Marseille attractions range from art galleries, white sandy beaches, and historic churches to museums, fine restaurants, and newly renovated entertainment districts. Marseille and its surrounding areas form the third largest metropolitan area in France behind Paris and Lyon and the variety of activities and attractions combine with the wonderful location in the southeastern part of the country on the Mediterranean Sea to provide visitors with an unforgettable experience. The city has a long history and tradition of art, literature, and music, and for years has been the most important port city in France. Marseille France tourist attractions include a wide variety of natural attractions in the form of the neighboring mountain ranges, deltas, and coastlines as well as nearby towns like Toulon and Cassis. Besides the natural wonders along the Mediterranean Sea, top attractions in Marseille can also be found throughout the city from the Old Port (Vieux Port) to the newest and trendiest parts of town.
The Basilique Notre Dame de La Garde is arguably the most distinctive of all the historic Marseille attractions. This imposing Roman-Byzantine structure from the nineteenth century still serves as one of the most important cultural and religious centers in the city. It towers over Marseille at the city’s highest elevation and offers incredible, panoramic views of the sights below and the sea beyond. You can tour the basilica in Marseille or even attend mass. Two of the most renowned features of the church are the 30-foot, golden statue of the Virgin Mary and the bell tower. If you are planning to tour the top attractions in Marseille, you should certainly put the Basilique Notre Dame de La Garden near the top of your list, if it is not already there.
The Chateau d’If is another of the most popular Marseille France tourist attractions. This castle that was constructed in the sixteenth century is packed full of tourists year round. It was the central setting of Alexandre Dumas’ The Count of Monte Cristo and at one time was occupied by Mirabeau, a hero of the French Revolution. You can reach the castle located on the island of If from the quai des Belges, located in the Vieux Port. It is a modest charge for the boat ride and the tour and it is more than worth it to see this oldest of the top attractions in Marseille.
The Palais du Pharo is a nineteenth-century palace where Napoleon himself once lived. This sprawling complex faces the Mediterranean Sea and the Chateau d’If and is open to the public for interior viewing most days of the week. The magnificent interior of the Palais du Pharo rivals the gorgeous exterior of the building and must be seen to be believed.
Some of the other most notable Marseille attractions include the Corniche, the War Memorial on the Corniche, the Old Port, the Joan of Arc Statue, The Eglise des Reformes, and the Hotel de Ville (City Hall). You will also find an incredible variety of amazing restaurants where you can taste the best of Marseille’s gastronomic traditions, a variety of legendary opera houses, and a wonderful selection of art galleries and museums. You will be able to enjoy the best of the historical and cultural traditions that are alive in Marseille while also tasting the best food, visiting amazing beaches, and enjoying great shopping. There are Marseille France tourist attractions to appeal to just about everyone.