Our Top 5 Monte Carlo Travel Tips
On our incredible Mediterranean Odyssey cruise with Viking our third port was Monte Carlo, Monaco. First of all, WOW! We have never seen such a picturesque marina town. It was stunning from every angle.
We chose to forego the bus tour and just walk on our own through the city. It was either the best or worst decision we could’ve made… we’re still not sure.
The walk along the marina was decorated views of luxury yachts the size of small cruise ships and the scenic city skyline. We could even see Princess Grace’s palace at the top of the hill to our left. Everything was
There are a few things that could’ve made our tour of Monaco a little bit easier and we’re going to share those with you in this post along with some other things you should know before visiting this Mediterranean gem.
The official language of Monaco is French. Never fear, though, if you can’t speak Français! We didn’t come across anyone who didn’t speak perfect English and who wasn’t 100% willing to do so. Everyone was very kind and laid back.
The currency is the Euro, but we didn’t find the need for cash. Monte Carlo isn’t your typical quaint, cobblestone street, sidewalk café European city. It’s more of your six-figure cars, outrageously large yachts and million dollar casino bets kind of place. Most places take all forms of credit/debit cards. They’ll take your money however you want to give it. We loved that!
Navigating the side streets and trying to find a specific store, restaurant or attraction can be a little confusing. We definitely recommend grabbing a map if you can. This saved us while we were in Monte Carlo! We would have had no idea where we were if it wasn’t for the map Viking provided!
This may be the most important thing we tell you. So pay attention to this…
Wear. Good. Shoes.
Drink. Lots. Of. Water.
Okay, but seriously. When you’re looking at the city from afar it looks like this cute marina town. Sure, it looks a little hilly, but IT’S DECEIVING! The hills in Monte Carlo are killer. Worse than anything we have ever experienced. Holy. Moly.
We were just casually walking along the marina and then we turned onto the main street to walk toward the shopping, restaurants, etc. That’s when it happened.
We started walking uphill.
And the hill seemed to keep getting higher and higher the farther we walked.
It was the middle of July. It was hot. We were sweating. Huffing and puffing.
It was a lot. But we made it. Just be prepared! Wear your activity tracker because you’re going to be HIKING for those postcards and Instagram photos.
Monte Carlo can be overwhelming. Between the beautiful views, atrocious hills, and confusing streets, it’s easy to lose your mind and all bearing on what’s happening.
So go into your trip with a plan. Have a rough idea of what you want to see and where those things are, so that you accomplish everything you want to. We were only in the city for a few hours, so a plan would’ve been helpful. We were flying by the seat of our pants… it worked out okay in the end!
Having a couple of days in Monte Carlo would be amazing! But if you only have a few hours, make the most of it by having a plan!
Last but not least, we are about to contradict tip number four… when in Monte Carlo EXPLORE!
Enjoy the marina. Eat at a delicious restaurant. Check out a few shops. See the casino and the palace. Gawk at the crazy cars and yachts. But explore the small side streets, too. Check out the local flavor and venture away from tourist palooza. You’ll be so happy you did!
Thanks for reading our ‘FIVE things you need to know before visiting MONTE CARLO’! Make sure to watch our Monte Carlo travel diary (linked above).
Have you been to Monaco? Let us know in the comments if you have and if you have any thing you would add to our list!