Read what the country is like in Part I, find out what to do in Monaco here.
I have the feeling that ‘Monaco’ is a word that comes up in every third rap song. So, who else finally wants to discover what to do there? This way, ladies and gentlemen 🙂
If you want to soak in the sun, Larvotto is perfect. It has a nice beach – ‘Plage du Larvotto’ – with a public area which does not cost anything, but also private beach clubs. Either way, you can enjoy the life on the Côte d’Azur by swimming in the ocean with a view onto some of the most luxurious yachts or by sipping a glass of fine champagne in the sun.
Le Métropole Shopping Centre
Both locals and tourists love to come to ‘Le Métropole’. It is an underground shopping centre with endless possibilities to spend your money, or dream of being a princess and wearing the most fabulous fashion clothes. As soon as you have had enough of shopping, exit and go to the square where the Casino is also located. A great café for having a bite and drinking a coffee is the ‘Café de Paris’. As a kid, I often bought myself a ice-cream at the gelato shop next to the café. Ah, memories 🙂 Then go towards the Casino and take a second to re-catch your breath because of the amazing view onto the harbour.
Yachts, yachts, yachts. The harbour (fr.: le port) is home to thousands of boats and also hosts the ‘International Yacht Show’. There are plenty of delicious restaurants and bars along the port as well. And if you look to the other side, towards the cliff where the palace is located, you can see a long building: the International School of Monaco. Maybe you will also see children in the playground on a summer day, or teenagers having lunch at ‘Stars ‘n’ Bars’. And because this school – my former school – is located at the port, I always loved running from one landing stage to another, coming to halt at a boat which pleased me the most. – Just a small blonde adventurous girl sitting in front of a boat, imagining what her life would be like sailing the seven seas.
The royal palace of the Grimaldis’ is located on the rock (fr.: le rocher). It is reachable by foot and by car and not far from Port Hercule. Actually, a staircase and a path leads right to the palace. It is possible to visit the ‘Grands Appartements’, so some rooms of the palace. Thanks to former princes and family members, the palace is also home to a lot of art work, such as masterpieces from Michelangelo or Raffael. Yet, I do not know if they are publicly displayed. The entry fee for an adult for the ‘Grands Appartements’ is 8€ and 11,50€ if you also want to visit the ‘Collection de Voitures Anciennes’ (= collection of old, former cars of the Grimaldis’). Located outside of the palace, but still on ‘Le Rocher’, the ‘Chapelle de la Visitation’ or ‘Saint Nicolas Cathedral’ is also worth a visit, it looks absolutely amazing from the outside. Discovering the inside of the church, which was transformed into a museum, is a great experience, because the baroque chapel dates back to the 17th century and it features religious arts.
Port de Fontvieille
The Port de Fontvieille is the second port in Monaco. It lays just on the other side of Le Rocher and is preferred by many people over Port Hercule. This port is also the newer one. Furthermore, it borders on Cap d’Ail, a french city directly next to Monaco. Cap d’Ail has my favourite beach: the ‘Plage Mala’. A breathtakingly beautiful walk with a scenic view over the ocean goes from Port de Fontvieille all the way to Plage Mala. The distance is 4 – 5 km and is even.
A Formula 1 race takes place in Monaco annually. That is the time when all the locals flee the country to get away from the noise and the crowds. On the other hand, that is also the time when all celebrities fly into Monaco and spend a week at the Côte d’Azur. If you want to have a once in a lifetime experience and catch glimpses of the most famous celebrities, such as Gigi and Bella Hadid, Kendall Jenner, Leonardo diCaprio etc., visit Monaco in time of the Formula 1 race. But do me (and your wallet) a favour by booking a hotel outside of Monaco 🙂