a VirtualTourist member from New York City
Hi! I am lucky enough to be coming out in a few weeks to Monte Carlo for business. I will have 2 days off to explore. What is feasible for me to do/see in 2 days? I will be based in Monte Carlo. I don't want to rent a car so taking the train and bus will be my primary mode of transportation. I wanted to spend 1 day visiting the French Riviera and I wanted to spend 1 day visiting Portofino. Being so close to Italy, I want to be in Italy too! I am less interested in running around all over the place just to "say I was there". I'd rather see some beautiful, charming towns. Is it possible for me to do a day trip to Portofino and can I get there without a car? Any ideas?
Hi.. Cannes, France is an amazing city to visit..just be aware that the Cannes Film Festival is May 17-28th and will be incredibly crowded there.
I heard it is 5-6 hours by train to Portofino from Cannes.. so about 1-2 hours less from Monte Carlo I suspect.
Hi - Portofino is a long trip by train, with changing trains twice - once at the border, once in Genoa. An awfully long trip for Portofino which is really a relatively brief visit. You see the harbor, maybe the church, have an expensive gelato, and you're back on the bus to the train station. The western Ligurian coast - San Remo, Bordighera, etc - has been disappointing to some VT members including myself. As much as you might like to visit Italy, might I suggest instead visiting some of the hill towns adjacent to Monte Carlo such as Tourette, St. Paul de Vence (Maeght art foundation), Vence, or visit Antibes on the coast (Picasso museum). You can get an idea of the hill villages (and Portofino) on my pages and many others.
I agree with the above post. If based in Montecarlo, and with only one day on your side, I guess you don't want to spend it on a train.
A few locations in the French Riviera might be satisfactory and maybe Nice itself would be good for a whole day. Unlike places like Antibes or Cannes, which are good but pure touristic places, Nice offers more of the "normal" life. The old town it's an interesting experience with its maze of alleys filled with small and cozy stores.
You might also like to check Eze Village above Montecarlo.