Marseille Through Film

Posted June 24, 2013 by Rachel Lee in Photo Essay

Marseille is the sunniest city that lies at the south of France, with its azure blue seas of the Mediterranean touching its coast. 

The crashing waves on the coastline force the hardened, chalk-white limestone cliffs to form inlets called calanques, in the area where the sea meets the mountains. ‘Fjord’-like in form, these are stunning places of natural beauty where alpine plants grow in the crevices of the white rocks. Though they only grow up to knee-level, the harsh climates and salty sea spray render only the hardiest of shrubs to thrive in such conditions. These calanques dot the coastline of Marseille.

In other areas boats bob gently, anchored near posh summer residences in the stretch across the Corniche.

Although the area around the Vieux-Port, the Old Port of Marseille, may seem tourist-ridden, it also calls for an authentic travel experience of a much more relaxed kind: sitting at the balcony terrace in the afternoon at a cafe called La Caravelle, you can sip French coffee and let sunny Marseille pass before your eyes. You can watch travelers and locals board ferries to the small islands around the area, one in particular which famously appears in ‘The Count of Monte Cristo’, a classic novel by Alexandre Dumas; the fortress on Château d’If that houses the infamous prison on an unescapable island where the protagonist makes his timely escape, survives, and succeeds.

Marseille and Provence are designated as the European Capital of Culture for 2013. 

As part of the fringe activities in Marseille-Provence, the writer’s photo ’View from La Caravelle’ is in the selection for the exposition in the gallery of ‘Researchers at Noon’. 

Find out more:

Marseille 1

Boats and clotheslines at the Calanque de Malmousque.

Marseille 2

Three bathers at the Calanque de Malmousque.

Marseille 3

The La Porte d’ Orient Monument.

Marseille 4

The view from La Caravelle, a café overlooking the old port.

Marseille 5

‘La Cagole’ is Marseillan slang for over-sexy women who wear too much makeup, but it is also a brand of beer.

Marseille 6

Boats at Cassis, an hour’s drive away from Marseille.

Marseille 7

Cliff views on the road.

Marseille 8

The sunset at Le Massif de Marseilleveyre.

Marseille 9

A pair of shoes left at Calanque de Malmousque: has the owner gone bathing or rock climbing?

Marseille 10

At the Château d’If.

Have you ever traveled around in Marseille? What was your favorite scene?

About the Author

Rachel Lee

She is a native of Singapore who loves the savage beauty of mountains and seas. Just over a year into making photographs in film, she aims to capture known and unknown places, arousing a sense of nostalgia for the fragile moments of everyday life, as observed in her travels around Indonesia, Malaysia, India, Hong Kong, France, Sri Lanka and in the Philippines.

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