The weather improved dramatically once we got to Nice. It was good to walk around, see the beach and the old town. The narrow streets of the old town were bustling with shops and restaurants and almost had a bazaar-like feel to them. As you can see, we also walked up the hill for a beautiful view over the town and the sea.
Up the top of the hill some people were having a lot of fun with homemade go-karts. This one was possibly called “everything AND the kitchen sink”:
The beach was ok, although it was rocky, not sandy. We didn’t think the people sunbathing looked very comfortable!
The downside of Nice was the hotel. The welcome they gave us consisted of a list of rules for Contiki groups, and they’d taken all the complimentary tea and biscuits from our rooms! The day manager was the stereotypical snooty Frenchman. I really think they shouldn’t treat Contiki groups like that because in the off season we would have been bringing so much business to their hotel. There was another busload of Contiki people staying there too.
The rooms they gave us also had very primitive locks on the doors (massive gap between the door and the jamb, and if you wanted to deadbolt them you had to lock them from the outside – we’re used to hotel rooms that lock themselves), which was what led to the major disaster in Nice – while both Contiki groups were at dinner, our rooms were broken into and all cash was taken. I never leave cash in hotel rooms and luckily Rachael, who almost did, had decided not to, so we don’t even know if our room was broken into (for some of the rooms, the cash was gone with no sign of the lock being broken etc. Kind of suspicious). It all happened on snooty guy’s shift although by the time it was discovered the hapless night manager had to deal with it. I went along in case translation was needed but although the gendarmes spoke no English the night manager’s English was good, so I didn’t let on that I spoke French and eavesdropped instead. Apparently the hotel had been broken into a couple of months previously. The gendarmes were not impressed.
Anyway, we’ll never know what really happened, but I hope Contiki finds another hotel or that this one at least puts proper locks on the doors!