A sovereign and independent state, the Principality of Monaco has borders on its landward side with several communes of the French Department of the Alpes-Maritimes; from west to east these are Cap d’Ail, la Turbie, Beausoleil and Roquebrune Cap Martin. Seawards, Monaco faces the Mediterranean Sea.
Its surface area is 485 acres, of which nearly 100 were recovered from the sea during the course of the last twenty years. Monaco lies on a narrow coastal strip, which sometimes rises vertically upwards with its highest point at 206 feet. Its width varies between .65 miles and a mere 382 yards. Its coastline is 2.5 miles long. The Principality has only one commune, Monaco, whose limits are the same as those of the state.
Monaco is divided into five areas:
Monaco-Ville on the Rock, the old fortified town, with the Prince’s Palace, the ramparts, the gardens, the Cathedral and the Oceanographic Museum.
The Condamine is the second oldest area in Monaco. The name comes from the Middle Ages and means the cultivable land at the foot of a village or castle.
Monte-Carlo, created in 1866, named in honor of Prince Charles III, hosts an internationally famous Casino, luxury hotels and leisure facilities, some created recently: Larvotto beach, the Monte Carlo Sporting Club, the Boulingrins Gardens.
Fontvieille is the newest area of the Principality of Monaco and was created from land reclaimed from the sea. This man-made waterfront area features a harbor, stadium and sports complex, heliport, and a pollution-free industrial zone, as well as some shopping areas and the new Columbus Monaco hotel.
Moneghetti, home to the Révoires and the Exotic Gardens (on the western border with Cap d`Ail).