Chapter 744: I Fell In Love With Marseille

I’ve been doing a few weekend trips already and this was by far, the one place that really made me feel so happy! Marseille was actually a spontaneous trip, like many of my other trips, I wasn’t expecting too much and I thought it would be a great opportunity to get some sunshine and be away from the hectic office over a short weekend. I had an early flight at 6:50am and I was super tired but very excited. I was put into a middle seat, but luckily my row was empty so I freely moved myself to the window seat and found a fantastic view! Just look at that!
First impressions of the city: Very beautiful and a little tropical.
Charming buildings everywhere…
I went straight towards the port and I found a big ferris wheel.
There was a morning fish market. The fishes were all fresh, still alive, moving and flapping around, which was a very unusual sight, because the fish markets back home usually sell frozen fish only.
The port had such a lovely and calming view, it was very sunny over the weekend. Blue skies and blue waters!! I felt like I had revived from the dead because compared to what I was suffering with over in London, this was like paradise.
I wanted to go up to the see the Notre Dame de la Garde but didn’t want to hike because I still had my over-night bag and I couldn’t check into my hotel until 4pm…So the best thing for me was to take the petit train…it was more of a train/bus trolley for people take took you up the mountain, then it’ll stop for 20 mins…Well the driver said 25 mins for us to get off and explore. Then you can take the next train down back to the port… The roads were pretty steep so it was a good thing I decided on this option, plus it was only 8 Euros. On this route it took me pass the coast and I got to see a beautiful view along the way.
When we got to the point of interest, I got off and the sun was so strong, and the golden statue on top of the tower was shining.
The view it self is absolutely beautiful!! Just look at the sky and waters!
There were actually a lot of people here, slightly crowded, especially inside. It wasn’t as big as I had thought it would be but…Very charming Catholic basilica.
I found Jesus.
The interior design…is so beautiful, like entering another world.
Every inch of the interior walls and ceiling is covered with patterns, colour and art…very detailed with a lot of shiny gold.
There were a few walls where you get to see many portraits.
Coming back out of the building I got to see more of the view and it really was a breath of fresh air!
I didn’t want to leave.
It reminded me a bit of Hakodate in Japan…Just a little feeling of the same happiness…
Near the stairs sat a very cute child statue.
The golden statue looks almost magical, even when afar.
This was my ride! There were 2 routes, circuit 1 and 2…the 2nd one goes to Vieille Charité and to see many monuments. The entire journey took about 1hr and 20 mins. Definitely a great way to explore the city…
From the port you can see the Notre Dame de la Garde on the mountain. Looks just like something you’d find in a fairy tale book. All the yachts, boats all neatly lined up.
Near the metro station of Vieux Port they have a mirrored roof walk way…
and they were selling a lot of plants for a few hours.
This was one of the highlights of my trip..
Palais Longchamp!
Pretty epic…
There was a colourfully dressed man juggling some balls at every traffic light opportunity.
Musée des Arts décoratifs, de la Faïence et de la Mode…
Parc Borély…One of the most popular parks in Marseille…Very peaceful and spacious. There were many kids here riding their bikes and people taking strolls.
I came across the Statue Of David which meant I was very close to the Plage du Prado.
and it was just so lovely, the waters were so blue and I had a wonderful and relaxing time here.
Plage du Prado is a man-made beach and a lot of people here exercise.
The beach is man made by Gaston Defferre in the elate 1970’s. Although it is artificial, it’s still a beautiful place to have a picnic and relax.
I was about to head back to town and to finally be able to check into my hotel where I would take a break before dinner…
Night view of my hotel. I was staying at the Toyoko Inn which is a few minutes away from Stain-Charles station.
The room was actually very quiet, clean and cosy. It was well maintained.
Like most Japanese hotels you have a deep soaking bath tub, Japanese modern toilet, and a small sink. Just like being in Japan! And the moment we have been waiting for…
My bedroom view! A spectacular construction site! I had to close the curtains immediately.
Before dinner…I went to the Christmas market at the port.
It’s just a small row of little wooden shops…everything is lit up and security is strict with a lot of police around.
Lovely and cheery mood!!
In Marseille you don’t get the chocolates and sweeties as much, because it’s all about the soaps!
I did some research about where to eat and decided to go to a place called Massena Café which is conveniently located by the Castellane metro station. They didn’t have an english menu and most people spoke only french, so I made do which my limited amount of french and managed to order their: Bouillabaisse starter. It came with some hard bread, some spread and cheese with garlic. I absolutely love bouillabaisse, so tasty!!
My main was the classic moules frites, mussels and fries! The mussels were very very delicious, sweet and tender. The fries weren’t the best I must say…Slightly more on the softer, sad and soggy side. But it was all about the mussels!!
The waitress that was serving me went through the list of desserts…No pictures or menu and the one I understood was Creme Caramel so I went with that one. And…it was a fine dessert! Sweet and little bitter, with delicious milky whipped cream and fruits.
She also asked if I wanted a coffee and I said yes, just about understanding her…I think I might want to study French again!! I did it as a compulsory course in school for 3 years but back then, because I never used any of what I learn outside of school I quickly forgot everything…
After a good night sleep…I wanted to goto the station first…
On the balcony of Saint Charles Station, you can get a good view of the Notre Dame.
And next I wanted to go straight to the Notre-Dame du Mont to explore Cours Julien (The area famous for its full-on graffiti art!)
All alley ways are covered in striking colours.
Some pieces are very cool!
Such a cool area to visit seriously. Some people might think it’s a bit dodgy but it’s just so different, I loved it.
All the shops, cafes, bars…everything is just colourful.
This art piece was pretty cool!
And the staircase. It’s located on one of the entrances / exits of the metro station, you will be bombarded by the bright colours all around. Some may look quite messy but some pretty awesome. Cours Julien can not be missed when you’re in Marseille…It’s got many food places here too. I read that at night it becomes a very lively neighbourhood.
It was time to head to the airport…When I first arrived on Saturday early morning I bought myself a return EcoTicket that allowed me to go to the city from the airport and back. I paid 16 Euros and it was the easiest option, the journey one way depending on traffic is approx 30 mins. Which is better than the train because you’d have to transfer and the entire one way could take an hour. I also bought a 24 hour metro ticket which allowed me to jump onto any train I wanted for 24 hours! I think is was about 5 Euros something at the ticket machines.
Of course how could I could I leave without buying a few soaps! And after using the red coloured one I must say….It’s so lovely and gentle on my skin! I felt a little bit obsessed with soap after spending the weekend in Marseille…
Luckily I had a window seat on the way back and got to see a beautiful view again. Overall, Marseille has become one of my favourite French cities and I would love to re-visit again!! My entire body hurts, especially my feet and legs….But it was well worth it!

—Tofu

5 thoughts on “Chapter 744: I Fell In Love With Marseille

  1. I used to live right behind Notre Dame de la Garde, and I worked in the snack right by the Massena Cafe!!! So it was really good to watch your pictures. There are a few posts on my blog if you want to have a look 😉
    I’m happy AND surprised you liked Marseille because it can be a very upsetting city!

    Liked by 1 person

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