Monaco on a budget

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You may know Monaco for various reasons; some know it because of Grace Kelly (hollywood royalty who married real life royal Prince Rainier III of Monaco) while others know it as the place where the 1% of people controlling the world’s economy live or have residence status for the purpose of tax avoidance. After all it is the millionaires and billionaires playground with the largest number of them per capita in the world while others know it because of the popular Formula One Monaco grand Prix. I got the opportunity to squeeze in an afternoon trip to Monaco while visiting Nice (France) and thoroughly enjoyed it. Here’s how to spend less than €40 (kshs 4000) in Monaco.

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The famous Casino Monte-Carlo
One common misconception about this little haven on the French Riviera is its pricey nature and while this could be true, there are a number of ways to reduce cost. It’s safe to say that I too held the same misconception; in fact I was even a little intimidated of the thought of visiting Monaco; but I am glad I did as it gave me much needed motivation to realign my life goals. Who doesn’t want to live in Monaco and enjoy the perks of wealth?

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Train Station at Nice, waiting to catch a train to Monaco
So here are some of my tips to enjoying Monaco and keeping it all under budget.

I did free sightseeing and walking. The only costs I incurred were on my train ticket, a cup of hot chocolate and dinner.

I would highly recommend just a day trip to Monaco. One fundamental way I kept my costs at bay was avoiding any of the paid tours or sights as I just choose to walk around and soak up some Monaco goodness and her breathtaking sights. I bought a return train ticket from Nice to Monaco for €14. There is always a train running from Nice Ville train station to Monaco Monte Carlo train station every 15 minutes or so, the total time for the journey is about 2o minutes and the views from the train were super breathtaking due to its rocky and steep hill terrain. Equally, you can buy a bus ticket from Nice to Monaco at €3.60 return, the journey is a bit longer and it could possibly take up to 45 minutes to get to Monaco. That’s another way of saving some costs.

Monaco is pretty small about 2km², it is actually the second smallest country in the world so it was an obvious choice to walk and enjoy some amazing views of the Mediterranean Sea and all the yachts that were docked in the harbour. We went past the prestigious Monaco Yacht Club and it gave us fortuity to look around and take some impressive pictures.

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Yachts, yachts, yachts
We also walked through a small section of the Formula One Grand Prix Circuit and saw some of the impressive tracks and scenes we see on TV during the race. It actually feels nice to see some of these tracks first hand.

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We proceeded to walk to the famous Monte Carlo Casino and Café de Paris. We even wandered the marble paths ways to the Metropole Shopping centre that has the most beautiful Chanel Shop ever, with amazing architectural and artist prowess.

 

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Luxury cars parked outside Casino Monte-Carlo

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Angled shot of Café de Paris
The only place that we really indulged and spent money was the Café de Paris which had an amazing diner that was not as expensive as I thought. My loved ones and I had steak and fries, spaghetti bolognese and potatoes and beef dish which was super delish.

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What a gorgeous menu!

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Dinner at Café de Paris
We also enjoyed amazing architecture and some great views of the Meditterean Sea.

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We stopped by for some hot chocolate in a little cafe called Costa Doro, best hot chocolate ever….yummy

After the long day it was time to leave.

I shall leave you with a quote, ” Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.”

Thanks for stopping by.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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