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Old 04-18-2010, 08:22 AM
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We are doing the W-Med cruise on the Navigator of the Seas. It doesn't stop in Monte Carlo. But we really wanted to check it out. Has anyone made a side trip from either Genoa or Toulon to Monte Carlo? How did you go? How long it it take?
Appreciate any info you can provide.
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Old 04-18-2010, 11:08 AM
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I've not gone to Monaco from either Toulon or Genoa. We stopped at Monaco. Personally I wouldn't waste my time on a side trip to Monaco, but if you want to do so I'd think it easier to do from Toulon than from Genoa. Frommers has some good info HERE
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Old 04-20-2010, 06:22 PM
 
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Ok, I hate to bring in my personal bias but have spent a lot of time in the South of France and Monte Carlo is one of the few places we run away from! its not that there is anything wrong with MC, but there are so many other places (probably 200+) above it on our places to be. That being said, to get from Toulon to Monte Carlo you are talking about a 2 hour drive (one way) or a little longer on the train (you would have to change in Nice). If asked what one should do in Toulon we would say go we would probably rent a car and explore the back roads of the Massif, but that is because we have never spent much time in those mountains.

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Old 04-22-2010, 04:50 PM
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Amazing. Monte Carlo is so well known yet I haven't heard anyone say anything good about it.
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Old 04-22-2010, 04:57 PM
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I think it is important to look at the size of Monaco. It is less than a square mile of territory and virtually all of it is comprised of streets and buildings piled on top of one another. I much preferred getting out into the French countryside.
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Old 04-22-2010, 05:10 PM
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Makes sense. But our cruise ship stops in Toulon. There just doesn't seem to be much going on there. I was hoping to hop on a train and head somewhere within maybe 1/2 hour. I am not yet adventurous to try a car, at least not while we are depending on the ship's schedule.
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Old 04-23-2010, 08:17 AM
 
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Regarding Monte Carlo, it is primarly a congested town (they have to pack-in everthing in a small hilly area) with many modern condo buildings, excellent shops (some of which you need to ring a bell), a casino that has a dress code and charges admission during the day, the palace (this is an OK site), an excellent Oceanographic Musuem, etc. To us, it is a city that has never decided what it wants to be....

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Old 04-23-2010, 08:27 AM
 
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We must admit we are surprised that RCI decided to use Toulon as a Provence port rather then the normal Marseille. Marseille is better located as a jump off point into Provence since it has excellent train connections and is on the correct road routes. From Toulon, most places that folks want to see in Provence are further from the port. When we are driving in the South of France we normally avoid the Toulon area since we prefer to stay inland (the heart of Provence) and take advantage of the A8 (Autostrade) which runs through Provence. If we were ever stuck in Toulon on a port day we would either rent a car and drive into Provence or we might want to explore the Iles d'Hyeres...which is a group of island of the south coast of France (we have never been to these islands). As to hopping on a train, its kind of a bummer because if you want to go to Aix en Provence you have to actually take a train to Marseille and change. If you head east the nearest well known town is St Tropez which we think is a place that time has failed. We would be curious to know what excursions your ship is promoting (cannot find this info on the RCI website) to see if they are doing something different such as going the islands.

Hank
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Old 05-07-2010, 08:33 AM
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Hank, good info on this post and the previous concerning Monte Carlo. Definitely sounds like it would not be worth a day trip, even if reasonable. RC does off several excursions out of Toulon; 5 hour Marseille City tour for $54, 5 hr Cassis for %56, 3.5 hr Sanary and Bandol for $49, 3.5 hr Bormes for $49, 8 hr Aix and Cezanne for $159, and 8 hr St Tropex for $149. I could email you the full excursion package description if you are interested.
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Old 05-07-2010, 03:39 PM
 
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We are still mystified as to why RCI is using Toulon. The big joke is that they offer a tour to Marseille (this is the usual port for Provence) since most cruise passengers who dock in Marseille immediately leave that city to go to places in Provence. It is nice that they offer you a chance to go to Aix en Provence, but if they took you to Marseille you could go to Aix for only a few Euros by train. We actually spent some time trying to figure what we do if we had a port day in Toulon and I guess we would rent a car. The region around Bandol does have some personal interest since we are Oenophiles (wine lovers) and this is a decent wine district. As to St Tropez, it is a tired old sea resort town made famous by Bridget Bardot, but time has not done anything to improve this place. We do stop there if we happen to be driving through the region, but would not consider it worthy of a $150 tour.

Hank
 
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