Back in wonderful France! Spain was really nice, but I prefer the French people and their more sophisticated tastes. We drove back into France and down to what is known as the French Riviera which is basically the southern coast of France. On the way there we stopped in a very old Roman town called Arles where Vincent Van Gough lived for some years doing some of his famous works. Below is a pic in Arles of an ampitheatre on the left and some 800 year old buildings on the right.
We stayed in Grasse at a "hotel" although it wasn't much more than any other place we stay at. Except for the food - buffet style breakfasts and dinners for 2 days was excellent.
The first night in Grasse we just chilled after the long day of travel. The next day we drove the half hour to Nice which is a great looking coastal town. Excellent water to swim in, but the beach left much to be desired as it is made up entirely of pebbles. Now I don't mean pebbles as in 'oh these pebbles are nice between my toes', I mean decent sized rocks that made walking on the beach without shoes quite hazardous. We took the time to climb a big flight of stairs to the top of a rocky mountain that had great views of Nice as seen below.
We went back down and had a walk through the market where you can find plentiful fresh fruit and veg - olives galore. We stopped in an Irish pub for a beer and caught a Cowboys game (footy). After that we went down to the beach for another beer and watched people try to find a comfortable spot on the pebbles.
We then headed back to the hotel to change into smart clothes since we were going into Monaco that night! What a night it was. For those who don't know Monaco is the 2nd smallest country after the Vatican City and is run by a party-crazy guy called Prince Albert II and only people with ridiculous amounts of money live there. We drove down a decent portion of the Formula 1 track on the way to Monte Carlo Casino. Pictured below is the well known hair pin turn outside the casino.
We saw a harbour where it costs 20,000 euros a day to park your yacht there. Not a bad deal if you ask me. Pictured below is the palace of the price of Monaco.
We then hopped off the coach and walked up to the casino while in awe of all the sports cars that make up the normal traffic of the area. The casino car park was more like a sports car show than a car park. Here's me outside the casino with my Ferrari.
It cost 10 euro to get into the casino - I guess it keeps the riff-raff tourists out? The casino is actually very small, and most of it wasn't accessible to us since you need to put down at least 50,000 euro to get into the high rollers area. Someone on tour won 300 bucks off a 10 euro bet, and Brett of course lost about 150 euro on the pokies. I was standing next to a roulette table where this one guy was putting 2 grand down every bet, and losing most of it. I myself am the worst gambler in history so I don't gamble any more. Just ask my mate Daniel Powell, I have lost our monthly poker game 8 times in a row.
So that was the French Riviera, a bit of fun and a relaxing place to go for a holiday. This completes the first leg of our tour, next it's off to Italy for a week.