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Barcelona or Southern France?? -opinions please

Barcelona or Southern France?? -opinions please

Old May 11th, 2022, 09:12 PM
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Barcelona or Southern France?? -opinions please

Has anyone been to Barcelona or the French Riviera? I'm trying to book flights in Europe right now. Staying 3 days in Southern France (Nice, Eze, a day trip to Monoco) and 3 days in Barcelona. Have one extra day and can't decide whether to spend it in Barcelona or France. Have never been to either. I speak Spanish, not French, so I thought I would want more time in Barcelona, but pictures from the French coast are sooo much prettier. If you've been, which would you spend a 4th day in and why???
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Old May 11th, 2022, 09:30 PM
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What are your interests and when?

I love Barcelona. Nice is also a nice smaller city. But it sounds like you're bouncing around a lot.

Three days in Nice and you've got two day trips out.
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Old May 11th, 2022, 09:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Traveler_Nick View Post
What are your interests and when?

I love Barcelona. Nice is also a nice smaller city. But it sounds like you're bouncing around a lot.

Three days in Nice and you've got two day trips out.
My daughter wants to sip wine on a terrace with beautiful views, and walk around/hike beautiful scenery and quaint villages. That sounds nice to me, but I also want to get to know the culture of France and Spain. Hear the language, Explore villages. If we had 4 days in Spain, we could take a day trip to someplace like that, but where??

You think we are too ambitious in the Riviera? One day in Nice, One day in Eze, and its only an hour to Monoco, so just one day there isn't too much to do in 3 days is it???

But we could stay an extra day there. Just not sure where, or if we'd rather be in Spain that extra day. We are flying out of Barcelona, so can't go further than a day trip from there.


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Old May 12th, 2022, 02:44 AM
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I think that I'd rather spend the extra time in the Barcelona area. I'm not sure that Eze will take a full day but it depends on whether you have a car or are you reliant on public transport?
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Old May 12th, 2022, 04:38 AM
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Spend six days in one city or the other.
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Old May 12th, 2022, 07:16 AM
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When is your trip? Have you already booked tickets into Nice and out of Barcelona? Is the extra day a whole day in one place? Have you allowed a day to travel between Nice and Barcelona?
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Old May 12th, 2022, 08:19 AM
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Wouldnt go to Barcelona for one day, I'd stay put and explore more in depth. Barcelona needs 3-nights minimum IMHO.
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Old May 12th, 2022, 08:28 AM
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Originally Posted by Sassafrass View Post
When is your trip? Have you already booked tickets into Nice and out of Barcelona? Is the extra day a whole day in one place? Have you allowed a day to travel between Nice and Barcelona?
We have a flight booked from Venice arriving in Nice 8:30 am may 29. So we have May 29,30, 31 in French Riviera. We can either leave Nice on a 1.5 hr flight arriving Barcelona 10:40am on June 1st thus spending most of that day in Barcelona, or
leave nice at 9:30 pm arriving Barcelona 10:40 pm thus spending most of that day in Nice. We then have all day on June 2,3,4 in Barcelona before heading back to Texas 7am the next morning. Open to a day trip from Barcelona on one of those days if there is someplace recommended
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Old May 12th, 2022, 08:32 AM
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Originally Posted by dkdrasta View Post
My daughter wants to sip wine on a terrace with beautiful views, and walk around/hike beautiful scenery and quaint villages. That sounds nice to me, but I also want to get to know the culture of France and Spain. Hear the language, Explore villages. If we had 4 days in Spain, we could take a day trip to someplace like that, but where??

You think we are too ambitious in the Riviera? One day in Nice, One day in Eze, and its only an hour to Monoco, so just one day there isn't too much to do in 3 days is it???

But we could stay an extra day there. Just not sure where, or if we'd rather be in Spain that extra day. We are flying out of Barcelona, so can't go further than a day trip from there.

I think both Nice and Barcelona deserve more time than you're giving them. I know not everybody thinks Nice needs lots of time but it needs more than one day. Barcelona is mid size city with two thousand years of history.

Barcelona is also part of Catalonia. If you want more "Spanish" I'd lean towards Seville or maybe Madrid. All three cities are Spanish but they all feel different.

Personally I'm not sure I'd use up limited time to head to Monaco unless the GP is running.
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Old May 12th, 2022, 08:44 AM
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We are headed to the south of france in June and bc we booked so late, we are hopping around from place to place, but i'm actually excited about the itinerary. I would do an extra night in France and maybe see cannes or antibes? We went to barcelona in 2019 and although we thoroughly enjoyed it, I think 3 nights is sufficient.
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Old May 12th, 2022, 08:49 AM
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You all know that Spain has 5 or so languages

Lots of nicer places than Nice on the south west med coast of France.

Drinking on Terrace, kind of comes with the territory
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Old May 12th, 2022, 11:08 AM
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Originally Posted by bilboburgler View Post
You all know that Spain has 5 or so languages

Lots of nicer places than Nice on the south west med coast of France.

Drinking on Terrace, kind of comes with the territory
Great! Where??? Where would you recommend that is close to Nice but Nicer than Nice? We are flying into Nice.
Better to spend more time in places you recommend there
than Barcelona? I know they speak Catalan, but They will speak spanish in Barcelona too, right?
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Old May 12th, 2022, 11:43 AM
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I'm leaning toward more time in Nice....pre-Covid, we went on a van tour that included Eze, Monaco, Grasse and Cannes. And, the van picked us up. We returned to Monaco by train on our own and went to the Casino (passports were needed for entry!).

My guess is that most people in Barcelona speak Spanish even if they speak Catalan as well. The dictator Franco made Spanish the official language and he was around a looong time.

I loved the Gaudi architecture and that's not quite a drink by the sea!

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Old May 12th, 2022, 11:45 AM
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With little prospect of our ever having the chance to return, I'll share what I feel is a "hidden gem" near Nice. We spent 3 nights in Antibes, staying at the small Irin Hotel, right on the Old Town main square. No breakfast at this tiny hotel, but just feet from a fantastic bakery and coffee stands. Of all of our trips, this is my favorite stay. The city is very walkable, with one of the largest marinas on the Mediterranean. In 2019 we saw "Dilbar" moored there, the largest super-yacht in the world, and we were happy to see that it was one of the first seized because of ties to Putin.

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Old May 12th, 2022, 11:58 AM
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Originally Posted by dkdrasta View Post
Great! Where??? Where would you recommend that is close to Nice but Nicer than Nice? We are flying into Nice.
Better to spend more time in places you recommend there
than Barcelona? I know they speak Catalan, but They will speak spanish in Barcelona too, right?
Yes, Spanish in Barcelona is fine. English, as well.😼

How much time in a great city like Barcelona is “ enough “ is a matter of interest. I believe, over the years , we visited 6 + times.

Last edited by danon; May 12th, 2022 at 12:02 PM.
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Old May 12th, 2022, 02:43 PM
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Originally Posted by bilboburgler View Post
You all know that Spain has 5 or so languages

Lots of nicer places than Nice on the south west med coast of France.

Drinking on Terrace, kind of comes with the territory
Thank you for the reply about Barcelona. But you say there are many places in the Nice area that are nicer than "Nice"? What specifically would you recommend? We are flying into and out of Nice, so needs to be fairly close
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Old May 12th, 2022, 05:24 PM
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Originally Posted by dkdrasta View Post
Thank you for the reply about Barcelona. But you say there are many places in the Nice area that are nicer than "Nice"? What specifically would you recommend? We are flying into and out of Nice, so needs to be fairly close
I believe they meant the southwestern Mediterranean coasts. And I don't agree. There are some very nice beaches with long stretches of sand. But outside of Collioure, most if not all of the beach towns are uninspiring to downright unattractive, with concrete blocks of holiday apartments fronted by lines of t-shirt shops and bad pizza joints. But opinions aside, that area of Occitanie is far, far away from your travel path.

You will be in Nice around the time of the Grand Prix -- it ends on the 29th. Keep that in mind when planning transport (don't try heading there on the 29th) If you are interested in villages, I'd recommend Villefrance-sur-Mer (the walk around Cap Ferrat is nice, as is the Villa Ephrussi), Eze or St. Paul de Vence (or a loop via car to Tourettes-sur-Loup and Gourdon). For larger towns, Antibes or Menton. I'd avoid Cannes for a day or two after the Film Festival closes because there will likely be a lot of temporary structures and scaffolding/barriers/tents still set up. These are the most popular ones, but there are other unusual things to do, like the train to the mountain villages or the ferry off Cannes to St Honorat island

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Old May 13th, 2022, 08:24 AM
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I'm so happy to hear this as we are spending four days in Cap d'antibes!
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Old May 13th, 2022, 09:11 AM
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hard to advise, since you have decided to use aircraft you only get to go to Nice and Barcelona, the benefit of the train is you can get off. Since you have such a tiny holiday you may be right to just focus on these two, but if you used a train the world gets so much more interesting
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Old May 13th, 2022, 12:15 PM
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Have to say of the two visits we have made to Barcelona , I still rate it as my least favourite city in Europe - just too intense , people trying hard to make a living, drugs issues on show, crime and too many of the wrong sort of rowdy tourists. I was really shocked by the contrast with Madrid when we visited for the first time just before Covid - generally far more laid back, grander and locals just out to enjoy life.

We love Nice but really donít like some of the wannabe resorts around out. Just dire, with so many people wearing bling and out on an Instagram festival , Monaco was the worst example - why would anyone take a picture of a sports car?

Really love Villefranche and strangely enough Saint Jean Cap Ferrat - mainly because thereís so much money there that the owners use the mansions as holiday homes for 3 weeks a year which makes it quiet and stunningly beautiful- lovely village vibe.
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