Shore Excursion and Port Reviews
Monaco at its Finest
Language and Currency
What is Monaco Like?
What is the Weather Like?
Where Does the Ship Dock?
Where is the Shopping?
What is There to Buy?
What is There To Do?
Is There Anything of a “Don’t Miss Quality?
Are There Any Great Restaurants or Bars?
A passport is required, but no visa is required for stays less than 90 days.
The official language of Monaco is French, but some English is spoken in many tourist areas. The official currency of Monaco is the euro. Dollars are rarely accepted, other than at some souvenir shops and other high profile tourist locations. Even there, euros may be demanded. The best way to obtain euros is by using your ATM card at one of the plentiful ATM machines. Credit Cards (Amex, VISA, MasterCard) are widely accepted, but Traveler's Checks are rarely tendered.
Monaco, Taken From Monaco's Palace
Monaco is one of the world's most fascinating principalities. Home to some of the wealthiest people in the world, Monaco exudes a "rich and famous" lifestyle. One commonly sees Ferraris, Rolls Royces and other expensive automobiles driving about by Monaco's residents as they make their way to the grocery store to pick up some items.
Monaco is blessed with perfect Mediterranean weather and you can expect sunny skies in the summer and plenty of beach weather with average temperatures in the 70s and 80s.
Docked in Monaco
Ships dock at the brand new terminal built at the harbor entrance. There is also a small dock within the harbor. Some ships will still anchor outside of Monaco and tender into the harbor. All docks and tender wharfs are within easy walking distance to the city.
Monaco Shopping Street
Shopping opportunities are everywhere in Monaco. "Centre Commercial de Fontvieille" is a mall full of exclusive shops and boutiques and Rue Princesse Caroline is a pedestrian street full of boutiques, shops and markets that will interest any shopper. There are several souvenir shops fronting the harbor selling everything imaginable sporting the names of Monaco and Monte Carlo.
Shopping in Monaco-Ville Around the Palace
There is also excellent shopping of interest to visitors in Monaco-Ville around the palace. The narrow pedestrian streets offer many unique shops and boutiques.
Monaco, Trinkets Anyone?
Designer clothes, fine French wines, souvenirs, ceramic dolls, collectibles from the Grand Prix that takes place annually in Monte Carlo and tons of upscale shopping.
Monte Carlo's Grand Casino
Monaco is best explored on foot, so be sure to wear comfortable walking shoes. There are a good number of hills to climb, so be sure to plan for that, as well. The best way to explore Monaco is to start on the west end of the town and work your way into the downtown area. Since all of Monaco is only one square mile, you will have no problem keeping your sense of direction. There is an excellent Oceanographic Museum on the west side of Monaco that you can reach by using the elevator to take you to the top of the hill.
If you continue walking along Avenue Saint-Martin you will come upon the Monaco Cathedral and it is well worth a visit. This is where Grace Kelly's tomb is located.
Palace of the Prince of Monaco
Further along is the Palace of the Prince of Monaco.
If you are there around noontime, you might enjoy the changing of the guards ceremony that is performed daily.
From the west end of Monte Carlo you can make your way to the downtown area for shopping and maybe enjoying one of the cafes and when you are ready to move on, walk to the yacht harbor front and take the road that skirts the yacht harbor heading south and up the hill until you hit the open ocean. A little further lies the Grand Casino.
The Casino Square in Monte Carlo, Monaco
The square at the entrance of the casino is well worth exploring. Check out the jewelry in the window of the jewelry store for some entertainment. I once saw a watch there that was so encrusted in diamonds (bracelet and all) that it must have cost several hundreds of thousand dollars.
The Casino in Monte Carlo, Monaco
If you intend to enter the Grand Casino, be aware there is a strict dress code that is enforced and that you will need your passport to enter. Once in, about all you will see is the public slot machine area and not much more. The tour desk on your ship should have maps of Monaco that highlight where the sights are located and also the neat tunnels, elevators and escalators that can take the bite out of having to climb up and down hills.
You can easily spend the entire day in Monaco, but if you want to see anything beyond Monaco you might consider Eze and Nice. These areas are featured in the Nice Port Review
Yes, just walking the length and breadth of Monaco is a "don't miss".
I don't think you can miss in Monaco, but get ready to pay.
Tom Ogg, Monaco By Train, On Your Own,
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