Cruise 2006 - Mediterranean
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  Monte Carlo - Monaco

Today we'll visit Monaco, the tiny state nine miles east of Nice and five miles west from the Italian Border. Monaco has population of only 30,000 people. It's a nice cruise destination, because the ship docks at walking distance from the centre of Monaco, just near the harbor. You can take some organized tours here, but you can easily explore Monaco yourself, at your own speed.
Page introduction photo
Monaco is a constitutional monarchy and principality, with Prince Albert II as head of state.
Monaco is famous because of the legendary casino and of course the Grand Prix Formula One race.
In fact, in a few weeks the Grand Prix of Monaco will be held and much construction work is going on now as you can see, because of this race. Grandstands, fencing, etc. It takes weeks to build and it's happening every year.
Monaco has a lot of nice bars and restaurants hidden in narrow streets.
One of the smaller marinas of Monaco, but the yachts are not small at all!
Do you see the Rotterdam? Today we can say we're on the largest ship of all in Monaco ;-) Notice how close the ship is to Monaco.
Everywhere in Monaco we witness the preparation for the F1 Race.
This is the Princes Palace, which was initially constructed as a fortress in 1191.
Here you can see the world famous Casino of Monte Carlo.
The casino opened its doors in 1863. It also contains a theatre, gardens and a terrace with a magnificent view.
If you like expensive cars, visit the parking lot in front of the casino. You would expect James Bond to be getting out of this one.
These are all "ocean view" rooms. You just have to pay a bit extra for these....just a few hundred bucks I suppose...
The roads are not closed yet, but the preparation for the Formula One race is ongoing. Now is your chance to drive some part of the racing track.
A nice view to see "our" Rotterdam between those rather simple yachts...
Notice what that man is doing? He's cleaning the speed boat inside this yacht! I can't afford just the speed boat, so I can only dream about the yacht.
The Monaco Grand Prix is held every year. One of the most remarkable facts is that the race is held in the city streets of Monaco instead of a specially prepared racing track. It's one of the most prestigious races in the world.
It takes six weeks to prepare the track for the race and another three weeks to tear everything down.
Most of the interesting things in Monaco are at walking distance. You can see the yachts in the Marina, visit the Casino, go shopping, visit museums and have lunch or dinner in fine restaurants. If you don't like to walk, there's the "Monaco Tours" tourist train, an open air "train" that tours through Monaco. I can recommend this tour. After having done it you know your way in Monaco and visit the places you liked best.
On our way back to the cruise ship. Our feet hurt but we can say we've seen a lot of this small country.
The crew is preparing for a barbecue on the Lido Deck. The timing is perfect: the weather is nice and we're surrounded by the lights of Monaco.
Monaco by night, almost as beautiful as Monaco by day.
After having left the port of Monaco with a pilot's help and having reached open sea, the pilot transfers to the pilot boat that brings him back to Monaco.

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