March 3, 2014

Let's cross over : San Remo

I first fell in love with San Remo when I was traveling through Europe while I should actually be studying. I was just talking with some friends at my university when they said that our school offered some very interesting excursions to some cities close to Nice. So, because I'm the biggest traveling freak in the world, I decided to check it out. And the first excursion they had was to Marseille, wich I went on and was surprisingly cool. And then, me and my friend decided the we would keep doing this little travels with the university until our time there was over, and we saw that the next one was to San Remo. 

The first thing that I did when I got home from school was to go on our lovely Google and just type in the name of our next destination, enough to put that idea that I just had to go there in my head. But unfortunatey, my so very busy mind forgot the day of the trip and we ended up losing it. 

But I wasn't ready to give up San Remo yet. And that's when  my faithful companion (best boyfriend in the world) accepeted my invitation to go there. And the next day I already had everything ready, I went to the little store to buy the train tickets (extremely cheap - I believe it was only 15 euros to go and to come back) and we decided (actually it was my decision because he lets all the planning to me, he only butts in when it starts to get a little expensive) to not spend the night there because the hotels were a little out of our student's budget and because the last train to Nice left around 22:00 (plenty of time to explore the city). 
Now to the city itself. 

The city is actually pretty small. It's part of an Italian region called "Liguria" which is also known as the "Italian Riviera". Just like all the small cities of the coast of Europe (Nice, Cannes, Monaco and many more) San Remo's highlights (in my opinion) are the casino, the beach, the port and the center. 
In that note, let's start with the Casino. I don't know if it's because where I live we don't have casinos but they are always my favorite part - they always make me feel like I'm in a glamorous movie scene, just like 007. 

Unfortunately I couldn't go inside because I forgot my passport and I'm not from the EU so I cannot go inside woth just my ID. - believe me I really hate myself for that, so please learn from my mistake and ALWAYS bring your passport. 
Next we went to the beach, even though it was winter, as you can see in the pictures it was a beautiful sunny day, just a little cold. There we did a picnic, because let's face it we are poor students. 

After the beach we headed to the port to see all the rich boats and to watch the sunset. There you can find a lot of very cute restaurants and bars if you want to eat with a gorgeous view. 

And then, on our way back to the center we did a few stops for shopping (AMAZING SALES IN ITALY - I bought a pair of boots for FIVE euros, yes that's right FIVE EUROS !), gelattos, coffee and some pizza. 

To finish things off my tips to anyone who is thinking about going to San Remo are: 
                        1) No need to stay the night. Sure if you are looking for a romantic getaway with your significant other is different and I think you are really going to enjoy your time there, especially in the winter because you have a sunny but cold day and you can get a hotel with a fireplace.. 
                        2) It's a city to spend one afternoon. 
                        3) And this one goes to every city in Italy : Go with your stomach empty. If you love food, Italy is your country, you're going to get lost in all the pizza, gelatto and pastries (my personal favorite sfogliatelle - just try it and you can thank me later)
                        4) Enjoy the sales. Seriously people, boots for 5 euros - I don't think I need to say more. 
                        5) Last but not least, take your time. The city is small and you'll have plenty of time to explore it, no need to rush. 

Hope this was helpful to some of you, or just interesting to read ! 
Have a wonderful day !

                                                                              -Michele Mattos

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