February in Nice was all about carnaval. As carnival season kicked off around the world, the Riviera celebrated with two weeks of parades. The streets were constantly covered in confetti, a reminder of the night before. My cousin joined me to take part in the festivities and we played tourist for a couple of days, drinking our morning coffee in the Cours Saleya, strolling through the markets and picnicking on the beach. The weather was finally giving us a hint of spring, so it was ideal to enjoy cool red wine and a pan bagnat while looking at the water. In the afternoon, we watched the flower parade go down the promenade. As the floats rode by, girls in sports-inspired costumes plucked flowers off of their floats to hand to people in the crowd. Each time the floats came around, they deconstructed more of their floats, which were decorated entirely in flowers.
Later on that evening, my cousin Natalie and I headed back to the old town to have a bite to eat before the parade of lights began. We ducked into Snug, a cozy little Irish bar, for a glass of wine and cheese plate. After finishing our assiette de fromage, we walked down to Place Massena just as the parade began. Natalie described the parade as a “rave for little kids,” and I couldn’t agree more.