Located about 11 kilometres north of Catania, it is the perfect little commune to visit during the ottobrata – the local festivity that occurs every October here in Sicily, celebrating the fruits of the land: frutti di terra. The first encounter went wrong already 🙂 Approaching the booth with fruit, I have noticed quince – one […]
After Marseille, the next stop was St Tropez.
I was sitting in the train and watching the beautiful landscape of the French Riviera: the blue sea below me and red rocks above the other side.
The first arrival was actually the city of Hyeres where we changed to bus connection towards Saint Tropez.
I found Saint Tropez amazing cute medieval city on the hill. Except that is now overcrowded with rich peeps and their yachts. So, soon you found yourself sitting in the riviera, having your drink with the view on the seaside, except there is no sea as it is blocked by the huge yachts.
This small town on the French Riviera was a military stronghold and fishing village until the beginning of the 20th century. It was the first town on this coast to be liberated during World War II as part of Operation Dragoon. After the war, it became an internationally known seaside resort for the European and American jet set and tourists.
The town owes its current name to the early, semi-legendary martyr Saint Torpes. The legend tells of his decapitation at Pisa during Nero’s reign (Roman Empire), with his body placed in a rotten boat along with a rooster and a dog. The body landed at the present-day location of the town.
In the 10th century it became an Arab Muslim colony dominated by the Saracens but the conra fire started soon by William I, Count of Provence, lord of Grimaud. So the city was deliberated but poor. The Count had connections with Geneva and contacted wealthy Genoese gentlemen who sent a fleet of caravels carrying sixty Genoese families to the area. In return, Count René promised to exempt the citizens from taxation. 🙂
Cool trick, isn’t it?
The city became a small republic with its own fleet and army. Did you know that gendarmerie comes from there?
From Saint Tropez to Saint Raphael towards the city of Cannes! 🙂
Some 100 km away from Saint Tropez this city is the host of the annual Cannes Film Festival. So I needed to take the photo of myself in front of the Palais des Festivals et des Congrès.
The city is known for its association with the rich and famous, its luxury hotels and restaurants.
We firsty made a walk through the Promenade de la Croisette.
La Croisette is known for picturesque beaches, restaurants, cafés and boutiques.
Established by the Greeks in 2nd century BCE to be a fishing village used as a port of call between the Lérins Islands, and later captured by the Saracens until 16th century when it was etached from the monks who had controlled the city for hundreds of years and became independent.
One of the most impressive things in Cannes was wandering through Le Suquet, the old town, climbing up the clock tower where it provides a good view of La Croisette.
This area is the original fishermans’ residential area of Cannes. The houses are all very old. The streets were laid out at least 400 years ago…
And again: plenty of restaurants! 🙂
Since my blog is named after the fairytale character, my dedication to the red colour and blond hair, I needed to take this picture on the left: La Chaperon Rouge!
The entire are is probably best known to tourists as the climbing, winding cobbled lane lined with local restaurants so the day was continued in this way until the perfect spot for having a dinner was found.
Then evening came and I saw the best firework in my life pre-empting the French anthem: La Marseillaise.
The very last day was reserved for Nice. This time no trains, no buses, no planes, but this:
From the moment we landed to the Nice Heliport, I noticed couple of items like the one below. What to say but that I am glad Frenchies know against who they played in the finals. 🙂
Nice is the fifth most populous city in France and kinda reminds on Cannes as well.
First wander around were the 19th century buildings with typical mediterranean balconies. I guess this is the reason the city is nicknamed Nice la Belle.
The sun was up in the sky with the temperature more than 36 degrees so the obvious refreshment was in the park Jardin de Albert 1er.
The area of today’s Nice whitnesses of a very early use of fire. Around 350 BC, Greeks of Marseille founded a permanent settlement and called it Nikaia, after Nike, the goddess of victory. Through the ages, the town has changed hands many times. Its strategic location and port significantly contributed to its maritime strength. For centuries it was a dominion of Savoy (I will make a hyperlink once I visit Switzerland, soon to be! 🙂 )
The natural beauty of the Nice area and its mild Mediterranean climate came to the attention of the English upper classes in the second half of the 18th century, when an increasing number of aristocratic families took to spending their winters there.
The city’s main seaside promenade, the Promenade des Anglais (“Walkway of the English”) owes its name to visitors to the resort.
After the Treaty of Turin was signed in 1860 between the Sardinian king and Napoleon III, the County was again and definitively ceded from Savoy to France as a territorial reward for French assistance in the Second Italian War of Independence against Austria.
So the visit to Vieux Nice started:
And somehow I found myself in the middle of the flea market with many interesting items – The Cours Saleya – the one of the central elements of daily life in Nice. The market place that features a vast array of products. In the market you’ll be able to find from collectible, handcrafted carvings to a wide variety of well-kept quality fruit and vegetables:
Getting lost among the dark, narrow, winding alleyways of Nice’s old town is a highlight. The layout has barely changed since the 1700s as the Baroque aficionados will adore architectural gems , just take a look:
The place is one of the city’s main attractions and a must-see for any visitor… Not particularly because of a huge amount of unmissable historical sites, but because it is a hive of activity, buzzing both day and night, which is ideal to wander around, to get lost in and to get a drink or a good traditional meal whilst enjoying the unmistakable baroque Mediterranean vibe
The more I was climbing upstairs, the the more I was involved in Medieval Nice ans the better view I had.
Climbing upstairs towards Parc de la Colline du Chateau was harsh under the heavy sun, but worth of the view on entire Nice and it’s beaches…
Somehow there was the Jewish cementary with many interesting monuments:
Just by Climbing up there you will pass through this beautiful Parc de la Colline de Chateau with the view on the ports of Nice:
The view was fabulous and made it clear why the place is called Coat d’Azzure:
The upper place was founded by the Greeks so you can find many mosaics with greeks motives:
Nice’s Old Town allows you to travel into the 1700s as you get lost in its narrow lanes and its architectural gems, such as the Cathédral Sainte-Réparate.
Somehow, I stumbled upon this palace as well, so I need to make a quick look 🙂 :
But I have to say that Old Nice is medieval, beautiful with the perfect moments to sit and relax, and have a drink or a meal in one of the bars or restaurants in the area whilst absorbing the Mediterranean vibes.
The last moments were used to enjoy the sun, Mediterranean vibes and the sea at the beach. The entrance costs 30 EUR and you just spread yourself all over the easy-chair. 🙂
And that was it!
The flight was ready for the evening!
Bye Cote d’Azur!