The town of Mention is basically situated between Monaco and Italy, on the French Riviera, being a highly acclaimed tourist destination. The city was founded by the counts of Vintimiglia and was owned by the Grimaldi family in Monaco between 1346 and 1848, passing under the local French administration only in February 1861.
Menton began to be preferred by many personalities, such as Ferdinand de Lesseps (builder of Suez Canal), Queen Victoria, Tsar Alexander, King Albert of Belgium, attracted by the atmosphere, pleasant climate and especially the geographical location, making it a very cosmopolitan environment, as well as a tolerant one. Especially the old part of town Menton contains interesting monuments and ruins.
Some of the most important attractions and monuments are as follows:
Square Saint-Michel: the old city center, major shopping center and meeting place in the past, today more room for the promenade.
Church of Saint-Michel: the construction was conducted between 1640 – 1675, the belfry was added in the eighteenth century and baroque gable in 1819.
Bastion: overlooking the city, this fort was built in 1636 – 1639 by Honore II of Monaco, to protect the town of Menton. Restored in 1957.
Palais Carnoles: old summer residence of the Princes of Monaco, was built in 1717, is often called “little Versailles”. Today hosts an interesting museum of art, with a rich collection of paintings and graphics.
Val Rahmeh Botanical Garden: designed in 1905 by Lord Radcliffe, the former governor of Malta, one of the most beautiful in Europe.
The Madonnas of Serre: another botanical garden, was built between 1919 – 1939 by Major Lawrence Johnston, the British way. Since then, his collection is preserved and rare wood, brought from Asia.
Villa Maria Serena: De Lesseps family property is now a historical monument, one of the most beautiful buildings in the city. Built in 1880, is surrounded by lovely gardens.
In order to develop the city through tourism, the local authorities decided to adopt an old idea and recreate the Lemon Carnival. During this holiday-themed event several exhibitions are held, including fruits, fruit promenade, etc., which are more or less beautiful and exciting. Menton’s streets are filled with characters made from fruit, telling the funniest and most original stories. Representative of the city buildings are also decorated with citrus. If you have the chance to visit Menton, then you are strongly advised to give this event a try.