Monaco

Monaco

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  • Day13

    An important lesson I learned somewhere allong this trip :p, give the lady the last words ;-). Here they are :D.
    Our last 1,5 days of our holiday we spent in Monaco. As we drove off from Balestrino ... When we arrived in the hotel we were a bit too early to check in. But we didn't care, as we now had time to figure out our schedule. We decided that we would take a walk first, then use the hotel facilities like the sauna and the pool to relax a bit. In our room we drank a glass or 2 limoncello which we brought from Italy :D. After that we dressed up to have a lovely diner and to end the last night of our holiday we went to the casino. A little insecure if we were allowed into it, because there was a dresscode. Once inside it was looking marvellous. Unfortunately the minimum raise was well over our budget and because we didn't fully understand what they were saying in French we decided not to join the game. Nevertheless we enjoyed just looking at how much money some people spend in a few minutes. After a while we called it a night and walked out of the casino, where we off course had to take some pictures of the unaffordable cars parked there.
    The next morning Daniël went for an early run around the Formule 1 circuit before I woke up. When he came back we had to check out and did walk one last time around the city. This time to the palace up the hill. After this lovely walk we ended at a terrace in the harbour to have a nice cold drink and some crepes before we headed for home. The whole trip was incredible (especially the sunny days) and Monaco (with the relax sunny hours on the terrace) was a very good end off the holiday :D.
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  • Day16

    Nun, wie soll man Monaco beschreiben: Klein, voll(er Touristen) und laut. Ach ja und eine einzige Baustelle 🙄 Nach einer 30-minütigen Tour mit einer kleinen Bimmelbahn - vorbei an den wichtigsten Sehenswürdigkeiten und natürlich entlang der Rennstrecke - machten wir einen kleinen Spaziergang rund um den Hafen durch ein paar kleine Seitenstraßen zurück zum ozeanographischen Museum, welches wir uns unbedingt noch anschauen wollten.

    Unser Fazit zu Monaco: "Kann man machen, muss man aber nicht.“

    Schön fanden wir eigentlich nur den Felsvorsprung mit dem Museum, der Kathedrale und dem Palast. Und vielleicht die teuren Autos, welche wir in dieser Anzahl vorher noch nicht gesehen hatten. Aber keines war so cool wie unser Bob 😎
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  • Day7

    Had to visit the famous casino and sneak a few photos in the Absolutely stunning place.
    The casino brings in enough money to the small country that they don't need to charge people taxes. They call it the sunshine country for shady people. And you can tell just by looking at the cars.
    Also a great view of some of the F1 track.
    Went to a bar that is meant to remind people of the OC. I think the 20 euro cocktails is a reminder enough, so it's Monaco beer for me.Read more

  • Day293

    Monaco was always a place for the rich and beautiful. My imagination was fueled by film scenes from James Bond, the myth of Grace Kelly and the King's House, as well as Formula One.

    On the spot, the picture was also quite similar to my idea. We reached the city on a Saturday at noon. Much of the shops had already closed. Expensive cars pushed through the streets towards downtown. Countless yachts anchored close together in Hercule harbor. The autumn sun attracted residents and visitors to the cafes on the quayside. It was as if we were moving in the backdrop of a film. If there were other tourists, they could camouflage themselves well. We, on the other hand, reached the city in a camping bus, where we lived for two weeks, strolling through the city in outdoor clothing. A break in the picture.

    The old town of Monaco-Ville with its small narrow streets and views over the ports of Hercules and Fontivieille is worth seeing. It is situated on a plateau called Rocher. The fortress of the Grimaldis, the Saint Nicholas cathedral, and the Oceanography Museum, once led by the famous marine explorer Jacques-Yves Cousteau, are located here. The actress Grace Kelly and Prince Rainer III, as well as the present royal family Prince Albert II and the sportswoman Charlene Wittstock, once married in this cathedral.

    We moved in another world. Even the everyday seemed strange. In the Starbucks, I met young people who displayed expensive labels and are named Avantgarde, Naomi, Diamond or Chiara. With my name I feel like an exot. Alina and I talked about our ideas about how we could best use the bad weather situation. We discussed possibilities and created plans. Looking at the faces of the teenagers, I wondered what kind of life they dream off? What plans do they have? How would they use their fully privileged situation (assuming they are from a wealthy parental home)?

    Involuntarily, I must think of the four men we had seen on the highway. At first I thought they were construction workers, but then it turned out they were on the road from Italy to France. They were dark-skinned and with small luggage on the road. "Refugees," I said abruptly to Alina. We were surprised and worried. The subject of refugee movements in Europe and also Asia has always accompanied me on my travels. And how is the Europe-wide issue of refugees and asylum seekers treated in Monaco? Monaco is not part of the EU and connected through special contracts with it. Few refugees are currently being admitted. Just around the 33 refugees living in 2014 in the small principality with about 40,000 inhabitants (current data are difficult to research). A sad figure, considering the prosperity in this state. But statistics alone do not show the entire picture.
    It is more complicated than that. I am curious how this topic will be handled within the EU in the future.

    +++

    Monaco war für mich immer ein Ort der Reichen und Schönen. Meine Vorstellung war gefüttert durch Filmszenen aus James Bond, dem Mythos von Grace Kelly und dem Königshaus, sowie der Formel Eins.

    Vor Ort fügte sich das Bild auch relativ gut in meine Vorstellung. Wir erreichten die Stadt an einem Samstag zur Mittagszeit. Ein Großteil der Geschäfte hatte bereits geschlossen. Teure Autos schoben sich durch die Strassen Richtung Innenstadt. Unzählige Yachten ankerten dicht nebeneinander im Hafen Hercule. Die Herbstsonne lockte Anwohner und Besucher in die Cafés am Kai. Es war, als bewegten wir uns in der Kulisse eines Films. Wenn hier noch andere Urlauber waren, konnten sie sich gut tarnen. Wir dagegen erreichten die Stadt in einem Campingsbus, in dem wir seid zwei Wochen lebten und flanierten in Outdoorbekleidung durch die Stadt. Ein Bruch im Bild.

    Archtiktonisch sehenswert ist die Altstadt Monaco-Ville auf dem Felsenplateau namens Rocher mit seinen kleinen engen Gassen und Aussichtspunkten über die Häfen Hercules und Fontivieille. Ursprünglich eine Befestigung beherbergt der Stadtteil den Fürstenpalast der Grimaldis, die Saint Nicholas Kathedrale, als auch das Ozeanographie-Museum, das einst vom berühmten Meeresforscher Jacques-Yves Cousteau geleitet wurde. In der Kathedrale heirateten einst die Schauspielerin Grace Kelly und Prinz Rainer III als auch das jetzige Königspaar Prinz Albert II und die Sportlerin Charlene Wittstock.

    Wir bewegten uns in einer anderen Welt. Selbst das Alltägliche wirkte befremdlich. Im Starbucks begegneten mir junge Menschen, die teure Labels zur Schau trugen und Namen wie Avantgarde, Naomi, Diamond oder Chiara besaßen. Mit meinem Namen fühlt ich mich wie ein Exot. Alina und ich sprachen über unsere Ideen, wie wir die Schlechtwetterlage am besten nutzen könnten. Wir erörterten Möglichkeiten und schufen Pläne. Beim Blick in die Gesichter der Jugendlichen fragte ich mich, was sie für Träume und Pläne im Leben haben? Wie würden sie ihre durchaus priviligierte Situation nutzen (unter der Annahme, sie stammen aus einem wohlhabenden Elternhaus)?

    Unwillkürlich muss ich an die vier Männer denken, die wir auf der Autobahn gesehen hatten. Erst dachte ich, es wären Bauarbeiter, doch dann stellte sich heraus, sie liefen auf dem Standstreifen von Italien nach Frankreich. Sie waren dunkelhäutig und mit kleinem Gepäck unterwegs. ,,Flüchtlinge”, sagte ich unvermittelt zu Alina. Wir waren überrascht und besorgt. Das Thema der Flüchtlingsbewegungen in Europa und auch Asien hat mich auf meinen Reisen stets begleitet. Und wie wird das europaweite Thema der Flüchtlinge und Asylbewerber in Monaco behandelt? Monaco ist nicht Teil der EU und nur durch besondere Verträge mit dieser verbunden. Nur wenige Flüchtlinge werden derzeit aufgenommen. Gerade mal um die 33 Flüchtlinge leben 2014 in dem kleinen Fürstentum mit circa 40.000 Bewohnern (aktuelle Daten sind schwer zu recherchieren). Eine traurige Zahl, wenn man bedenkt, wie groß der Wohlstand in diesem Staat ist. Aber Statistiken allein zeigen nicht das gesamte Bild. Wie immer ist es viel komplizierter. Ich bin gespannt, wie dieses Thema zukünftig in Europa gehandhabt wird.
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  • Day7

    Visited the palace with some great views!
    So the Prince took over the Grimaldi castle by knocking on the door, pretended he needed help and then stabbed them. Game of thrones much?
    It is also said that there is a curse for unhappy marriages in the family. We saw the cliff that Grace Kelly's car drove off. But also her wedding venue. The train of her dress flowed from the door to the bottom of the steps.Read more

  • Day14

    There was time for a quick stop at Monaco to see the Jacques Cousteau Museum that Aaron has been wanting to see. Jacques Cousteau was a marine conservationist that produced many documentaries to raise awareness for his work. He also co-developed the Aqua-Lung, better known as scuba gear or underwater breathing apparatus.

    We were rather disappointed with the museum. We were misinformed about what the exhibition was about. We thought it would feature Jacques Cousteau's life and conservation work but it was mainly a small aquarium with displays of preserved marine animals. It did have a good view of Monaco from the top of the museum though.

    It was not a wasted trip. We got to walk along a section of the Grand Prix circuit! Aaron's stoked. Unfortunately, our bad timing will see us miss the Monaco Grand Prix by a month. Maybe next time.
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  • Day14

    Second smallest country in the world! Check! Apparently, you can walk across the entire country in an average of 52 minutes, so I'm thinking I could do it in half an hour 😀

    We were there only a few days after the F1 Monaco Grand Prix, so they were still in the process of taking down everything that's set up for the race. The most famous hairpin turn in F1 is in Monaco, right in front of the Fairmont Hotel, and I was there!

    We walked up to Prince Albert's Palace for some photo opportunities and group shots... Not surprisingly, amazing views!

    Our last stop was a casino in Monte Carlo... I felt like I was on the set of Casino Royale! The last time I gambled, aside from my lottery ticket purchase after my hole in one, was when I turned 18, so I figured this was a great opportunity... I played blackjack and doubled my €50 starting buy in to €100, so I'm probably good for another 15 years! I also picked up some pamphlets at the casino explaining the rules of various table games. Craps is a game i have zero understanding of, so that read should be interesting.
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  • Day28

    Travelled from Milan to Nice today again with no border controls from Italy and France. To get there we drove along the French Riviera driving through Monaco which is the most densely populated country and with of course with the richest casino. We got in quite late so had dinner and a walk down to the beach so excited for tomorrow when I can go swimming wohooo!!

  • Day39

    The walk to the train took almost as long as the train trip itself to Monaco. 45 minutes after boarding we were there. It was stifling hot with no wind so we kept in the shade as much as we could. It certainly is where the rich and famous like to play and the toys were everywhere. Cars and boats and helicopters as well as a large group of people having "lunch in the sky" suspended by a crane.

    It is an interesting Principality and with such little land space between the mountains and the sea everything has to go up. High rise apartments after high rise making a colourful backdrop to the city of Monte Carlo. There are 35,000 residents but only 7000 are citizens, none of whom pay taxes.

    As we made our way to the Palace we were just in time to see the man himself leave with a fanfare of trumpets in a sleek black car escorted by Police on motorbikes and several other cars.

    We visited the Cathedral and saw where Prince Rainier and Grace Kelly are buried and then ogled at all the boats in the marina and moving around out at sea. There is very little room for beaches but we did spot one very small one and then beside where the cruise ships dock they have created a concrete stepped "beach" for people to swim off. There is also a public swimming pool between the city and the marina.

    A visit to the Casino topped off the visit....well the outside of it - shorts and T shirts didn't quite make the dress code apparently and judging by the cars dropping people off we probably didn't look wealthy enough anyway!

    In 1860 Monaco bought it's independence from France and in 1865 the Casino opened and revived the country's fortunes.

    As I write this I am sitting in a hair salon wishing my hairdresser Steph was here. I'm not sure what this hairdo will turn out like as English is definitely not understood here very well!

    PS. The hair turned out ok!
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  • Day41

    Well it's not everday you get to party on a yacht in Monaco harbour when the Formula One cars are in town! First off must say a huge thank you to Smithy Jnr and Snr for the invite. Amazing day and evening guys.

    From arriving into the harbour and yacht via speedboat, to chilling out watching the F1 practice session from the top deck, to the amazing food, to the live band on the back of the boat, to the endless flow of drink, to having F1 driver Felipe Nasr and the Sauber guys on board, to the sun being out all day and to the great company it really was an incredible day.Read more

You might also know this place by the following names:

Principality of Monaco, Monaco, Mɔnako, ሞናኮ, موناكو, ܡܘܢܟܘ, Mónaco, Monako, Манака, Монако, মোনাকো, མོ་ན་ཀོ།, Mònaco, Monako nutome, Μονακό, موناکو, Monaakoo, Monacô, Monacó, મોનાકો, מונקו, मोनाको, Մոնակո, Mónakó, モナコ, მონაკო, ម៉ូណាកូ, ಮೊನಾಕೊ, 모나코, مۆناکۆ, Monoecus, Principâ de Monego, ໂມນາໂກ, Monakas, Monaku, Mônakô, മൊണോക്കൊ, मोनॅको, မိုနကို, Monakho, Monegue, ମୋନାକୋ, Munaku, Monaköo, මොනාකෝව, Moonako, மொனாகோ, మొనాకో, โมนาโก, Manako, مناکو, Prinzsipato de Mònaco, Mô-na-cô, Monakän, Orílẹ́ède Monako, 摩纳哥, i-Monaco

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