~ Monaco Visitor's Guide ~

Any Monaco travel guide will make mention of the Grand Prix and the famous Formula One racetrack, as well as the gambling casino you will see if you visit Monte Carlo. But there are many other things to do and see for people that are not fans of racing or gambling. What you will read about here are just a few of the highlights.

Panoramic view of Monaco

The Palace

Although the reigning Prince resides in the palace, much of it is open to the public, including the Museum of Napoleon Souvenirs which houses an assortment of artefacts that originally belonged to the French Emperor Napoleon I. The collection was assembled by Prince Louis II, the grandfather of Albert II, current Prince of Monaco. The museum also houses historical documents related to the independence of the principality on the mezzanine floor.

State rooms of the palace are open to the public during the summer months. The courtyard is the setting for open air concerts given by the Monte-Carlo Philharmonic Orchestra and the annual children’s Christmas party, as well as other events throughout the year.

Oceanographic Museum

The Oceanographic Museum is often pictured in a Monaco travel guide. The striking building seems to rest precipitously on the cliffs that rise above the sea.

Established by Prince Albert I, an avid scientist, the museum’s director for many years was the world famous Jacque Cousteau. An aquarium is located in the basement and is home to four thousand species of fish. Model ships, skeletons of sea animals, tools and weapons complete the museum experience.

The Rally

If you visit Monte Carlo around the third week of January (check with our events page), you will find the city very crowded, because of the Rallye Automobile de Monte-Carlo. The rally is a unique race with many famous special stages. There is often ice on the roadways during that time of year and many spectators throw snow onto the roadway. The excitement factor is tremendous.

The Hotel de Paris

Photo of Monte-Carlo Casino
Monte-Carlo Casino, Place du Casino

Although you might decide not to stay in the Hôtel de Paris when you visit Monte Carlo, you should at least want to take a few snapshots of the building. The architecture is reminiscent of a large watch tower or topless lighthouse. Because the building is round, it allows for spectacular views of the city, the courtyard or the sea.

The Jardin Exotique

Jardin Exotique is French for exotic garden. Scenes from the garden are often included in a Monaco travel guide. Poised on another of Monaco’s famous cliff sides, the garden is home to thousands of species of cacti and other succulent plants.

Caverns are located at the foot of the cliff and can be visited by hiring a special guide. Remains found in the caverns are displayed in a museum of prehistoric anthropology, located inside of the gardens.

Sea-going Adventure


If you visit Monte Carlo, you will be visiting the famous French Riviera. Port Hercule in Monaco is the docking site for numerous yachts, some of which can be rented by the day or the week. From aboard ship, you can take in all of the sites that the French Riviera has to offer including Nice, Cannes and the point where the Alps enter the sea.

This was but a brief Monaco travel guide. There are literally hundreds of things to do and see.

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