I was looking forward to visiting Cannes on our cruise as I’d never been before and it was always somewhere I fancied the sound of. It’s best known for the film and TV festivals it hosts but I was looking forward to a port stop where we could have an amble around at our own pace.
This was the only port stop on our cruise where we needed to get a tender and the transport was one of the ship’s lifeboats. When you go on a cruise you try not to think about potential disasters, well I do anyway. Master ATWWAH always gets excited when we walk around the deck with the lifeboats telling us how we’d jump on one if the ship started to sink as though it would be a huge adventure.
The lifeboats were reassuringly spacious and held about 200 people so were perfect for quick tenders and the port was only about 5 minutes away from the ship so the journey was fast.
We had no real idea where we were going when we got off the ship but we headed into the centre of Cannes and its Old Town. The buildings were magnificent and despite all the traffic we took time to admire some of the prettier ones.
We then headed up a hill to the ‘place de la Castre’ where you were guaranteed great views of Cannes. The hill wasn’t a particularly arduous walk at all, about 10 minutes, and Master ATWWAH could manage it on his own but there was a little tour train which took people up there too if you are feeling lazy.
At the top of the hill as well as the great views are the Notre Dame de L’ Esperance church which Mr and Master ATWWAH went to have a look at inside while I waited outside with Mini ATWWAH, who you can never guarantee to observe a respectful silence. There is also an impressive, medieval castle and its chapel which has been transformed into a museum. We didn’t go into the museum as it looked small and to be honest, a little bit dull. The weather was so nice that we just wanted to enjoy the fresh air and explore.
Whenever we visit somewhere that we like Mr ATWWAH and I have to take a look in the estate agents windows to see what you can get for your money. This usually involves us deciding we should leave the over-priced housing market of London and start a new life somewhere else although by the time we come home it never comes to fruition. Instead, I’m now compiling a retirement list of places to live, providing we are both in good health and solvent enough to do so. Cannes was no different and we had a good nosey at some estate agents as well as a bit of boat window shopping, as you do.
The old town is full of little restaurants, all of which looked great. I looked enviously on as we passed couples enjoying long lunches with bottles of wine and commenting to Mr ATWWAH how different our day in Cannes would be if we didn’t have the kids with us. We finally stopped at one of the promising looking restaurants to eat outside assuming Mini ATWWAH would be kept entertained by passing pedestrians and a menu he could look at/eat/rip/bonce over someone’s head. We chose Chez Michael on the Rue Meynadier. I ordered a salad and Mr ATWWAH went for soup with the kids having the usual burger. Sadly the idea was better than the reality and the food wasn’t up to much but had a pretty hefty price tag for what it was.
Cannes did however redeem itself in the form of macaroons at Jean-Luc Pele, further along the road. Wow! They were delicious. I chose a Nutella one which was so melt in the mouth gorgeous it makes my mouth water as I type. I’d never really got the fuss about macaroons until then.
We headed to the new part of Cannes town or the ‘Modern Town’ as their tourist information office calls it and much to Master and Mini ATWWAH’s delight we found a playground and fun fair. The four of us went on the carousel which was good fun, it was a double decker carousel which I don’t think I’d ever seen before.
We checked out the Esplanade du Palais and the walkway of celebrity hands, I couldn’t spot Bradley Cooper’s anywhere though. The Palais des Festivals is where all the big events are held. Sadly for us there was no celebrity function going on but a convention on plastic surgery. It went well with the posh shops you’d associate with Bond Street lining the Boulevard de la Croisette.
Cannes felt very much like a town of two halves with the quaint Old Town and its little shops and huge food market contrasted with the big famous over-priced shops of the Modern Town.
I did like it though and it’s a great place for a port stop as if you don’t want to go further afield there is more than enough to keep you entertained in Cannes. I would like to return one day and explore the surrounding areas more especially Nice and Monaco, just to see how the other half live.
Have you ever been to Cannes? What did you think? Which was your favourite bit, the Old Town or the Modern Town?
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