With the first week of December, the magic truly arrived in the Principality with the opening of the annual Monaco Christmas Village at the Quai Albert 1er. Those residents of the port-side luxury properties were treated on 4th December, as thousands of glittering fairy lights illuminated the festive hangout, which offers revellers an array of festal treats.
The pièce de résistance of December’s what’s on guide is without fail the Monaco Christmas Village, which spreads festive cheers along the Port each year and remains open from the beginning of December to early January.
Each year the Monaco Christmas village adorns itself with the influence of a certain theme; this year’s decorations are based on ‘un Noel russe’ – a befitting end to Monaco’s cultural calendar, which has seen a medley of Russian-based events. The Monaco Christmas village is, therefore, the perfect end to this cultural union between the two countries and an infectious way to get into the festive spirit.
430 Christmas trees surround the village De Noel and entry is via two enormous structures, which appear to have been plucked straight out of a Russian city.
Within the village are 25 traditional wooden chalets selling handmade Christmas gifts, delicious festive delicacies, such as oysters and vin chaud, as well as tempting snacks for kids.
There are also some great fairground rides for those who are young at heart, a giant Ferris wheel, and an ice-skating rink on what is normally the outdoor swimming pool.
The Monaco Christmas village is open from 11am to 9pm from Sunday to Thursday, and from 11am to 10pm on Friday and Saturday. On Christmas Eve, the village is open from 11am to 7.30pm and on Christmas Day and New Year’s Day, from 2.30pm until 9pm. On New Year’s Eve the village is open from 11-2am.
Entry to the Village de Noel this year is via four entry points; from the beginning of Quai Albert 1er, near the Ferris wheel; opposite la rue Princesse Caroline; opposite rue Suffren Reymond; and from Darse Sud.
As the sun goes down each day over the tiny sovereign state, Monaco lights up with twinkling festive garlands and sparkling Christmas trees, which adorn almost every corner. Walking through the streets at night is like a stroll through a magical winter wonderland. The village de Noel is the crowning jewel on what is already a sight to behold each Christmas time.