We decided to do a city break of Nice and Monte Carlo for a few days, we visited between Christmas and New Year for a much-needed break. I had always wanted to go to Nice and Monaco, maybe it was to do with the 1980s film The Dirty Rotten Scoundrels which I watched as a child/
The beach was vast and so sandy and the sea had a plethora of blues with the winter sun reflecting on the water. Whilst walking along the beach, you could spot stylish Italian ladies with their small pedigree dogs walking along the promenade. The style was fantastic, like watching a fashion catwalk!
Flying into Nice airport, we took a taxi and stayed in the Nice Carlton hotel which was right by the lovely beach.
Nice is a perfect location to stay if you want to sample Nice, Monte Carlo and Italy and is ideal for day trips.
The local people were friendly and we went along the local side streets and went to local restaurants where the food was superb, fresh and locally sourced. The meat, fish and the wine lists were amazing and there was so much to choose from the extensive list of gastronomic feasts. Also it was great to speak French and be understood too.
Having picked up tourist leaflets from our hotel there were so many day trips to Monte Carlo and some were charging expensive rates which were over the top. As like everywhere, I speak to the the locals and they advised we could easily walk to Monte Carlo or take a bus there.
We walked from the centre of Nice to Monte Carlo and it was only 2km walk! As we walked along taking the view, we could see the Port with the supersize yachts and tall apartment blocks. It was like another world!
Monaco is the second smallest country in the world, Vatican City is the smallest country in the world. It is famous for being a tax haven and famous for Grace Kelly who was a Hollywood starlet who married into the royal Grimaldi family. My family have always loved the glamour of Grace Kelly and to visit Monte-Carlo was on our list.
The principality of Monaco is on the Mediterreanean Sea. It is also only 15 km from the border of Italy. The main language of Monaco is French and the traditional dialect is Monégasque which is influenced by it’s French and Italian neighbours. Monte Carlo is known for being a tax haven and a place for the superich to show off and be seen in their sports cars and what not.
We visited the Prince’s Palace of Monaco, we did not go in as we were the palace was closed to the public when we were there, but the Palace has a website which is: Prince’s Palace of Monaco (palais.mc), here you can visit the State Apartments and it is really reasonable. You can buy tickets online at the website above website. There are also links to the Zooological Gardens too.
After visiting the Palace and seeing the changing of the guard, we took in the architecture!
We went to see the Casino de Monte Carlo which is an iconic building. There is a wonderful fountain and we enjoyed going inside the casino and having a look and having a flutter on the roulette ! You can stay there for a pricey sum if you are lucky in the casino!
I would recommend staying in Nice and spending a day in Monaco, it is easily walkable and there are buses as well to take you where you want to go. I would avoid going in the Summer time, as it is very hot, and also when the Monaco Grand Prix is on as the streets are narrow and lots of crowds. If you are a lover of Formula 1 you would love the atmosphere.
All in all, it’s lovely to experience Monaco. It’s great to try local produce and French cuisine and enjoy some time exploring the side streets and having a lovely cocktail in the evening especially after walking all day.
You must visit 😉