Friday, May 30, 2014

Marseille

Marj and I rolled into Marseille yesterday and after grabbing a bus from the airport to the main train station (where it took us a while to find an exit door) we eventually made it to our hotel. Marseille is the 2nd largest city in France after Paris and unfortunately is nothing like Paris. The buildings, although they seem of the same vintage as Paris, all look they could use a good scrubbing. The ornate filigree is offset by a bit of grubbiness and we both agreed the entire city is kind of like that.

The main touristy area is the Vieux Port, a very wide walkway bordering the water on 3 sides, which has a 'mirror covered' market (photo below) - the market last night was for ceramics and since it was a holiday (Ascension) it was quite busy. For dinner we had to try the Marseille specialty - bouillabaisse (fish soup) - delicious.


We both woke up relatively early and since we didn't have to be in Avignon until later in the day we decided to take a tour on the Hop-on-hop-off bus.  This led us to the 2nd touristy spot in Marseille - the Notre Dame du Gard - a church high on the hill that you can see in the background of this photo.

Along the water, the fisherman had set up tables to sell their catch - some tuna, octopus, eel-looking creatures, snails, etc - some of it still flopping about.

We figured we'd seen the best Marseilles had to offer and, after much deliberation/translation, found the train to Avignon.  We don't board the boat until late tomorrow so we have time to do more exploring in the morning. We haven't made it sur le pont d'Avignon yet - dance to follow.

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