Monaco is a very small principality that makes the most of its spectacular location on the northern coast of the Mediterranean Sea. This location not only affords it incredible scenery but also very pleasant weather all year with warmer weather in the coastal region and slightly cooler weather as you get closer to the French Alps mountain area. The non-coastal part of Monaco is completely surrounded by France, who provides military protection to the principality.
The capital city of Monte Carlo is a huge tourist draw with the Monte Carlo Casino being its crown jewel. This casino is an ornate carved marble masterpiece with statues and luxurious decorations. Even those not interested in gambling make a point of stopping by. The Monagasque citizens themselves are not actually permitted to gamble there but the casino does plenty of business thanks to the influx of tourists, who are required to dress formally if they wish to enter.
Another must-see in Monte Carlo is the Place du Palais which includes a palace as well as a museum. The daily changing of the guard ceremony makes this a very popular place at 11:55 each morning.
Resting on a cliff high above the sea is the Oceanographic Museum and Aquarium with a breathtaking view. Inside, one can find a very complete marine museum with extensive collections of sea plants and marine life from both past and present. There is also an impressive aquarium with a real coral reef that has been relocated here for the enjoyment of all who visit.
Monaco takes great pride in its cultural activities. The biggest attraction of the year is the Formula 1 race that takes place right on the city streets every spring. Visitors from around the world descend upon Monte Carlo to watch the spectacle of the world's fastest cars weaving in and out of the windy roads and tunnels. It's also possible to view the excitement from yachts parked in the harbour.
Monaco is perfect for those who enjoy walking. You can actually walk from one side of the country all the way to the other end in about an hour. You can also stroll past luxury car dealers and the best designer boutiques in the world.
Although French is the local language, the country caters to tourists so it's easy for English speakers to get around. The country has plenty of wealthy international inhabitants thanks to the lack of income tax. This quant principality is the place to visit for people who want to get a taste of the good life.