The French Riviera is the perfect holiday destination for everyone: with white, sandy beaches and the deep turquoise hues of the ocean, there is no better place to relax on the shore of the Mediterranean coast. If you are considering booking a trip to the area, why not clue yourself up on some interesting facts about the area? We’ve compiled a list of our favorite below to get you started!
Monaco is the second smallest country in the world
Known for its glitz and glamor, you may find it hard to believe that Monaco is actually only three miles long and one and a half miles wide. With 32,000 people living in the tiny principality, Monaco manages to squeeze a theater, a ballet house, a casino complex and is home to one of the most famous Grand Prix’s in the world all within its boundaries. Due to the high number of people living in the country, Monaco is actually the most densely populated country in the world!
Citizens of Monaco are not allowed to set foot in the Monte Carlo Casino
With only a small proportion of the residents living in Monaco being Monegasques (born and bred citizens), the local government wants to prevent these citizens from developing a gambling addiction. It is thought that this rule originally came under the reign of Princess Caroline. As the house of Grimaldi was financially struggling, Princess Caroline convinced French entrepreneur, Francois Blanc, to move his famous Bad Homburg Casino to Monaco from Germany. As a way to save every Monegasque Franc, she banned all the citizens of Monaco from gambling away their money, instead hoping to attract a foreign crowd willing to splurge.
So how is this rule policed ??today? In order to fight the Monegasque, passport and identity checks are put in place at the doors to the casino. There is good news though: with restriction from gambling, there is no temptation to spend our money foolishly. In addition to this, those living within the small confines of the country also live a life free of debt, ensuring that citizens never get in trouble again.
The first ever Cannes Film Festival took place in 1939
The first installment of the prestigious film festival started on September 1, 1939. However, there is another reason why this is a standout day in history, as Germany invaded Poland on the same day. This caused the festival to end prematurely, and World War II started shortly thereafter. Over the next couple of years, the event ws put on hold before finally starting again in 1946.
Today, it takes 20 million to fund the festival, with half of the budget coming from public funding. The large scale event, which sees 20,000 actors, directors, producers, agents and fans flock to the streets of Cannes, is a glamourous event that lasts for two weeks. With 3767 journalists visiting the 201o event, it was the second biggest event after the Olympics!
Grasse is the capital of the world
The flower gardens of Grasse have produced some of the most iconic perfumes around the world. Home to the training grounds for ‘Noses’, the people who are responsible for creating scent combinations, Grasse’s climate allows flowers to cultivate easily. With different notes for each scent, each nose has its own specialty and has fine-tuned their own sense of smell to work out which notes are best paired with one another.
More Pizzas are eaten in France than Italy
Behind only Germany and the UK, France is the third largest pizza-consuming country in Europe. In 2014, an astonishing 809 million pizzas were baked. Over the course of the year, this amount to more than 323 tonnes of pizza, which is an increase from 2013 of 1.2%. So what’s the French’s favorite type of pizza? Margherita and four cheeses came out as the top choice for the French, and it has been suggested that French people eat about 5kg each of the food yearly!
If these facts have piqued your interest, why not consider booking your own trip to the French Riviera. We have an amazing range of luxury villas in the south of France that are sure to make you feel like you are living the life of luxury after a long day strolling around the Cote d’Azur. If you have some interesting facts about the area, why not share them with us on our social media channels? We would love to hear any other quirky bits of information about the French Riviera.
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