One of the promises the Accidental Locavore has made herself is to look at more art. Being in Nice, you’re surrounded by it but there are always special places to check out. Since I didn’t have a car this trip, I’ve been exploring on and with public transportation, which has been easy to figure out (and the locals are always helpful).
The Picasso museum in Antibes is always a good excuse to wander the old town, hit the market and drool over the building where Picasso worked. You just have to watch your timing as they close very promptly for lunch at noon. More than a few good places to eat and my husband’s favorite place to taste artisanal pastis always makes it a must-go. It’s an easy and quick train ride.
Back in Nice, the Matisse museum is another place to picture yourself living and working in. More of a traditional Niçoise maison it’s an easy bus ride from “downtown” up into the hills. There’s an archaeological museum next door and across the street is an amazing beaux art building, the Hotel Regina (and Matisse stayed there too). If you’re a fan of Chagall you can trot down the hill to his museum, but I’m not really so I haven’t.
On foot, I made another attempt at the Russian Cathedral. The last time, we were shocked to find it closed on Good Friday, but I guess it is a different calendar. Which reminds me, on the BBC recently the Archbishop of Canterbury was calling for a fixed date for Easter. What do you think? Makes sense to me. Anyway, this time it was open (I checked before leaving) and is just stunning! If I knew more about Russian icons, I might have appreciated the hundreds of them inside, but the tile work on the exterior made it all worthwhile.
A trip to the South of France wouldn’t be complete without a trip to the Foundation Maeght in St. Paul de Vence. It’s such a special place and at this time of year almost devoid of tourists (as actually all the museums have been, including Saturday at the Matisse), making it even more tranquil. The show that was up wasn’t one of their best and I especially missed seeing my favorite Giacometti, but it’s the exterior that is my favorite part. Again, this was an easy bus ride (but an uphill slog to the Maeght) and I had plenty of time to wander the streets of St. Paul. Now that I know how easy getting around is, my next trip I’ll be heading out of town even more. Corsica anyone?