My boyfriend and I enjoy travelling a lot. We regularly check offers from budget airlines and plan our vacation in advance. Norwegian Air Shuttle, our favourite budget airline in Scandinavia and Europe, offers cheap flights and hotels to many destinations. For Easter this year, we decided to visit Nice on the French riviera where the water is crystal blue and most likely warmer than in Copenhagen.
The beaches in Nice are gorgeous. Each day we spent at least a couple of hours walking along the beach on the vast paved Promenade des Anglais looking at the water and the bright blue skies and absorbing the arrival of spring. Facing the beach is the ever charming Nice Old Town. Sprinkled with quirky shops and cafés throughout a maze of the narrow walking streets, the old town really stole our hearts. We ended each day with a food adventure leading to mixed experiences and a few lessons learned.
Lesson 1: Eat like a local
Two days in a row, we ate at a restaurant called Le Romarin in Nice Old Town. There, we had a late lunch and were particularly taken with the house special, Salted Caramel Ice-Cream. We took time to enjoy our meal and observe the other customers in the restaurant. Witnessing French etiquette first hand is fascinating. For example, an old couple sitting next to us, we noticed, kept their hands on the table at all times. Also, a guy at another table used a knife to cut his pizza into a bite-sized pieces and used a fork to fold each piece neatly before eating it. Generally, people stuck to the rule of keeping the knife in the right hand and the fork in the left hand.
Lesson 2: French food tastes the best in France
The first night, we went for a dinner nearby our hotel and found a cozy restaurant and wine place called Le Vingt4. I ordered a classic French fish stew aka bourride. It comes in a deep plate with vegetables and new potatoes, based with saffron butter sauce. The fish is extremely fresh. I could even feel the collagen from its skin when chewing on it. The vegetables were appropriately cooked, which gives some sweetness to the dish. I finished my dinner with the house special, fresh fruit salad which is a mix of kiwi, apples, pineapple, lynchee and passion fruit. It reminded me the feeling of a summer night in the Mediterranean.
Lesson 3: Vietnamese food is everywhere
The second night, we went to a small budget restaurant called Lao Viet, a tiny Vietnamese restaurant nearby our hotel. When it comes to food, it turns out, we knew the menu better than anyone else. People were surprised that I ordered in Vietnamese even though I don’t speak a word of Vietnamese. Considering the price, the food was relatively good, although I instantly felt they had put a lot of sodium in which made me thirsty afterwards.
Lesson 4: Never eat at a restaurant with karaoke
The third night, we initially went to famous sushi restaurant which, sadly, turned out to be fully occupied. So insted, walking back to the hotel we went to some random restaurant whose name, as a courtesy, I better leave out. The restaurant had karaoke inside and looked extememly tacky. We ordered sushi which we regretted tremendously. Clearly, there is a reason why people put an effort into checking TripAdvisor or Google Local Guides before booking a table.
Tags: cheap flights and hotels, Europe, France, French riviera, Google Local Guide, Lao Viet, Le Romarin du Vieux Nice, Le Vingt4, Nice, Nice Old Town, Norwegian Air Shuttle, Norwegian budget airline, Promenade des Anglais, Review, Travel guide, TripAdvisor