Monte-Carlo – spectators’ experiences

This discussion page is closed. If you want to discuss going to the Monaco Grand Prix please go to the new discussion forum here: Going to the Monaco Grand Prix

Rubens Barrichello, Honda, Monte-Carlo, 2006Tell us about your experiences of visiting the Monte-Carlo street circuit.

You may wish to include:

  • When you visited the track
  • Where you watched from
  • How easy it was to get to
  • How much of the track you could see
  • What support races there were
  • What you liked and didn’t like
  • How much it cost and whether it was good value

Please use the reply box below to leave your comments.

Are you going to the 2011 Monaco Grand Prix? Chat with other F1 fans who are going to the race here: 2011 Monaco Grand Prix discussion

340 comments on “Monte-Carlo – spectators’ experiences”

  1. Hi there,
    We are a family of 4 going to nice on holidays during the same time as Monaco GP, great!!! We would like a short visit to GP and have a few queries:
    1. When is the best day and time to visit the GP when we can see all the action – cars, racing, drivers? Also when it’s not complete madness?
    2. I believe it’s not recommended to get our 2 yr old to the GP, will our 6 yr old daughter enjoy the race?
    3. Best way to get to Monaco GP fm nice? Taxi – how would the traffic be? Train?
    4. Best recommended seats/stands with the place to buy the tickets?
    Thanks for your help.

    1. Hi, not sure what’s happened but I posted a response which hasn’t shown. Rather than re-type it I’ll wait a little to see if it shows, if not I’ll re submit it for you.

      1. Hi, i posted my reply again last night and it has vanished…again!! Can a moderator please look into?


  2. Hi
    Please may I ask we coming from Cannes.
    Whats best way to get there the Sunday .
    We sitting at the cheapest possible place the sector Rocher , can anyone tell me where is best place to sit , when should I arrive , can I take food and drinks , what are pros and cons

    please advise any info regarding Rocher on hill .
    Thanks kelly

    1. Hello and welcome

      If you have a look at some of the previous posts you will find a lot of information on Rocher and different opinions and experiences.

      Also check out the other thread “2011 Monaco Grand Prix discussion”.

      Once you’ve had a look at the past posts about Rocher if you have any queries or need more advice please don’t hesitate to post again or PM/email me. Happy to advise and help.

    2. Hi again Kelly

      Options for travel from Cannes are train, bus, helicopter and car (taxi or private transfer). If budget I’d recommend train. If you have a little to spend on it private transfer/tax, if you want a massive treat and have money to burn helicopter is great fun.


  3. Hi folks

    I’ve been corresponding with Cory & Jake via email and they are considering an alternative to a grandstand for Saturday. I’ve proposed an “F1Fanatic only” terrace option to them, if anyone else would like the details just PM me. Alternatively if the consensus is or moderators permit i’m happy to post the info, just don’t want to breach any rules or offend anyone. I am genuinely on this forum to help other F1 fans.

    1. Hi Ed
      Do you have and terrace places left on Saturday, I’m on a pretty tight budget and travelling solo….what are the options? I’d love to do a yacht but I suspect thats going to be well out of my price bracket :-(

      1. Hi

        no problem, email me and i’ll send the details. I don’t want to post them here until someone from F1 Fanatic OKs it.

        1. Hi Ed

          As you seem to be the font of all knowledge …. we have tickets for Caravelles on Thursday but have no idea how to access the terrace? Our ticket information doesn’t tell us. We have tickets for K on Saturday/Sunday and know how to get there but haven’t a clue where to go on Thursday. Are you able to advise?

          Many thanks

          1. Hi Caroline

            Which bloc and which floor are you in at Caravelles?

        2. Hi Ed

          No reply on your question. It says Block B and we are on the roof?


          1. Head down Rue Grimaldi towards St Devote corner. Rue Grimaldi runs alongside the start/finish straight (Boulevard Albert 1er) and joins it at St Devote corner.

            just before you get to St Devote there is a BMW garage, at the right of the garage is a little path which takes you into the rear entrance of Caravelles, turn left and take the bloc B elevator, et voila.

            Caravelles is a good building, we have some terraces in it, great view.

            Have fun.

          2. Cheers Ed, getting quite excited now.

  4. Ps..I have a Z1 ticket for Sunday…. is the best place to stand nearest the Tabac corner? and what time do you need to get there to get a good spot?
    Cheers :-)

    1. Oops… not Tabac….I meant turn 3…..doh!

  5. argh…sorry I was right the first time…. ie nearest K1…
    Apologies for being a Monaco newbie! :-s

    1. HI again

      If it were me i would get there early (8am) and establish where will be a good position once the are fills up with people, have a look for obstructions (trees, advertising, tv camera platforms, etc.).

      Hope that helps, Ed.

  6. Hi Ed
    Sorry blonde moment but I cant find previous comments on Sectr Rocher .

    Where to sit
    when to get there
    Can we take food & drinks

    any recommendations for this sector rocher
    best seat place to see cars
    please advise

  7. Is the sector Rocher a free for all is it all up on the hill or is some on the track , how close is the closest spot to the track
    Food and soft drinks aloud , , Whats best place to sit to see cars

    1. Hi Kelly

      Rocher is a free for all, some people will have stayed there or nearby the night before to get the best spots (up trees, below trees, at the wall, etc.). Get there as early as you can tolerate. It’s not on the track, set back quite a bit.

      Take your own food and drinks…and a shewee…only kidding, there are toilets but be prepared to fight through the crowd to get there and if you pass one and that doesn’t have a queue…take the opportunity!

      Also keep an eye on the forecast, if it looks like there is a chance of rain expect underfoot to be slippery and muddy and take a rain poncho.

      Go to, click on Saturday/Samedi or Sunday/Dimanche, then click on the Rocher section, then click on the little camera and you will see images from Rocher.

      Hope that helps Kelly, have fun and please let us know what you think once you’ve been – I for one would be grateful if you took a few minutes to share your experience.

      All the best

  8. Great site with helpful advice! My wife and I already have tix in upper K for both Saturday and Sunday. We’re not the world’s biggest party animals but we’re open minded wine drinkers and we like to have fun. Plus this is a once in a lifetime dream for me. Does anyone have advice on the party scene? We’re not looking to rudely crash a party for free and would expect to pay our fair share for drinks or food, but would love to join in the party fun. Is there a behavioral ‘protocol’ of sorts or do you just find your own way? Cheers and many thanks!

    1. Hi Michael

      As you might imagine there are a lot of parties in Monaco over the GP. There is Amber Lounge which is a party started in Monaco and only occurs during the GP (and at Singapore, Abu Dhabi etc.) 650€ pp for an individual pass and all drinks on Friday and Saturday night, 800€ pp on Sunday. This does not include a table just free for all seating on the terrace outside. Tables start at 5,200€ for 8 people. Jimmy’z nightclub is a Monaco institution, pricing varies but expect to pay 1,000€ pp. The Billionaires club is in the Fairmont (if Flavio Briatore is running it again this year).

      Are they any good? It depends what you’re looking for to be honest, they are not for everyone and I have guests who love Amber Lounge/Jimmy’z and I have guests who…don’t!

      There are yacht parties in the harbour also, we operate some and have space for Saturday night but they are a more relaxed affair than the full on club experience and they finish before the clubs even get started, to allow our guests to get some sleep and avoid them falling asleep during the race the following day.

      There are lots of bars also which will be open late if you just want to wing it.

      Hope that helps.

      Have fun and let us know how you get on.

      1. Thanks Ed. That certainly helps … looks like we’ll be winging it! -:) On a slightly different note, we’re arriving on Thursday afternoon with a free day on Friday. My wife wants to take in Cap-Ferrat. Any other non-GP suggestions for people visiting the area?

        1. Hi Michael

          How about heading towards Italy? Some great places to see and restaurants to try!

          Have a look at visitmonaco dot com for museums, etc. they also have a decent downloadable monaco travel guide app for blackberry, iphone, android.

          Nice is good too, the old town is fun and there a good restaurants (lots of bad ones too though).


  9. For anyone looking at getting a Fanvision unit (formally Kangaroo TV) they have a link on their site to a partner website where you can hire one for tracside collection.

    I’d also like to thank Ed for all his help and comments over the past few weeks (months?) his experience and willingness to share info has been exceedingly helpful!

    1. Sorry folks, I did get a reply and totally forgot to post it.

      The units were available for pre-order until recently at 55€ + delivery charge. As Alex correctly points out they are now available to individuals via partners like the one detailed on their site at 75€.

      Thanks for your kind words Alex, happy to help – I like to think someone would do the same for me if I was going somewhere new.

      All the best

  10. itsmitchelltime (@)
    18th May 2011, 19:37

    A week and I’ll be there cannot wait.

    Few questions does anyone know limitations on what you can bring in to the circuit e.g. are food and water ok (as no doubt it’ll be cheaper in Nice), is a standard DSLR camera ok (I had a bit of an issue with it at the Valencia test in February).

    Also, can you leave the circuit area and return later?

    You see pictures of fans outside the paddock gates waiting for people to leave, is this part accessible or is it on a blocked off road? I only ask as I may get a chance of bumping in to some F1 royalty as they leave the holy grail of F1 that is the Monaco paddock?

    1. You can bring your own food and drink no problem. The circuit area is pretty much the back of the stand where they check your tickets and it’s fine to go in and out. I think (unless I’m mixing it up with another circuit) that they tear a strip off your ticket when you go in the stand and if you want to leave and come back you just take a strip fron the person and then hand it back when you return.

    2. Hi

      To add to Steph’s comments – there should not be a problem with you taking a camera, I’ve never heard of anyone having a problem. Be prepared to have your backpack or bag searched by the stewards/police though – this is standard practise.

      You can get to the area near the paddock but you really need to have a viewing ticket for one of the locations next to it to achieve what you want I think.

      Have fun

  11. re-posting and looking for some help:

    Hi there,
    We are a family of 4 going to nice on holidays during the same time as Monaco GP, great!!! We would like a short visit to GP and have a few queries:
    1. When is the best day and time to visit the GP when we can see all the action – cars, racing, drivers? Also when it’s not complete madness?
    2. I believe it’s not recommended to get our 2 yr old to the GP, will our 6 yr old daughter enjoy the race?
    3. Best way to get to Monaco GP fm nice? Taxi – how would the traffic be? Train?
    4. Best recommended seats/stands with the place to buy the tickets?
    Thanks for your help.

    1. Hi again, third time lucky with this reply, I hope you get it this time.

      1. Thursday is the least busy of the F1 days, Friday morning is ‘less busy’ too but there is no F1. Friday morning is for GP2 and Porsche Supercup.

      2. I don’t think you will be able to buy a ticket for a 2 year old, i believe the minimum age is 5 years old. My own children are two girls (5 and 8 years) and a boy (6 years). My girls do not like the racing but my boy loves it. I think only your daughter will be able to tell if she enjoys it but ABSOLUTELY buy her ear plugs (the soft ones you squeeze and put in your ears) AND a good pair of ear defenders (the headphone/ear muff style). She can use both to minimise the noise or if she is OK with the noise can use just one of the types – but definitely buy both for her.

      3. Taxi from Nice should be no problem but book in advance and get a fixed price (if they will give one) for the journey. Train is cheap, quick and efficient but buy your ticket in advance of your day of travel, do not buy it on the morning you want to go as the queues are likely to be very long if you get the time wrong. We run transfers from Nice in our fleet of minivans, if you would like the details and prices email me and I’ll send you them.

      4. If you are looking for grandstand tickets only the best place to buy them is from the Automobile Club de Monaco (acm dot mc – or – formula1monaco dot com).

      If you are looking for a terrace I can help, again email me for our info.

      Alternatively one of my colleagues in Monaco has asked me if we have anyone who may be interested in deals on their last private terrace spaces so I am just about to post the information for everyone at F1Fanatic. It is a good deal and I know the company very well so am comfortable being associated with what is being offered.

      Hope that helps, if there is anything else I can help with just let me know.
      Best wishes

      1. Hi Ed,
        Off to Monaco for husband’s 40th tomorrow, if you get this message in time, we’ve got tickets for Sunday but not Saturday, what Terraces do you have and how much are we talking about?! We’re in O stand high how goos or bad is this, so I’m prepared!!!???

        1. Hi Denise

          Have a look at the last page, all the terrace info and prices are there. O is OK, have a look at www dot formula1monaco dot com then click on Sunday, find O stand, click on it and there is a little camera image, click on that and you will see photos taken from that location.

          If you need any more help or you can’t find the post with the terrace info just holler and I’ll re post it.

          Best wishes

  12. What a great site! Special thanks to Ed and others for lots of useful info. Questions remain:

    We are arriving Thursday and staying in Antibes. We plan to visit Cap-Ferrat on Friday and then attend the races in Monaco on Saturday and Sunday. We would like to take the train from Antibes to Cap Ferrat but not sure how close the train will take us (versus the bus). Is there a recommended route from Antibes to Cap Ferrat?

    Also, would you you advise buying train tickets for all three travel days in advance, upon arrival on Thursday?

    1. Happy to help Michael.

      Not sure about specific routes but try
      SNCF, national rail service for France – WWW dot SNCF dot FR
      TER SNCF, regional rail service for France – WWW dot TER dash SNCF dot COM

      I think some post have been blocked due to containing web addresses hence the method used above.

      Personally i would buy the tickets in advance, more convenient and avoids queues – if you buy when there isn’t one :)
      Best of luck

  13. Hi all

    A company I know and work with in Monaco have availability for three of their terraces which they are offering at what I think are great prices. I’ll post the details here and if anyone is interested email me.

    3rd floor terrace on the start/finish straight overlooking the starting grid, Saturday only, no food or drinks included but you can bring your own = 300€
    That’s only 80€ more than a good grandstand seat and you are on a private terrace start/finish straight with private toilets etc.

    4th floor terrace on the start/finish straight, directly above the Automobile Club de Monaco, Saturday only with food and open bar = 595€ (usually 995€)

    12th floor terrace at St Devote corner, Saturday & Sunday (Saturday bring your own food/drinks, Sunday includes food and open bar) = 1,100€

    If anyone needs more info just let me know.

    Best regards

    1. itsmitchelltime (@)
      20th May 2011, 9:14

      Hi Ed,

      I may be interested in the 3rd floor terrace for Saturday. Is this still available and are there any details/pictures of the view?

      Thanks for all the info by the way it’s been amazing

      1. Hi, i have some from our own 3rd floor terrace which is next to it so view identical, email me and i’ll send you the pics. Cheers, Ed.

  14. We have some very special F1 Team access & Paddock access for those with a big budget and who want to get into the pit lane, garage tour, meet the drivers, etc. etc. etc.

    If that appeals to any big spenders out there let me know.

    Best wishes to all

  15. Well folks the time is almost here. Leaving to stay in Nice and fighting the crowds in Rocher next Thursday. Should be a blast. And before my questions, a shout out to Ed for putting my mind at ease on a few questions.

    My biggest concern now is transport to and from Nice to Monaco. The SNCF website is pretty bad, especially with my extremely limited French. I heard that there are Kiosks at the train station that allows you to print off train tickets a day or two before the actual race? Can anyone confirm that? Or more simply, is taking the train simple to a French illiterate (though I’ll try to make an effort) Joe like me?


    1. I went in 2008 so it may have changed since then but my experience as a complete non-French speaker was…
      – Buying a train ticket at the vending machines was impossible because I didn’t have a European issued credit card and they didn’t work with any others, nor did they take cash
      – Waited in line at the booth and bought ticket there, lots of signage with “F1″ all over it. The standard ticket issued was a return ticket to Monaco & back, branded with “F1″ all over it
      – Then a corral to herd everyone (and there was a LOT of people) onto the trains constantly going back and forth between Nice & Monaco all day
      – Lots of extra rail staff around to help out and keep things moving smoothly
      – When you get to Monaco just follow everyone else out of the underground and to the track. 99.99% of the people on the full train are going to the race
      – Hang around after the race and have a few beers then go for a walk around the track when they open it… close up opportunites to see the cars as they pack up and load trucks, get your photo taken on the podium, check out the big boy toys in the harbour (one girl in my group got invited onto one boat for a party)
      – Once the track is open again to traffic sit down and watch some of the locals take their Ferraris / Mercs / Lambos / etc for a blast around.
      – Don’t know when the shuttle trains back to Nice stopped but I got a train around 9pm

      Overall, very easy, only pain was waiting at the booth to get the ticket – if you can buy your train ticket for Sunday the day before I would do that just to skip the wait at the booth on Sunday. My raceday started in Levanto (Italy) to get the train to Nice, dump my stuff at the accommodation, then shuttle train to Monaco, so I don’t know if its possible. Man, that train was packed (people even sitting on each others laps) until Monaco, then it was just me in my carriage onto Nice lol

    2. Hi Patrick

      The ticket machines in Nice station can be a little tricky. They did have someone trying to assist people last year but seemed to be having a few problems – not sure if they will have resolved that or not this year. The station is quite well organised, although extremely busy, so you need to factor in extra time to buy your tickets, and has several ticket kiosks purely for the sale of F1 train tickets to Monaco. Whilst you will have to queue and be prepared for some people trying to queue jump (we had 3 Americans who wanted to go in front of us as they wanted to get the train to Monaco – not sure what they thought we were trying to do!) they do seem to get people through fairly decently. The trains do get very busy and you need to make sure your money etc is safe as it is rich pickings if you are not careful. Sardine can has nothing on this, which is why on race day we go in on the boat from Nice. May be considerably more expensive, but a lot less hassle.

    3. As always thanks for the advice everyone. I think the best plan is to buy tickets Saturday or even Friday if I can.

      Also I just found out to those interested. The Gumball 3000 rally participants and their cars will be in Monaco. Something else worth checking out if you have time to spare (although I’m not yet sure if they will be displaying their cars, but I’m sure you will see them around).

    4. hi Patrick

      I am also going to monaco next weekend! my first GP!! cant wait!

      I managed to buy sncf train tickets for sat and sunday going from NICE to MONACO for £6 open return.
      you can buy online from raileurope dot com. allows you to pick the station (there are 2 in NICE) and departure times… from about 6am onwards and last train back from monaco is 23:58… they post special delivery and got them to me the next day…


      1. ###update### sorry its raileurope dot co dot uk to buy sncf tickets in advance if u live in UK…

        1. Hey Ed. Unfortunately I’m living in Dublin at the moment so I am unable to purchase tickets from that site. I did, however, look up when the train picks up from Nice, so it wasn’t in vain :)

          Thanks for the help!


  16. Hi Patrick

    Thanks for the shout out, appreciated. The kiosks you mention have an English option, pretty straightforward although I remember the first few times I used them, getting used to the ticket options then finding the right platform were the biggest challenges – just relax, take your time and have fun…and keep you wits about you, lots of pickpockets! Ed

  17. Hi there, I am going to Nice on 26th May to 27th May and plan to visit Monaco and Monte Carlo on the evening of the 26th and daytime of the 27th. I have heard that unless you have tickets for the Grand Prix, you cannot enter Monaco during the Grand Prix unless you pay a tax of £2,000. Is this true?

    1. Hi Carmen

      That is utter nonsense, can you tell me where you heard that?

      You may enter and leave Monaco as you wish without paying any kind of fee or tax.

      You will not be allowed anywhere you can actually see the race (grandstands, terraces, etc.) unless you have a ticket for them.

      Have fun

  18. Starting to get exceedingly excited now. Fly out first thing Wednesday morning (ash cloud permitting!) to Nice.

    Looks like our boy Lewis might be able to give Vettel a run for his money, certainly after yesterdays performance.

    1. PS – Can anyone suggest somewhere we can go for lunch in Monaco on the Friday. I fancy somewhere with a nice view over the harbour.


      1. Hi Alex

        Tender To in the port and Miramar on beau rivage bothe decent for lunch and good view of the harbour.


      2. Hi Alex

        Tender To in the port and Miramar on beau rivage both decent for lunch and good view of the harbour.


        1. Alex – just dawned on me Tender To is the old name, now called Virage. Ed

  19. Hi All,
    Currently working in Geneva and plan on driving down with a few mates to hotel in Sanremo and then getting the train into Monaco for the Sunday. Was planning on Secteur Rocher but some of the posts are making me feel rather nervous about it! Anybody know of any last minute balcony tickets going cheap or grandstand tickets they need to offload? Theres 3 of us….
    many thanks for such an informative and helpful Forum!

  20. Hi Jon

    You will see previous posts from me, below are some deals from a company I work with in Monaco, already some F1Fanatic members have taken up some of the places…

    3rd floor terrace on the start/finish straight overlooking the starting grid, Saturday only, no food or drinks included but you can bring your own = 300€
    That’s only 80€ more than a good grandstand seat and you are on a private terrace start/finish straight with private toilets etc.

    4th floor terrace on the start/finish straight, directly above the Automobile Club de Monaco, Saturday only with food and open bar = 595€ (usually 995€)

    12th floor terrace at St Devote corner, Saturday & Sunday (Saturday bring your own food/drinks, Sunday includes food and open bar) = 1,100€

    If you need more info let me know.

    Best regards

    1. Hi Ed,

      Two of us are heading to the GP in Monaco this Friday and are a little unorganised. Flights and accomodation in Nice sorted though no tickets as yet.

      I see from the blog above that you seem to have a few options spaces to go for terraces or yachts. Was planning on winging it though I agree with some the points noted previously.

      Looking for somewhere for Sunday (maybe Saturday as well) with a good atmosphere.

      Dont mind spending some money.

      Thanks in advance,


      1. Hi Chris

        I saw my colleague tonight in Monaco and they confirmed there are still a few spaces on the locations mentioned previously.

        The 12th floor terrace is the price for Sunday it’s just that they will give Saturday free (bring your own refreshments) for anyone who wants to go both days. There will be a good atmosphere on the 12th floor terrace, especially on race day!

        For yachts we’re sold out for both weekend days but have a handful of spaces left for Thursday and some for Friday morning.

        We also have a yacht party in the harbour on Saturday night – private yacht moored trackside, all drinks included, canapes, hostess service, from 19.00 – 23.00, usually 395€ per person, for F1Fanatic we are offering our guest price of 195€ pp (i.e. usually only if someone has booked race viewing etc with us they get that price). It’s a great story to tell…that the night before the Grand Prix you were relaxing on a private yacht in Monaco harbour watching the world go by.

        Hope that helps.

        1. thanks for that Ed,

          how do i contact you? can you send me your email address?

          thanks Chris

Comments are closed.