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Published: September 15th 2016
Weather today was glorious again after last night’s violent storm (which knocked our electric off). Now cooler though, nearer 24 than 30 and set to stay that way for lots more days. Lovely.
Never thought much about Marseille except as a place to avoid driving through which we’ve had to do twice. The guide book didn’t tell us much so our trip today was a rather lovely surprise.
We caught the train from Arles station - €30 return for both of us which is a pretty good price as it’s at least 50 miles to Marseille. Train took 45 minutes with only 2 stops, one at the airport and then we were in the centre of this enormous very cosmopolitan city. We had no idea what to expect and no map and never did find a map as never saw a tourist office.
We headed down to the old port – not straight there as the road signs were a bit confusing and were generally aimed at cars not at pedestrians but we worked it out and made it to the Grand Rue which has magnificent 7 storey buildings on either side and trams running down
Then to the harbour which is magnificent. Only word for it. We stopped for coffee so we could admire the sights.
Then we walked along the end of the port where the fish market was still in operation and fishermen were working on their boats.
We walked all the way to the end of the east side of the port until we could go no further as we ran out of land. There is a way to cross to the other side, the road tunnel. We used it once in Tandy but not a good idea on foot.
We retraced our steps and stopped at a rather nice café for lunch then took the ferry across to the other side of the harbour. One lady tried to use her travel pass to pay and was affronted when she couldn’t. We were amused – the ferry was €0.50 per person !
We had chatted to an English couple who said we needed to visit the superb Cathedral which sits right on top of the hill on the East side and best way to get there is to take the tourist train which goes from
the other, the west side. We decided we really didn’t have time to do that so will leave that for our next visit.
We did have a lovely wander round an area of magnificent very old buildings. There are obviously lots more delights to see in this city and so we will put it on our list to revisit soon.
Back to the station nicely timed for our train back to Arles. All very easy and a superb day out. Got back in time for a swim before dinner.
We move on to Roses in the Spanish Bay of Roses tomorrow.
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