The Best Travel Guide to Monaco by BestTravelBook

Monaco might be the world’s second-smallest country (only the Vatican is smaller.)  Tucked inside the Maritime Alps between the French and Italian Riviera on the Mediterranean Sea, Monaco has long been associated with glamour and exclusivity, and has price tags to match

The Best Guide to Monaco by BestTravelBook

“The Best Travel Guide to Monaco by BestTravelBook” is segmented into 4 key travel themes to immerse you into everything Monaco:

  1. An introduction and brief history to Monaco;
  2. Some eye watering facts & figures;
  3. A comprehensive lowdown of What to See;
  4. An insider guide

Hope you enjoy it!  Carpe Diem!

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1. An introduction and brief history to Monaco:

Monaco is extravagant and flash as it gets – Ferraris and Lamborghinis line the exquisitely kept verges and the Marinas are filled with the yachts of Millionnaires (Monaco is home to 12,261 millionaires in less than one square mile)   Look into a real estate window and you simply will not believe the property prices.  If you’re in the French Riviera, Monaco is an easy pit stop and you can see how the seriously rich live and you can say you have ticked off two countries in one day.  I have to admit that for once I felt that the UK offered value-for-money which is a rarity.

Lapping in the Luxury of Monaco
Lapping in the Luxury of Monaco

 

Monaco is a place of contrasts – you have the fantastic location flanking the coastline, elegant boulevards and beautifully kept old town, however, this is somehow spoilt by the skyscrapers which just do not look like they belong and are in stark contrast to the rest of the Cot D’Azur.

Monaco Marina
Monaco Marina

My best advice is jump off the train at Monaco-Ville and make your own judgement – it will likely divide your group.

 

Lapping in the Luxury of Monaco
Lapping in the Luxury of Monaco

 

2. Some eye watering facts & figures:

Monaco Facts & Figures
Monaco Facts & Figures

 

  1. With an area of just 0.78 square miles and a population of 38,300, Monaco is one of the densest countries in the world
  2. Monaco is smaller than Central Park in New York City
  3. Monaco is home to 12,261 millionaires in less than one square mile
  4. Almost one in three people who live there is a millionaire
  5. The average home in Monaco costs $4,560 per square foot
  6. ‘Citizens of Monaco, a city famous for its casinos, are forbidden by law from gambling
  7. Monaco’s GDP per capita is $165,420 — the second highest in the world – only Liechtenstein is higher at $166,021
  8. More than 75% of Monaco’s residents are foreign-born
  9. In 2008, the Wealth Bulletin, a Dow Jones site, named Avenue Princesse Grace the most expensive street in the world, with an average price of $17,750 per square foot

3. A comprehensive lowdown of What to See:

Lap of Luxury
Lap of Luxury

 

What to See in Monaco
What to See in Monaco

 

Palais du Prince:

BestTravelBook Top Pick:

Palais du Prince, Monaco
Palais du Prince, Monaco
  • The Prince’s Palace of Monaco (Palais du Prince) is located on the Monaco Rock, adjacent to Monaco’s Old Town
  • They are separated only by the impressive Place du Palais, which overlooks the Port of Hercules on one side and the district of Fontvieille on the other
  • The Prince’s Palace has been the official seat of the Grimaldi family for over 700 years. It was here that the famous Hollywood actress, Grace Kelly, lived after her marriage to Prince Rainier III
  • The lavish Grimaldi palace was built in the 17C on a 13C Genoan fortress, hewn out of the rock. In the Hercules Gallery, decorated with ancient frescoes, admire the main courtyard, adorned with three million pebbles

 

Monte Carlo Casino:

Monte Carlo Casino, Monaco
Monte Carlo Casino, Monaco

 

BestTravelBook Top Pick:

  • It was built in 1893 by Charles Garnier, the architect of the Paris Opera House.
  • Its marble paved “atrium“, surrounded with 28 Ionic columns made of onyx, gives access to the Opera Hall which is entirely decorated in red and gold, with bas-reliefs and sculptures
  • For more than a century, its stage has been the setting for international operatic creations, concerts, and ballets. Its series of “Gaming Rooms” are marvellously decorated with stained glass windows, sculptures, and allegorical paintings

 

Jardin Exotique:

Jardin Exotique, Monaco
Jardin Exotique, Monaco

BestTravelBook Top Pick:

  • The Exotic garden of Monaco is a fabulously mature exotic garden which grows along the edge of a cliff overlooking the bay of Monaco. Not only do you see hundreds of cacti and Mediterranean plants of a size you will rarely if ever have seen before but the view over Monaco and the French and Italian Riviera are simply stunning
  • The exotic garden was started in 1933 but many of the cacti and succulents come from a collection which was started in 1895. The maturity of the plants on display is therefore a key feature of this garden which contains more than 1000 species of cacti and succulents
  • At the top plateau of the garden there is a panoramic view including the Rock of Monaco, the Port of Monaco and Monte Carlo. The view extends as far as Italy

 

Saint Nicholas Monaco Cathedral:

Saint Nicholas Cathedral, Monaco
Saint Nicholas Cathedral, Monaco

 

BestTravelBook Top Pick:

  • Built in 1875, using white stones from La Turbie, on the site of a 13th century church dedicated to Saint Nicolas, the Monaco Cathedral is an impressive monument
  • This is where Prince Rainier III and Princess Grace got married and it houses the tombs of the former Princes of Monaco

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