In this small cove, you’ll find a picture postcard scene, with colorful boats and homes. Easy to miss, it is an inlet that is set back from the Corniche Kennedy. Within the cove, you’ll find cute little houses, narrow streets for wandering, and renown restaurants known for seafood and the local specialty, bouillabaisse. Friends tell me this port has inspired many artists. (Free to visit, of course, but some of the restaurants can be pricey.)
Along Corniche Kennedy, you’ll find Jardin de la Villa Valmer. Enter from the Corniche, and follow the path (it’s a small climb) to the top where you’ll find the Villa which looks like a small castle. When I went it was closed, but I wasn’t interested in seeing it. The beautiful views of the sea from this point dwarf the villa. A great place to spend a sunny, summer Sunday afternoon picnic!
On a warm day, I highly suggest renting a bike and riding along the Corniche du President JF Kennedy. The Corniche Kennedy is a long coastal road, beginning at the city’s center leading to the beaches at the Prado. Along the way, you’ll find a monument dedicated to President Kennedy, various beaches, restaurants and beautiful views of the city and sea. According to the placards, it was built between 1850 and 1861, meant to link the city center to the chalet districts.
Notre Dame de la Garde is as much of a symbol to Marseille, as the Eiffel Tower is to Paris. The church is located on the top of a hill, and can be seen from most of the city. A major landmark, visitors come not only to see the church, but to see the views of Marseille below (try to stay to see the views at sunset – fabulous!). If you are a serious walker, dare to walk up the hills to get to the church; for the rest of us, take Le Petite Train for a small fee (entrance to the church is free).
Referred to as “the Citadel” by locals, this fort was built in the 17th century in a response to civil unrest and to keep an eye on the locals. (It was designed so that the canons within were pointed towards the town!) The Fort is at the entrance of Vieux Port, on top of a hill, and the Foreign Legion uses it as a base. Tours are available through the Marseille’s tourist office (located on Vieux Port), or by calling the Fort itself (+33 491 13 8900).