National rail operator
Facts about Monaco
- Currency: Euro (EUR)
- Timezone: 1+ UTC
- Language: French, Monégasque
With a short Mediterranean coastline and landlocked by France on all other sides, the Principality of Monaco is one of smallest territories in the world with all the trappings of sovereignty. Only Vatican City is smaller. There is just one train station in the country, Monaco-Monte-Carlo, which is on the main rail route between Nice and Menton. This is the classic Riviera coastal railway. That line has some very fine scenery but the railway dives underground as it cuts through Monaco. So, if you are expecting to get fine views of Monaco without stepping off the train, forget it! All the more reason why you should break your journey in this diminutive principality. Monaco is really worth a stop.
High-speed TGVs run from Paris to Monaco once daily, taking around six hours to travel almost 1000 km. For a better choice of departures from Paris, just book one of the many Paris-Nice TGVs, from where it is a short onward hop by frequent local train to Monaco.
The local regional express train service along the coast through Monaco is excellent. Nice is close to hand, and Antibes less than an hour away. There are twice-hourly direct trains from Monaco to Ventimiglia in Italy. As they travel through France along the way, this 24-minute train journey along the coast thus takes in three countries. Monaco pulls the crowds from far and wide. The fact that there are direct trains, albeit only infrequently, from as far away as Minsk and Moscow says something about the principality’s enduring popularity.
Image credits: Monaco © Liligraphie