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Monaco

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The principality of Monaco lies on the southern Mediterranean Sea coast of France, near the border with Italy, in Southern Europe. It is the second smallest independent state in the world (after the Vatican) and is almost entirely urban. With no natural resources to exploit, other than its location and climate, the principality has become a resort for tourists and a tax haven for businesses.

Economic development was spurred in the late 19th century with a railroad linkup to France and the opening of a casino. Since then, the principality's mild climate, splendid scenery, and gambling facilities have made Monaco world famous as a tourist and recreation center.

By plane
Airports : none; linked to airport in Nice, France, by helicopter service (2001)

Heliports : 1 (shuttle service between the international airport at Nice, France, and Monaco's heliport at Fontvieille) (2002). Entering Monaco by helicopter is especially nice, and will doubtless impress your significant other. After collecting your luggage at the Nice airport, you go to the helicopter service waiting area. The helicopter ground crew takes you and your luggage from the Nice airport to the Nice heliport, on the other side of the airport, by van. The flight along the coast is beautiful, and you land right at the water's edge at the Monaco heliport, where a car service takes you directly to your hotel. Other than arriving by yacht, this is the best way for the international traveler to enter Monaco.

Rates vary seasonally, in the range of €100-€300. They spike up to €700 or more, however, during the Cannes Film Festival, usually held in late May.

By train
You can enter Monaco by train, arriving at the Monaco Monte Carlo train station. There are 2-4 services per hour to Nice, Cannes, Menton and Ventimiglia (Italy). Be aware that there's no left-luggage in the train station nor in the rest of Monaco. There's a law in Monaco forbidding leaving bags etc. in any place and also tourist offices won't help.

By car
Monaco may be entered by car, The A8 is the road that brings most of the traffic in and out of Monaco and Monte Carlo. From Monte Carlo, it heads west towards Nice and Marseille, and east towards the Italian border.

Between Nice and Monaco, there are also three more scenic roads: the Basse Corniche (Low Coast-Road - Highway 98), along the sea, the Moyenne Corniche (Middle Coast Road - Highway 7), going through Eze-Village, and the Grande Corniche (Great Coast Road), going through La Turbie and Col d'Eze (Eze Pass). All are pretty drives offering spectacular views over the Coast line.

Taxi trips to and from Nice are also affordable.

By bus
There is a bus -route 100- that leaves every 15 minutes from the centeral bus station (Gare Routière) in Nice and costs €1.30 An express shuttle -route110- links the Nice Côte d'Azur Airoport and the principality. A bus leaves every hour and a single ticket costs €14.70 (2006).

By boat
The rich can afford to travel to Monaco by boat, preferably by private yacht. It's the way to visit Monaco if you can do so. The creme de la creme berth at the Port de Monaco; the primary alternative is the Port de Fontvieille.

Information provided by Wikipedia

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