There was a potential for the tour to be fantastic since it was just my husband and I. Most people opted for the half-day tour, while we picked the full day tour. Pros: we were the only ones, Zara, guide/driver, gave us the option of skipping the perfume factory, which was definitely a good decision based on some of the reviews posted on the site. This gave us more time at the various stops. Zara was more of a driver than a tour guide. She did explain about the places on our drive.. however, we would have really preferred a guided tour. For example, she quickly told us what to do when she dropped us off at the Manoco palace. She told us that the time of the changing of the guards however, neglected to say if we actually want to see it we would need to get there at least 20min prior otherwise due to the crowds you wouldn't be able to see anything. Also, she should have said it's not special. We saw a glimpse of it and left before the ceremony was over. We also asked her for a specific lunch recommendation. She wouldn't give us one.. kept saying well it depends what you like.. I'm a vegetarian. I said we like fish and would like to try local food. She told us to go to Freddy's which was the biggest tourist trap and was more like a burger place/catch all offering unrealistic number of food options. By that I mean you knew the food was unlikely to be fresh, authentic, or good. So we walked around until we found this sandwich/salad stand. We saw that there were French people waiting in line and figured it couldn't be bad. For 9 euros we each got salads w/ chicken/egg, drink, and fresh fruit cup. It wasn't the most amazing salad, but acceptable. Then when we only had 15min left I discovered the gardens which the tour guide neglected to mention or perhaps mentioned so fast in her 1 min explaination of what to do before dropping us off that I didn't remember. I was so disappointed we didn't spend more time there.. as they offered fantastic views of Monaco. Also, she never once would mentioned where the restrooms where at the various stops unless I remembered to ask her prior to getting off the van. This may seem like a small thing... but the best tours we were on during this cruise the guides would go out of their way to tell us where the restrooms where, whether you had to pay or not or to buy a drink then they would be free and also where the cheapest water is. She did none of that. So when we got back on the van and I mentioned how I wished I knew about the gardens she became super defensive first by saying she did tell us and also that most tourists don't care about the gardens.. I also said i wish i had known about the crowd for the changing of the guard.. and she ignored my comment.
Plus, She talked a TON, it was very hard to get a word in.. at times she kept repeating herself. At one point, I had to put on my sunglasses to take a nap. I can't say that everything she said was interesting. Lastly, we visited St. Paul, where the art galleries where and we specifically asked her for a recommendation of a gallery where we could buy a piece of art for 30-60 euros. Again, she seemed appalled at our question because how could she recommend a gallery when people have such different taste in art. So then I proceeded to give her examples of the art I like... Picasso, Dali, modern art, etc. She still wouldn't give us a recommendation. We only had about 1 hour there and wanted to make sure we walked to the view point to take pics. There were so many galleries that it would have been impossible to stop and make an unrushed purchase. So in the end, we didn't buy anything because of the lack of time and suggestions from Zara. All in all, she did the bare minimum of her job. She was more of a driver than a tour guide. At times she came off very pretentious i.e. The food and gallery examples. We did leave her a tip because it would feel rude not to, but she definitely didn't deserve it. Again, I comparaed her to the guides we had in Florence and Barcelona who went above and beyond. They were so friendly and provided incredible customer service.