A Weekend in Nice (and Other Travel Blunders)

 

A few weeks ago two of the other New Paltz girls and I had the opportunity to spend a weekend in Nice. I really must say one of the best parts of study abroad is convenient travel! In Europe the world is quite literally in your back yard with so many opportunities to travel to other countries in such a short time.

Though Nice is still a part of France, the climate and the atmosphere are so different I actually thought I was somewhere in the Caribbean. Where my program is located in Besançon, the climate is pretty chilly most of the time so in just an eight hour train ride (it seems like a lot, but take into account the layovers and waiting time) seeing palm trees and startlingly blue water was a little bit of a shock. We arrived late on Friday evening and enjoyed a nice dinner of pizza (very traditionally French, I know).

 

Being the beach lover I am, I vowed to spend all of Saturday on the ocean since we were leaving late morning on Sunday. We arrived bright and early at eight AM just in time to see all of the morning joggers and swimmers. But we were all a little surprised to find a sand less beach. The area we were staying had a beach almost solely of rocks which had its ups and downs. No sandy towels (yay!) but lying on your back and basking in the sun took a little adjusting. After an hour or so we realized we were actually next to a water sports kiosk. The parasailing and jet skiing were a little too high priced for our budget so my friend Lemon and I ended up renting paddle boards for an hour. This gave us a GORGEOUS view of the shore and the surrounding area. Even though the waves knocked me over more than I would care to admit it was still an incredible experience for me. My friends left about an hour earlier than me so I could enjoy my last little bits of water and sea glass searching before I finally admitted my summer was over.

Our beautiful weekend in Nice came to a bit of an interesting end (though a happy one) with more of our classic travel blunders. It was nobody’s fault in particular, as we hadn’t all thoroughly checked our train number but the lesson learned there was TRIPLE CHECK EVERYTHING!! We ended up missing our train and having to pay forty euros to catch another one, adding over two more hours of travel time and two extra layovers on the return. Considering how expensive reservation changes for the trains are, that was a lucky break. Overall this weekend was one for the books and made me appreciate this beautifully diverse country even more. I can honestly say I will definitely be planning another weekend in Nice for the future!

 

I am a French major with an undeclared minor. I’ve traveled to Europe three times in my life and always find myself wanting to go back so spending a year here is a great opportunity for me! I love travelling so be prepared for a lot of travel posts. I will be studying at the Université de Franche-Comte for one academic year.

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