2 Days in Monaco: Itinerary for a Perfect Weekend

2 Days in Monaco: what to do?

Are you going to Monaco for a weekend ?

Excellent idea!

To help you organize your short stay in the principality, I have prepared a detailed 2 days Monaco itinerary for you.

I have concocted the ideal program for you with all the things to see each day and ideas for super cool activities to try to live a luxurious experience. Thanks to my advice, you will be able to make the most of your 2-3 days!

And at the end of the article, I also give you my selection of the most beautiful hotels to sleep in during your weekend in Monaco for a romantic getaway. And if you’re more up for a family or “low budget” weekend, no worries: I also have what you need!

The best itinerary for a weekend in Monaco

I present to you now my itinerary for a weekend in Monaco.

A small precision: this schedule is based on 2 full days, and I also give you advice for a weekend in PACA extended by 3 days at the end of this guide.

If you still have questions to organize your short stay in Monaco after reading everything, do not hesitate to ask me your questions in the section dedicated to comments, at the very end of the article.

Day 1: Walk in Monaco

Weekend in Monaco: day 1 itinerary

A. The Rock of Monaco

I suggest you start your day with the unmissable place to see in a weekend in Monaco: the Rock.

Le Rocher corresponds to the oldest part of the city, which was founded in the 13th century by the famous Grimaldi dynasty, which still reigns over the principality today.

You will therefore find the emblematic Prince’s Palace and the cathedral there.

The historic heart of Monaco is also full of shops and restaurants distributed in the small streets lined with colorful houses.

Tips for your Monaco itinerary:

The best way to visit the Rock during your weekend in Monaco is to do so on foot , as access by car is prohibited.

But as the access is quite steep, there is also a panoramic minibus and the little tourist train that goes through the old town, if you can’t walk.

Monaco itinerary
The Rock, in Monaco

B. The Prince’s Palace

Impossible to visit Monaco in a weekend without going through the prince’s palace.

Since the 13th century, it has been the main residence of the Grimaldi family, whose best-known members are the Prince of Monaco Albert II, his wife Charlene of Monaco and their twins Jacques & Gabriella.

In addition to admiring the exterior facade, it is possible to visit part of the interior of the Palace of the Princes (only between the months of April to October ).

You can discover there:

  • The main courtyard  and its double staircase in marble
  • The Hercules gallery  and its sumptuous frescoes depicting characters from mythology
  • The large apartments: luxuriously furnished lounges where the Prince receives his distinguished guests. You will also have access to the throne room.

The schedules and price of his visits can be found on the official website of the palace.

Tips for your Monaco itinerary:

Every day at 11:55 a.m. sharp, the changing of the guard takes place on the Palace Square.

The Prince's Palace of Monaco
The Prince’s Palace of Monaco – A must for a weekend in Monaco

C. Saint-Martin Cathedral and Gardens

Continue your walk on the Rock by strolling through the picturesque alleys then reach the Saint-Nicolas Cathedral.

Built from 1875, it has a sparkling facade entirely made of white stones, in the Romanesque-Byzantine style.

The cathedral has hosted several major events in the principality, such as the marriage of Prince Rainier to the world famous American actress, Grace Kelly, in 1956. The latter, as well as the deceased princes rest in graves inside the cathedral.

Entrance to the cathedral is free.

Opposite the cathedral, then enter the gardens of Saint-Martin. 

Overlooking the sea, this public garden, opened in 1816, offers several pretty viewpoints, particularly over the port and the Fontvieille district (which you will visit a little later in the day).

Saint Nicholas Cathedral, Monaco itinerary 2 days
Saint Nicholas Cathedral, Monaco

D. The Oceanographic Museum

Leaving the gardens, you will come directly to the oceanographic museum.

If you have decided to go to Monaco for the weekend with your family, I strongly recommend that you visit this institute, one of whose most illustrious directors was Commander Cousteau himself!

Not only is the building magnificent, but the museum is also very well done and interesting.

You can discover several aquariums where sharks, sea turtles and Mediterranean fish live.

In the second part, you can also admire huge skeletons of whales and dolphins, as well as fossils and models.

The queue for the museum is often quite long. To avoid waiting, I recommend that you buy your ticket in advance.

View of the Oceanographic Museum from Saint Martin Gardens, Monaco
View of the Oceanographic Museum from Saint Martin Gardens, Monaco

E. Fontvieille

To end the first day of your weekend in Monaco, I recommend that you explore the Fontvieille district.

Located at the foot of the rock, you can reach it in 15 minutes on foot from the Oceanographic Museum.

Built directly on the sea, you can see:

  • The marina
  • The sculpture path which houses several works by renowned contemporary artists
  • The Princess Grace rose garden, a landscape park with more than 300 varieties of roses and access to which is free.

It is also possible to visit several museums in Fontvieille:

Tips for your Monaco itinerary:

Still in case you are looking for an activity to do in a weekend in Monaco with children, you can also take them to the animal garden.

Located near the Terrasses de Fontvieille, it collects abandoned or donated animals. None of the hippos, turtles, birds and other animals found there have been purchased.

Fontvieille, district of Monaco
Fontvieille, district of Monaco

Day 2: What to see and do?

Weekend in Monaco: day 2 itinerary

A. The Exotic Garden of Monaco

For the second day of your weekend in Monaco, head to the exotic garden, located on the heights of the city.

On nearly 15,000 m², you can admire hundreds of cacti and exotic plant species, from a good part of the American continent.

In addition to being very rich, the garden offers a splendid panorama of the principality and the Rock.

With your entrance ticket to the exotic garden, you can also visit 2 other places nearby:

  • The observatory cave and its caverns where the remains of bones were found proving the presence of prehistoric men. Guided tour once per hour.
  • The museum of prehistoric anthropology focusing on the evolution of humanity and presenting a mammoth skeleton.

Timetables and prices  on the official website.

Exotic Garden of Monaco – Weekend in Monaco

B. The Condamine District

Then go back down to the center of Monaco to discover the Condamine district.

This small shopping district is home to several shops, restaurants and cafés, mainly located on rue Milo, rue Grimaldi, rue Terrazani and rue Princesse Caroline.

On the Place d’Armes, you will also find the Condamine market and covered halls offering Monegasque and Italian specialties as well as good fruits and vegetables from the sun.

The Condamine market, Monaco itinerary
The Condamine market

C. Port Hercules

The Condamine is located just on the edge of Port Hercule where yachts and other luxury pleasure boats are moored .

You can stroll along the quays for the pleasure of the eyes!

If you have decided to go to Monaco for the weekend at the end of the year, Port Hercule hosts the Christmas market every year, rides and a large outdoor ice rink.

In October and November there is also a carnival on the quays.

Port Hercules, in Monaco
Port Hercules, in Monaco

D. The Japanese Garden

Walk along the seaside for about 1.5 km (20 minutes on foot) to reach the Japanese garden.

With its ponds filled with Koi carp and its typical Japanese pavilions, the garden is a real little haven of peace, in total contrast to the buildings that surround it.

Most of the elements that were used in its development, such as wood or tiles, were directly imported from Japan.

Access to the Japanese garden is free.

The Japanese Garden of Monaco
The Japanese Garden of Monaco

E. The Monte-Carlo District

And I suggest you spend the rest of your weekend in Monaco in the most famous district: Monte-Carlo.

This is where the famous Casino de Monaco is located, where you can admire the luxury cars parked in front. The building, made by the same architect as the Opéra Garnier in Paris, has a very beautiful exterior facade.

Inside is the Salle de l’Opéra where concerts and gaming rooms are held. If you feel in a flamboyant mood, you can spend your whole evening there!

In Monte-Carlo, you can also heat up your credit card in the luxury boutiques and jewelry stores of the Carré d’Or. If you want to get the latest Chanel handbag or a Cartier set, it’s possible!

The Metropole Shopping Center, as well as the Boulevard des Moulins, the Boulevard d’ Italie and the Avenue Princesse Grace concentrate most of the high-end boutiques.

In the evening, treat yourself to a small cocktail with a view of the Casino at the Café de Paris before (if your budget allows it) invite your other half to the restaurant “Le Louis XV”. Led by chef Alain Ducasse, it has been awarded 3 stars in the Michelin Guide.

Monte Carlo Casino
Monte Carlo Casino

Extended weekend in Monaco

If you have decided to visit Monaco during a long weekend of 3 days, on the last day, I advise you to discover the surroundings.

Even without a car, you can very easily reach 4 beautiful places (the choice is yours) to conclude this long weekend in Monaco:

1) In 10 minutes by train, I suggest you go to Menton, a charming little town with its facades of houses in warm colors.

You can discover the Saint-Michel basilica, the chapel of the Penitents, the rue Longue or the park of Pian.

2) In 20 minutes by train, you can also go to Nice and visit one of the most famous cities of the Côte d’Azur.

To know how to organize your day in Nice, you just have to read my article: What to do in Nice?

3) Another beautiful little village accessible by train from Monaco: Eze. Perched on top of a cliff, you can visit the exotic botanical garden and enjoy views of the coast.

4) For those who would prefer a short hike, I advise you to go around Cap Martin, located between Menton and Monaco.

The viewpoints along the trail are really nice and you can also swim. 

There are 2 options for this walk:

  • A 5 km loop starting from Carnolès beach
  • A 10 km walk from Monaco to Menton and passing through Cap Martin. Allow 3 hours on foot. Return by train to Monaco.

5) Book a private boat trip from Monaco

In my opinion, this is the best way to make the most of your day at sea in Monaco!

You rent a boat with a skipper, and he will take care of taking you to the most beautiful corners of the Côte d’Azur.

Motor boat, sailboat, catamaran or even yacht : it’s up to you to choose the boat that suits you to spend a dream day!

View of the port of Nice
View of the port of Nice

Other activity ideas to do during a weekend in Monaco

Do you want to add other activity ideas for your weekend in Monaco?

Here are some examples of things to do for a short stay in Monaco in addition to everything I have already told you about (click on the links in orange to access the info):

Helicopter flight over Monaco
Helicopter flight over Monaco

Weekend ideas in Monaco: Where to Stay?

Now that you know what to do in a weekend in Monaco, it’s time to take the last step to organize your stay: book your accommodation.

To help you, I have prepared a selection of the best hotels in town. I have found some ideal weekend ideas for you for a short romantic getaway.

A clarification: there are only about fifteen hotels in Monaco, so it is better to book in advance to be sure of having availability on your dates and benefit from the best price (knowing that most are 5 * ).

And if you prefer to have a cheap weekend in Monaco, it is best to stay in Menton or Nice for example. You’ll find travelers’ favorite hotels in these 2 cities here:

Luxury weekend in Monaco

For a luxury weekend in Monaco, I recommend spending a night in the emblematic hotel: the Hotel de Paris Monte-Carlo.

Enthroned right on the Place du Casino, right next to the Casino and opposite the Café de Paris, it occupies a splendid historic building dating from 1864. 

This 5* establishment offers sublime rooms and suites, very elegant and refined, and decorated with great taste. I really fell in love with the design and comfort of these.

For this luxurious getaway in Monaco, you will stay in an exceptional setting and can also take advantage of the hotel’s top-of-the-range services to relax: an outdoor swimming pool on the roof with a view, an indoor swimming pool, jacuzzi and free access to the Spa at the Thermes Marins Monte-Carlo.

In summer, you will also benefit from a free shuttle to reach the private beach of the Hotel de Paris.

For dinner, remember to book your table at Alain Ducasse ‘s “Louis XV” gourmet restaurant, awarded 3 stars in the Michelin Guide.

The Hotel de Paris Monte-Carlo is truly the best choice for a luxury weekend in Monaco!

Hotel de Paris Monte Carlo – Luxury weekend in Monaco

Spa weekend in Monaco

Always in the spirit of a relaxing and luxury stay, I now offer you a short spa weekend in Monaco.

For this, I recommend that you stay at the Hotel Metropole Monte-Carlo, which is located a hundred meters from the Place du Casino.

This prestigious establishment recently won 1st place in the “Best hotel in France/Monaco” category and 3rd place in Europe in the Reader’s Choice Awards awarded by the Condé Nast Traveller.

The luxury hotel has a Givenchy Spa including an indoor heated seawater swimming pool, and offering treatments, as well as several relaxation areas.

You will also have a heated outdoor swimming pool open all year round, surrounded by a garden and a lounge bar/restaurant, all designed by Karl Lagerfeld.

On site, you can dine in one of the hotel’s 3 restaurants run by Joel Robuchon. Whether you fancy gourmet, Japanese or Mediterranean cuisine, you are guaranteed to taste excellent dishes.

To book the night, click here!

Hotel Metropole Monte-Carlo – Spa weekend in Monaco

Romantic weekend in Monaco

For another romantic weekend idea in Monaco, I have selected the Hermitage Monte-Carlo hotel.

The 5* hotel is located 200 meters from the casino and 800 meters from Larvotto beach.

Classified as historical monuments, the palace has magnificent rooms in the Belle Epoque style, comfortable and warm. The hotel also has a 7000 m² Spa and a winter garden.

And to top it all off, you can have a drink at the Crystal bar, before enjoying excellent gourmet cuisine on the terrace with a view of the port at the Vistamar restaurant, 1 star in the Michelin Guide.

Book your weekend for two in Monaco.

Tips for your Monaco itinerary:

If you have a little less budget for this romantic weekend in Monaco, I recommend that you book at the Méridien Beach Plaza.

The property has 2 swimming pools, a gym, a sauna and direct access to a private beach. 

The rooms are modern, bright, with large bay windows and most of them have a balcony with an unobstructed view of the sea.

Reservation here.

Hotel Hermitage Monte-Carlo – Romantic weekend in Monaco

Weekend by the sea in Monaco

If you want to spend your weekend in Monaco by the sea, here is another magnificent establishment: the Monte-Carlo Bay Hotel & Resort.

The establishment has a very beautiful location on the seafront, at the end of the Larvotto promenade, about 1.5 km from the casino square.

On site, you can enjoy a casino, a spa and above all a splendid outdoor lagoon with swimming pools and waterfalls surrounded by vast gardens. The place is really well thought out and beautifully laid out.

To book this weekend by the sea in Monaco, just click here.

Tips for your Monaco itinerary:

If you really want to stay in a hotel built on the sea, I recommend the Fairmont Monte-Carlo.

Swimming pool heated all year round on the roof, restaurants and bars, casino, spa, gym, everything is done to spend an unforgettable weekend in Monaco. You will even have a free shuttle to the 3 surrounding beaches.
Book by clicking here for the night!

Monte-Carlo Bay Hotel & Resort – Weekend by the sea in Monaco

Budget Weekend in Monaco

I end this selection of hotels with some cheap weekend ideas in Monaco.

I still want to point out that for Monaco, the term “cheap” is quite relative when you know that hotel nights start on average from around €130.

And as there are less than twenty hotels in all in the principality, I give you here the 3 least expensive:

  • Hôtel de France:  located 200 meters from the Prince’s Palace. Double room from 135€. Most: the price for Monaco, the cleanliness, the welcoming staff.
  • Novotel Monte-Carlo: located 600 meters from the Casino. Modern and bright double room from €170, breakfast included. Most: the swimming pool, the setting, the great breakfast.
  • Hotel Columbus Monte Carlo: located 1.5 km from the palace. Double room completely renovated recently, modern and with sea or garden view from 215€, breakfast at 25€. Most: the swimming pool, the welcoming staff, good bedding, the view.

Tips for your Monaco itinerary:

If you are really looking for cheap hotels at less than 100€ per night, I recommend that you stay in Nice, which is only 20 minutes by train from Monaco.

Map of your weekend in Monaco

To help you visualize your  routes during this weekend in Monaco,  I made you a map listing the  places to visit day by day. You can display the map legend by clicking on the top left button with a small arrow.

You will then be able to view the routes for each day.

When to go for a weekend in Monaco?

The principality being located in the South of France, it is possible to go on weekends to Monaco all year round.

The temperatures are generally quite pleasant, even in winter, and everything remains open. You will be able to follow my visit program regardless of the month you have chosen.

Afterwards, it is certain that the best time to spend a weekend in Monaco is from May to the end of September. You will still be more likely to have good weather and it will be more pleasant to walk around.

And if you want to swim, prefer July and August, but expect to see people, because you will be in the middle of the high tourist season and the region is very busy at this time.

Tips for your Monaco itinerary:

For a weekend in Monaco in May, remember to check the date of the Formula 1 Grand Prix which takes place every year at this time.

Hotels are full well in advance and some parts of the city are cordoned off during the event.

Are you looking for other travel ideas in France? Read Also:

Discover all our articles on French cities : all articles on France are listed here.

Camille L.

Passionate about foreign languages, cooking and writing. I wish to share with you the places, the meetings and the gastronomic discoveries which gave relief to my travels.

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