Day 50: Marseille vs. Paris

The reason I fell in love with France was because I did a two week exchange to a town about an hour away from MarseilleOrange, France. And ever since I glimpsed at the French lifestyle, I vowed I’d come back and stay longer.

Et voila! I’m studying and living in France for 4 months. Sure, it took 6 years to get here, but I’m finally here!

And I wouldn’t be this close to Paris if it weren’t for that town near Marseille. So I wanted to give my respects to the city (and my good friend) who did me such a big favour of showing me how awesome the French life is!

HOWEVER….when I asked my French friends what Marseille is like, they pulled the typical exasperated faces and told me it’s just like a petite Algerie, and that it’s dangerous and ugly. That’s a bit of a downer to hear just after you book train tickets.

Parc Borely at sunset. Marseille is ugly? Are you sure?

So when I got there and spent 4 glorious days with my Marseillaise friend, I asked her if it was true: Is Marseille ugly? And she said – “Well, yeah. But Paris just hates Marseille, and Marseille hates Paris too.” Like Toronto vs. Vancouver! Gotcha.

And with those oh-so-encouraging words, I set out on a mission to prove that Marseille is NOT ugly. Here’s what I found.

The beautiful docks with some funny graffiti!

Palais Longchamp! No tourists, you get the whole place - including pretty fields - to yourself and the Musee des Beaux Arts is right there.

Andale andale! From the top of Palais Longchamp.

Le Panier, a super old district of Marseille. Gorgeous. And it looks kind of like Greece...

Still think Marseille is ugly? I thought it was beautiful – a sun drenched, wind blown French Mediterranean city with a fun and safe atmosphere. If you still aren’t sure, wait until you see Notre Dame de la Garde, the cathedral on the hill overlooking the town. If the cathedral isn’t enough for you (and it is, because the inside is something I’ve never seen before in France – so colourful and gold!), the views will take your breath away. Have a look!

Love the inside, and it was hard to capture on my camera. Red, blue and gold inside a white building!


Still not convinced? Tough crowd, but I have one more argument in my arsenal.

Ladies and gentleman, I present to you Marseillaise fine dining.

Aioli sauce, prawn, sea snails, some delicious salty white fish, and other goodies. I miss this.

And the Paris vs. Marseille is a battle that continues on. I love both cities dearly, and I have memories in both that won’t allow me to be objective enough to decide which is better. But MISSION ACCOMPLISHED! Marseille is not ugly!!

Marseillaisely yours,

Shiv πŸ™‚


6 responses to “Day 50: Marseille vs. Paris

  1. Come back to see me again when you want shiv’!! πŸ˜‰ it was so fun to find out my own town with you !!! See you soon! bisous!

    • Tu me manques, Laura! La prochaine fois que je serais en France, je t’assure que je vais te rendre visite! Gros bises et merci pour me montrer la belle ville de Marseille πŸ™‚

  2. I Googled “Marseille vs Paris” and reached here. You have an interesting array of blog posts on your travels. oh, btw, visit Sri Lanka, the next time you go to India, if you haven’t visited it yet. You will surely love it. πŸ™‚

    from Sri Lanka.

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