Mini guide to Monaco
The Principality of Monaco attracts the rich and famous, and its setting on the
Cote d'Azur is spectacular. It is a micro territory that thrives on spectacle
and glitz. The largest spectacle of the year has to be the Formula One Grand Prix,
held in May, when the world's best drivers hit the city streets and crossing the
road becomes an extreme sport.
It's easy to wander from one end of this tiny city state to the other and accidentally
end up in France; walking is therefore the best mode of transport for seeing
everything. Take in the opulent Casino Royale and gardens, ogle the million-dollar
yachts docked in the harbour, and window-shop grand boutiques. A look at the
Prince's Palace on the Rock is also highly recommended, as is a trip to the
largest aquarium in Europe.
Monaco is in a unique position on the map, with a variety of landscapes nearby,
including the stunning French Riviera and the nearby Alps. Driving along the
N7 in either direction is extremely pleasant. To the west lie the exclusive
resorts of Cannes and Antibes just past Nice, and to the north lie the Alps,
where you can ski in the winter.
Monaco has a colourful and fascinating history filled with barbarians, kings
and even a movie star. It is a story of castles, epic battles and untold riches.
It began in 1297 when Francois Grimaldi seized the fortress and territory. In
1308, his family officially bought the land from Genoa, and his descendants
have ruled it ever since, qualifying it as the world's oldest dynasty.
The Principality covers one square mile, which is split up into five areas.
The three main areas are: the Monaco-Ville, or 'the Rock', where the Prince's
Palace is situated over the striking cliffs; Monte Carlo, the hive of all the
activity in the centre; and Fontvieille, the reclaimed land where the harbour
The nearest airport is at Nice to the west, and it receives direct flights
from many European cities; from there, you can transfer to Monaco via bus, taxi
or even helicopter. There are direct TGV trains from Paris and the E80 highway
services the region.
Selection of hotels in this region:
Le Meridien Beach Plaza
Ambassador Monaco Hotel
Fairmont Monte Carlo
Click below for a
full list of hotels and online booking