The bay at Monte Carlo is not that big for docking today's typical cruise ship. We had to transfer to small ferries to get to the pier. After half an hour wait and some rocking on the boat due to rough sea, we walked off onto the pier around noon. We followed some people and climbed some stairs up a bayside slope to get a good view of the bay.The u-shape bay is filled with yachts. Low hills surrounds the city. Most of the buildings are not tall and are built facing the bay. Looking up the slopes, you can get a great view of the city spread out around the bay.
Saint Nicholas Cathedral
From a road on top of the stairs, we walked between a row of European style houses. Not far down the road is the Church where Princess Grace Kelly was buried. Pretty little church with gilded dome ceiling. Grace Kelly is a fairy tale came true. An American hollywood star married to a Prince.
A short walk later is the royal residence area. There is a plaza on the outside where I found a statue with some cannons and cannon balls. From here you are on top of a hill and can see far down the bay. I did not come across people writing about how impressive this palace is so we didn’t waste time and money on a guided tour. If someone had been inside, I'd like to hear how it is.
From here, it is down a steep walkway back to main part of the city. Then we walked a good distance to the Exotic Garden. We had to go up a lot of stairs, and steep streets. Some prince of Monaco collected many many different kinds of strange cactus and planted them on a slope here. Worth a visit. Found out that I could have taken a bus #2 and saved the long walk up the stairs. Oh, well! Now you know better.
Monte Carlo Casino
Took bus #2 to the other side of town to the must see landmark, the Grand Casino. Not very big but rather luxurious. There is a large park and water fountain outside. Luxury hotels surround the area. Car lovers must come here. There are all kinds of luxury cars, Porsche, Ferrari, Masarati, you name it, they are everywhere. Nearby is a large outdoor restaurant where we sat down and had lunch. Not a budget place but not too expensive. Well, what do you expect, it is right next to the Grand Casino.
There was a yacht show going on at the pier. The bay area was full of hundreds of yachts of all sizes, with many fancy features like jacuzzi, dinning area that can sit more than 10 people, motor launch. Yachts with double-deck, triple deck, or quadriple deck. Someday, someday, I’ll be back and take one of those.