Monaco Grand Prix | A European Road Trip
by Faye Duncan
Formula One will be hosting their annual Grand Prix in Monaco on 26th May this year. This iconic race has been taking place along the streets of this independent city-state since 1929 and it has become one of the most anticipated motorsport events of the year.
If you’re thinking of heading to the Monaco Grand Prix, why not make the most of it and combine the visit with a scenic road trip along the French and Italian border, stopping off to spectate the race along the way? There is a lovely coastal route starting from the Southern French city of Nice and ending in Genoa, Italy.
We’ve looked at some of the best places to go and most popular activities to help you plan a trip to remember and guide you along the way.
Where to go on a European coastline trip
This scenic coastline trip allows visitors and tourists to experience the best of both worlds, visiting iconic parts of both France and Italy, as well as enjoying a pit stop at the Monaco Grand Prix!
The French and Italian Riviera are renowned for glorious weather, quaint little towns and amazing food, making an ideal destination to visit this summer. Begin your journey in the South of France in the grand city of Nice, stop off in Monte Carlo for some epic racing action, and then cruise along the coast of Italy until you reach the port city of Genoa.
Things to do in Nice
Nice is often a popular choice when it comes to the French Riviera. Being a medieval town along the coast combines culture and beach life in one impressive city.
This beautiful area is full of enjoyable walks including long esplanades and quirky alleyways full of shops and restaurants. A particular favourite is the Cours Saleya, a large market square that thrives in the summer months where you can buy food, flowers and souvenirs, and surround yourself with delicious smells and vibrant colours.
Take on the 1,722 steps up Castle Hill where you will find a park filled with Mediterranean trees and shrubs, separating the beach on the west from the old port to the east.
Things to do in Monaco
Next stop, Monaco. This principality may be the world’s second smallest country, but it certainly isn’t short in prestige and beauty since it is home to many casinos, luxury hotels and also the one race of the year that Formula One drivers’ dream of winning. Before the racing begins, make sure you explore the area from the high-rising streets of Monte Carlo to the old town le Rocher where the royal palace sits. If you time it right, you could witness the changing of the guards.
The race takes place through the streets of this glamorous country including Casino Square, the famous tunnel and past the port filled with luxury yachts. The route is challenging for all drivers with tight corners and limited opportunities for overtaking. But, for all teams, it would be a dream to win this race, just as it is a dream for the spectators to watch in such beautiful surroundings.
Things to do in Italy
After the racing has finished and you leave France for Italy, drive down the coast of the picturesque Italian region of Liguria taking in the many quaint villages, seaside views and impressive mountains, until you reach Genoa.
If you are a fan of the coast and love wildlife, then you will be excited to know that the Italian Riviera has some of the most beautiful marine life reserves with the highest concentration of aquatic mammals in the Mediterranean Sea; perfect for whale watching, scuba diving and snorkelling.
Genoa is Italy’s largest seaport with a combination of extravagant buildings, fashionable shops and bustling restaurants to offer something for everyone. The heart of the medieval city is worth a roam, bound by three ancient gates and filled with bars and cafes along the narrow streets. View the city in all its glory by taking a steep but short walk up to the Spianata Castelletto platform for a panoramic view of the city below.
If you love the seaside, medieval villages, and Formula One, then the coastline route from Nice to Genoa could be the perfect next trip for you.
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