Monaco - The town of Princes and Grand Prix, but also...
Independent and sovereign state located between the foot of the Southern Alps and the Mediterranean, the Principality of Monaco shares land borders with several French communes of the Alpes-Maritimes: La Turbie, Roquebrune-Cap-Martin, Cap d'Ail and Beausoleil.
From the earliest times, the Rock of Monaco was a shelter for primitive populations. However, the history of Monaco really starts from the XIIIth century. June 10th, 1215 marks the birth of the future principality. On this day, the Genoese family of Ghibellines laid the first stone of the fortress which is now the Palace. To attract inhabitants, the first masters of the Rock agreed to grant newcomers with valuable advantages such as land or tax exemption. The history of Monaco is associated for 700 years to that of the Grimaldi family, which celebrated in 1997, the anniversary of his accession to the destiny of the current Principality.
Enjoying exceptional sunshine, the Principality of Monaco has mild winters and summers without excessive heat. The Mediterranean climate by excellence, makes Monaco a prestigious site, where life is pleasant throughout the seasons.
At the heart of the Principality, built on the site of a fortress erected by the Genoese in 1215, the Prince's Palace is home to the splendor and luxury that retrace seven uninterrupted centuries of sovereignty.
The historic center of Monaco is situated on a promontory surrounded by walls where the Palace is located, it also hosts the Oceanographic Museum, the Cathedral, the court. You go from one monument to another by cobbled streets of old Monaco, restaurants, shops souvenir...
The visit of the Palace is a journey through the centuries, from the Renaissance to the Napoleonic era. The Court of Honor and its imposing double staircase leads to the gallery of Hercules and the old Princes' flats, which sumptuous XVIth century frescoes adorn the Mazzarin living room, the house of York and the imposing throne room.
Do not miss the oceanographic museum where Jacques Cousteau worked many years alongside researchers from the underwater world. This museum will delight young and old with its giant aquarium, its retrospective on sharks or the impacts of global warming in the North Pole.
Among the musts, we cannot visit Monaco without the Casino area, with the Café de Paris and the luxury hotels and shops, and finally the exotic garden where hundreds of rare plant species were brought from all over the world and reimplanted here. If you have time, try to also wander around in the district of Fontvieille, its small port, the circus tent, dear to the old Prince Rainier III father of the current Prince Albert II. This whole neighborhood was built directly on the sea about 20 years ago.
Sensitive or not to the glamor and glitz of this city, Monaco remains a haven of peace and sun that leaves no one indifferent.