Monaco is a sovereign city state and is considered the second smallest country in the world. Its Head of State is Prince Albert II whose family, the House of Grimaldi, has ruled the area since 1297. It is also the world/s smallest monarchy and the most densely populated country on the planet. One reason for the high population is the lack of income tax on its residents which has attracted wealthy people from around the world.
Since I had never been on a bus tour before, I wasn't sure what to expect, however I was more than disappointed that we drove along the French Riviera without making a stop. I took a few photos of the beautiful coastline through the bus window, but would have really liked to stop a few times to make photos. I soon realized this was unrealistic because of the steep cliffs and narrow roads.
Our first stop was in Monaco where we were given a very rushed tour through a beautiful old church. I tried to make a few images there, but didn't want to lose sight of the tour group and had to keep up with them. We then made our way through crowded narrow streets to the square and Prince's Palace. We had 45 minutes of free time, then had to meet again to proceed to the next part of the tour.
Most people browsed the shops but I spent the time walking around the area making photos. I wanted to go back to the church, but knew there was not enough time so I photographed the buildings in the area and the changing of the guard. The tour guide said that the prince was in the city because the flag was flying on the palace. Apparently every time the Prince leaves, the flag is lowered.