Europe is always a fantastic place to visit, and some of my favorite places to go are the lesser known duchies and principalities that make up the tinier European states. All off them, from Andorra to the Vatican, offer interesting and unique things to see, as well as the chance to hear nearly dead languages. They all offer a glimpse into Europe’s past: namely, a bunch of isolated ethnic groups that hated each other â€“ as opposed to Europe’s present: a conglomeration of large states that pretend to get along.
Located along the southern coast of France, the quintessential micro-state vacation hotspot of the Principality of Monaco cannot be missed. The thought of Monaco invariably conjures images of tuxedoed secret agents playing baccarat while casually gambling with the free world itself. While this particular demographic is a sizeable minority in Monaco, it should be noted that Monaco is surprisingly diverse for being such as small place (the second smallest in Europe, as a matter of fact), and there more to it than gambling in opulent casinos.
Monaco has a wonderful Mediterranean climate, which makes it a vacation hotspot for much of Europe. The Principality itself is an interesting historical curiosity, surviving in its present form against the odds, and is now one of the few places in the world you can hear the nearly-extinct language of Monegasque. The beaches of Monaco are some of the world’s finest (though that won’t necessarily impress someone from Florida), but it is Monte Carlo that really packs in the visitors.
Monte Carlo is the jewel of Monaco, known for glamour and luxury that would make even Miamians gasp. It is the home of the Formula One Monaco Grand Prix and the Monte Carlo Master tennis tournament, and has hosted numerous championship- boxing bouts. The casino complex is amazing, and also holds the Theatre de Monte Carlo, which hosts ballet and theater companies.
Monte Carlo is a destination not to be missed, and anyone planning a trip to Europe should consider paying a visit. Have fun breaking the bank.