A Travellerspoint blog

June 2017

Nice to see you, to see you - Nice!

Côte d'Azur - Nice & Monaco

sunny 30 °C
View Côte d'Azur on kmmk17's travel map.


Summer had finally arrived, and it was time for the first of the weekend breaks together with Chris.

Flying out on Friday evening, we boarded our plane to find that as one of our fellow travellers was on a surprise birthday trip - our destination was never being mentioned. Thankfully after the two hour flight we had arrived in the correct city where it was now getting dark and so we headed to our hotel in Nice for a well earned sleep after a long day.

After breakfast at the hotel, our Saturday was reserved entirely for Monaco. After getting some help from a local buying our tickets, we took the short train ride along the beautiful coast to the second smallest country in the world.

Monegasque Border

Monegasque Border

The train station was built entirely within the hill at the very top of the country, immediately adjacent to the French border, with the train station being part of the French network. In fact there was very little existence of the border at all, and we only managed to get passport stamps by visiting the tourist information centre - although these were at least free unlike in San Marino...

Eventually finding the exit we wanted, we made our way down the hill to the port at the bottom, before walking towards Monaco Ville, and back up a hill to the Royal Palace complex.

Views of the Harbour

Views of the Harbour

After stopping for views of the harbour we carried on up the hill to the Palace, before walking around the old streets buying souvenirs and taking photos of the pretty views. It was then time for the Changing of the Guard to take place.

Changing of the Guard

Changing of the Guard

After watching the parade we then headed back down towards the harbour to take a look at the huge boats that had come in to moor.

Boats in the Harbour

Boats in the Harbour

The next place on our trip was Monte Carlo, and we headed back up another hill, walking around the back of the casino towards the hairpin, one of the most iconic parts of the Monaco Grand Prix circuit.

The Hairpin

The Hairpin

After walking past the tunnel, another famous feature of the course, we stopped for food before walking along the coast towards the beach.

Monaco Beach

Monaco Beach

The beach was much softer than those on this coast, being made of very small pebbles, and after putting our feet in the warm beautiful water, we had a rest before continuing on our journey.

The Monte Carlo Bay Hotel

The Monte Carlo Bay Hotel

Eventually making it to the end of the coast we briefly crossed back into France before coming back and visiting the Monte Carlo Bay Casino. However as they only had gambling machines, we left without having actually spent any money and headed back along the road to the Casino. After taking photos of the front of the casino we then headed back towards the station to return to Nice.

The Grand Casino

The Grand Casino

On our trip over to Monaco we had considered stopping in one of the bays en route, however being so tired after a long walk in the heat around Monaco we decided to head straight back to the hotel for a rest.

Villefranche-sur-Mer

Villefranche-sur-Mer

In the evening we headed out for dinner, ending up again in an Italian (as with Paris), where my dinner turned up in what looked like a sick bowl!

Sunset

Sunset

We then sat on the beach to watch the sunset before a nighttime exploration of the promenade and city centre, which we had rushed through the previous evening and thus not had the time to take in.

Le Negresco Hotel by night

Le Negresco Hotel by night

On Sunday we checked out of the hotel and headed down into the city centre to view it by day. Starting in the main square, we then headed through the Old City passing quaint little shops and a market.

Old City

Old City

We then headed up the castle hill, which once there appeared to be far more exciting than we thought - a refreshing waterfall and a plaza with views over the port as well as city.

Waterfall at the top

Waterfall at the top

By this point we were starting to run low on time, and so we quickly headed down and had a chill on the rocky beach before walking back along some of the promenade.

Nice from the top

Nice from the top

After a last wander around the city, we returned to the hotel to grab our bits before making our way to the airport for our flight home.

Having expected Nice to be a bit shabby, it turned out to be a lot nicer than expected. Very well kept, with beautiful views, and a lot more on offer than expected. Monaco meanwhile was exactly as we expected - rich and luxurious. An interesting trip!

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Posted by kmmk17 13:01 Archived in Monaco Tagged sea beach views city hill grandprix Comments (0)

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