. One of their primary interests at every stop was where to eat and drink, while Bill and me on our own tend to find other things to do. I’m not complaining though. It was fun.
Though it seemed as if we’d just left the sidewalk cafe in Cap d’Antibes, the first order of business in Nice was to find another sidewalk cafe. This time it was Le Gande Balcon and we were getting more than a snack.
Bill and I both had prawns and oh my goodness, I have rarely seen such big ones. Mine came with pasta and Bill’s came with risotto. Glasses of wines and adult beverages were enjoyed by all.
A Shopping Opportunity
Le Grande Balcon was in the middle of a shopping area. Nearby shops filled the sidewalks with their wares and a little further down was an open air market. We’d all been so busy being tourists, very little shopping had been happening, in spite of all the shopping opportunities the guides had forced on us. Those opportunities usually came with a pretty heft price tag. Though there was one more day of touring left, no one wanted to get home without the requisite souvenirs, so after our wonderful meal, we hit the shops.
The shop closest to the restaurant had laminated place-mats and for some reason Bill was all over them. He picked out four odd place-mats – two with roosters and two with cartoon cats. They were the absolute last thing I would have chosen as a souvenir of this trip, but hey, Bill rarely shows any interest in any souvenirs. So, if he wanted plastic place-mats, by golly, I thought he should get plastic place-mats.
Further down I found a shop of linen goods. They had a darling dress I knew my sweet next door neighbor would love, so I had to get that. Continuing down the street we wandered into the open air market. I found a delightful vendor offering gifts of lavender sachets in the printed cotton which Provence is known for. That’s where I bought my souvenirs.
Visiting the Beach
There wasn’t much time left, but we wanted to get a few pictures of the gorgeous beach. We headed back to the meeting point, which had been across from the beach. We wished for a few more hours to explore the area, but we had minutes, not hours. Another reason for us to head back to the French Rivera someday.
After having time for just a few photos, it was time to get on the bus and ride back to the ship. We had a quiet afternoon in our cabin. Bill napped. I caught up on my journal and did some reading.
That evening the rest of the gang had decided to fork out big bucks to eat at Eden. They say it was fabulous and for the first time in his life, Bill actually admitted that he wished he’d had any idea it would have been so good. He actually wished that he had spent the money.
Instead, we had dinner at the Cosmopolitan, which was actually the third time we ate there. I was surprised Bill didn’t want to go back to the Italian or French restaurant, but I think it may have had more to do with proximity than anything else. We enjoyed the downtime.
After dinner we took in a show called Gilly and Girl in the Theater. It fit the easy-going mood of the day – just a couple doing love songs and ballads. We strolled the shopping area where various events were supposed to be happening, but it was all just a come on to get passengers shopping.
Even the shopkeepers didn’t want to participate, so we just went back to our cabin. Guess what! We’d both left our keycards in the room and had to go back to guest services. We giggled all the way there and all the way back to the room. We’ve traveled entirely too much to have both made that mistake on the same evening – but that’s just what we’d done!
One day of touring left. Come back next week for Palma de Mallorca.