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MONACO    INFO & DIARY  1

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 GENERAL INFO (Jump to Diary)
The official name is Principality of Monaco, and this city state only covers 2.02 square kilometres. It is  a principality governed under a form of constitutional monarchy. Here are around 39.000 citizens, of which 83% are Christian, 13% have no religion, 3% are Jews and 1% Muslims.
The currency is Euro, worth 7,46 Danish Krone. The GDP is at an impressing $5.424 billion.
The climate is a pleasant Mediterranean climate.

Being the second smallest country in the world, here are not room for many larger mammals beside from humans, but the  the least weasel, the cross fox and the roe deer can still be seen. In the Mediterranean, two species of dolphins are found.
I guess the most interesting plant will be the European fan palm (Chamaerops humilis),  fritillarias (Fritillary involucrata), the sea mallow (Lavatera maritima)  and  the orange lily (Lilium bulbiferum).

DIARY
I arrival from France, and drive pass the Botanical Garden, just without finding a place to park. The road is partly through the formula one track, and a lot of preparations have already taken place. I end in the eastern part of this tiny country, before I can park the car.

Then I start walking back towards west, and suck-in the impressions I can. Here are some real nice, well maintained old houses along with some quite fancy new ones. The entire city/country is located on a mountainside: The Alps meet the sea - in the beach.

Here are several real nice parks, some small some large. One of the bigger ones is the beautiful Japanese garden. Others are just a few Gorgonians and other huge succulents along in the roadside.
Unfortunately, is is a bit cloudy day, and I actually end up freezing a bit.

I walk along the seaside at first, admiring the clear waters and the huge boats. I have driven through the famous Hotel Tunnel, but I walk it anyway. A lot of construction is going on. What appears to be an undisturbed mountainside, with big plants on, is less than one meter thick, although it is over 20 metres high.
Some of the work is connected with building a F1 track, while others are the maintenance of the city and renewing.

I end up in the western end, and return a bit higher up the mountain side. I had actually expected it to be even more fancy, but despite everything is so well maintained and pretty, it is still a mellow atmosphere. I reach the botanical garden, but too late, it seems.

Then I zigzag my way through town, and try to get the great motives in to my tiny camera. One gorge is amassing, with waterfall and a nice bridge. An relatively small house is more or less located under the bridge. I find a large park, which is maintained as well as any botanical garden I have visited.

I pass the central square, and pity those poor bastards, fighting to get room for their giant cars. Here are so many Royces, it must be a bit embarrassing to end up with same model and colour as your neighbour. And I see one clear problem with a Lamborghini: You can't sleep in it!

Eventually, I end up at the eastern border, and start looking for my car. It have been great to be here, but I guess being here with someone, sipping lattes in the many cafés and relaxing at the marina, is the right way to experience Monaco. A bit of gambling perhaps? Well, I'm her by my self, and I have seen what I wanted to - except the botanical garden. I have spend €4 on souvenirs and €4,5 on parking. The diesel for 9 kilometres is around €0,50. I guess most spend more....
From here, I head to Italy.
        

 All the photos are in one slideshow.

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