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Location - Western Europe; Capital - Monaco (city state); Population - 33,000; Currency - Euro

In April 2010 a certain Icelandic volcano was puffing its cheeks, so Eurostar was the mode of transport to Monaco, via Paris and Nice. In an area only 2 km², it has an amazing amount to offer - 3 days was just enough to see it all.


 euroThough Monaco isn't a member of the European Union it uses the Euro as its currency











monaconote1Euro notes aren't specific to each member state but the coins are. This is a Monaco 2 Euro coin











monaco150The best views of Fontvieille harbour can be had from Monaco-Ville


monaco152The luxury boats at Fontvieille harbour, with the sheer walls of the rock supporting Monaco-Ville on the near-right


monaco153I wouldn't mind having an apartment here - the narrow path that overlooks Fontvieille at Monaco-Ville













monaco137Walk to the other side of Monaco-Ville and look down to Port Hercule














monaco139The streets of Monaco-Ville, the principality's old town


monaco144The Palais Princier, or Prince's Palace, is the offical residence of Prince Albert II. It houses the State Apartments which are open to the public - Monaco-Ville


monaco146Guards preparing for the changing of the guard ceremony - Monaco-Ville














monaco148The changing of the guards takes place outside the Palais Princier at the Place du Palais, Monaco-Ville














monaco142Monaco-Ville is also known as 'Le Rocher', or 'The Rock'


monaco149Offices surrounding the Place du Palais, Monaco-Ville


monaco156There's plenty of restaurants dooted around the narrow cobbled streets of Monaco-Ville














monaco159Monaco's cathedral, Monaco-Ville














monaco161Inside the cathedral are the tombs of Prince Rainier III and his wife, Princess Grace (Hollywood actress Grace Kelly, above) - Monaco-Ville


monaco14The Jardin des Boulengrins leads to the Casino de Monte Carlo, obscured in this photo by stands erected for the upcoming Monaco Grand Prix - Monte Carlo


monaco2Jardin des Boulengrins, Monte Carlo















monaco9The world-famous Monte Carlo Casino, Monte Carlo















monaco19I managed to lose around 45 Euros within 20 minutes of entering. Ask me for tips - Casino de Monte Carlo, Monte Carlo


monaco18On one side of the casino is the Hotel de Paris, Monte Carlo


monaco13Somehow I don't think I could afford this place - Hotel de Paris, Monte Carlo














monaco20On the other side of the casino is the Cafe de Paris. You can see the hotel in the background - Monte Carlo














monaco4Casino de Monte Carlo, Monte Carlo


monaco22Next to the train station's main entrance is the Ste Devote church, Monte Carlo


monaco24Have a wander through Monaco's labyrinthine underground walkways















monaco25It feels like a town in itself, albeit a very empty one - Monaco















monaco63The view from the Hotel de France, the cheapest hotel in Monaco, at around 100 Euros a night - La Condamine


monaco68Near the hotel is the relaxing Place d'Armes - La Condamine


monaco66 Place d'Armes is a quiet place at night, La Condamine














monaco65 Place d'Armes, La Condamine
















monaco45At the end of April work was well under way preparing for the forthcoming Monaco Grand Prix - La Condamine


monaco37Port Hercule is the older and larger of the 2 harbours in Monaco - La Condamine


monaco34One of numerous luxury boats berthed at Port Hercule, La Condamine














monaco47Port Hercule, La Condamine















monaco48From Port Hercule take the Chemin des Pecheurs path to the Aquarium at Monaco-Ville


monaco43Peering down from the Chemin des Pecheurs at Monaco-Ville


monaco55The Aquarium comes into view - Monaco-Ville















monaco53The Aquarium clings to the cliff face at Monaco-Ville
















monaco58Funny fish at the Aquarium (I've forgotten its real name), Monaco-Ville


monaco74A night view of Port Hercule, La Condamine



monaco73Looking up from La Condamine to a section of the Prince's Palace in Monaco-Ville















monaco77The Jardin Exotique lies up the hill near the French border, in Moneghetti















monaco81There's more fantastic views from the Jardin Exotique, Moneghetti

My YouTube video of the Moneghetti views


monaco86Cruise ships arrive at Port Hercule, with the Mediterranean and the French Riviera in the distance - Monaco


monaco92A superb look at Monaco's old town, Monaco-Ville
















monaco94Monaco-Ville and Fontvieille harbour. Port Hercule can just be seen to the left of Le Rocher.















monaco100Fontvieille harbour, as seen from the Jardin Exotique, Moneghetti


monaco103A closer look at the money in Fontvieille harbour


monaco109At the top right is Monaco cathedral in Monaco-Ville - Fontvieille harbour















monaco52A rather bizarre sculpture at the entrance to Fontvieille harbour. It can (just about) be seen in the Aquarium photo earlier.



















monaco115Also in Fontvieille is the Princess Grace rose garden


monaco117The district of Fontvieille is built on reclaimed land



monaco119The fancy way of arriving in Monaco is by helicopter - the heliport, Fontvieille















monaco163Making maximum use of Monaco's 2 square kilometres - Fontvieille















monaco120And yes Monaco has beaches - this is the smaller, pebbly one between the Monte Carlo Bay Hotel and the Monte Carlo Beach Hotel, at the eastern extremity of the principality


monaco123Closer to the centre is the larger, man-made Larvotto beach - Larvotto


monaco128Larvotto beach, Larvotto















monaco129It's especially popular at the weekend - Larvotto beach, Larvotto














monaco133Continue along the coast heading towards Monte Carlo and you'll come across the Japanese Garden - Monaco


monaco136Close to the Japanese Garden are a host of footballers' feet imprints, including one Diego Armando Maradona - Monaco



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LINKS - Monaco's official site


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