European Vacation – September 25/19 – Monaco – Part 1 – Prince’s Palace of Monaco

The Prince’s Palace of Monaco started life as a Genoese fortress in 1191 and throughout its life has faced sieges and bombardments by many foreign powers. Since the end of the 13th century, it has been home to the Griamldi family, who first ruled the area as feudal lords and then as sovereign princes since the 17th century. Due to its tenuous existence based on agreements with its much larger neighbours, the palace had to remain fortified. When the fortifications were relaxed in the late 18th century, it was seized by the French, looted and stripped of its treasures, with the Grimaldi family being exiled for 20 years.

The palace became the scene of glamour and decadence, when the then prince married American movie actress, Grace Kelly in 1956. To this day, the palace remains the residence of the current Prince of Monaco.

(Source Wikipedia)

Bus #100 from Nice dropped us off at the foot of the stair to this hilltop palace and we slowly plodded up the stone stairs, stopping for frequent photos of the palace and the beautiful views of this tiny principality.

View of the Palace from the pathway up
Statue of Prince Ranier III
Statue of Francois Grimaldi, who captured the Palace in 1297

We arrived in the palace plaza in time to witness several small Changing of the Guard ceremonies…

…before wandering around to see the sights…

…enjoy the fine views of the harbour below…

…and buy some souvenirs. Patty and I had done the palace tour in 2011, but we did not have enough time to do it this day.

From time to time on the remainder of our walk around Monaco, we caught glimpses of the Palace.

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