We had our BMW for a day in Nice, after driving in from Gorges du Verdon.
You do not really need a car when in Nice but since we had this option, we took a drive along the Grand Corniche – the famous highway where Grace Kelly appeared in a Hitchcock film “To Catch a Thief”.
We were subsequently greeted by this gloomy scene at Villefranche-sur-Mer.
We stopped for a while, to admire the scenery but a thunderstorm soon ensued. We waited in the car for the rain to stop, while planning the rest of the driving route. We decided to drive to Eze once the weather became more manageable.
As we drove out of Villefranche-sur-Mer, we were greeted by a small flood on the road. Boy, were we glad that we were driving a spanking BMW with a powerful engine!
By the time we reached Eze, there was no trace of a storm prior. The sky in a beautiful shade of azure that blended seamlessly with the turquoise hue of the sea. From the top of Jardin Exotique, we had clear forgotten about the torrential rain we had weathered to arrive at this destination.
Eze is a small hill-top village that boasts a well-restored castle and cobblestone walks. It is a pretty village to have relaxing stroll, with the castle as the main attraction. You probably just need to spend a couple of hours there. Eze is also accessible via a train from Nice.
We drove back to Nice in time to admire the Promenade des Anglais before sunset. The seawater sparkled under the gleaming sun, as if multiple diamonds were adorned on a massive, flowy blue silk. Till today, I do not understand why anyone would want to disrupt the soothing relaxed rhythm of life and endanger other holiday makers in this beautiful town.
And all this while strolling in Nice and along the Promenade, our rented BMW was nicely parked at the side of the road, just like any orderly no-nonsense visitor would have done. However, we did not realise that we were supposed to pay for parking coupon immediately after we parked the car. So alas, when we returned to the car after dinner, we saw a parking ticket, entirely in French stuck at the windscreen.
We didn’t even know how we were supposed to pay for the fine! After a quick check with the tourism office nearby, we were told to go to the Tabac store to buy stamps and mail this ticket out. Voila!
So, that summed up our little adventurous day out in Nice. First a stormy weather and flood, next parking fine… Don’t ever leave your car alone without paying for the parking fee!
Quick information on Nice
- Nice is a cosmopolitan town populated with good restaurants, fashionable boutiques and a stretch of pebbled beach.
- It is good base to travel to other smaller cities and towns at the French Riviera – Eze, St Tropez, Cannes, Monaco just to name a few. I spent 3 nights in Nice and spent most of the day town-hopping.
- Do set aside some time for a nice walk at the Flower Market and the Nice Port in the morning.
- If you are craving for Asian food while in Nice, check out MaYucca which serves amazing French-Japanese fusion.