Every Friday morning there is a street market in Nimes on Avenue Jean Jaures near the fountains and the pools. They have more than just vegetables and fruits, they also sell meat, spices, and prepared warm meals. If you want to check out the market, make sure you go in the morning because by 12 all the stands start to put things away and clean up. We never actually bought anything from this market, so I cannot comment on the prices or the quality of the products but everything looked good and there seemed to be plenty of locals around, shopping for food.
On a separate note, last night we booked a lovely place in Hanoi, Vietnam (coming up in November) for a very good price. To celebrate this and the fact that our fridge is more or less empty again, we headed into Nimes’ city center for some Vietnamese food. There are a lot of Vietnamese restaurants in south of France, and there is no shortage of them here in Nimes. We looked on Yelp and picked the one with the best reviews, La Baie D’Halong.
Travel Tip: A majority of restaurants in south of France are not open for dinner until after 7 PM. We encountered a few that are actually not open until 8 PM. If you plan to eat dinner at a restaurant with young kids, make sure you have either a late lunch or a light afternoon snack.
La Baie D'Halong
We arrived at exactly 7 PM and were seated right away. At first, we thought we would sit outside to enjoy the lovely weather. I don’t know how we keep forgetting about the evil mosquitos! We relocated to a table inside without being given a difficult time.
Travel Tip: Many restaurants have a few English menus available, but you have to ask for them.
We ordered a variety of plates to share and the food came out fairly quickly. Everything was very delicious, but sadly that was the end of decent service. The restaurant started getting crowded, and the staff seemed to forget about the customers who were already seated. Our dessert, which consisted of 2 scoops of ice cream and a cup of exotic fruit, took over 15 minutes to arrive at our table! The waiter totally forgot to bring us another bottle of water, and I practically had to jump in front of him to ask for the check, because saying "s’il vous plait" and "pardon" was not working. I also saw another couple had to take matters in their own hands and get up to get their own new bottle of water.
Since the food was very delicious, I wouldn’t say don’t go to La Baie D’Halong, but perhaps you can order a take out :)
Nimes at Night
After dinner, we walked by the Arenes and through l'Esplanade Charles de Gaulle. This was actually our first time seeing this part of the city at night, and it was definitely a treat. The Arena and Monsieur Bullfighter were nicely lit up and all the streams around l'Esplanade Charles de Gaulle were glowing with ever changing colors.
This was likely our last walk through the city of Nimes. I am glad we had the chance to see it at night, although if you recall our Time for a Haircut post, you know we like to avoid walking home after dark. I was glad we had driven and parked in a nearby street so we didn’t have to walk home.