If you’re vacationing in France’s Cote d’Azur, Cannes or Saint Tropez, you absolutely must take a detour to the Principality of Monaco. Thanks to its mild Mediterranean climate, one of the best times to explore Europe’s second smallest country is after dark. As a tourist, you can take in some truly choice entertainment and events in this glamorous hilltop location perched under the starry skies of the French Riviera. From legendary theaters and the Opera House to chic bars, ultra-VIP nightclubs, major sports events, Michelin-starred dinners and, of course, Monte Carlo’s legendary casinos, there are so many things to do in Monaco at night. So check out our travel tips and come dance, dream, savor delicious flavors, party and feel the city state’s unique thrills!
Monaco is steeped in culture, so make sure you check some of it out for a night to remember. For instance, from mid-November to late-April, you might like to go to a performance by the Monte-Carlo Opera. From Mozart to Wagner via Tchaikovsky and Puccini, the company presents not just the classical repertoire but new creations and rarities too. The world’s most famous singers regularly tread the boards in the legendary Salle Garnier, an auditorium designed by Charles Garnier in the Monte-Carlo Casino back in 1879. Other major performances are held at the Grimaldi Forum in Monte Carlo’s Larvotto district. Both theaters also host the highly reputed Ballets de Monte-Carlo. Book your tickets to see one of its contemporary or classical shows and be amazed by one of the world’s most prestigious dance companies. If you have spent a day exploring boutiques or strolling along the Mediterranean coast, another of the best things to do in Monaco at night is dinner and a show or a highly reputed concert in the Salle des Étoiles, at the Monte-Carlo Sporting complex. You will find every genre in this incredible venue, from soul to rock, pop, funk and hip hop. It regularly hosts major international stars, including Celine Dion, Stevie Wonder, Elton John and Nile Rodgers.
Much like the Prince of Monaco, Albert II, the Principality between France and Italy loves sport. As you would expect in an independent state that regularly hosts a Formula One Grand Prix, there is no shortage of sports events to attend after dark. Stade Louis II will be familiar to any soccer fans, and it plays host to Monaco AS during its Ligue 1 and Europa League matches. This sports complex in the Fontvieille district is also home to AS Monaco Basket, one of the French league’s top basketball teams. Lots of other meets are held here on a regular basis, from athletics to judo and handball.
If you are looking for things to do in Monaco at night, then you are probably thinking about the French Riviera’s legendary party scene. Be sure to check out its hip bars and famous nightclubs, which number on many visitors’ lists of their top tourist attractions. If aperitifs and nibbles with a view of the Mediterranean sea sound like your thing, then head to Blue Gin. This seafront bar is located in the Monte-Carlo Bay Hotel & Resort and its terraces are the perfect spot for taking in a spectacular panoramic view of the sun setting on a coastline speckled with palm trees and luxury yachts, while you sip a few cocktails and savor some luxury tapas. It is simply the last word in chic. Its resident DJ, Nicolas Saad, whips up a gorgeous musical backdrop every weekend. Another unmissable entry on your list of things to do in Monaco at night is the Buddha-Bar Monte-Carlo. This place owes its unique charm to its interior design, which features woodwork, gilding – and a giant Buddha. Start your evening with a few Asian-inspired dishes at the bar and restaurant, then move into the lounge to lose yourself to DJ Papa’s electro-world soundtrack. Not far from Monte-Carlo Sporting, COYA also brings together exotic flavors (Peruvian in this case) and beats. It is open from April to October, so be sure to check out its theme nights, one example of which is its Noche Blanca, an event that will keep you dancing all night long. Nearby attractions include Monaco’s legendary Jimmy’z Monte-Carlo nightclub. Jet-setters and celebrities come from around the world to be seen in its ultra-glamorous VIP ambiance and revel in the kind of soundtrack that only top DJs like Martin Solveig and Mark Ronson can supply. The Monegasque party scene is certainly a jewel in southern France’s crown.
The Principality’s Michelin-starred restaurants provide some of the best things to do in Monaco at night. The Blue Bay at the Monte-Carlo Bay Hotel & Resort has one Michelin star at present, and it is a great place to enjoy effervescently luxurious service as you watch the chefs at work in their open kitchen. Chef Marcel Ravin works wonders by marrying together the flavors of the Cote d’Azur and Caribbean in remarkable creations such as his signature egg, cassava, truffle and passionfruit dish. If it is starlit evenings looking out over the Mediterranean coastline and its Rocher that you want, then head to the refined, singly Michelin-starred Vistamar. It is located in the luxurious Hôtel Hermitage Monte-Carlo – one of the Principality’s best hotels – and its terraces are counted among Monaco’s most renowned. Sharing platters, seafood and garden veg are all served up for your delectation and delight. Another one of the great things to do in Monaco at night is the ultimate gourmet experience of dinner at the Hôtel de Paris Monte-Carlo’s Louis XV – Alain Ducasse. This restaurant was the first ever to receive a third Michelin star in 1990, and it hasn’t deviated from that path since. This is a unique and prestigious destination for haute-couture cuisine.
Of all the things to do in Monaco at night, the casinos are arguably the most legendary. Gambling and the Principality go hand in hand in popular legend, and the gaming tables are an undeniable draw. Step into the city state’s iconic Monte Carlo Casino for a taste of James Bond’s own lifestyle among all the glitz and glamor of a Belle Epoque décor. You will also be thrilled to see the huge array of slot machines at the gambler’s paradise, the Casino Café de Paris.
Tourists usually find that, once they have spent a night in Monaco, they don’t want to leave, so extend your Monegasque adventure to include a day trip, a weekend or even a whole week in the second smallest country in the world!