The Cathédrale Notre-Dame-Immaculée of Monaco, or Saint Nicholas Cathedral, is the main church of the Monegasque Archdiocese and an important symbol of Monaco’s identity, history and faith. It is located in Monaco’s old town on the Rock of Monaco and is both a much-visited Roman-Byzantine-style landmark in the principality and a central point for local life.
The cathedral took over 25 years to complete, beginning in 1875, and was finally consecrated in 1911. Originally, a chapel was built where the cathedral now stands, dating back to the 13th century, and visitors can still see the 16th-century altarpiece of Saint Nicolas that survived. Most recently, in 2011, the cathedral’s great organ was reconstructed by Thomas Manufacture in Belgium after nearly two years of design and building.
White stones from La Turbie
The cathedral was built using white stones from La Turbie, an ancient hilltop village just northwest of Monaco, which overlooks the principality from its elevated plateau. Dominating the village of La Turbie is the Trophée d’Auguste, a Roman building that was constructed to celebrate the glory of Emperor Augustus in 7 BC.
The monument was restored in the 1760s – after falling into disrepair for some thousands of years when Rome fell – using both 3,000 original stones and new local white stone, the same that was used for Monaco’s own cathedral. The white La Turbie stones have a special feature; they naturally get whiter when it rains.
Grace Kelly is buried here
Royal events, such as the wedding of Grace Kelly and Rainier III, Prince of Monaco, in 1956 and the investing of his son Albert II as prince and ruler of the country in 2005, have taken place at Saint Nicholas Cathedral.
Most princes of the royal Grimaldi family are buried here, too, from Jean II Grimaldi (who died in 1505) to the present day. The funeral of Grace Kelly, probably one of the principality’s most well-known members, was held at the cathedral in 1982 after her tragic death and Prince Rainier was buried alongside her in 2005.
Volcanic Iceland Epic Trip
meet our Local Insider
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN A GUIDE?
WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR JOB?
It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.
WHAT DESTINATION IS ON YOUR TRAVEL BUCKET-LIST?
I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!
Every CULTURE TRIP Small-group adventure is led by a Local Insider just like Hanna.
KEEN TO EXPLORE THE WORLD?
Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world
Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.