10 of Monaco's Top Museums to Visit

Oceanographic Museum | © Cyril Bèle / Flickr
Oceanographic Museum | © Cyril Bèle / Flickr
Photo of Holly Howard
17 May 2017

Monaco is best known for its Monte-Carlo Casino and Grand Prix, however the principality is rich in its unique history, which oozes from its many different museums. Here are Culture Trip’s top 10 of Monaco’s museums to visit.

Monaco Top Cars Collection

Museum
Map View
The Monaco Top Cars Collection is an automobile museum over five levels in the Terrasses de Fontvieille, with a collection that was once owned entirely by Prince Rainier III of Monaco. There are almost 100 classic cars in the collection, including rally cars that were victorious in past Grand Prix. If you’re a car enthusiast, this is the museum not to miss in Monaco.

Museum of Stamps and Coins

Museum
Map View
This specialist museum displays the postal history of the principality, as well as what was needed to print the stamps since the first “Charles III” in 1885 to today. There are two showrooms: The first houses Monegasque stamps in chronological order as well as stamping processes and the second is separated for the rare stamp collection, including historic Sardinian and French stamps used in the principality.

Museum of Old Monaco

Museum
Map View
To learn about Monaco’s heritage, the Musée du Vieux Monaco is the museum to visit. Containing everything from paintings to furniture, costumes to ceramics, daily life from Le Rocher (Monaco’s old town) can be visualised. This museum is also intertwined with the preservation of the Monaco language – Monegasque – by hosting these heritage items alongside the revival of the spoken word, too.

Monaco Naval Museum

Museum
Map View
Opened in the 1990s, Monaco’s Naval Museum offers up 250 marine objects and models of famous boats and yachts; including several pieces from the private collection of HSH Prince Rainier III of Monaco. It is every sea-lovers dream museum, with full-scale models – Viking longboats and Spanish galleons and more – and detailed models.

New National Museum of Monaco

Museum
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The NMNM is a contemporary art museum set over two different locations in Monaco; Villa Paloma and Villa Sauber. Villa Sauber is said to be one of the last Belle Epoque villas in Monaco and is truly a delight on the eyes! A full price ticket gains you entry to both buildings, and both the permanent collections and changing exhibitions are well worth the visit.

Princess Grace Irish Library

Library, Museum
Map View
The Princess Grace Irish Library is situated in the former beautiful home of Comte Félix Gastaldi, who was Mayor of Monaco for 39 years. This museum was set up by Prince Rainier III in memory of Princess Grace (Kelly) and her Irish heritage. At the heart of the library is Princess Grace’s personal collection of Irish books and Irish-American sheet music. This is really a gem of a museum and one that is often overlooked among the other more well-known establishments in the principality.