Sunday, July 31, 2011

Au Revoir, France and the French Riviera.

Waking up on a cruise is pretty awesome. I happened to be facing the direction of our balcony (to which we had left the curtains open) when I opened my eyes this morning and awoke to a breath taking view of the coast of Cannes, France, yes, home to the famous film festival. The coast is filled with a gorgeous marina and beach resorts (I get why the elite, rich and famous want to come every year). The city also has it's share of history, containing old, beautiful architecture built up against gorgeous, green, rocky mountains (the view that I awoke to this morning). We walked through Cannes a little bit, stopping at a local flea market and enjoying the view of the crystal blue Mediterranean Sea. Shortly, we caught a train to Nice, France, about 30 minutes away by train. Nice came off as even more of a beach town than Cannes, with everyone clad in their bikinis...sometimes less (Tom, my 16 year old cousin, was in heaven). As we walked through the city and made our way to the beach and main promenade along it, we stopped at various cathedrals and other beautiful buildings along the way. We had a great lunch at the promenade along the beach and then walked along the beach and shopped throughout the promenade a bit. Compared to Paris, Nice didn't really feel like France. The culture is much more relaxed and friendly. Nice is also a really interesting mix of French, Spanish, and Italian culture. Due to the short stop, we didn't get to take in Nice's art scene (the home of Henri Matisse), but I think I'm getting my art fill on this trip and it was a very nice, relaxed day for a change. Back in Cannes, before boarding the ship, we toured a castle from the 1600's. The castle was very impressive, but the best part was the view from the hill where it sits at the top of the city, looking over the entire city and sea (we could see the ship). Now back on the ship excited for Florence tomorrow! Sorry I won't be able to upload pictures for the remainder of the trip. The internet on the ship is painfully slow, so I'll just update it with plenty of pictures once I'm home.

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