The old port city of Marseille is the third-largest city in France. While the city once had a reputation for being rough around the edges, today, it embraces that old-world roughness that’s softened by its modern charm.
Marseille’s location on the Mediterranean Sea gives it a quaint feel. The population of almost a million people combined with street art, chic cafes and eateries, world-class museums, and a vibrant culture give it an electrifying, urban feel.
Below are 15 of the best tours in and around Marseilles.
1. Take a Sightseeing Tour of Marseille
Start your adventure in Marseille with a sightseeing excursion around the city. During this four-hour comprehensive tour, you’ll see various areas of the city, including the oldest neighborhood and the Old Port.
Meet your guide and hop into a comfortable, air-conditioned minivan before heading out to explore Marseille and a section of the French Mediterranean Coast.
Your first stop is at the Notre Dame de la Garde, where you can admire panoramic views of the city, coast, and nearby mountains.
Next, you’ll make your way to the center city, which is home to Noailles Market, Fort St. Jean, and Le Panier neighborhood. Following the walking tour of the center city, enjoy a five-kilometer scenic drive along The Corniche to Goudes.
2. Set Sail for Calanques National Park
Depart Marseille on a large catamaran and cruise along the rocky coastline of the Mediterranean Sea to Calanques National Park, which is considered to be one of the most beautiful natural sites in the whole country.
During this five-hour adventure, you’ll see the stunning natural land and seascapes of the national park, and you’ll swim and snorkel in the clear waters near breathtaking coves. A delicious lunch is provided, and snorkeling equipment is available onboard the catamaran.
3. Explore the French Riviera
The French Riviera – otherwise known as the Cote d’Azur – is a top vacation area for both residents of France and travelers from all over the world. This 11-hour guided tour will take you through some of the highlights of this much-loved paradise.
Leave Marseille in a comfortable minivan and set out along the coast to explore Monaco, Eze, and Nice.
Monaco is your first stop. This is where you’ll watch the changing of the guards ceremony at the Princes’ Palace and drive on the famous street that becomes a racetrack during the Formula One Grand Prix.
Next, you’ll make your way to Eze, where you’ll explore this medieval town and visit a perfume factory.
Last but not least, you’ll explore the beautiful city of Nice and see iconic sites such as the Cours Saleya market and Promenade des Anglais.
4. Visit the Capital of Lavender and the Luberon Valley
Hop on an air-conditioned minibus and enjoy a ten-hour tour of Sault and the Luberon Valley. In Sault, which is said to be the lavender capital of the world, you’ll visit the sprawling lavender fields and pay a visit to a lavender producer.
You’ll also have some free time to explore this pretty little town and grab some lunch before heading to your next stop.
The villages of Roussillon and Gordes in the Luberon Valley are among the most stunning in all of France, and you’ll spend the rest of the afternoon exploring both.
5. Visit the Roman Towns of Provence
Depart Marseille in the comfort of a minivan and spend the next 7.5-hours exploring Roman towns and monuments. Arles is the first stop on this tour; this is where you’ll see excellent examples of Roman architecture, including the Roman Arena and Old Town.
In Nimes, which is the next stop on the tour, you’ll get some free time to explore and grab some lunch before visiting an old Roman settlement.
The town of Uzes is the last stop on the tour, and you’ll see more Roman attractions, including Le Pont du Gard.
6. Bike Along the Seashore
Spend 90 minutes exploring a beautiful section of Marseille by electric bike. Much of the tour takes place near the seaside and adjacent neighborhoods.
As you soar along city streets taking in the sights, you will have the chance to stop and photograph various attractions, including Notre Dame de la Garde Basilica, The Vallon des Auffes, and Pharo Palace.
Stop for breaks along your route and hear stories and historical information from your knowledgeable guide.
7. Take a Wine Tour of the Luberon Wine Region
France is known the world over for its wine, and you have the chance to explore one of its popular wine regions with a 7.5-hour tour of the Luberon Wine Region.
Meet your guide at a convenient location in Marseille and hit the road in a comfortable, air-conditioned minivan. During the tour, visit several wineries and wine cellars and hear about the unique techniques that winemakers use in this region.
In the stunning village of Loumarin, spend some free time exploring the area.
8. Go Snorkeling and Scuba Diving in Calanques National Park
Go on a four-hour marine adventure with this exciting tour that offers the best of both worlds: an opportunity to enjoy the spectacular scenery of Calanques National Park above the sea and beneath it.
Meet a diving instructor at the Port de la Pointe Rouge in Marseille. After you get fitted with diving and snorkeling gear, travel by water in an inflatable boat to the national park.
On the way, take in the natural sights of the French Riviera. Upon arrival to a secure area near one of the park’s islands, spend a half-hour snorkeling and discovering the marine life beneath the surface.
Next, your instructor will provide you with diving instruction so you can slip 18 feet beneath the surface to discover even more marine life, including striped mullet, sea stars, and zebra bream. Before departing the docks in Marseille, you’ll be presented with a scuba diving certificate.
9. Go Truffle Hunting
Learn all about truffles and hunt for your own on this three-hour guided tour at a truffle plantation in Provencal.
Learn everything you need to know about this guarded industry, including how the truffles are grown and cultivated, how to find truffles, and how dogs are trained to help with the process.
Team up with genuine truffle hunters and set out to find some of your own. Enjoy your truffles with some champagne, followed by a lesson in how to clean, store, and cook these delectable treats.
Before ending the tour, explore the vineyards and an olive tree plantation in the beautiful region of Luberon.
10. Track Van Gogh on a Unique Tour from Marseille
Get picked up at your hotel in an air-conditioned minivan and head out on a 7.5-hour excursion following in the steps of the famous painter, Van Gogh.
Stop first in the city of Arles, where you’ll explore this UNESCO World Heritage Site. See the Roman arena and take a walk along the Cours de la Republique.
Next up is the village of Les Baux de Provence, where you will visit Saint Remy de Provence and Saint-Paul-de-Mausole – one of Van Gogh’s former residences. Spend some free time exploring the area before heading back to Marseille.
11. Take a Segway Tour of Notre Dame de la Garde
Don’t worry if you’ve never driven a segway before; your instructor will provide you with a lesson before you head out on a two-hour tour through some of the most notable areas of Marseille.
As you soar through the city streets on this fun and unique method of transportation, you’ll pass iconic landmarks, including Cathedrale de la Major, the Mucem, and the Old Port.
Once you reach Notre Dame de La Garde, you will have some time to explore the attraction, admire the spectacular views of the city, and visit the cathedral and the Abbey of St. Victor.
12. Indulge with a Foodie Walking Tour
During this three-hour walking tour, you’ll have the chance to immerse yourself into the various cultures that make up the multicultural ambiance of Marseille.
As you make your way through the old city streets of the Noailles district, you’ll see many attractions, including le Panier, which is the oldest neighborhood in the city. You’ll also get to taste the unique food and drink of many cultures, including France, Greece, and Italy.
Stop at six different eateries and sample local favorites such as panisse and pastis. Smell the delicious food coming from the restaurants and cafes and hear the different languages being spoken while you get a history lesson from your informative guide.
13. Explore the Region of Aix-en-Provence
Depart Marseille in a comfortable, air-conditioned minibus and spend four hours exploring the beautiful area of Aix-en-Provence.
Drive along the Cours Mirabeau and its famous fountains and old mansions before entering the center of Aix-en-Provence.
Admire the picturesque streets and visit Cathedrale Saint-Sauveur d’Aix. Sit in on a workshop about the artist Paul Cezanne and enjoy some free time to explore on your own.
14. Take an E-Bike Tour of Calanques National Park
Depart Marseille on your provided E-Bike and leave the city behind for this three-hour adventure to Calanques National Park.
Along the way, soar along off-road trails and see many natural areas, including Chateau Pastre, Montagne de l’Aigle, Parc de la Fontaine d’Ivoire, Crete des Escampons, and Col de Cortiou Mountain Pass.
Head back to the city via the Roy d’Espagne neighborhood and finish the tour at Pointe Rouge Harbor.
15. Take a Tour of Marseille in a Vintage Sidecar
Join your guide in a vintage sidecar and explore the old neighborhoods of Marseille.
During this two-hour tour, you will visit various districts – including the historic neighborhoods of Le Panier and Noailles – and see attractions such as Notre Dame de la Garde Basilica. You’ll also take a scenic drive along the Corniche JFK and visit the port of Goudes.