20 Years From Now...

"20 YEARS FROM NOW," Mark Twain said, “you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than the ones you did.”THIS online journal is dedicated to our next 20 years!

Thursday, 10 May 2018


Last year when we visited Menton, France and Ventimiglio, Italy we travelled through Monaco, but did not set foot on terra firma of this postcard-size country. For that reason I did not feel comfortable mentioning or claiming it as a country we've visited, but as of this week that's all changed. Monaco is officially #27 on our list.

While Monaco is known for its wealth, getting there from Nice is both easy and economical. One option is to travel by train or the #100 bus that conveniently leaves from the port. For €1.50/person each way we opted for the bus. Once onboard we sat back and savoured the breathtaking views of the Med and numerous communities during the 35-minute trip.

Port Hercule

First a few details about Monaco. It's small. Just under 500 acres in total. It's also the most densely populated country in the world as a result, although its inhabitants number only 38,500. Plus, it is the wealthiest nation with one in three Monegasque being millionaires. Monaco may be small, but we focused on one small corner of the country - the old medieval town known as Le Rocher (the Rock)

One of the most visited sites on Le Rocher is the Prince's Palace. This is the official residence of the Sovereign prince of Monaco and has been since 1191.

This statue commemorates the night of January 8, 1297 when Francesco Grimaldi captured the Rock and claimed it as his own. He apparently did so disguised in a monastic robe, hence his garment below.

Nearby the palace is the old town with its narrow pedestrian streets, shops and restaurants. 

Before we left Nice we checked the weather report and the chance of rain was less than 20% so we figured we were in the clear. Wrong! By the time we reached Villefranche it began to rain and it continued for a good hour after we arrived in Monaco. Needless to say it put a damper on the experience, however, once we ducked inside the Restaurant La Tavernetta, ordered a bottle of wine, salad and pizza we were good to go!

Photo Courtesy of TripAdvisor

Photo Courtesy of TripAdvisor

Photo Courtesy of TripAdvisor

Photo Courtesy of TripAdvisor

Window decor above our table

John also ordered a goat cheese appetizer

By the time we finished lunch the rain and clouds had disappeared and that made all the difference in the world.

The Saint Nicholas Cathedral on the right below is where many of the Grimaldi are buried including Princess Grace (Kelly) and her husband Ranier III.

Opposite the cathedral is a park and walkway that literally hugs the rugged coastline cliffs.

A long way down

It offered some incredible views and photographic opportunities of Port de Fontveille.

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