Marseille is the second largest city in France (after Paris). It is located in the south of the country, on the shores of the Mediterranean Sea (Gulf of Lion). The distance from Marseille to Paris is about 770 kilometers (by road), the distance to Nice is about 200 kilometers. France’s largest commercial port is also located in Marseille.
Marseille is the sunniest city in France. The number of hours of sunshine in Marseille is greater than in Nice or Toulon.
Short, but heavy rainfall can occur in Marseille in the fall.
Mistral, strong and cold northwest wind, can make adjustments to your plans. Mistral is more common in winter and spring, but can happen at any time of the year.
Places to visit
The old port can be considered to be as a tourist center of the city. Now it is mainly a yacht harbor. Cruises liners' berths are nearby. The embankment of the Old Port is a favorite place for tourists.
Canebière street is laid from the old port to the northeast, in the direction of the Église Saint-Vincent-de-Paul church. This street is sometimes called the main street of Marseille (or Marseille's Champs Elysees). The length of the street is about one kilometer.
The Cathedral of Notre-Dame-de-la-Garde (Basilique Notre Dame de la Garde) is located on the highest point of the city, at a distance of approximately 1.2 kilometers from the Old Port. This is the most famous landmark of the city. A beautiful view of the city and the port opens from the hill.
In the center of Marseille there are several pedestrian areas. These are popular places for walking, both among locals and tourists. You will find many cafes and shops nearby.
- Southern part of Rue Saint Ferréol street.
- Part of Cours Julien, north of Notre Dame du Mont metro station.
- The Cours Honoré-d'Estienne-d'Orves Square, located about 100 meters south of the Old Port.
Friul Archipelago is located in the sea, at a distance of approximately 3 kilometers from the Old Port. There is Château d'If situated on one of the islands of the archipelago, which is mentioned in the famous Dumas novel The Count of Monte-Cristo.
You can book a guided tour in Marseille here.
Lovers of shopping: you will find many shops in the central part of the city, on the streets adjacent to the Old Port. Marseille also has some large shopping centers.
Les Terrasses du Port shopping center is located on the seafront, about 1 kilometer north of the Old Port. Address: 9 Quai du Lazaret, Marseille, France. Joliette is the nearest metro station to Terrasses du Port, located on the M2 line.
Marseille Grand Littoral is located in the northern part of the city (in the 16th arrondissement, approximately 8 kilometers from the city center). The shopping center is the largest shopping center in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region. Address: 15 Avenue de saint antoine, Marseille, France.
The Center Commercial Valentine is located in the eastern part of Marseille, in the 11th arrondissement. The distance to the city center is about 8 kilometers. There is also an IKEA store nearby. (By the way, you can eat cheaply in the restaurant of the IKEA store.) You can get to the shopping center by bus No.50 route from Castellane metro station.
Three beaches are most popular in Masel.
Les Catalans beach is located in the central part of the city, southeast of the Old Port, just behind the Abbaye Saint-Victor Abbey. The distance from the Old Port is about 1.5 kilometers. This is a small beach, about 100 meters long.
The Prado beaches (Plages du Prado) are located south of the city center, at a distance of about 5 kilometers from Stargo Port, partly within the Parc Balnéaire du Prado park. Near the beaches there are areas for sporting events. Various events are often held here. You can get to the beach by bus route 83 from the city center.
The Pointe Rouge beach (La Pointe-Rouge) is located south of Prado beach, about 6 kilometers from the city center. The beach has a length of about 200 meters. There are a diving club and marina for yachts nearby.
How to get to Marseille
You can get to Marseille by train, bus or plane. Choosing the best mode of transport will depend on the place of your departure and on your preferences.
Marseille - Saint-Charles railway station (Gare Saint Charles) is the main railway station and intercity bus station in Marseille. This is the southern terminus of the Paris - Marseille railway station. You can reach many cities in France by TER (Trains Express Régionaux) trains. The station is located about 1 km northeast of the Old Port. Metro Station: Gare de Marseille Saint Charles.
Timetables and ticket prices can be found on specialized sites. You can also buy tickets online there.
There are also other railway stations in Marseille. For example, the station La gare d'Arenc-Euroméditerranée is located next to the port (approximately one kilometer north of the Old Port). You can also get to the airport from this station.
Check the departure station if you will buy tickets on the Internet.
🚄 Train tickets can be purchased in advance, online (you will find links here).
Marseille Provence Airport (Aéroport de Marseille Provence; IATA: MRS) is located approximately 27 kilometers (17 miles) north-west of Marseille. This is the fifth busiest airport in France in terms of passenger traffic.
You can reach Marseilles and other cities by rail.
The Vitrolles-aéroport Marseille Provence railway station is located approximately 1.5 kilometers from the airport. A free bus route connects the airport with this train station.
Useful link - you will find good sites for buying tickets here
🚕 It will be more convenient for you to take a taxi if you have a lot of luggage, if you travel with children or a small company. You can also order a taxi in advance.
Car rentals offices are located in front of terminal 1. You can choose and book a car in advance.
🚗 If you want to rent a car, you can choose and book a car online.
Where to stay in Marseille
The area around the Old Port (Vieux Port) is the best area for tourists to live in Marseille. This erea is convenient for the majority of people visiting Marseille, both for tourists and for business travelers. You can easily reach the train station and the airport from here. The most popular places of the city will also be nearby.
We offer you a few hotels that are located in the city center and have received good customer ratings.
You will surely find suitable for you accommodation here (hotel, apartments, hostels).
InterContinental Marseille - Hotel Dieu (5-star). This hotel is located in an 18th century building. The distance from the hotel to the Old Port is about 350 meters. Some rooms have a private terrace overlooking the city. Address: 1 Place Daviel, 13002 Marseille, France.
Grand Hotel Beauvau Marseille Vieux Port (4 stars). The hotel’s bar, Le Beauvau, offers views of the Old Port and the Mediterranean Sea. Address: 4 Rue Beauvau, 13001 Marseille, France.
Escale Oceania Marseille Vieux Port (3 stars). The boutique hotel is located on the most famous street of La Canebière, at a distance of only 100 meters from the Old Port. The distance to Saint-Charles train station is about one kilometer. Address: 5, La Canebière, 13001 Marseille, France. Nearby is the metro station Vieux-Port - Hôtel de Ville.
Hotel du Pharo (2 stars). The hotel is located about one kilometer south of the Old Port. The two main advantages of this hotel: it is a cheap hotel and it is located at a distance of about 350 meters from the beach. Address: 5 Place Du 4 Septembre, La Corniche, Marseille, France.