We will be 2 couples on the Golden Princess Sept. 25th. We were wondering if we can arrange our own tours with local guides in Marseille & Monte Carlo. (at the Dock) . Is it safe? What do they charge? If anyone can help us thanks in advance. Jo & Mike
We were on the Golden Princess Istanbul to Barcelona in June. We arranged for private tour guides in Istanbul, Kusadasi for Ephesus, and Barcelona as well as a pre-arranged taxi driver for Athens. If you want more information about any of these, e-mail me.
You really do not need a tour guide for Monte Carlo. It is very small and very easy to do on your own. We were not in Marseille.
I was just in Marseille on Renaissance cruises. I did 2 tours. One was to Aix-en-Provence, which is a beautiful town, complete with outdoor markets. Very charming. The other tour was the Marseille city tour, which was surprisingly terrific. The city is very pretty and the view from the Basilica Notre Dame de la Garde is spectacular. Our buses were parked right off the gangway in Marseille so I didn't notice any cars for hire. Keep in mind that the port is a distance from the city. When I was in MonacoI saw the Golden Princess in the harbor and there was a steady stream of tenders running between the ship and the shore. That will take you right into Monte Carlo. There is a cute tramway/train tour that runs through the town (very much like the one in Key West). Most of the good stuff to see is up near the palace. You can get a bus up there. The walk is quite a hike but do-able. Hope this helps
While it's true that you can wander about Monte Carlo on your own, the "Old Monaco Walking Tour" is particularly worthwhile. This tour visits the Cathedral and the Royal Palace, with complete tours of both, and we also got to see the changing of the guard at the Royal Palace. Since the tour has prearranged admission to the palace, there's no long wait in line to gain admission. The tour guide also provided a lot of fascinating background informtion on the principality. This 1/2 day tour is pretty inexpensive, and it also leaves plenty of free time to wander around Monte Carlo on your own.
BTW, Monte Carlo is the only port in the Mediterranian where MV Golden Princess cannot dock. By taking a tour from the ship, you get priority on the tenders to go ashore so you won't have to wait until there's a tender available. If you go on your own, the wait for a tender ashore on such a large ship can reduce the amount of time that you have for sightseeing by an hour or more.
Norm- We were on the Golden Inagural---we had to tender from Cannes....Monte Carlo was closed for the Grand Prix. I was really stunning to see the entire coast from the ship--the view from the shore was equally impressive.