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Honeymoon Advice - First time in Europe

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Cincinnati, Ohio
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Honeymoon Advice - First time in Europe

I'm sure this has been talked about before, so if you could humor me I would appreciate it.

My soon to be wife and I are coming over to Europe for our honeymoon, unexpectedly, due to being asked to be the best man in my friends wedding on August 17th in Scotland. I am thrilled but having to plan a honeymoon on short notice in a place you don't know if kinda tough ;)

We are in our mid 20's and will be flying into London on the 12th, spending a couple days there, then Scotland for couple days, then Paris for a couple days, then we thought we'd leave fro Paris on the morning of the 21st of August and head to Nice. The reason being we really wanted someplace that we could go hang out at a great beach area, relax like crazy and have a great time doing some eating, seeing sites and really enjoying ourselves before we have to head back to London on the night of the 25th to leave on the 26th for the US.

So the questions I have are this:

1. I have seen some recommendations and trying to read through posts on this board and reviews, but for people who are NOT looking to spend a ton of dough (since we are paying for this honeymoon ourselves) but want to really enjoy ourselves, where should we look at staying?

We are flying into Nice around 12:00 on the 21st. I have read the beaches are not true beaches in Nice with sand and whatnot, so didn't know if the areas that have beaches are worth staying at more than Nice itself or if we should just suck it up that the beaches are pebbles, because Nice is such a great place to stay. I am planning this honeymoon for the both of us so I am trying to surprise her with little things her and there to make it great, so finding a good place to stay with an ocean view would be awesome.

2. I'm not going to ask again about things to do with in Nice because I have seen lists about that and I will try to find stuff to do.

3. Regarding eating, I have read some posts about this, but knowing what I have mentioned before, what are some great places to eat at and what are some places to stay away from. We definitely wouldn't mind catching a train or bus somewhere to grab something to eat or find something to do...so we aren't limited to just the area we would be staying in.

4. Weather - What type of clothing should we bring for the dates of August 21st - 25th? I know everyone has their own style but what is traditional to wear or not wear? What should we definitely bring?

5. We are not leaving out of Nice till 12:20 on the 25th to give us extra time to enjoy, so will our place we will be staying be happy to hold our luggage for us?

6. How should we pay for things to get the most bang for our buck? Should we use credit cards, get cash while over there, travelers cheques? I have hard that cards are the best way to go in regards to getting cash advances at ATM's over there. I have also heard about some places charging you in pounds versus euro's on your cards which of course cost's us more.

7. We really wanted to check out a vineyard for a day, do the whole tour thing and drinking thing...is there anywhere nearby that is a good worthwhile vineyard?

8. Like I said before, I would really like to surprise my girl with some relaxation time and little things, so I was thinking things like hang gliding, hot air balloon, micro light...just some different stuff that would be fun and memorable. She is a huge sailor and I would LOVE to find a place that would take us out for the day or night, kinda like a day cruise on a great sailboat or catamaran and just take us around the area and maybe even surprise her with some dinner at a local port or on board.

I know I'm asking tons of questions but I really want to make this great. We don't have tons of money, so I have been saving up all I can in order to have a great time. Europe is so expensive hahaha.

Thank you in advance and I'm sure I will have more questions for later.

Best,

Christian

London, United...
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for Nice, Villefranche-sur-Mer
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1. Re: Honeymoon Advice - First time in Europe

a good place to stay with an ocean view ?- Hotel Suisse, or push the boat out for next door Hotel Perouse - big if - if you can dtill get a room - this is high season and you may just have to take whats available. Could try for a seaview room at Hotel Mercure Promenade des Anglais or same group Marche aux Fleurs.

For the beach your best to grab the bus 100 from the bus station round Cap de Nice to Villefranche. Its got great beach facing restaurants too - Carluccio seems the most classy but there are lots of others. The last bus bacjk to Nice is only 8.00 but there are trains running later up to midnight from the railway station.

Late August should be HOT - inthe low 30's, so thin and light stuff. Casual smart - anything goes but its nicer to dress up a little rather than backwards facing baseball cap and falling down pants IMHO

French ladies are very definitely "dressier" Lots of white teamed up with very big sunglasses

Hotels usually no problem holding luggage

Cash - just use a hole in the wall debit card to take out euros. The rates as good as anywhere.

The best local vineyards accessible from Nice are Bellet and Chateau St Cremat a little way up the Var and accessible by the train Chemin de Fer de Provence I believe - knowhow anyone?

Theres outfits that do all sorts of dangerous stuff in the back country behind Nice here -

http://www.beyond.fr/sports/hangglider.html

Ive seen boat hire and stuff at Antibes Port Vauban which is where all the superyachts are parked - lots of restaurants for dining out in old Antibes.

That should give some ideas for starters

Cheers

Cincinnati, Ohio
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2. Re: Honeymoon Advice - First time in Europe

Well, I tried the Suisse, but it says that it is all booked up...which stinks because that would have been perfect.

I will try the others but definitely not trying to spend a ton of money on the hotel room since really won't be staying there all the time.

So if a seaview is not available, what hotels would you recommend for good staff, atmosphere, and location?

Cincinnati, Ohio
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60 posts
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3. Re: Honeymoon Advice - First time in Europe

Here's another question.

I know we are flying into Nice, but is there somewhere else nearby that we could stay at, that would be just as good if not better than staying in Nice? Offer good views of the sea, good food, people, etc?

I just didn't know if central Nice is the best place to be or if we could get more for our money in a neighboring area, etc.

Does that make sense?

And last...language. Being stupid Americans, we took French in high school and retained about a couple words. What do we need to learn or brush up in order to not be treated...well...like Americans?

Best,

Christian

London, United...
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4. Re: Honeymoon Advice - First time in Europe

hI

Not suprised about the Suisse

As an alternative to Nice, with what you are looking for Villefranche would be ideal You could try thefamous Hotel Welcome, or the other end of the spectrum two star Hotel Darse. Its a small place but there must be others

In Nice, get away from the sea but still very central I can recomend the Hotel Vendome in Rue Pastorelli

London, United...
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5. Re: Honeymoon Advice - First time in Europe

Dont worry about the language - its learning how to get around that matters

I have some transportation tips on my VT pages if you would find that helpful

members.virtualtourist.com/m/6cdeb/188b0/9/

Cheers

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6. Re: Honeymoon Advice - First time in Europe

If the promenade hotels are full - try Comfort Opera Roosevelt on the corner of Rue Marechal Joffre and Alphonse Karr . Good hotel - 3 star ish , good rooms etc - have a look on trip advisor reviews .You could also try Villa Victoria on Boulevard Victor Hugo or Hotel Splendid - these latter 2 a bit more pricey but a bit nicer

Cincinnati, Ohio
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7. Re: Honeymoon Advice - First time in Europe

Sounds good on the Villefrance area, but what do we need to do in order to get there from the airport? And where is it in relation to central Nice...just so I can get my bearings.

I'll check the other hotels and see what I can come up with.

Has anyone here ever used Priceline to get any good hotels in the Nice area?

Best,

Christian

London, United...
Destination Expert
for Nice, Villefranche-sur-Mer
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8. Re: Honeymoon Advice - First time in Europe

Airport to Villefranche by public transport has two options

Airport Express bus 98 to Nice bus station and switch there to Bus Route 100, which is about 15 minutes to Villefranche.

Airport Express bus 99 to Nice Gare Ville SNCF and switch to a train to Villefranche, two stops.

Villefranche is about 4-5 kilometres around the coast - the next town, travelling in direction Monaco and towards Italy.

Cheers

Chicago, Illinois
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9. Re: Honeymoon Advice - First time in Europe

SolutionsKid,

Having a room with a sea view and balcony is really wonderful. You may try emailing the Suisse with your room request and ask that they notify you if something opens up. I booked directly with them the last 2 years and went through some lengthy email correspondence before ending up with the room that I wanted. You never know when there will be a cancellation and you may get lucky! I've stayed on the 5th floor and the 2nd floor. The 5th is quieter and more expensive. Here's their email address: hotel.suisse@hotels-ocre-azur.com

I did visit Villefrance and it seems like it would be a very nice place to stay. Much quieter than Nice of course. I looked at rooms in both the Wecome and the Darse. The Welcome's rooms are nicer but more expensive than the Darse. As of last year not all of the Darse's rooms had air conditioning. Something that is an absoulte must for me. So be sure to check on that.

Good luck and best wishes. Nice and the surrounding area is absolutely fantastic.

Cincinnati, Ohio
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10. Re: Honeymoon Advice - First time in Europe

Thank you very much for the advice, I just emailed them so we will see what happens.

But I guess I am a little confused. I have read where VillaFrance is more expensive than Nice, is this true?

What advantages does that town have over Nice and vice versa?

Best,

Christian