An Introduction to Monaco

Covering around two square kilometres and nestling between mountains and sea, the Principality of Monaco might be the world’s second-smallest country, but what it lacks in size it makes up for in attitude. Glamorous, sophisticated, safe and hugely cosmopolitan, Monaco is truly beguiling.

Located between France and Italy, Monaco is only a 30 minute drive from Nice airport (or a few minutes helicopter trip). There are no border controls between Monaco and France or Italy making hopping between its neighbouring countries both fast and easy.

Running along a 4km coastline Monaco stretches over 200 hectares, 40 hectares of which have been carefully reclaimed from the sea. Monaco has two ports, a beach area and, despite an intense urban planning programme designed to make the most of its small land mass, the number of square metres of green space per resident is greater than in most comparable cities.

Monaco has a population of around 36,000, of which around 8,000 are Monegasque nationals. Of the remainder, 8 out of 10 residents are citizens of countries forming part of the European Economic Area: French nationals comprise 33% of the population, followed by Italians (23%), British ( 9%), Swiss (4%) and Russians (1%). 128 nationalities are represented in Monaco as residents.

The official language is French but English and Italian are widely spoken and understood.

Monaco is divided into five different areas:


Monaco-Ville on the Rock,

The old fortified town, with the Prince's Palace, the ramparts, the gardens, the Cathedral and the Oceanographic Museum.


Created in 1866, this is the most famous area in Monaco and includes the internationally renowned Casino, various luxury hotels, the Larvotto beach area, the Monte Carlo Sporting Club and the Boulingrins Gardens. The centre of this area is the Golden Square or Carré d’Or, home to some of the most sought-after residential buildings in the Principality.


Fontvieille is the newest area of the Principality of Monaco and was created from land reclaimed from the sea. This man-made waterfront area features a harbour, stadium and sports complex, heliport, and a pollution-free industrial zone, as well as some shopping areas and the Columbus Monaco hotel.


Home to the Révoires and the Exotic Gardens (on the western border with Cap d`Ail).

The Condamine

The second oldest area in Monaco, centered around the main port of Monaco