A Woman Standing Under the Tree

Solo travel to Marseille / France as Solo Traveller.

Welcome to Marseille: A Haven for Solo Female Travelers

Hello fellow adventurers! Welcome to my travel blog, where we embark on thrilling journeys and explore hidden gems around the world. Today, I am excited to take you on a virtual tour of Marseille – a destination that has captured my heart and soul. Whether you’re a seasoned traveler or a first-time solo female explorer, Marseille offers a warm welcome, rich culture, and countless experiences that will make your trip unforgettable. So, let’s dive in and discover the magic of Marseille together!

1. Embracing the Rich History and Culture

1.1 Discovering Marseille’s Ancient Roots

As you stroll through the vibrant streets of Marseille, you’ll quickly realize that this city is steeped in history. Start your journey at the Vieux Port, the heart of the city’s life, where fishing boats and luxury yachts coexist harmoniously. Marvel at the iconic Notre-Dame de la Garde, a basilica perched on the city’s highest point, offering breathtaking views of Marseille and the Mediterranean Sea.

1.2 Exploring Le Panier: Marseille’s Oldest Neighborhood

Step into the charming neighborhood of Le Panier, hardly untouched by time. With its narrow cobblestone streets, pastel-colored buildings, and vibrant street art, Le Panier is a haven for wandering souls. Enjoy a cup of coffee at a local café, browse through the quirky boutiques, and immerse yourself in the vibrant artistic scene. Don’t forget to visit La Vieille Charité, a former almshouse turned museum, housing a fascinating collection of art and artifacts.

2. Savoring the Culinary Delights

2.1 A Gastronomic Paradise

Calling all food enthusiasts – Marseille is a haven for your taste buds! Indulge in traditional Provençal cuisine and savor an array of flavors at local restaurants and street markets. Bite into a freshly baked fougasse, a delicious bread topped with various Mediterranean ingredients, or sample some authentic bouillabaisse, Marseille’s iconic fish stew. For a sweet treat, head to Les Navettes, a traditional biscuit shop offering mouthwatering biscuits that are perfect for souvenirs.

2.2 The Bouillabaisse Experience

A trip to Marseille would be incomplete without trying bouillabaisse, the city’s signature dish. This flavorful seafood stew is a true delight for the senses. To enhance your experience, book a table at a local restaurant that specializes in bouillabaisse, such as Chez Fonfon or Le Miramar. Let the divine aroma and fresh flavors transport you to culinary paradise.

3. Staying Safe and Connected

3.1 Prioritizing Safety as a Solo Female Traveler

As a solo female traveler, safety is paramount. Marseille, like any other city, has its own share of challenges. However, by staying cautious and taking a few simple measures, you can explore this vibrant city with peace of mind. Stick to well-lit and populated areas, avoid isolated spots at night, and be aware of your surroundings. It’s always a good idea to have travel insurance that covers emergencies and to keep important contact numbers handy.

3.2 Connecting with Like-Minded Travelers

In a city as diverse as Marseille, connecting with fellow travelers is a breeze. Join local walking tours, sign up for a cooking class, or explore the art scene in Le Panier. Engaging in these activities not only allows you to make new friends but also provides a platform to share travel tips and experiences. Remember, the travel community is a tight-knit one, and we thrive on supporting and uplifting each other.

4. Unwinding and Rejuvenating

4.1 Enjoying the Beach Culture

Marseille boasts a stunning coastline with beautiful beaches waiting to be explored. Spend a leisurely day soaking up the sun at Plage des Catalans or Plages du Prado. Take a dip in the azure waters of the Mediterranean Sea or indulge in water sports like paddleboarding and kayaking. With the sea breeze in your hair and the warm sand beneath your feet, relaxation is guaranteed.

4.2 Escaping to the Calanques

For nature lovers, a visit to the Calanques is an absolute must. These breathtaking limestone cliffs and crystal-clear turquoise waters create a mesmerizing landscape. Lace up your hiking boots and embark on an unforgettable adventure exploring the hiking trails that lead to hidden coves and secluded beaches. Bask in the serenity of nature as you take in the awe-inspiring beauty around you.

With its rich history, vibrant culture, delectable cuisine, and adventure-filled experiences, Marseille is a dream destination for solo female travelers. Embrace the spirit of exploration, get lost in charming neighborhoods, and immerse yourself in the local culture. Marseille will leave an indelible mark on your heart, reminding you of the beauty that lies both within you and in the world. Bon voyage!

Accommodation Options in Marseille for Solo Female Travelers

1. Mama Shelter Marseille

Located in the trendy Cours Julien neighborhood, this modern and stylish hotel offers comfortable rooms with a hip and vibrant atmosphere.

2. Hotel C2 Marseille

Situated in a beautifully restored 19th-century mansion, this boutique hotel offers elegant rooms, a rooftop terrace, and a spa for the ultimate relaxation.

3. Vertigo Vieux-Port

Perfectly located near the Old Port, this budget-friendly hostel offers shared and private rooms with a communal kitchen and a friendly atmosphere.

4. Airbnb Rentals

Consider renting an apartment or a room through Airbnb for a more personalized and homey experience. Look for accommodations in safe and central neighborhoods.

5. Camping Marius

If you prefer outdoor accommodation, Camping Marius provides camping spots for tents and caravans. Located near the beach, it offers modern facilities and a peaceful atmosphere.

Must-See Places in Marseille

1. Vieux-Port (Old Port)

The heart of Marseille, this bustling port offers picturesque views, charming cafes, local markets, and boat trips to nearby islands.

2. Notre-Dame de la Garde

Perched on the highest point in Marseille, this iconic basilica provides panoramic views of the entire city and is a symbol of protection for sailors.

3. Le Panier

Marseille’s oldest neighborhood, Le Panier is a maze of narrow streets lined with colorful houses, vibrant street art, charming shops, and cozy cafes.

4. Calanques National Park

A natural wonder just outside the city, Calanques offers stunning limestone cliffs, hidden coves, crystal-clear waters, and hiking trails for outdoor enthusiasts.

5. MuCEM (Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilizations)

A modern architectural masterpiece, this museum showcases the history and culture of the Mediterranean region through captivating exhibitions.

6. Palais Longchamp

This grand monument features a picturesque park, a stunning water cascade, and two fine arts museums, making it a perfect spot for a leisurely stroll.

7. Château d’If

Located on the nearby island of If, this historic fortress is famous for its appearance in Alexandre Dumas’ “The Count of Monte Cristo.” Take a boat trip to explore its intriguing history.

8. La Corniche

This scenic coastal road offers breathtaking views of the Mediterranean Sea, exclusive villas, glamorous beaches, and access to beautiful swimming spots.

9. Marseille Cathedral

Also known as Cathédrale de la Major, this stunning cathedral showcases a unique blend of Byzantine and Romanesque architecture and is a must-visit for history and architecture enthusiasts.

10. Les Terrasses du Port

A modern shopping center with a rooftop terrace, Les Terrasses du Port offers panoramic views of the harbor and is a great place for shopping, dining, and relaxation.

Favorite Foods to Eat at Marseille

Bouillabaisse

Bouillabaisse is a traditional fish stew that originated in Marseille. It is made with a variety of local fish such as red rascasse, sea robin, and rockfish. The stew is flavored with saffron, garlic, onions, tomatoes, and various Mediterranean herbs and spices. Bouillabaisse is typically served with a garlic-infused rouille sauce and crusty bread. It is a hearty and delicious dish that showcases the flavors of the Mediterranean Sea.

Panisse

Panisse is a popular street food in Marseille, which is essentially a fritter made from chickpea flour. The batter is made by mixing chickpea flour with water and olive oil, then deep-frying until crispy. Panisse is often served as a snack or appetizer and can be enjoyed on its own or with a variety of dips and sauces. It has a crispy exterior and a soft, creamy interior, making it a delightful and flavorful treat.

Petits Farcis

Petits Farcis are stuffed vegetables that are commonly found in Marseille cuisine. This dish typically consists of hollowed-out vegetables such as zucchini, bell peppers, and tomatoes, which are then filled with a mixture of seasoned ground meat, breadcrumbs, herbs, and spices. The stuffed vegetables are then baked until tender and golden. Petits Farcis are a delicious and satisfying dish that showcases the fresh produce and flavors of the region.

Anchoïade

Anchoïade is a traditional Provencal dip that is popular in Marseille. It is made by blending anchovies, garlic, olive oil, lemon juice, and sometimes additional ingredients such as capers or mustard. The resulting dip is savory, tangy, and packed with umami flavors. Anchoïade is typically served with raw vegetables, bread, or as a condiment to accompany grilled meats and seafood. It is a versatile and flavorful dip that adds a burst of Mediterranean taste to any meal.

Navettes

Navettes are a type of traditional Marseille biscuit that is shaped like a small boat (hence the name, which means “little boats” in French). These crunchy biscuits are made with a combination of flour, sugar, butter, and orange blossom water. Navettes are often enjoyed with a cup of coffee or tea, and they are especially popular during the Christmas season. They have a delicate and fragrant taste, making them a delightful treat to enjoy while exploring Marseille.

Daily Costs for Solo Travellers in Marseille

Food:

– Average cost of a meal at a budget restaurant: €10-15
– Quick snack or street food: €5-8
– Groceries for a day: €20-30

Stay:

– Budget hostel dorm bed: €15-30 per night
– Mid-range hotel: €50-80 per night
– Airbnb apartment rental: €40-100 per night

Transportation:

– Public transportation (bus, metro): €1.60 per single ride
– Daily transportation pass: €5
– Taxi fare (starting rate): €3.80
– Bike rental: €1-2 per hour or €10-15 per day

Safety for Women Solo Travellers in Marseille

General Safety Tips:

– Stay vigilant in crowded tourist areas, markets, and public transport.
– Avoid walking alone at night, especially in less crowded areas.
– Keep your valuable belongings secure and be cautious of pickpockets.

Safe Areas:

– Vieux-Port area and central Marseille are generally considered safe.
– La Joliette and Le Panier neighborhoods are popular choices for tourists.

Avoiding Unpleasant Situations:

– Dress modestly and respectfully to blend in with the local culture.
– Use well-lit and busy streets when walking alone.
– Trust your instincts and avoid any situation that feels uncomfortable.

Emergency Numbers:

– Police: 17
– Medical emergencies: 15