August 21, 2017

Monaco-Ville: Take Two

As with my morning visit to the French hill town of Eze, my afternoon in the nearby Principality of Monaco was also a repeat visit. Would I see anything that I hadn't seen before in what may be the most glamorous of locales on the very glamorous Côte d'Azur?

Tour Bus at Monaco's Palace Square

My visit began with a quick orientation walk through the streets of Monaco's Old Town, Monaco-Ville, and the town was much as I remembered. By this time I was ready to escape the heat at U Cavagnetu, one of Rick Steves' recommended restaurants only steps away from Place du Palais, Palace Square. I refuelled with some tasty escargots and then shopped for a tiny Grand Prix t-shirt for the newest member of my family back home.

Invitation, K. Verkade (1982) in St. Martin Gardens

Port Hercule, Monaco

Escargots at U Cavagnetu

Monaco Grand Prix T-shirt

At 3:00 p.m. I rejoined the group in front of the Prince's Palace for a simpler version of the Changing of the Guard. On my previous visit to Monaco I'd witnessed the full scale event held at 11:55 a.m. (along with a bigger crowd). I also found the statue of François Grimaldi, founder of the dynasty that has ruled Monaco for over seven hundred years, that I'd missed the last time.

The Prince's Palace

Palace Guard

Statue of François Grimaldi

Building of the Palace Guards

Archway Detail

Place du Palais, Palace Square

View of Fontvieille

Our tour guide was not only very knowledgeable, she was also very accommodating. She arranged for a few of the ladies to take a helicopter back to Nice, a six-minute ride that cost them 140€ each. The brief journey required passports and security screening like any airport departure. With the ease of movement across borders within the European Union one can forget that tiny Monaco, surrounded on three sides by France, is a separate principality. And the ladies had a blast travelling by helicopter like celebrities.

Before returning to our tour bus for a much less glamorous drive to Nice we visited St. Nicholas Cathedral where Prince Rainier married Hollywood film star Grace Kelly. The royal couple is buried side by side in the cathedral. There was a new drawing of the Prince and Princess on their wedding day that hadn't been there before.

St. Nicholas Cathedral

The Tombs of Princess Grace and Prince Rainier

Princess Grace and Prince Rainier

On the way back to the bus we passed the Oceanographic Museum run by Jacques Cousteau for 32 years. The art installation in front of the museum, Borderline by Philippe Pasqua, had a much darker theme than the art displayed on my previous visit to Monaco.

Vanité, Philippe Pasqua (2017)

Face Off, Philippe Pasqua (2017)

Planet, Marc Quinn
The Littoral Zone Exhibition (2012)

My son might have appreciated these oversized skulls but the exhibit in 2012 was more to my liking.

Related Posts:
"P" is for Princess


  1. I was only in Monaco once nearly 50 years ago. My slides all faded so thanks for sharing your photos. I loved visiting the Oceanographic Museum.

    1. If it wasn't for my photos I swear I'd forget half of my travels. I'm glad mine prompted some memories for you.😊


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