Monte Carlo

Casino at Monte Carlo

In 1861, Monaco relinquished one-half of its territory to France in exchange for cash and independence. Prince Charles III realized that most of Monaco's natural resources had been lost with the land and something had to be done to reestablish an economic base in the Principality.

He decided that the answer was tourism and gambling. In 1863, he established the Societe des Bains de Mer. The company consisted of a handful of hotels, a theater, and a casino. Both Monaco and its district of Monte Carlo casino flourished. So began the Monaco we know today.

Harbor at Monaco

At the foot of the cliff, lies the busy, almost square-shaped, harbor which was constructed between 1901 and 1926. Large numbers of yachts moor here, including from time to time the Prince's own private vessel.

Monaco has an area of 485 acres, of which nearly 100 were added by recovery from the sea within the last twenty years. Monaco lies on a narrow coastal strip, which rises vertically upwards necessitating streets that are elevators and roads that climb by switchbacks.