When I applied to study abroad in the French Riviera, I expected sunshine, beaches, and good food. In reality, I have those things and more.
My town, Antibes, is located 20 minutes by train from Nice and 10 minutes from Cannes. Here, I can get to the beach, grocery store, and bus stop within ten minutes, walking time.
|One of the many pedestrian streets|
|The port in our neighboring town of Nice|
Equally, there is always room to explore. I love to go to the pedestrian part of town and just get lost in its winding streets. Even to this day, I find new little corners that I love. Or, if I want to ditch the city life for a day, I can hike up the Cap. There are so many walks that lead to hidden beaches and amazing views.
|My not-so-secret rock by the water|
Antibes is a small town, so it feels very comfortable to walk around during the day. It is filled with adorable retired couples and their dogs. With it being so small, we can always see other CEA students around. It is a great feeling to be in such a foreign environment yet constantly see people that you have gotten to know throughout the semester.
A big difference between my hometown and this one is the markets. Every single day, until 1 PM, different vendors set up a Provençal market. Here, you can buy cheese, meats, fruit, spices, soaps, flowers, and so many other things. On Thursdays, we also have a clothing market with many Italian vendors. This is a great place to pick up a couple new dresses or a leather purse.
The markets, however, are not the only place where this Italian influence can be seen. After all, we are less than an hour drive from Italy (which is also very accessible by train). We actually have many Italians who live here, like old Italian men who play bocce ball by my apartment. Also, there are pizzerias on almost every street. Our restaurant of choice, Mister Pizza, has become my apartment’s best friend.
And yes, the rumors of eating lots of baguettes and cheese are true! The bread here does not even compare to the bread back home, and the cuisine is absolutely amazing. We constantly make trips out to pick up some macaroons or even some gelato (again, that Italian influence).
But, what is most impressive to me is the view of the Alps. Here, when you look out onto the Mediterranean Ocean, you can clearly see the Alps in the distance. As long as I have been here, they have been covered in white snow which makes for a nice contrast against the deep blue water.
|One of my paintings of the view of the Alps at sunset|
This town has gone above and beyond my expectations, and I wish that I had more time to enjoy the amazing lifestyle here.
|The sunset last night on my way home from Poland|
Laura Bastings is the Spring 2016 CEA MOJO blogger in the French Riviera, France. She is currently a sophomore at Towson University.
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