Wednesday, August 19, 2009
The Luries Go To France: Days Five and Six
Day Five. Sunday was our last full day in Nice. It was a lazy one. We slept until noon which Dan loved. Once we dragged ourselves out of bed we decided to grab sandwiches and a strawberry tart from a boulangerie and head to castle hill. This is the looming lookout that you usually see in a picture of Nice.
The neatest thing about it was that you could walk up from a side street in Vieux Nice, past small art galleries (where local artists sell) and a square with a charming church to a stone walkway that takes you up the hill. It was a warm day but along the way the waterfull comes down and we'd stick our arms in the water to cool down. Near the top is a lookout point just below the main part of the waterfall, we took pictures of ourselves and let the wind carry the water in our direction, which felt amazing.
Once we had reached the highest lookout we were greeted by two huge souvenir stands (horrible) and an outstanding view (worth it!) On our way down we bought a crazy expensive bottle of water and tried to cool down. We were pretty tired after our walk but managed to grab Dan a pair of tennis shoes and some fig room spray for me. At this point we've been wondering around old town long enough we're starting to get the hang of all the little streets. We wanted to make it to the sea again today but out late start made it impossible. Instead we headed back to the hotel, tried to get a start on packing and prepared ourselves for a lovely evening out. We ended up at Casa Mia for dinner. Casa Mia is actually next door to cote marais which is perfect since we loved that street so much. We had some red wine and decided to do a "menu" which means we'd each get a starter, an entree and a dessert or coffee. I had baked cheese and fig jam to start and a pasta with ham and marscapone for the main course. Dan started with melon and cured meats and had breaded veal for dinner. It was totally perfect! After dinner we went back to the wine bar from a couple nites before and had a glass before sloppily heading to the hotel to pack. We are so excited to head to the new town but sad to leave Nice which is so beautiful!
Day Six. Today we woke up at 6 am to catch a 7:30 train which ended up leaving an hour late. We were supposed to transfer quickly in Marseilles to Orange but we arrived in Marseilles just as our second train left.
We ended up having a few hours to kill while we waited for the next one so we loked up our bags and headed to Vieux Port on foot. The old port was lined with fishermen behind carts of freshly caught fish. We took photos and looked around until we finally stopped at a cafe and ate a quick lunch. Once we caught our train to Orange we saw sunflower fields and cute houses as we bounded along in a barely air conditioned train.
Once we arrived in Orange, we dragged our luggage from the train station to the roman theater where we thought the bus to Vaison la Romaine was. Unfortunately we were wrong and after a few paniced moments a telelphone card was purchased and we called the bus people who told us the bus station was actually right out front of the train station we had just come from. A couple celebratory beers later, for figuring out where we were supposed to go, and we were on the bus headed out of Orange and past a ton of adorable small towns, chateaus and rolling hills full of wine grapes to Vaison la Romaine. Our hotel here, la fete en provence, is adorable, comfy and the bathroom is like a tiled spa.
In the evening we went to a touristy creperie where we ordered salads and were treated to these amazing cheese filled dishes. I had the goat cheese one and Dan went for the roquefort. A perfect ending to a less than perfect travel day!