Obviously, it’s a real shame to have only one day to visit Marseille – so many treasures to discover! But if you cannot stay longer, well, follow our guide! First time in our city? Or you already know a few spots and want to discover more? We present you classic or off the beaten track tours, walks in the countryside…
See our different itineraries
Marseille high spots, the perfect tour for a first visit
There are things you cannot miss if you are in Marseille: the symbols of our city. First of all, the fish market. From 9am, head towards the Vieux-Port to meet the fishermen who sell “à la criée” the catch of the day.
The fish market is one of the last folkloric emblems of Marseille. Admire the sea, the boats, the famous “ombrière”(a piece of art created in 2013, a kind of shade house) and Marseille light that is so special. No doubt you will come back with amazing pictures of the city.
After a walk on the Vieux-Port and the fish market, head towards Marseille most famous museum: the MuCEM. Doors open from 10am (in July and August, 11am the rest of the year) and it will only take you 15 to 20 minutes to reach the place by foot. Otherwise you can catch the 60 bus between « Métro Vieux-Port » stop and « MuCEM Saint-Jean » stop.
You will indeed need some energy! The MuCEM is big, and its gardens fantastic to explore. Visit the temporary or permanent exhibitions (and discover a piece of Berlin’s wall!), see Marseille scale models (the city today and in the Antiquity), stop at the amazing bookshop (30 000 books in French and other languages) and the boutique. Of course, you will pass over the gorgeous footbridges and discover the surrounding spaces, it’s free and they offer amongst the most beautiful panoramas of the city.
After your visit of the MuCEM, it’s probably time to eat. Good news, you’re just a stone’s throw from Marseille most picturesque quarter: le Panier. It’s the oldest quarter of the city, the true place of its Greek foundations.
For your lunch break, stop at one of the charming restaurants on the way. Our article here will tell you all about the best addresses.
After lunch, enjoy a walk in the little narrow streets and admire the colourful façades, a true Provençal village! Don’t be surprise to see so many graffitis on the streets walls, Le Panier is a spot adored by Marseille street artists.
To end this beautiful day in Marseille, there is one thing you must absolutely do before leaving: visit Notre-Dame de la Garde. Our “Bonne Mère” (Good Mother) is very dear to the Marseillais. The monument is exceptional, and the view is just breath-taking, with no doubt, the best panorama of the town: Marseille 360°.
It’s very easy to reach the spot from Le Panier. Just catch the 60 Bus (from the « Capitainerie », « Quai du Port » or « Hôtel de Ville » stops, according to where you ended your walk). The bus will take you directly at Notre Dame foot.
Marseille transports tips
If you’re using public transports, think about the XL 24h pass (5,20€). This pass allows you to do as many trips as you want in one day in Marseille (using the RTM network – bus, tube, tram, ferry boat). You can buy it at the tube and Tram stations (tickets machines), at the train station (Gare Saint Charles) or from the shops selling RTM tickets or the customer service in the mall called “Centre Bourse”(just opposite to the Vieux-Port).
You can hire a bike with the city bikes service in one of the many docking stations dispatched everywhere in the city’s centre. The first half an hour is free, then it’s 1€ an hour.