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Marseille, France
Written by Shrinivas on June 22, 2020 Share on

These Best Things to Do in Marseille are a worthy inclusion

Marseille, a port city in southern France, has been a crossroads of immigration and commerce since its establishment by the Greeks around 600 B.C. The Vieux-Port (Old Port) is at its heart, where fishmongers sell their catch along the quay lined by boat. Notre-Dame-de-la-Garde Basilica is a Romanesque-Byzantine church. Modern icons include the prominent massive Cité Radieuse at Le Corbusier and the CMA CGM Tower at Zaha Hadid. 

Merseille beach
Source: Unsplash

Top Things to do Marseille

Notre Dame de la Garde

This church is one of the most prominent landmarks in Marseille, situated on the peak of a hill overlooking the town and the sea. It is easily accessible by bus and there are busses leaving from the Vieux Port every twenty minutes or so and taking you right up to the doors of the church. Visitors are free, and the mosaic interior is incredibly impressive, as are the beautiful views of the city.

Merseille france
Source: Unsplash

Les Calanques

A relaxing boat ride to the beautiful Calanques – a stretch of coastline between Marseille and Cassis – is a must for anyone visiting the city, particularly in the summer. Amazing views, beautiful beaches and a refreshing sea breeze are some of the highlights that travellers can enjoy while visiting the Calanques National Park. Another choice is to walk through the town to look at the scenery on your own, or even ride a bike to one of the beaches, then hire a kayak or canoe to paddle out to the cliffs.

Vieux Port

Perhaps the most popular aspect of Marseille is the Vieux Port (Old Harbor), where all visitors go to take pictures, eat some fresh seafood, see the boats or ride the Ferris wheel. It is part of the old city and a great location from which to head to all the main attractions of the city, so a visit is definitely worthwhile. Sunsets are especially awe-inspiring throughout summer.

Fireworks at Vieux Port
Source: Unsplash


Known also as the MuCEM, this is the best museum in the city. It explores Mediterranean civilizations and history and provides an insightful insight into how they have developed until they have become what they are today. Besides the exhibitions, there are also mini-films or lectures to help visitors understand the Mediterranean culture better, and the museum spans three entire buildings. Gods, herbs, transportation paths, and gardens are only a handful of the different subjects that this diverse museum encompasses.

Cathédrale de la Major

Of course, the cathedral of Marseille is worth a visit, being one of the most important buildings in town. This place overlooks the shore and is ideal for viewpoints and photos. Its imposing structure, consisting of several dome towers, with the highest reaching a height of 16 meters (52 ft), and the use of green and white calcareous stone may remind some of the Duomo of Florence, but the interior was decorated in a completely different style. Fortunately, you can visit the cathedral too.

Le Panier

Old Town in Marseille is one of the most picturesque neighbourhood’s visitors will find anywhere in France. It is easily reachable from the Old Port, as it is located on a nearby hillside. When the Greeks arrived here, it was first populated in 600 BC, and it is actually the oldest section of the region. The most multicultural part of the city is known for its colourful neighbourhood,

Palais Longchamp

The magnificent Palais Longchamp is the venue of the Musée des Beaux-Arts, Marseille ‘s oldest museum. The gallery holds an extensive array of works by artists from Italy and Provence, and most portraits and pieces of art date from the 17th century to the present day. Besides the beautiful artwork, there is also a splendid park in the palace, where locals flock to

Château d’If

Those who have read The Count of Montecristo by Alexandre Dumas will no doubt find this island ‘s name familiar. The fictitious count was never really incarcerated here, but this makes Château d’If no less fascinating: tourists would be able to know more about the past of the 16th-century castle as a dungeon for real-life state political enemies. There are boats which leave from Vieux Port daily.


Although France may commonly be recognized for its elegant and sophisticated gastronomy and drinking scene, Marseille is especially well-known for its pastis – an anise-flavoured apéritif. Also known as ‘pastage’ by residents of Marseille, there are plenty of spots throughout town to sample this traditional tipple. The apéritif is typically served with a jug of water,

La Canebière

Close to the Vieux Port and Le Panier, La Canebière is another of the most important areas of Marseille. It is the largest avenue of the city, and it represents the richness that Marseille once possessed. The massive, ornate towers and grand hotels that once stood on either side of the street have now, for the most part, been turned into bars, stores or offices, but still, maintain some of their elegance. The avenue extends nearly a kilometre from the Vieux Port and leads, among others, to the lively neighbourhood of Capucin. It is one of the best things to do in Marseille.

Sunset at Merseille
Source: Unsplash

Plan your trip to France

Marseille is an old town, with plenty to do to keep the visitors entertained for days. We’ve compiled a list of the city’s best attractions so people pressed for time can pick and choose what they like best. The region has a Mediterranean early-summer climate (Köppen: Csa) with calm, mild winters with variable rainfall and humid, often dry summers. The coldest months are December, January and February, with average temperatures of about 12°C (54°F) during the day and 4°C (39°F) at night. Hottest months are July and August. Although putting together a trip to Europe is not a difficult task overall, having the support of a reputed travel brand is always an added benefit.

Pickyourtrail is the destination for all your travel needs in a single place. It provides customised itineraries with a range of options to choose from while also keeping the cost-effectiveness at check. Login to for further information and start planning your trip to France completely online. Find out more for a hassle-free travel experience. 

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