Monte Carlo

The small yet wealthy tax haven of a country that is Monaco is synonymous with all things luxurious.

It often conquers up such images as royalty with the modern day fairytale (and tragedy) of American actress turned Princess Grace Kelly, the yearly Grand Prix and its hairpin road in addition to the iconic Monte Carlo casino.

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St Nicholas Cathedral, where Prince Rainier III and Princess Grace Kelly married

At 10 euro entry a visit to the Monte Carlo casino is not going to be the most backpacker friendly site but it is very impressive, inside and out although no pictures are allowed once you enter.

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Entrance of the casino 

The architect behind it, Charles Garnier also designed the Opera House in Paris and the most interesting fact I discovered is that if you’re a citizen of Monaco it’s against the law to gamble or even step foot in the casino!

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The Palace

For some of the best views I’d recommend going to the Place du Palais, where the current monarchy of the Grimaldi family resides.

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Its high location means you get some wonderful shots of the expansive harbour!

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I went to Monte Carlo mid afternoon and stayed until late as it was only a short drive from Nice, where I was staying.

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While there’s a few museums and other sites to see if you wish due to Monaco’s small size (only 2km in area!) I felt it was more than enough time.

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The view along the coast to get there makes it pretty worthwhile too!

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