Two weeks baked and two going into the oven. Hard to believe they cooked up so fast, but my how tasty they were!
The next leg of our journey, Monterosso to Nice started overcast and in a tunnel, breaking out after about an hour, with only intermittent tunnels. The scenery, as with any train now-a-days seems to either skirt the low end of towns and cities or the industrial areas, although it is very lush here.
We finally stopped in Genoa to get our tickets for Nice, the trains were delayed by rain, as they are electric and there was a torrential downpour. The under ground passages were even slightly flooded. Guess we caught up with the storm from last night – except no lightning nor thunder. After 30 minutes travel the weather turned sunny, hopefully it continues to Nice. This stage of travel will be different as we couldn’t get seats together, such is the chance you take when you have to book a train on the fly. The three prior bookings to this we just lucked out – not this time. Oh well, at least we’re in the same coach on the same train.
Two of the three trip hours passed, we just went through Bordigehria and it looks like another storm ahead. Interesting we’ve travelled 2 km very slow and are now stopping at Ventmiglia – sounds italian but maybe the french border? Well we stopped for approximately 15 minutes and 31 seconds before moving again. No one seems to know why, although it looked like they changed engines, cause they completely turned off everything including the air – got a little stuffy. More tunnels, also looks like the Mediterranean on our left – lots of water. Ahhh they just announced we have entered France and will now do a service stop ……… these two stops must be a “union” thing. No encroachment on each others turf! More interesting, three police/security officers with guns and bulletproof vests came onboard and checked several people out. Shades of the August 21 Amsterdam to Paris train attack stopped by the vacationing Americans. False alarm ….. they’re moving on, as do we.
We are definitely in France. In Italy they announce everything in three languages, here just french most of the time.
Just passed through Monaco – of course in a tunnel. Now in Nice …. and staying at the Le Seize 16 Hotel.
Our hotel in France is situated in the old city about 500 m from the train station. We should arrive there by 4:00pm. Right now it looks as if it could rain.
Ah … fairwell to Italy, we’ll see you again some day if the vacation gods allow.
Hello France, all kidding aside we love Paris and hope to find great things in each of our 4 other stays!
We definitely must improve both our italian and french.
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Nice: August 24- 27
What a long day. We arrived 30 minutes late and took a taxi to the hotel …… as the crow flies we are about 500 m from the train station, but thanks to the wonders of ‘one-way’ street technology, our ride wove through 2 km to get to our hotel.
Well we are now embedded in our room on the 4th floor. We have wifi (sort of) – because of terrorism laws everyone wanting access to wifi at a hotel must provide proof of who you are and then sign-in with that profile. Unfortunately, you seem to get “kicked-out” of the internet connection intermittently for no apparent reason and have to re-sign in. Half the time it just doesn’t work.
Our first dinner was at a local Nice cuisine restaurant. The food was very good, the service okay. They are very fast learners ……. when we arrived most of the waiters didn’t understand english; however by the end of the meal they had picked up the linguistics so well they could answer in understandable english – truely remarkable.
Wandered the streets of the old city looking for the unusual. We found a water park (for kids). It’s roughly about the size of a football field made out of granite tiles, with regular spaced jets where water shoots into the air.
There are approximately 160 jets (8 x 20). The water can come from just one jet, multiple jets or all. It can bubble, spit or shoot up to 10 feet high. Both kids and adults are enthralled by it. In the afternoon each jet had at least one kid beside them – it was both entertaining and amazing to watch.
In the evening it was all lit up!
Dinner was similar to the last one we had in Monterosso (linguini seafood). Different but similar and tasty. Lots more touring – we did the ‘hop-on, hop-off’ bus tour, it wasn’t as good as Rome’s. Afterwards we went for a walk in the Mediterranean.
Rocky shore with crashing waves that will bowl you over if you’re not carefull.
Did the “try to purchase” train tickets for Monaco and had difficulty because all instruction were in french – and our french is poor. Finally a frustrated young man intervened and scrolled through all the menus, helping us purchase our tickets.
Then a mad dash to catch the packed train ….. we’re off to Monte Carlo. 25 minutes later we’re wandering the port of Monaco, heading up to the palace.
We got there just in time to catch the changing of the guard, then do some quick shoping in one of the souvenir shops. When we stepped out, we ran into a palace guard who was staring at Brian.
The guard suddenly asked if we were from Saskatchewan!!! We realized he was looking at Brian’s RoughRider shirt. Turns out he had gone to university in Montreal for 3 years and recognized the logo. So far he has been the only one on this trip!
After our tour, back to Nice for a short rest and then more walking and shopping before dinner. We tried another restaurant in the old city the meal was good and the service started great but deteriorated after the meal was brought out. Needless to say we can’t recommend this restaurant – service should remain consistent.
Regarding the La Siege 16 Hotel, while the staff are friendly and helpful, the bathroom is perhaps the smallest we have seen and used in Europe.
The sink for sure is the smallest I have seen anywhere – oblong, 10″ wide, 6″ across and 4″ deep – maybe holds 1 liter of water. We can get by with little, but I wouldn’t recommend this hotel and probably would not use it again.
Tomorrow we head out on a 6 hour plus high-speed train ride to Toulouse for a 2 night stay.