Monaco Grand Prix… for Free!
Monaco Grand Prix May 25-28, 2017
Here’s a secret: The most glamorous and prestigious racing event in the world, the Monaco Grand Prix… has a free day. It’s not publicized and most locals don’t even know about it, but the Friday before the big race is always free, with all of the same noise, smells, vibrations, sensations, crashes, and excitement… but no ticket required.
There are three sessions being held Friday morning, May 26th, 2017:
Take your earplugs: the GP2 has 42 breakneck laps roaring through the just-over-two-mile-long course. In 2010, the fastest lap of the weekend was 1 minute 15 seconds, so you have constant action with each race car screaming by every minute or so (check out the video below for a drivers seat web cam). Move around and try out different seats and vantage points (normally costing 100’s of euros), so if you ever do buy a ticket, you’ll know where you want to be.
After the races, go have lunch. The streets reopen to the public at around 2pm, and then you are free to walk along the track and even peek into the pits… and while you’re at it, take a stroll on the docks to check out the mega-yachts in for the races.
While exploring the town, keep your eyes open: many of the drivers have apartments in Monaco, and with the Cannes Film Festival just down the coast, the Principality will be packed to the gills with celebrity spectators of all stripes, and at a minimum you can always count on spying Ivana Trump on her mega-yacht in the Port…
Here is the official race schedule and ticket information, but note that there are no tickets showing for Friday… because it’s free!
How to get there: To get to Monaco during the race, you can either take the train or take bus #100, but even with both modes of transport reinforced to the max, it’s still sheer madness, especially on the way back. With the money you save on ‘free day’ you could opt to splurge on your transport, and take the boat from Nice to Monaco for 60€ round trip. Okay, so it’s not a super-yacht, but it would still be far more enjoyable to arrive on the top deck of a stunningly beautiful 40-minute coastal cruise, than packed like sardines in a bus or train. Reservations are a must.
Monaco hosts a series of Grand Prix type races in the course of the year, so here is the official Automobile Club of Monaco link in English to find out more.
We visit Brighton all the time, and we can’t resist taking a visit to the pier, strolling along the sea front and pottering around the historic Brighton Lanes. But sometimes you need to do something a little different. Here’s six ideas of things we love and we think you’ll find a bit different to spice up your next trip to Brighton.
BRIGHTON SEWER TOUR
Brighton’s famous sewer tours have been running for more than 50 years. Discover their Victorian fascinating secrets from 150 years ago by walking through the labyrinth of tunnels. The award-winning tours run from May until September and are a popular attraction with visitors from across the world.
The Undercliff Walk boasts some stunning scenery and extends for just under three miles. You set out from Brighton Marina and walk along to Rottingdean before heading onto Saltdean. The walk runs along the top of the sea wall which was built in the 1930s to prevent the chalk cliffs eroding. In the Summer the path is full of flowers including sea lavender, ragwort, field bindweed, red valerian, wild carrot, common thistle, common mallow and common vetch.
BRIGHTON GHOST TOUR
The Brighton Lanes is a fantastic place for shopping, yet beneath its convivial veneer darker forces are at work. Join actor and master storyteller Rob Marks as the eccentric Silas the Ghost Walker, or his fellow ghost walkers Jasper and Ebenezer, for a 70 minute walk around Brighton’s famous Lanes visiting eight haunted sites.
BRIGHTON FOOD TOUR
Experience a different flavour of this quirky and spirited city whilst discovering a selection of popular foodie Brighton hotspots. Get off the beaten track to meet some of Brighton’s most exciting and unusual independent vendors and producers. Hear the stories, passions and politics behind their products and best of all, try some tasty samples.
Devil’s Dyke and Southdown’s National Park
Take the no.77 Bus to explore Devil’s Dyke and the Southdown’s National Park. Enjoy the great outdoors, beautiful countryside and many special events held at the Dyke.
THE NEW i360
Maybe not so new now, as the i360 has been running since early 2016, but you can still only do this in Brighton, so it must be different! Take to the skies to see Brighton and the beautiful south coast as you have never seen them before. Glide up gently to 138 metres on the world’s tallest moving observation tower, to admire 360 degree views across Brighton, the South Downs and, on the clearest days, all the way to the Isle of Wight.