Home to the rich and famous, Monte Carlo exudes style and panache. The locals walk the paths with a swagger; you can smell the affluence. The town is a charming blend of chic city living and wonderful sun-kissed beaches. Monte Carlo is a compact city; the best way to explore is by foot. The narrow streets and tight alleyways are home to a fascinating array of petite shops, bars and restaurants.
1. Monte Carlo Casino
Built in 1863, this architectural masterpiece overlooks the Mediterranean and must be a priority on your sightseeing list. It has a remarkable gold and marble atrium designed by the legendary architect Charles Garnier.
2. Walk the Grand Prix Racing Route
The Monaco Grand Prix has been held annually since 1929 and is considered one of the most prestigious races in motor sport. The roads are transformed from busy public highways into a Formula 1 circuit in an incredibly short space of time.
3. Prince’s Palace
The palace is open to the public from June to October. The courtyard is paved with over 3 million coloured pebbles, beautifully arranged in geometrical patterns. Built in 1215, the palace was originally a fortress before being transformed into a luxury home.
4. Monaco Cathedral
This magnificent cathedral was constructed in 1875 and is the final resting ground of Princess Grace. The cathedral’s fabulous organ was painstakingly restored to its former glory in 1988.
5. Monte-Carlo Thermes Marins
For over a century this luxury spa has pampered and delivered the ultimate in relaxation. Treat yourself to a day you will never forget.
6. Metropole Shopping Centre
Filled with designer stores to match those of Paris and Rome, the Metropole is a shopper’s paradise. A stroll around Casino Square will present you with precious stones of the highest quality.
7. The Old Town
An abundance of quality restaurants and bars present themselves in the more traditional parts of town. Here you can tuck into local specialities such as Monegasque cuisine.
8. Café de Paris
Located in Casino Square, Café de Paris is the place to be seen. The lively mix of locals and visitors generate a warm atmosphere, whether sitting outside or dining indoors. The menu has an international flavour and daily specials are always recommended.
9. The Grimaldi Forum
The stunning Grimaldi Forum is home to a host of cultural events. Watch concerts, opera, ballet, as well as festivals and exhibitions, including the Monte-Carlo Masters tennis.
10. Stade Louis II
What the home of AS Monaco Football Club lacks in size, it certainly makes up for in quality. Despite a capacity of only 18,500 (smaller than most top football clubs), the ground’s architecture make it one of the more memorable stadia.