I’m so excited to finally share my Nice, France Travel Diary with you guys — it’s been on my wishlist to travel to the South of France for years, so I was happy we were able to make it work after our trip to Lebanon. We flew direct from Beirut, Lebanon right into Nice (about a 3 hour flight) on a Monday and spent the rest of the week staying right on the famous Promenade des Anglais at the Hotel Negresco! Choosing two places we wanted to stay in the South of France was tough — there are so many little towns that people love, and we were getting feedback all over the place (which made it hard to decide). In the end, we ended up going with Nice and decided to choose a hotel right on the Promenade. It’s a little a-typical of us to choose a touristy area, but we love to walk, and wanted to be able to walk to everything. The location was perfect and the hotel is HUGE, so you can’t miss it walking down the Promenade, which always makes things easy when visiting a new place. From the moment we checked in, I knew I was going to LOVE our hotel. Madame Jeanne Augier, who has owned the Nesgresco Hotel since the 50’s, is an avid art collector. It was basically like staying in a museum, and we were able to see some pretty extraordinary art right in our hotel without having to leave! I knew the hotel was meant to be when we checked into our room. All of the floors of the hotel had specific categories of art. We happened to get on the floor with CAT PAINTINGS and right next to our room was a painting of a Himalayan Cat who looked JUST like Mischa.
We arrived to some pretty crisp, fall-like weather — but after sweltering in Lebanon, it was a welcome change. I always make sure to travel in a pair of jeans and bring a jacket just in case the temps drop. It was actually cool enough to wear boots at night (which I ended up doing a few times). We spent the first full day walking around Nice and ducking into little cafes when it started to rain. I absolutely loved the little streets tucked away in Nice — it reminded us of being in Italy, and the beautiful bright colored buildings with window boxes and balconies look like Paris. I’m SO excited to go next week!
We ended up eating a delicious dinner at Le Safari — which is set back a little ways from the Promenade in Old Town Nice.
We packed a lot into a few days in Nice and wanted to take advantage of the gorgeous (and summer) weather we had the rest of the week after it rained! We did a lot of walking around (so many photo opps) and tried to eat outside as much as possible. It’s so daunting going away in September and knowing we will soon be facing another brutal winter for 6 months, so I wanted to be outside the entire time. To be honest, the smoking in France is ROUGH — everyone smokes, so this took some getting used to for me, especially for eating. Our hotel had a private beach across the street called Neptune Plage, so we made sure to take an afternoon off from walking around to lay out for a few hours. I wore this striped swimsuit from a brand I really like called Summersalt. I was introduced to the brand this summer and love their swimwear — it’s amazing quality and all swimsuits are under $100!
We rented a car when we were in Nice and it was so great to have for day trips. Nice is in the perfect location and there’s a lot to do 30 minutes from it on both sides — you can head east to Monaco, the Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild (which I wrote an entire post on HERE), or head west to Cannes.
The hubs really wanted to drive over to Monaco for an afternoon, so we drove the convertible up the coast over to Monte Carlo to eat lunch on the marina and do a little (window) shopping! We had debating staying in Monte Carlo (over Nice), and to be honest, I’m glad we didn’t. It was PACKED with group tours, a little difficult to get around, and didn’t have as great of a vibe as Nice did for us. It was the perfect day trip, and I’m glad we got to see it and do a little exploring — I’m just happy we didn’t spend a few days there. It’s definitely small enough to see during an afternoon. We ended up eating at Nikki Beach because we wanted to sit outside and get that sunshine. Nikki Beach overlooks probably the most famous part of Monte Carlo — the famous “bend” that the Grand Prix race goes around. My husband is a major car guy — so this was beyond cool for him to see!
Our last day, I was phoneless — the debacle of losing my phone during one of our day trips happened the day before (more on that story tomorrow). We spent the morning walking around the Promenade once again and heading all the way down to the other end to go to the Flower Market (which came highly recommended to us by a few people). We ate our most delicious meal of the entire trip at Mon Petit Café — highly suggest making a reservation and heading there if you’re in Nice. It was one of my favorite meals of all time!
I have TWO more posts from France coming to you over the next few days — tomorrow, I’ll be sharing our day trip to Èze and the story of losing my phone (and getting it back). Then, I have many more photos from our few days in Saint Tropez that will be coming to the blog Monday! I leave for London and Paris this weekend too, so there’s LOTS of travel content coming your way for the next few weeks!