Production : © 2016
Production : © 2016
The coastal road leading south from the port of Marseille opens up fascinating vistas, but it ends abruptly in the grand wilderness of the cliffs and gorges of the Calanques.
The charm of this fishing village, immaculately nestled between the bays of the calanques, has hardly been affected by its great popularity. You're more likely to meet smartly dressed Marseillais than sun-tanned fishermen, and it's unreasonably expensive to park anywhere in the center for any length of time. But Cassis is so beautiful and so well stocked with bistros, bars, and boutiques that it's still worth a detour.
To the east is a spectacular rocky outcrop crowned by a 14th century castle. This is now a hotel open only to guests, while the surrounding land is either pleasantly wild or dotted with wineries producing white and rosé wines under theCassis Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée (AOC).
It seems miraculous to find a haven like the Parc National des Calanques so close to bustling Marseille. In parts of this tiny, 85-square-kilometer area of scrub-covered, curving rocky outcrops, it's easy to think you're miles from civilization. Then, a bend in a pine-covered gorge reveals France's second-largest metropolis sprawling seemingly within reach; the Calanques seem like uninhabited suburbs.
Cassis, Greek Charsis, Latin Portus Charsicus, is one of the oldest foundations of Massalia. Poets (Mistral) raved about the small port and it was a favorite motif for painters (Derain, Dufy, Matisse, Vlaminck). Fascinating is the landscape of its bizarre fjords and gorges, the Calanques. They are best explored on foot or by boat. Some cliffs are the result of human intervention: Limestone was quarried here for centuries, and can even be found in Genoa or along the Suez Canal.
The white wine named after its place of origin is also famous. Various wineries can be visited on foot or by bicycle on a Route des Vins and taste their wines. We visit the Bodin winery, located on the outskirts of the city within sight of the Calanques cliffs.
A handful of Parisian elegance from the left bank of the Seine deep in Provençe, this is Aix with all its class.
The Calanques are a 20 km long, wild and spectacular stretch of rocky mountains and turquoise Mediterranean Sea.
Cassis is one of the oldest foundations of Massalia. Poets and painters raved about the small port.
The village of Le Castellet is set on the top of one of the many steep hills on whose slopes wine is grown.
Along the coastal strip, La Ciotat and the Mediterranean Sea are like an old married couple for more than 20 km.
Marcel Pagnol wants to make the castle the film city of Marseille and create a "Hollywood Provençal".
Sanary is an insider tip for over 100 years and has a turbulent, history in the time of the 2nd World War.