In the summer of 2018, I lived on the French Riviera, waitressing in a hotel restaurant and bar in Nice. While I certainly hope not to have to work in a restaurant ever again, this granted me the opportunity to travel the Côte d’Azur while earning money and improving my French. Along the way, I met many, many people who I will not easily forget because there are simply so many memories that tie me to them.

Vieille Ville of Nice

While I fell in love with the old town of Nice during my three months there, my favorite place to spend the morning before going to work was a small stretch of beach in Villefranche-sur-Mer. If I wanted to go to a beach where I could lie in the shade, Èze-sur-Mer was the ideal place to go. Apart from that, the path up to Èze Village made for excellent hiking. If you prefer something less steep, I can heartily recommend the trails around the peninsula of Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat.

The view from Èze Village

I much preferred these smaller towns and beaches to more well-known places like Nice, Monaco, or Cannes. Seeing as the train runs right along the coast, I could simply board it and get off at any station. Wherever I walked, the turquoise water was easily visible, a warm breeze blew through my hair, and the smell of pine trees with a little tang of sea salt followed me. If I had not been too scared, I would have rented a scooter to drive along the winding hills of the coastline. I reckon I would have found more charming towns like Menton or Saint Paul de Vence with its galleries, Èze Village with its cute stores, or Grasse with its trademark smell of flowers in the air.