Jessica Kosmack Trip Report on the Grand Prix of Monaco
What were your favorite activities on this trip?
- Qualifying day at the Monaco Grand Prix (the day we had grandstand tickets)
- Soaking up the race atmosphere around Monaco all weekend
- Finding quiet moments in Monaco-ville (old city)
- Race day lunch in Cap D’Ail at Naos Beach
- People watching in Monaco and the F1 Fan Zone
- Evenings in Nice (where we stayed and commuted to Monaco from)
- Nice Port area — amazing location for getting around (and avoiding the crush of Vieux Nice)
- Nice: Colline du Chateau, old Nice and boardwalk
- The camaraderie of the entire Cote d’Azur region during race weekend
- Taking the bus between Monaco and Nice
Did you stay at hotels or apartments? Please list them and write a sentence or two of what you liked and didn’t like about each.
We stayed in an amazing and quaint Airbnb in Nice. Our host, David, was outstanding! He booked us our race day lunch in Cap D’Ail after getting recommendations from his friends, he was so helpful with local transportation and restaurant recommendations, he met us to show us around the apartment, and was always available for questions. Made the trip feel so special. Easy to walk to the Port area for connections to the tram and bus. Right next to the colline du chateau and less than 10 min walk into the old town. Link: https://www.airbnb.ca/rooms/48690287
Did you have favorite restaurants?
We mostly ate cafe and snack foods in Monaco, and since we were able to bring food and drinks (non-alcoholic) into the grandstand with us, we stopped at the local grocery store (Marche Super U) in Monaco to stock up on sandwiches, water and fruit. Our favourite meal in Nice was a small local pizza place near the old port area called Made in Sud (http://madeinsudnice.com/)
What were your favorite foods on this trip?
Favourite foods: gelato in Nice — fave flavour this time was lemon meringue! Also loved the salade Nicoise in Nice, everything at our meal at Naos Beach (octopus with squid ink potatoes, burrata tomato salad, homemade snickers bar)
How did you get around?
For this portion of our trip we relied upon plane (from Paris to Nice), tram (from Nice airport into the city and to get around), train (to get to Monaco), bus (to get back from Monaco), and walking A LOT! The only transportation issues were race-related — I can talk at length and give tips on this!
What did you learn about France on this trip?
That the hype of the Monaco Grand Prix is REAL and definitely lived up to expectations. The other thing we learned was that even with such a massive event taking place, it was still easy to find loads of other things to see and do that had nothing to do with the race.
Is there something you wish you had known before you came?
I wish I had known how challenging it would have been to get home from Monaco at the end of each day — I would consider staying somewhere other than Nice if we went again.
What tips do you want to share with other visitors?
Book your race tickets well in advance and definitely consider getting tickets for qualifying rather than race day (if you have to pick). This is the most expensive F1 location and tickets are a LOT! At this race, qualifying is often more exciting than race day and the tickets were half the price. Book your accommodation as soon as you book your tickets — even earlier if you’re able to book something that you can cancel with no penalty. The whole area gets booked up almost a year in advance!
Overall was your trip restful or stressful?
It was thrilling! Not restful (we walked 15,000-25,000 steps a day for the four-day race weekend!) but it wasn’t stressful either. It was amazingly immersive. We did the right amount for this portion of the trip and made Monaco and the race events our focus.