Last month to celebrate my birthday, we headed to the South of France. I was so excited for my first road trip exploring this beautiful country, France. We rented a car and planned to drive along the coastline of the French Riviera and Italian Riviera including Monaco. One of the perks living in Europe is the distance- you could easily jump and step on another country in hours. So fancy for lunch in Monaco and dinner in Italy in one day?
I thought it would be nice to show the map with illustrations and motion! Follow our journey with this short video below.
Early in the morning, we hit the road as the journey from Paris to Nice would be around 7 hours driving. Nice was our base where we reserved a hotel in the city centre and very close to the beach. As we entered the lovely city, we were welcomed by the lines of Palm trees, the stunning blue skies and oceanic view of the Mediterranean coast. Taking a walk on Promenade des Anglais and soaking the sunshine on the beach which made of pebbles. The weather was gorgeous- the kind of weather which was envied by the Parisians.
We had lunch enjoying the seaside then exploring the Vieux Nice (Old Town). In the morning, you could find a local market selling foods and flowers.
Next destination was Cannes– just a stone’s throw from Nice which is famous for its annual Cannes film festival. Unlike the pebbly beach in Nice, the seaside is filled with sands. We walked along the Boulevard de la Croisette and caught the glimpse of sunset. A great area for shopping with many luxury boutiques and shops.
Traveling to Monaco by the route of La Grande Corniche for the remarkable view from the top. By the afternoon, we arrived at the second smallest country in the world, Monaco which is popular for its wealthily reputation and the annual Grand Prix. We parked the car at the carpark near Jardin Japonais, a beautiful Japanese sanctuary and pond with mini bridge and waterfall. Then we decided to walk or you could use bus for only 2 euros going to infamous Casino, Monte Carlo’s harbour, Musée Océanograpique & Jardin Exotique and Le Rocher for medieval lanes.
Next day, following the coastline we passed Menton, a charming town in Côte d’Azur covered with pastel buildings; before arriving in Italy. Luckily, two famous festivals in French Riviera happened in February, a Carnaval de Nice and lemon festival in Menton.
Not far from the French Riviera border, here is Ventimiglia, a pretty Italian Riviera village. We went on a good bargain for flowers and succulents in the local market. Also, I was feeling peckish, so we had a breakfast at the patisserie across the market, a bit of sweet, just what you need for the holiday. Promise you, they are all super yummy!
Unspoilt and understated town yet beautiful, Ventimiglia is a total gem! We headed to Roya River which you could spot the Old Town, Piazza. The end of the bridge, down to the beach where you could see the wonderful panoramic of the coast.
Back on the road, we stopped at Ospedaletti and had a lunch at the seaside restaurant. It was sunny and warm enough to eat outside. I had a fantastic birthday lunch at Come a Casa, a good view, excellent service and amazing foods. I opted for octopus which just freshly caught from the sea. After lunch, we went for a walk at La Scogliera Beach. It was calm and relaxing, perfect to end the holiday.