Home Ports of Call The Marvel of Monaco

The Marvel of Monaco

by Lori Eastes

Often credited as the birthplace of modern yachting, the luxurious principality of Monaco provides a playground of delights for visitors.

Since the first sailing regatta was orchestrated by Prince Charles III in 1862, Monaco has established itself as a yachting destination like no other. Today, you can let all the sophistication and charm of this Mediterranean gem wash over you as you explore the small principality nestled in the heart of the French Riviera.

As you arrive, you’ll be surrounded by steeply rising hills lined with exquisite buildings that feature Belle Époque-style architecture and boast stunning views of Port Hercules. The centrally located marina hosts some of the world’s most impressive yachts during the summer months. Before meeting your friendly crew aboard one of those yachts lining the marina, take time to tour the magnificent city of Monaco.

Walk around the beautiful gardens of the Jardins de Saint Martin before heading to the Musée Océanographique de Monaco. There you can walk around the museum of marine sciences while enjoying the most incredible views of the Mediterranean Sea. The next stop possibly could be the Price’s Palace of Monaco, the official residence of the Sovereign prince of Monaco built in 1191. End your day with dinner at Avenue 31, a posh spot that locals claim to be one of the best restaurants in town.  Here you will enjoy the lovely atmosphere, incredible service, and their delicious local gourmet dishes. After dinner and dessert, you can make your way to the Casino de Monte-Carlo for some late night drinks.

Prepare to meet your yacht the next morning and begin cruising along the crystal clear shores adorning the stunning archipelagos. As your experienced captain maneuvers from the dock, enjoy the up-close view of the Yacht Club de Monaco. The unique building was designed by Lord Foster to be both aesthetically pleasing and high-tech with multiple terraces strategically designed to resemble the decks on a boat with unobstructed views of the harbor and of the Formula 1 Grand Prix race circuit.

When you reach open water, your options are seemingly endless. The long stretch of coastline along the alluring Mediterranean Sea offers breathtaking bays, high-end marinas, and pockets of pristine waterways where you can drop anchor, making it the quintessential summer yachting destination. Cruise to some of the most world-renowned destinations including Nice, Cannes, Antibes, Sainte-Maxime, Juan-les-Pins, and Saint-Tropez. Find a quiet beach or bay to spend the day sunbathing or snorkeling before enjoying an enticing picnic prepared by your chef.

Before leaving Monaco, have one last dinner at the Yoshi restaurant, the only Michelin Star Japanese restaurant in Monaco. This is the second Joël Reobuchon restaurant at the Hotel Métropole and pays tribute to Japanese cuisine, as well as features chic decoration by French interior designer Didier Gomez and a stunning Japanese-inspired garden designed by landscape architect Jacques Messin.

No matter what time of year, there is something for every taste happening in the posh principality of Monaco as its locale also allows you to plan your luxury yacht vacation to coincide with some of the Mediterranean’s mega-events like the celebrity-studded Cannes Film Festival or the heart-pumping and shambolic F1 Monaco Grand Prix. Just remember: The French Riviera is always ready to welcome you with plenty to do or the time to relax and enjoy doing nothing at all.

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