Noel carroussel

Festive Christmas activities in Marseille during the holidays

The Christmas holidays are here! Are you staying in Marseille and looking for recommendations on what to do? Here is a selection of sports, unusual or classic activities. Let us guide you and discover Marseille with your family during the festive season!

Published on 16 December 2021

The essential Christmas activities

The first thing that comes to mind when you’re in Marseille during the Christmas holidays is of course the famous ‘Foire aux santons’ (figurine fair)! This year, it is held on the Vieux-Port. Just next door, you will find the Christmas market. The city centre will be animated and vibrant throughout the holidays: an ice rink, a mini-fair, tastings and light illuminations that will delight young and old!

Discover the city

Guided tours

The Tourist Office is offering guided tours for families during the holidays. Street art in the Cours Julien district, a treasure hunt to discover ‘the fish and mermaids’ around the Vieux Port, a visit to ‘discover the water distribution system’ in the Palais Longchamp park, a family trip to ‘the end of the world’ (Les Goudes; furthest district in Marseille) with ‘Life is Goudes’ or an exceptional discovery of the marine fauna with a biologist guide on board a pointu (fisherman small boat). So many visits that are definitely worthwhile!
> Discover all the family guided tours of the Marseille Tourist Office.

Invader was here

Go hunting for ‘Space Invaders’ with your children! These small colourful mosaics are hidden all over the city!  During the summer of 2020, the street artist Invader installed his works throughout the Phocaean city, there are nearly 97 of them! It’s up to you to find them all!

Take to the sea

On a beautiful sunny day, hop on the boat and discover the location that inspired the Count of Monte Cristo story on the island of Château d’If! Just 30 minutes from the Vieux Port by boat, the Château d’If offers a breathtaking view over the bay of Marseille. During the holidays, discover all the mysteries of the island with your family!
Find out more about the visit of “Château d’If for the whole family”

The Notre-Dame de la Garde basilica

If there is one thing to see in Marseille, it is the famous Notre-Dame de la Garde! All means are good to go up there, on foot (count 20 good minutes from the Vieux Port), by bike, by bus (N°60) but the ideal if you have children, it is with the little tourist train, this one is taken on the Vieux Port and leads you directly to the Notre-Dame!
Book your ticket for the little train tour

A crave for nature

Discover the educational farms

Open every day during the holidays. Children will be made aware of the environment and will learn to know the animals of the farm as well as the nature which surrounds them. Educational activities and events will be offered (gardening, discovery of plants, introduction to organic farming, etc.) There are several educational farms in Marseille.

Take a deep breath of fresh air in the Marseille massifs

How about a nice winter walk with your family? Because of its topography, Marseille is full of beautiful natural paths for everyone to enjoy, a breathtaking view, a walk in the forest, here is our hike and trail selection in Marseille and its surroundings for a total change of scenery.

A crave for learning

Everything you need to know about the planets

Welcome to the Planetarium in the garden of the Palais Longchamp!
There are various activities every day during the school holidays, and tours for the very young and for the older ones, the stars will no longer hold any secrets for you!

Activities in the city’s museums

For the little ones, visits and activities are planned during all the holidays in most of the city’s museums. Night safaris at the Natural History Museum, artistic workshops around nature at the Préau des Accoules, storytelling visits at the Museum of African, Oceanian and Amerindian Arts, creative workshops around Christmas at the Château Borely or themed courses and workshops at the Château de la Buzine, there is something for all tastes and all ages!

For OM football team fans

Visits of the Orange Velodrome stadium take place every day during the Christmas holidays, your children will be able to learn all about their favourite team!

A crave for sport activities

You can go to the skate bowl of Prado beach or the skate park of the Friche Belle de Mai, your children will have a blast! If your children fit more the Tarzan type, take them on a tree climbing adventure and accompany them in their acrobatics.


Is the weather acting up?

Don’t panic! Even if it’s raining, cold or windy, you’ll never get bored in Marseille!

Theme parks

For the youngest, Royal Kid or Magic City are a real opportunity to blow off steam! Children can play in giant game areas to their heart’s content. Urban Jump or KIP are indoor multi-purpose parks targeted more for teenagers, where they can play indoor go-karts, lasergames, bowling or try out the giant trampolines.

Escape games

There are many escape games in Marseille, for Harry Potter fans, mystery fans, film buffs, or older people who are looking for a good scare! From the most mysterious to the most frightening, your children and teenagers will enjoy themselves to their heart’s content! (illucity, time out, panic room, Dark dreams) …

For the most daring

The climbing walls are not to be outdone! Adapted to all levels (even for the youngest) you can enjoy the climbing rooms of the Phocaean city with your family. (Altissimo, la boite à grimpe, Climb Up …)