Is Monaco Safe? What Travelers Need to Know

Monaco is one of the safest destinations in Europe. Here's what you need to know before you go to this micro-state on the French Riviera.

Monaco harbour at twilight Photo © Getty Images/John Harper

The safest place to travel in Europe?

If safety is your number one priority in a destination, then Monaco might be the perfect place to visit. Security for this tiny constitutional monarchy is provided by an armed national police force consisting of 515 men and women, giving it the reputation of being the "safest square mile" in Europe.

Sharing its borders with France and the Mediterranean Sea, this is the second smallest country in the world at just 0.78mi² (2km²), after the Vatican.

With a population of 38,000 people in a country that covers less than one square mile, Monaco has one of the largest police forces and police presences in the world on both a per-capita and per-area basis.

Don't even think of having a go at the Royal Family – they are protected by the Compagnie des Carabiniers du Prince (Prince's Company of Riflemen), who are armed with M-16 rifles and pistols.

There are reports, however, of counterfeit Euros being circulated among the millions that change hands every day in this playground for the rich and famous. Before you accept cash from vendors, check to make sure the notes are real.

Local laws

If you don't want to offend the Gucci-wearing masses that travel here, be aware that walking around barefoot, in swimwear or just board shorts (apart from on the beach) is not permitted. You may risk a fine, or be refused entry to shops. In such a wealthy country, not dressing appropriately could bring the local snobbery out. It's not a religious thing, it's just etiquette in the ritzy microstate of Monaco.

Are there pickpockets or thieves in Monaco?

The risk you'll be robbed or scammed in Monaco is super low. With such a wealthy population, it's highly unlikely any locals are out to steal your money. Of course, it's still smart to be careful with your belongings and avoid being flashy with your cash.

Getting around

Getting around Monaco is almost impossible in a private car, as parking is non-existent or already taken by a famous person's Ferrari. Use taxis instead.

Dates for your diary

Unless you are addicted to the smell of burning celluloid or the scream of an engine, you might want to avoid traveling during the Cannes Film Festival or the F1 Grand Prix, which are both held in late May.

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3 Comments

  • billy said

    f it up monaco !!

  • Ethan said

    Did we ask Billy? I don't care.

  • Mac Millan said

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