Fête Nationale: Princely Family shines during Monaco’s celebration of heritage and unity

Princess Charlene and Princess Gabriella stole the show in matching outfits for Monaco’s National Day on Sunday, while Prince Albert and Prince Jacques donned traditional military attire. Overall, National Day this year was a hit on so many levels.

Monaco’s National Day celebrations came alive this weekend with a dazzling fireworks display, a solemn cathedral service, a grand military parade, and a happy Princely family, exemplifying the Principality’s rich heritage and unity of its Sovereign and his people.

National Day celebrations begin with a bang

A spectacular fireworks display on the evening of Saturday 18th November, organised by the Monaco Mairie, and a live music show by the band Blønd and Blönd and Blóndset on Port Hercule set the tone for the vibrant festivities this weekend; the pyromelodic wonders marking the beginning of one of the most awaited events in the Principality’s calendar.

A solemn reflection amidst celebration

Transitioning from the vibrant spectacle, the mood shifted to a more sombre and reflective atmosphere on the morning of Sunday 19th November.

At the historic St. Nicholas Cathedral (Cathédrale de Monaco) a solemn ‘Messe d’Action de Grâce with Te Deum’ was held, attended by Prince Albert, Princess Charlene, Princess Caroline, and Princess Stephanie, alongside the younger generation including Charlotte Casiraghi, Princess Alexandra, Beatrice Borromeo, Pierrre Casiraghi, Tatiana Santo Domingo, Andrea Casiraghi, Louis Ducruet, and his wife Marie. Their attendance symbolised the unity and enduring legacy of Monaco’s Princely family.

Photo: Direction de la Communication / Frederic Nebinger / Manuel Vitali / Stéphane Danna

Culminating in the highlight of Fête National

As the day progressed, the celebrations reached their peak. The Place du Palais transformed into a sun-filled stage for a grand parade and military procession. The ceremonious Prise d’armes, accompanied by the distribution of grade insignias and medals, was a spectacle of military precision and national pride. The rhythmic march of the troops, the gleaming uniforms, and the stirring music summarised the spirit of Monaco’s rich heritage and its contemporary ethos.

The pinnacle of the day’s festivities was marked by the much-anticipated Princely family wave. As Prince Albert, Princess Charlene, Prince Jacques and Princess Gabriella appeared on the palace balcony overlooking the Place du Palais, cheers rose from the crowd below and flags were patriotically waved. In other windows, the Sovereign’s sisters and their children also waved and enjoyed the exchange with the citizens of Monaco.

This iconic moment, a blend of tradition and popular appeal, symbolised the close bond between the Monegasque people and their Princely family.

National Council President Brigitte Boccone-Pagès was among the crowd of proud Monegasque citizens at Fête National Celebrations. Source: Conseil National de Monaco

A day steeped in history

Monaco’s National Day, deeply rooted in its historical and traditional past, commemorates the Principality’s vibrant cultural legacy and national identity. This celebration dates back to the era of Prince Charles III, who initially set November 19th as a day of joyous festivities, in tribute to the patron Saint of Monaco.

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Main photo source: Conseil National de Monaco