Marseille was nominated as the European Capital of Culture in 2013 and it is in this wonderful city that we will welcome you today Monday 24 August. We will be based at the Escale Borely from 10 am til 2 pm.
Marseille is often called “la Cite Phoceenne” because it was founded by Phoenician sailors in 600 BC fleeing the Persians invasion. Marseille has a rich architectural and cultural heritage. Here are some suggestions to discover this fabulous and vibrant city.
Exploring the creeks by boat
The best way to discover the coast is by boat. Forget the shuttle boat and rent instead a “pointu” (sharp) which is a simple fishing boat. You will be able then to discover all the different creeks (Calanques) like Samena, de l’Escalette, Sormiou, Sugiton to name just a few. They are all well-known and offer spectacular views as well as having tiny cabanons (shepherd’s huts made of stone and wood) where you can sample the simple yet exquisite Mediterranean cuisine.
Partying and dining
Les Halles de la Major is a large market place with several restaurants and cafes dedicated to gastronomy where you can go shopping and enjoy delicacies and exceptional local products.
The concept is quite original, you find a table then choose your dishes from the various market stalls you want to sample. The dishes will then be prepared and brought to your table, just sit back and enjoy with a nice glass of wine.
If you are after breathtaking views then visit this beautiful basilica that is Marseille’s most iconic building. It was built on the city’s highest point and everywhere you go in Marseille you will see the golden statue of the Basilica. The interior is mostly Romano-Byzantine and the dome is ornamented with coloured marble, murals and intricate mosaics.
A walk in the old port
The Old Port of Marseille is located at the end of the Canebière boulevard. It has been the natural harbour of Marseille since antiquity and is now the most popular place in Marseille, it is now pedestrianized since 2013. Why not wander in the morning in the fish market, watch fishermen mending their fishing nets and lose yourself in the alleys-ways.
A room with a view
If you are after a luxurious hotel with unbeatable prices then head to Mama Shelter. The rooms are imaginative and were designed by Philip Stark. Mama Shelter aims to bring urban chic within the range of everyone. The bar is eccentrically engaging and specializes in Pastis, in total 40 brands are represented! The food is local, absolutely delicious and don’t forget breakfast, terrific!
Every summer Cine Plein Air (outdoors cinema) offers films in different neighbourhoods to make every event more accessible to a largest crowd. In a friendly atmosphere you will discover all type of films every Friday and Saturday night. For more information go to www.marseille-tourisme.com
For something completely different and original and for the curious of modern art, the “Juxtapoz Association” organised this year an exhibition called Aux Tableaux! It is held in an old school called Saint-Thomas d’Aquin in the city center. The artistic director of the event has selected 40 artists to design ephemeral works on the school’s walls (classrooms, courtyard, etc). This is a unique event in Marseille and available to everyone. For more information, go to www.marseille-tourisme.com