Marseille is one of Frances most energetic coastal towns in Provence. The second biggest city after Paris, Marseille is a beautiful balance between a Mediterranean metropolis and an operational port. The city has a hub of activity in and around the area. Here at Quality Villas, we have selected the best range of activities for you to experience on your next holiday.
Day One- Go to the Hub of the City
Time to get straight out there and head to the heart of Marseille, Vieux Port. Translated to the Old Port, this location is full of action. It is the home to St. Victor’s Abbey, Phare de Sainte Marie Lighthouse and the Old Town Hall. Just off the port, you will find the bustling area of Le Panier. Quaint little streets full of edgy art and crafts businesses make Le Panier a lovely afternoon for exploring.
Day Two- Visit Museums
Inspire your mind and make the most out of Marseille’s multiple museums. Boulevard Longchamp is a gorgeous 19th-century palace and museum. The gardens are perfect for a peaceful stroll in the warm sun. Musée d’Histoire de Marseille is a lovely and informative museum about the roots of the city. La Vieille Charitéhas a charming exterior, previously used as an almshouse, and now an art gallery and museum. It displays mainly Asian and African art, and is a fascinating visit. Another unique museum is Mucem, which offers diverse exhibitions on Mediterranean culture. The architecture is eye-catching, involving a solid, square block that displays beautiful illuminations in the evening. Situated in the Old Port, it is well worth a visit.
Day Three- Marvel at the Unique Coastline
Marseille is surrounded by beautiful landscapes, including the Calanques National Park. The best and most exciting way to get there is by boat. You can organise a mini cruise from the Old Port and enjoy the tranquillity of the Mediterranean Sea on the way. Upon arrival, you will feel immersed in the beauty of the white limestone cliffs. The calanque d’En-Vau cove is a must-visit if possible!
Day Four- Visit Notre Dame de la Garde
Notre Dame de la Garde is a stunning cathedral. Located at the top of a hill, not only is the architecture phenomenal, but the location offers a fantastic view of Marseille. Its beauty overlooks the city, and the structure itself can be seen vividly from the Old Port. The style is 19th-century neo-Byzantine. The striking, gold statue of the Virgin Mary and baby Jesus perches from the top of the building; it glows atmospherically in the glorious Mediterranean sun. For a refreshing afternoon trip, hop on a boat to the attractive four islands of Frioul archipelago, located in the bay of Marseille.
Day Five- Branch Out to a Nearby Neighbourhood
A charming little town near Marseille called La Corniche deserves a day trip. The main attraction comes from its stunning 5km stretch of sandy beach and is regarded as one of the most spectacular walks in the area. Its slightly eccentric neighbourhood setting makes it a fun break from the city, and the little fishing port is a delightful place to explore the local life. Make sure to stick around for mealtime and track down some Bouillabaisse; a tasty fish stew loved by the residents.
Day Six- Watch a Football Match
A distinctive building nestled in Marseille is the Stade Vélodrome. A massive white structure, it is hard to overlook. Its purpose is a stadium, so be sure to attend a football or rugby game during your stay. If you loved Day Five’s expedition, and fancy more coastal adventures around Marseille, head over to L’Estague instead. This place is supposed to be so beautiful it helped to influence the artist during the impressionist art movement. A patchwork of colour, the impact of the jagged cliffs, red-roofed houses and glorious plants is immense. For some more ideas on day trips from Marseille, take a look at our blog The Best Day Trips to Take from Marseille for further inspiration!
Day Seven- Relax
Unfortunately, it is your last day in fabulous Marseille. If you have time before your departure, make sure to soak up the last of the sunshine and head back to one your favourite beaches.
Marseille has plenty to offer for a fun week of diverse activities. If you’re planning a trip to the South of France, get inspired by our range of luxury holiday villas in the French Riviera for the perfect accommodation.