Marseilles, the second largest city in France, and the largest commercial port is described as the capital of southern Europe, cosmopolitan and exuberant with it’s picturesque old ports. It is also the capital of Provence, and is at the other end of the Riviera to its flashy rival, Nice, both in terms of location and image. There are no manicured promenades and no glitzy hotels in this louche port. But for all its shabbiness, pollution and congestion, Marseille is one of the most exhilarating cities in France, offering a polyglot of cultures and races, and some of the best restaurants in the country
Founded in 600 b.c. by the Greek sailors of Phocaea, this great city is the oldest in France and surely the most complex. The old town ("Panier") and port, the cliff road high above the sea, the wild inlets plunging into the deep blue water for 20 km. To Cassis, this is the Marseilles of the tourist guide. But the commercial port, the airport, the oil industry, the large population all play an important part in the ecomomic role ot the whole ot Provence and complete the picture of a city rich not only economically but in culture, art and science.
To discover its unique character and beauty, one must leave the center of town and explore some of the "quartier" of which there are more than 100. Each quartier is a little Provencal village of its own with a church, a playing area for the game of Boules and the obligatory plane trees.
One can climb to 162 m, above sea level to
visit the church of the patron saint of sailors, Notre Dame de La Garde. One
can admire the cliffs the "Estaque" inspiration to Cezanne or go to
Treille to pay homage to the well loved Provencal writer Marcel Pagnol,
From the islands "lles de Frioul" and the Chateau d'If with its legend of the Count of Monte Cristo, one has a beautiful view of this ancient maritime site.
Sights worth visiting in
Cathedral of the Major.
Situated on the southern bank of the Vieux-Port above the dry dock,
this abbey founded in the 5th century on the tomb of an ancient Christian
martyr played an important role in Christianity's development in the
Mediterranean between the 11th and 18th centuries. In the 14th century, Pope
Urbain V (then installed in Avignon) oversaw its fortification.The abbey's
crypt and catacombs, which contain a number of ancient sarcophagi, are open to
visitors, whilst its excellent acoustics make it the perfect venue for the
religious and classical music concerts held here on a regular basis..Admission:
free; crypt visit around EUR 1.52
Transport to the city: There are shuttle buses (tel: (04) 42 14 31 27) to Marseille St Charles train station (journey time – 30 minutes). Taxis are available 24 hours a day and can be ordered in advance (tel: (04) 42 14 24 44; website: www.taxis-aeroport.com).
In Marseille, as elsewhere, ostentatious displays of wealth are inadvisable; take care not to carry valuables that can easily be snatched. Avoid leaving your car on the street in downtown Marseille - car theft is endemic. Fortunately there are ample, secure, underground car parks.
Moreover there is a clean, efficient métro system which stops everywhere you need to go in central Marseille. Maps and information are available from any métro station.Marseille Provence Airport is located 25km (16 miles) north of Marseilles, in Marignane.
For more information look at : http://travel.yahoo.com/p-travelguide-191501737-marseille_vacations-i
|Disclaimer | T's & C's | Copyright Notice||www.AIDSImpact.com|