The country of Monaco is the second smallest independent state in the world (after the Vatican), and is almost entirely urban.
Where is Monte Carlo?
Monte Carlo is located at the base of the Maritime Alps along the French Riviera in Western Europe, 9 miles east of Nice, France. You can get there by plane (the Nice International Airport), by rail and ground transportation.
It’s important to know that Monte Carlo is actually not the capital of Monaco, but a government district.
The country is divided into four areas: Monaco-Ville (the old city), the Condamine (port quarter), Monte-Carlo (business and recreation), and Fontvieille (recreation and light industry).
With no natural resources to exploit other than its location and climate, the principality has become a world famous resort for the rich and famous and a tax haven for businesses since there is no income tax.
Monaco is six times the size of the Vatican, and still remains the world’s most densely populated independent country.
What is Monte Carlo Famous For?
Monte Carlo is the world famous gambling center which according to Wikipedia has made Monte Carlo “an international byword of the extravagant display and reckless dispersal of wealth”.
Monte Carlo is one of the Europe’s leading resorts and most fancy and expensive travel destinations. It is host to world championship boxing bouts, the European Poker Tour Grand Final as well as the Circuit de Monaco on which the famous Formula One Monaco Grand Prix takes place.
World famous Monte Carlo Casino is located in Monte Carlo, Monaco. It is a glamorous gambling palace full of incredibly beautiful sculptures and frescoes and one of the biggest attractions on the French Riviera!
Monte Carlo Facts and Figures
Ruler: Prince Albert II (2005)
Minister of State: Michel Roger (2010)
Total area: 0.8 sq mi (2.0 sq km)
Population (2009 est.): 36,371 (growth rate: 0.3%)
Capital (2006 est.): Monaco, 1,600
Languages: French (official), Italian, English and Monegasque.
Monetary Unit: Euro
Life expectancy: 90.0 Unemployment Rate in the World: 0% GDP per capita: $153,177 per person (world’s highest!) Most Expensive Real Estate Market: $65,600 per square meter
Constitutional Monarchy with Prince Albert II as ruler.
Fascinating History of Monaco
The Phoenicians, and after them the Greeks, had a temple on the Monacan headland honoring Hercules. The principality took its name from Monoikos, the Greek surname for this mythological hero.
After being independent for 800 years, Monaco was annexed to France in 1793 and placed under Sardinia’s protection in 1815. By the Franco-Monegasque treaty of 1861, Monaco went under French guardianship but continued to be independent.
A treaty made with France in 1918 contained a clause providing that, in the event that the male Grimaldi dynasty should die out, Monaco would become an autonomous state under French protection.
Monte Carlo Sightseeing
Monaco has a tourist business that attracts as many as 1.5 million visitors a year, and is famous for its beaches and casinos, especially world famous Monte Carlo built in 1893. It had gaming tables as early as 1856.
The principality of Monaco offers a great balance of historical and modern attractions.
There are various museums and palaces to visit like Oceanographic Museum, Monaco Cathedral, Prince’s Palace, Fort Antoine as well as shopping malls and casinos. Monaco also offers beautiful relaxation spots along the harbor and even around the attractions.
It is relatively easy to navigate Monte Carlo and Monaco if you take the time to learn where the various “short cuts” are. City maps are generally available at most news vendor stands and shops for a small fee.
All of the above makes Monte Carlo, Monaco such a fascinating travel destination and a hot spot for tourists from all over the world.
Have you ever been to Monte Carlo, Monaco or any other Western European Country? Please share your experience with us!
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