An original tour

Discovering Marseille by tuk tuk

Visit Marseille by tuk tuk, a kind of three-wheeled “taxi”, an original transport to visit Marseille! From the Old Port to the basilica  Notre Dame-de-la Garde, via Corniche Kennedy and finally the emblematic  Panier district, this more than original ride will amaze and surprise you with the richness of  the city of Marseille.

Published on 31 December 2021

An unusual walk in Marseille

From the Old Port to  Notre-Dame…

Today all lights are green to enjoy a shining day,  the weather is good without any wind like the mistral ( a typical strong south wind )and the temperature is mild, so what to do?

I decide to rediscover Marseille but this time in a more original way, by tuk tuk! Nicolas will be our guide and driver, a couple will join us a few minutes later to share this tour. After a quick introduction, Nicolas explains what our journey is going to be and invites us to board his “pitchoune”( affectionate expression from Marseille meaning little girl “fillette”).

We settle into the seats which are very comfortable: there are even blankets  for the most sensitive.

The meeting point is located on the Old Port, ideal to start our visit well. We can admire the sailboats and even see their names and dates of manufacture written on them.

Then, we continue on to Corniche Kennedy where we have a breathtaking view of Frioul islands. Nicolas explains that it is here where the Chateau d’If (If Castle) is located and the place where the Count of Monté Cristo was imprisoned and who was made famous by Alexandre Dumas’s novel.

…Passing by the Vallon des Auffes…

We are heading now into the narrow streets of the beautiful Endoume district and after a few minutes we have reached the small fishing port of the Vallon des Auffes, my favourite place in Marseille. Indeed, it is a place full of charm located in a quiet location, far from the traffic and accessible only by foot, bicycle or…by tuk tuk! We talk with some fishermen on our way getting ready to go and drink “Une Mauresque”( a  famous south cocktail with pastis and barley syrup).

In order to reach the emblematic Notre-Dame de la Garde, we go up through the Roucas-Blanc district, where we can admire beautiful houses.

I’m not very sporty by nature, so I’m glad that Nicolas and his “pitchoune” spared our efforts  to climb the 200 or so steps to get to the top! The view over Marseille is breathtaking. Nicolas suggests that we stop for 20 minutes to enjoy the view and discover the basilica if we wish.

… To finish with the Panier district

After taking  many pictures and sharing our common passions, we head back towards the  Panier, the oldest district in Marseille! Famous for its narrow streets and typical Provençal colors, life is good here, a great place to live in.

On our way to the Panier district, we passed by the Intercontinental Marseille Hotel -Hôtel Dieu- as it used to be called, a former Marseille hospital dating from the 16th century and classified as a historical monument. As we passed, Nicolas suggested that we stop to taste some Navettes in a very famous artisanal biscuit factory in Marseille : Les Accoules. Products of an ancestral know-how, these orange blossom biscuits are sure to awaken the taste buds.

Under the sound of the bells of the Accoules Church, we continue our journey through the majestic cathedral of “La Major” then we enter the heart of the Panier district rich by its heritage and culture. The streets are narrow, the tuk tuk barely passes by but thanks to it we were able to admire the Street Art present in many alleys.

An original and enriching outing

To finish our excursion we pass again on the port, the spectacle is always as pleasant. We are so comfortable in the tuk tuk that we don’t see the time passing.

During this ride we do not fail to be noticed, the tuk tuk is equipped with an old « pouet pouet » type horn, funnier than annoying, it can be very useful in traffic which can sometimes be busy.

In addition to being very enjoyable, this walk was very rewarding. Nicolas always has the references to answer our questions, he taught us a lot about the history of Marseille and its culture. If you want to go on an original, enriching and good-humored ride, go ahead for it!


Did you know?

Nicolas is passionate about his city and his region, he will be able to give you the best tips and places to visit and thus make your stay an unforgettable moment. Currently, he is the only tuk tuk driver in Marseille. So, feel privileged by experiencing  this escapade rich in discoveries and emotions.