Monaco, just over a mile wide at its fattest point, can easily be seen in a quick afternoon. So once we’d checked out the highlights and it began to dump buckets on us, something even our canary yellow rain slickers could do little to prevent, it was time to hop the train to Nice.
It was only nine euro round trip for an adult—and even cheaper: two euro less for the “seniors” in our group—so if in Monaco on a cruise stop, there’s no reason not to head next door to Nice, eight miles away, or even Italy, which is about the same distance in the other direction. Don’t get me wrong: Monaco is nice—and if you gamble, you could spend alllll day there—but with just 33,000 people living there, you can run out of things to do, fast.Lucky for us, Vicki led the way, from purchasing the tickets to corralling us all off the train when we reached Gare de Nice-Ville.
It didn’t hit me until we walked a ways in the (still) pouring rain that I’d actually visited Nice before. When my friend Helle and I went to Corsica for a project back in 2006, we took the ferry from Nice to Bastia, which was an overnight ride. (Have more time in France than just a few days? Definitely go to Corsica!)
I’ve told you I’m not the biggest fans of museums, but when a native Francophile leads you to a modern art museum—in this case, the MAMAC, or the Museum of Modern Art and Contemporary Art—you go, no questions asked.
At the end of the day, Vicki left us on the train as she disembarked at her stop. We wondered if we could smuggle her back on the ship with us, but figured we’d save it for next year. Because we’re already planning two trips back to Europe in 2014 (and inviting any of you who want to join, so start saving now! pack your bags! let’s explore the Med together, whaddya say?)…