- Old port of Marseille
- Marseille beaches
- Palaces and castles of Marseille
- Temples and cathedrals
- In the silence of the museum
- Note to shopaholics
- Delicious points on the map
Marseille for three hundred is ideal in all respects. The climate here is very conducive to an active summer vacation on the water, museums generously illustrate the rich cultural and historical component of the southern region of France, and restaurants with Michelin stars lure inveterate gourmets with fashionable novelties in the field of haute cuisine. Fashion in the local society also has weight, and any shopping trip can turn into an exciting walk with a lot of positive impressions.
In short, the question of where to go in Marseille can be answered in a long and detailed way, although its residents recommend starting from the Old Port - the symbol and main attraction of the largest southern city of France.
Old port of Marseille
It is interesting to be on the seashore in Marseille at any time of the day. At dawn, fishing boats with fresh catch come to the port. By lunchtime, cafes and restaurants start to draw with the aroma of freshly prepared bouillabaisse. In the evening, crowds of enthusiastic tourists, impressed by the tightness of the stone sack in the Chateau d'If, go ashore after a sea excursion and take tables overlooking the bay and yachts.
The boulevard La Canbière leads to the Vieux Port; religious buildings are located near the port, which invariably occupy the first lines in the list of attractions in Marseille. The very same port in ancient times became the place where the city began. In the VI century. BC NS. Greek colonists landed on the coast of the Bay of Marseilles, who founded a settlement called Massalia.
A port city, Marseille is hardly the ideal destination for a beach holiday. And yet it is quite possible to refresh yourself in the sea and sunbathe on the Marseilles coast. It is only important to be in the city at a time when the purity of the water in the sea suits the local regulatory authorities.
The complex of Marseille beaches is called Prado. They were poured in the 70s of the last century, when the mayor's office was puzzled by the lack of places for active recreation in the city by the sea. The du Prado are comfortably equipped with sports grounds, changing rooms, children's play areas and showers. On Marseille's beaches, you can play volleyball, go sailing, rent canoes or water skis, and even scuba dive. You can freely use the beach space, but you will have to pay for the entrance to some infrastructure facilities.
Palaces and castles of Marseille
Tourist guides call Marseille the pearl of France and the cultural and historical center of the southern part of the Old World. The city even became a European cultural capital, and therefore you can create an interesting route here both independently and with the help of professional guides:
- The Longchamp Palace has been on the list of landmarks since the middle of the 19th century, when the completion of its construction marked the appearance of the city canal. Marseille received water, and admirers of beauty - an architectural masterpiece. In the palace, expositions of two museums are open, an observatory works, and in the park a complex of fountains richly decorated with sculptural compositions is worthy of attention.
- The world learned about the castle of If thanks to Alexandre Dumas and his hero, who fled from a stone sack and took revenge on his offenders. In reality, the Count of Monte Cristo did not exist, but the gloomy casemates on a small island for a long time really served as a prison. Today excursions from Marseille to a rocky patch of land are one of the most popular entertainments for guests of the city. The fortress on the island of If appeared in the first half of the 16th century, and you can get there on your own by boat from the Old Port.
Temples and cathedrals
France is rich in architectural monuments of cult significance, and the country's city cathedrals are the subject of constant delight and surprise of tourists. Marseille is no exception, and its churches and basilicas always become a must-see for tourists.
The Cathedral of Marseille is called Santa Maria Maggiore. It appeared in the city not so long ago - at the end of the 19th century. The temple is famous for its striped exterior and grandiose size. The walls of Santa Maria Maggiore in Marseille are lined with slabs of white and green marble, making them appear voluminous and embossed. The interiors are no less impressive: in the cathedral you will see mosaics and bas-reliefs, a richly decorated altar and numerous sculptural compositions on biblical themes.
And yet, when it comes to the symbols of the city, residents of Marseille are the first to remember the Cathedral of Notre Dame de la Garde. They call him the Kind Mother, thus emphasizing the special significance of the temple. The cathedral appeared in the second half of the 19th century. The foundation was the ruins of an ancient fortress on a hill - the highest point in Marseille. The architectural dominant of the Kind Mother is a tower with a bell tower, at the top of which there is a gilded sculpture of the Virgin Mary with the Baby Jesus in her arms.
The Abbey of Saint Victor was founded in the 5th century. It was one of the first in Gaul and had a huge impact on the spread of Christianity in Provence. The French Revolution destroyed many of the buildings of the monastery, but the church survived and remained active. Today, the crypt houses a collection of sarcophagi, and the abbey museum is highly significant for those interested in Christian art.
In the silence of the museum
As the largest city in Provence, Marseille carefully preserves the various traditions of the region, from culinary to musical. You can fully enjoy the Provencal spirit in the Marseille Regional Museum. In the halls you will find many exhibits dedicated to Provence and its inhabitants: tools and crafts of artisans, national costumes, household items and agricultural tools, ancient musical instruments and furniture. The exhibits form several collections, including the Christmas one. It presents festive traditions that have existed in Provence for a long time - culinary, game, musical and ceremonial.
The daughter of a Marseille industrialist, Marie Labadier, after marrying Louis Grobet, began to collect a collection of works of art. After her husband's death, she donated the collection to the city along with the mansion, where paintings, sculptures and antiques were exhibited. Each of the halls of the museum is a living room with furnishings, furniture, paintings, books, dishes. The musical instruments collected by the Grobe spouses were made in the 17th-19th centuries, the oldest paintings were painted in the 14th century, and some handmade carpets are 600 years old. The Grobe-Labadier Museum is very cozy and intimate, despite the huge number of priceless items exhibited in it.
Another interesting museum, which is worth going to, once in Marseille, is located in the Borely castle. It was built in the 18th century. for a wealthy Marseilles family, whose head was engaged in trade. The Boreli Museum exhibits a unique collection of earthenware, as well as exhibits exotic exhibits brought from Asia and Africa. A large part of the museum halls is dedicated to contemporary fashion. Faience from the Boreli Palace is a collection spanning a huge time period. Faience masterpieces were made in Italy and France, China and Japan. After exploring the museum's collection, be sure to take a walk in the park surrounding the palace. Ranking high in the ranking of the country's best gardens, the park is famous for its rare plants.
Note to shopaholics
Trade traditions in Marseille originated in the 6th-5th centuries. BC. Throughout the history of its existence, ships departed from the port loaded with wine and olives, citrus fruits and grain. Modern Marseille offers guests many options to enjoy shopping - from a walk through the bustling city market to a visit to one of the modern shopping centers, where everything is arranged in full accordance with international standards.
The Emmaus Bazaar on Cartonry Boulevard is a classic Mediterranean market with colorful vendors and an unimaginable range of products caught, grown and cooked in the surrounding seas, gardens, vineyards, fields and farms. There is also an abundance of souvenirs on the market, and it is worth going here if you plan to bring gifts to family and friends from Marseille.
The souvenir shops around the port traditionally offer customers handmade soaps made from olive oil and lavender-based fragrances.
On the street Canebières, which starts at Vieux Port and goes north of the port, is full of expensive shops. You will find on it branches of famous Parisian department stores, and elite boutiques with Italian names in the windows.
Delicious points on the map
Do you like delicious food? Restaurants of all levels are popular among travelers in Marseille, and therefore choose the ones that suit your preferences:
- The menu of La Table du Fort contains examples of culinary art and this restaurant is “not weak” to host even a crowned person. The cuisine of the institution is beyond praise, the delicacies inspire awe even for seasoned gourmets, and the level of service leaves no doubt that the French know a lot about pleasures.
- Le Jardin Cache will melt the soul of any fan of Mediterranean cuisine. Seafood is supplied to the kitchen every morning by local fishermen, and therefore the chef has no problems with choices and opportunities for improvisation.
- It is believed that the best oysters in Marseille are served in Chez Toinou, and this is easy to verify by booking a table in advance.
- Would you like pies and sweet desserts? Sylvain Depuichaffray is one of the best family dining restaurants in Marseille.
They say that more than seven hundred restaurants, cafes, pastry shops and bistros are open in Marseille, where you can not only satisfy your hunger, but also enjoy excellent cuisine and the traditions of Provencal culinary culture.