So yesterday morning we walked the 2.5 kms from our apartment down to the bus stop at La Port. Buses leave for Monaco every 15 minutes and cost only €1.50 ($2.20 CAD, $1.70 USD) for the 20 km (12 mile), 40 minute trip.
The bus is heavily subsidized because it isn't really a tourist bus. It also transports hundreds of people who work in Monaco, yet live in much cheaper Nice.
Walking to the bus stop, we couldn't help but notice this huge piece of "art"...
We don't get it. Blockhead? Who knows?
The bus was pretty full and I had to stand for the entire trip. Mostly tourists. There are five stops when it goes through Monaco, and we wanted to walk as much as possible so I think we got off at the first one.
There is lots of construction going on in Monaco. Because the land area is so small, and property prices are so large, there is constant demolition of shorter buildings to make way for taller ones. Also, they are constantly redoing roadways and tunnels. And on top of that, the city is currently undergoing it's yearly transformation into a racetrack for the upcoming Monaco Grand Prix that takes place May 28th. It takes more than two months to get ready for this event every year!
As we were walking towards the western waterfront area, a couple of red Ferrari's zipped by. Wow...do they ever sound cool. I want to drive one some day! Anyhow, they were parked a little further up and I snapped a photo. From the talk we overheard, we think these two girls had rented the ride. The drivers each had red Ferrari jackets on, and the girls had British voices.
There is a LOT of money in Monaco. It has the most expensive real estate in the world. There are Lamborghini and Ferrari dealerships as well as Aston Martin and of course Porsche. And then of course there are the luxury yachts...
This boat s available for rent...only $200,000 per week!
This is a private yacht, owned by a British property developer.
This private yacht is worth $80 million.
Monaco doesn't have an airport, but it does have a heliport so that you can zoom yourself over to the Nice airport. Cost is €110 for the seven minute flight!
Ruth, enjoying the greenery.
We walked up to the palace for the postcard view of Monaco harbor...
A perfect view of Monaco.
Lots of tourists up at the palace.
Another section of Monaco Harbor.
Lots of flowers.
Getting ready for the Formula 1 Monaco Grand Prix.
Rolls Royce parked outside the Monaco Yacht Club.
If you own one of those yachts, the Rolls is just pocket change!
Thumper has accommodation for up to 12 guests in five generous cabins plus berths for up to nine crew members. The master suite comes complete with a 55 inch Samsung flat screen television and a System Orca facility for audio/visual enjoyment. Two double and two twin cabins have 32 inch Samsung televisions and all cabins have full en suite facilities. There is full acoustic protection around the master and all guest cabins including adjoining areas, and also excellent sound insulation between the captain’s cabin and the sky lounge on the upper deck. Satellite wifi Internet throughout. And, Thumper is for sale. She can be yours for only $16 million USD!
Ruth, wondering what it would be like to be that rich.
We wandered from the marina up to the famous Monte Carlo Casino. You are allowed inside the casino lobby, but if you want to go into the gaming halls, you need to register. And probably provide a hold on your credit card!
Monte Carlo Opera House.
Monte Carlo Casino.
Lamborghini parked outside the casino.
Inside the casino lobby.
More public gardens.
One of the things we wanted to do in Monaco was to try and match up another one of my father's pictures from 1954. But this one was tough. The area has simply changed too much. And even if we would have been able to find the exact spot, the view would have been obscured by newer and taller buildings.
Monaco in 1954.
From approximately the same spot!
We had a great visit to Monaco. Not sure it's worth the money they want to live there though. We looked at a couple of real estate listings....here's the most expensive one we found...
That's not for the whole building...just an apartment near the top of the building!
This afternoon, we fly to Morocco for a two week visit. Our first Muslim country. This should be interesting. Next post coming to you from Marrakesh!
Fantastic deal on eight Mikasa wine glasses. If you know your wine glasses, you'll know what a great deal this is...
And in Canada...