Blogs from Monaco, Europe - page 11


Europe » Monaco » Monte Carlo July 13th 2008

So, the morning after the night before. I open one eye around 8.00, understand THAT is not going to happen and roll over for five more minutes. The next time the eye flutters open it is 10.00. OK, I can get going now. The nice thing about seeing everything yesterday is that I do not feel the usual tug to jump out of bed and run around town, camera in hand. Instead, I decide to have an easy morning. I order café au lait from room service, open my window to the beautiful sunshine and sit and write for almost two hours. How lovely. The afternoon is now stretching out in front of me and I can do whatever I want. I love lazy Sundays - especially in Monaco. A bit of internal debate about what ... read more

Europe » Monaco » Monte Carlo July 12th 2008

The thing about going to bed at 10.00 is that one tends to rise early! I was up before the sun, but no matter. I came out onto the balcony to watch the beginning of the day and to write. How lovely. The hills begin to light up and mist falls. The roosters are actually crowing and I can smell the lavender all around me. What a way to start the day. Then, that pot of fabulous French café au lait arrives and the start reaches perfection. The New Me has really taken over here. I can’t connect to the internet this morning for some odd reason. The Old Me would have had a fit and gotten completely frustrated. The New Me shrugs and reminds the Old Me that we can connect later in the day. ... read more
Le Petit Train
The Cathedral
The Cathedral

Europe » Monaco » Monte Carlo June 13th 2008

So we decided to cancel our second night in Nice and try to move onwards to Avignon. On the way, we saw the most densely populated country in the world, and also one of the smallest—Monaco. This is the second microcountry I’ve seen on this trip, and is of course very different than the Vatican. The entire thing is secluded from the world, with mountains around two-thirds of it and the other third on the Mediterranean. And about two thirds of it is hotels, if not more. High-end cars, yachts, etc. are in higher concentration here than anywhere else I’ve seen, and possibly the world. We started by trying to find a place to store our luggage, since Monaco is all about the vertical thing and would thus be unfun to traverse with our bags. Unfortunately, ... read more

Europe » Monaco » Monte Carlo June 5th 2008

Thursday 5th June: Spent the morning window shopping and 'people watching' along the busy strip adjacent to my hotel before finally settling down for lunch opposite my hotel. I started chatting to a couple from Scotland (photo below) who were sitting next to my table - Michael was an artist and Jeanette a librarian. They were a great couple who had been married for 3 years and Michael had brought Jeanette to Southern France for her 50th birthday. We chatted for almost 2 hours about travel and cultures around the world and I was totally humbled to find that Jeanette had taken care of my lunch and wine bill while I had ducked out to the toilet. (Thanks Michael and Jeanette - I know you will read this). I then headed for Monte Carlo in Monaco ... read more
Monte Carlo 1
Monte Carlo 2

Europe » Monaco » Monte Carlo May 27th 2008

An early breakfast and I'm very excited to find that eggs are on offer - albeit boiled only. The breakfast is quite good here, and I thoroughly enjoyed the respite from ham and cheese on stale bread rolls! Once we'd booked our train tickets to Barcelona, we headed out to Castel Hill, which gives a view of the whole City of Nice. We caught a tram - they're very new and impressive - back to the beach and walked up to the lookout. Although it's not particularly high, the view is fantastic - right along the beach and over the city stretched behind it up to the hills. The weather is very overcast and did rain briefly on the way up, so the beach is deserted and visibility not ideal, but you can see right along ... read more

Europe » Monaco » Monte Carlo May 25th 2008

What do you get when you mix really sexy cars with fabulous Europeans, mega-yachts, the French Riviera, and a lot of screaming testosterone? I should preface this by stating that regardless of how this is written, it will inevitably come across sounding hoity-toity. For that, I apologize, but who are we kidding... this is the Monaco Grand Prix. The subject matter doesn’t quite lend itself to a humble, penny-pinching, off the beaten track travel narrative. Formula One racing could quite possibly be the most moneyed sport in the world. And the Monaco Grand Prix is quite definitely the one event of the year that showcases the world’s most moneyed sport best. It’s pretty much glamour, prestige, cha-ching cash, and the kind of scene that makes ghetto rap music video gold-diggers wet themselves, rolled into 78 laps ... read more
Photo 30
Felipe Massa, FERRARI (Brazil)
cute pilot

Europe » Monaco » Monte Carlo May 25th 2008

aka Contributing to the reputation of Aussies drinking overseas Was up at 4:30 to make the 5:00 train for Nice, kept falling asleep all the time until Ventimiglia, when had to get off for another train continuing in France. It was packed, everyone going to the Grand Prix... by the time everyone took 5 mins to pile out at Monte Carlo it had about twice as many people as it should have. I continued on to Nice, found the hostel and checked in, then back to the station and in the express lines to get a Monaco train. Got there about 12:30 with the intention on just wandering around and got hassled by scalpers wanting 100 euro for sector rocher tickets,which I knew was too much. Found out there was still official ones left so decided ... read more

Europe » Monaco » Monte Carlo May 25th 2008

Ok picture this: It's cold and raining, you're sitting uncomfortably on the side of a muddy cliff and if you slip you will most likely die, you've had to get up at 5am to get to this cliff, you are also starving. You try and sleep but it's uncomfortable and rain is dripping on your face, plus the noise is just deafening. Now picture this: You are in a helicopter it lands on the back of a super yacht, you are greeted by Quentin Tarantino who passes you a glass of champagne, you wander over and nibble on caviar whilst talking to P Diddy about the economy. When you think 'Monaco Grand Prix' you probably have visions of the second situation, unfortunately we were faced with the first. I have to admit it was pretty miserable ... read more
Monaco - Me, Bluey, Big Rig, Jez
Monaco Pit Lane

Europe » Monaco » Monte Carlo May 25th 2008

Well, had an interesting day. Got the train to Monaco, then spent over a hour trying to get to the ticket office, then the 'Rocher' area, which is the only 'non grandstand' viewing area at the race. Itwas pretty much a disgrace, with the only viewing being on top of some duck boards running up the side of the hill near the palace. The closest place to the track (which had people there who had been camped there for ages) was still about 100m from the track, with no screen to see the rest of the action. Bit of a waste of 140 Euro's basically. The only way to do it, would be to get a grandstand ticket, but with those starting at about $350 per seat for one day, and with no shelter from the ... read more
Royal Palace
Nice view

Europe » Monaco » Monte Carlo May 18th 2008

This was probably one of the coolest days of my life up to this point. I laid on a beautiful beach, went to a place where the rich and powerful hang out, walked around the most famous formula 1 circuit while the teams unloaded their equipment for the race, and hung out with some movie stars. Let's begin. It was sunny! And hot! And we went to the beach! It was a pretty start to the day. We sunscreened up and just laid on the beach for a few hours.... Finally! It would have been pretty sad if Oosduinkerke was our only beach on this trip. Actually, the beach in Nice is quite rocky, but the water was a lot warmer. A LOT warmer. I left after about three hours to avoid getting a severe sunburn ... read more
The Water is Warm
The theatre in Cannes
Crazy Monaco

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