Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Antibes or Old Town/New Town

We're almost finished with our time on the Cote d'Azur. We're actually leaving a couple of days early so we can fit in a couple of things on the opposite side of the Provence that we wanted to see. I spoke in yesterday's post about our ordeal getting back from Antibes. But up until then we had had a very nice day.

When one visits an 'old town' in a European town or city, one might expect one is seeing the same thing. But that is not the case. For many cities, particularly those that were damaged a lot during the wars of the 20th century, the old town may be mostly reconstruction along the lines of the streets as they were, trying to use as many buildings and facades that survived. Nice's old town would be an example of that. Then there are those that survived with a new town growing around it such as the one in San Remo Italy. Finally their are those where it looks as if the old town has hardly changed at all such as the one in Cervo, Italy, and the one in Saoge, France. Antibes is definitely in the first category.

Antibes has been occupied for well over 2600 years. Like Nice and Marseilles and a number of other places one the Mediterranean coast, the Greeks or Phoenicians were there, followed by the Romans, followed by various barbarian conquerors, etc. Whereas Nice and the towns to the east were primarily dominated by the Duchy of Savoy in Italy until the 19th century, Antibes was French. It was the military bastion on the edge of the border. When you see the pictures below, you will get the feeling that this was a place of business, no nonsense military business. It was only after WWI that the military moved out and it joined other areas on the Cote in becoming a playground of the rich and famous. It did that in spades though and is now considered the place in the world for the super rich yacht spot.

Let's delve into our visit.

Don't believe it's been 2600 years?
Read and believe - 26 Centuries
If you can't believe the signs at a French archaeological dig, what can you believe?

Fortress City?
I present to you Exhibit One
A crapload of big fortified walls and bastions

The 'old' in Old Town
This is like a building from who knows how long ago that clearly made it through the WWII bombing

Antibes has LOTS of museums and a cool market
All closed on Mondays
(Actually we knew that but we needed something to do on the 31st)

Evidently Halloween is now a thing in France. It wasn't when I was a student with Charlemagne.

Historical border fortress town = Church that wasn't so great (or it got bombed out). The church in Cervo was much better.
But there was this piece of interesting late Medieval church art

Of course there are always the narrow streets with various sorts of action in them

And each 'old town' seems to have some interesting architectural thing going on.
I loved this door and windows

And their were lots of houses with these decorative trees which we've not seen elsewhere

And there was this modern art statue

I especially liked the way it framed Nice across the bay
Time to get serious
Let's Talk Yachts

Lots of companies selling yachts and offering all kinds of services for the yacht owner

But their are yachts and their are yachts
There is a big market for selling 'sports yachts', fast boats that don't hold that many people, maybe  8 passengers with a crew of two or three.

Sorry, that's just a glorified pleasure boat.
You can tell in Antibes harbor because of the strict segregation about such things.
Now here we're getting to something a bit more serious.
And now we're getting to the real deal
And I will conclude with this exclusive find.

Dilbar happens to be the most recent and biggest super yacht yet built according to my internet research. At first we thought it was a cruise ship. It is supposed to have over 41 thousand square feet of living space.

Well if that didn't make you hungry, I don't know hat will. Let's talk about FOOD!

We were both in the mood for street food.
We decided to start with dessert first so we had sweet crepes
Wife's salted caramel crepe followed by mine with chestnut puree

In French cafes they serve flavored syrups which you dilute with sparkling water. Sort of a make your own soda.
The only problem is they give you tons of the syrup and their is not a lot of room for the water and because of the difference in densities it is hard get them to mix.
Wife demonstrates the approved technique for dealing with this.
First take a small sip of the syrup on the bottom of the glass
Then move the straw up so you can dilute it with the bubbly water at the top 
By total fluke luck we fell into a food find.
We were looking for something portable to take to a park.
We saw a number of things but Wife wanted chicken and we went back to a place she said smelled the best. After we ordered our sandwiches, I saw a bunch of TripAdvisor emblems on the side of the hole-in-a-wall place. The reviews extolled the virtues of the gal who ran the place for sourcing all the ingredients directly and making most things from scratch.

Looks like a Belge right? Bread with Fries. 
Mais Non!
Below is chicken that was in a rotisserie that she has cut to put on this fabulous French Bread (maybe the best on our trip) with a homemade slightly pickled vegetable salad.

A satisfied customer


Renee Michelle Goertzen said...

I like the idea of choosing your restaurant based on the quality of smells emanating from it.

alexis said...

love the idea of frites in sandwiches spreading.