For glamour on the Cote d'Azur, the tiny principality of Monaco is the ultimate. In this playground for the wildly wealthy, entertainment is found observing the impossibly chic in their natural habitat. Count the Ferraris, peek into yachts, and tally the jewels. Soak up the opulence with a drink or lunch at a storied hotel like the Métropole before trying your luck at the casino.
What We Love
Musée Océanographique: Get up close and personal with sea creatures great and small at the aquarium, and explore the art and science of the underwater world in the museum.
Shop Till You Drop: Or your credit card melts. Even window shopping is a thrill, with everything from gleaming Bentleys to glittering jewelry to cutting-edge fashion on display.
Best Known For
Casino de Monte-Carlo: The glam casino in the heart of town thrills visitors by day and entices high rollers by night. No photos are allowed, but you won't soon forget the sumptuous space.
People-Watching: Stake out a table at the Cafe de Paris in the shadow of the casino. Your show — for the cost of a cup of coffee — features Lamborghinis roaring past, the glitterati out for a saunter, and a parade of haute couture.
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Who It's Best For
High Rollers: For anyone thrilled by a wager, throwing your chips on the table in Monte Carlo is as good as it gets.
Fashionistas: A mecca for designer devotees, Monte Carlo's avenues are lined with boutiques from the top design houses. Stroll the Cercle d’Or to find your dream fashion.
Don't Say We Didn't Warn You
You'll Be Climbing: Perched above the harbor, Monaco feels like one endless hill. Unless you find the public lifts, be prepared for lots of stairs. (Note: No sports shoes are allowed in the casino.)
It's Spendy: In a luxury capital like this, prices — like the stairs — are steep.
Dana McMahan is a Detroit-based contributor to ShermansCruise who also writes for the Chicago Tribune and The Washington Post.