Shaken, not stirred: A day in Monaco

LOCATION:  Beaulieu sur Mer – on the French Riviera
WEATHER:  Beautiful.  High 78

We buy a baguette about every other day ($.49).  The second half gets hard pretty quickly, so this morning George made some French toast with part of it.  Yum!

Then, we were off to Monaco.  It is about a 15-minute train ride that follows the Mediterranean.  Monaco is built on a steep hill.  The train track was about 5 stories below ground.  This is the view when we emerged from the top of the train station…

Our first destination was the Prince’s Palace.  In order to get there, we had to walk down, down, down.  The entire city is high-rise apartments/condos.  I saw one for rent for $55,000/month!

At the bottom, we stumbled upon a market. 

We ventured inside, and found a wonderful indoor market.  It is a combination of food stalls and restaurants.  I think it is where the locals go to eat, as it is less expensive than regular restaurants.

Since we are only about 15 minutes away from Italy, we selected an Italian place.  We shared their specialty of the day – gnocchi with asparagus and clams in a garlicky butter sauce.  Even in expensive Monaco, a glass of good wine was only $3.  Our total for the wonderful meal was $24.  Amazing!

Then, up, up, up to the Palace.  There were even defibrillators on the way!

Once up, we watched the changing of the guard…

Then, we walked around the streets, now full of shops and restaurants, that were once the homes of the people who cared for the royalty,

Down, down, down again to the harbor where they are getting ready for the annual yacht show.  Beautiful people everywhere. 

Sorry to say, but up, up, up again to our second destination – the casino in Monte-Carlo.  It is fabulous…

Bentleys, Jacquars, Rolls Royces all parked in front. 

The inside is very opulent.  We had a James Bond martini (shaken, not stirred) in the bar.  George tried this on the waitress, but she didn’t get it:  ” Reid……George Reid”.

George pretended that he lost a bunch of money, like this statue shows…

We were lucky to catch a bus not far from the casino so we didn’t have to walk miles again. 

Back “home” in Beaulieu sur Mer, we walked up to the little town square where locals were strolling around, and children were kicking a soccer ball in the square.  We found a cafe advertising “happy hour” – not really a French thing, but it was a good price for drinks.  I had an Aperol Spritz.  Tasty.  The cafe was very “hip”

DINNER:  Keeping with the Italian theme, we went a restaurant for a wood-fired pizza. Pizza is popular here, and they put a French “twist” – very thin crust with different toppings.   Ours had olives and goat cheese on it.  Not exactly Pizza Hut!

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