Monaco Town, the Rock

Monaco Town, the Rock

Discover the old town through the narrow alleyways from the middle ages which lead to the picturesque Place Saint Nicolas and Placette Bosio, the Chapel of Mercy, Palais de Justice and the Cathedral, a Roman-Byzantine style building built in 1875.

  • Naturally, your feet will guide you to the Place du Palais, where every day at precisely 11:55am the changing of the guard takes place in front of the Princely Palace.

In front of you, the Princely Palace, built in the 18th century then modified during the Renaissance.

Guardian of an ancient tradition, with its Italian-style gallery and its 15th century frescoes, the palace reveals to visitors some of its splendours such as the Main Courtyard with its 17th century Carrara marble double staircase, the Hercule Gallery and its delicate 15th century frescoes running along the blue and gold Louis XVth lounge and the Mazarin room with its multicoloured wood-panelling, the York Bedroom and finally the Throne Room with its Renaissance fireplace. Visit duration 35 to 40 minutes, tel: 00 377 93 25 18 31.

Located in the southern wing of the Princely Palace, the Museum of Napoleonic Souvenirs and Collections of the Historical Archives of the Palace contains a rich collection of more than a thousand objects and documents about the First Empire, such as objects which belonged to Emperor Napoleon 1st, clothes from the King of Rome, holy souvenirs of Saint Helen and more. The first floor is entirely dedicated to the history of the Principality. Visit duration: 1 to 2 hours, tel: 00 377 93 25 18 31.

Further on, at the Place du Palais, gaze at an exceptional panorama while strolling towards the Saint Martin Gardens. Planted in the 1830s during the reign of Prince Honoré V, they surround the Oceanographic Museum , on Avenue Saint Martin, another marvellous piece of architecture in the Principality.

Built in 1910 under HSH Prince Albert 1st, this Oceanographic institute was for a long time managed by Commandant Cousteau. Dedicated to marine sciences, the museum houses the most significant coral reef in the world in its all new shark lagoon, 400 cubic metres of water with hammerhead sharks and majestic stingrays swimming in front of a coral reef populated with a multitude of tropical fish and living corals. Visit duration at the Oceanographic museum: 2 ½ to 3 hours, tel: 00 377 93 15 36 00.

In front of the Oceanographic museum on the Avenue St Martin, catch the “Azur Express” tourist trains. These small trains decorated in the national colours take their passengers on a daily tour with commentary in French, English, Italian and German during which you will discover the Port, Monte-Carlo and its palaces, the famous casino and its gardens before arriving back at the old town with its ramparts and Princely Palace. Duration of the tour: 30 minutes, tel: 00 377 92 05 64 38.

Located on the Rock at Place de la Visitation, the Museum of the Chapel of Visitation is part of a Baroque style chapel dating from the 17th century. It houses part of the remarkable collection of sacred works of art belonging to Mrs Piasecka Johnson, with masterpieces by Rubens, Zurbaran, Ribera and masters of the Italian Baroque. Visit duration: 30 minutes, tel: 00 377 93 50 07 00.

The Monaco Town walk will take around 2 hours (excluding museums).
For the children, there is the play area at the beginning of the Saint Martin Gardens towards the Princely Palace.

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