A Travellerspoint blog

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Marseilles - to be avoided!

Yep - mugged in Marseilles

sunny 18 °C

Beautiful day.. tad foggy.. drove very carefully via GPS to Avignon, but got very lost towards the end.. a very kind lady said "follow me" and drove infront of is to the TGV station.. where we proceded to again get lost.. thank goodness some kind people speak English.
Europcar have got their lovely vehicle back - unscathed!!!

We caught the TGV from Avignon on time.. arrived Marseilles 45 mins later..
Found hotel Citea near the station.. but room was not to be ready till 2.00 pm
so left luggage and went walking to get some provisions..
Crowds of people selling all sorts of trinkets from small stalls
Suddenly young hooligan grabbed Wendy's necklace (Gold one from from Lorna)and made off..
Despite loud shouts of "stop Thief" people just looked away.. wendy survived unscathed but very shocked and shaken..

We returned to the railway station where we knew we'd seen police..who were very helpful.. drove us down in a police car..
nearly flipped when young police man produced handcuffs and said - "Do I need to put these on you??"
Suddenly realised he was only joking!!
Whilst at the station we were very privileged to witness the great friendship between the police officers - the very french version of "shake hands" - (use your imagination here!!)

But 4 loooog hours later we eventually got to be interviewed in French by a most helpful police sargeant, who sympathised with our situation.

During our stay at the station there was a loud hubbub down the street and a very roudy group of demontrators targeted the police station - (which had now been locked up! with us inside TG!!) banging on the windows with their banner and yelling abuse to the police - who mind you really seemed quite relaxed about the whole thing.. but they had officers with huge muzzeled dogs very quickly outside the station and as the noisy group headed off noisily with a smoke bomb or flares, down another street towards the railway station, four riot vans came along quick smart on their heels..
After all this drama our first thought is to "cut and run" still undecided so will research online for another destination, or maybe stay a little longer.
we have to be in Nice on Friday 20th to catch train to Italy..
We have been advised not to carry cameras so will dress down and try to blend in in this part of the world!
Protesters outside police station

Protesters outside police station

Posted by timd 10:51 Archived in France Tagged theft marseilles thugs Comments (0)

Getting better

Marseilles exploration

sunny 15 °C

This morning we breakfasted in style in the hotel dining room.. yuuum croissants!!
We changed some train tickets at the station then headed off on foot to the Old Port area. mush quieter on the streets today - Sunday


We decided to take a "mini train" tour from the old port area up to the Basilica Our Lady of the Gard - "Notre Dame" which one can see high on a hilltop. The "train" took almost an hour to wind its way along the waterfront streets, providing magnificent views of the town - especially the islands - "Count of Monte Cristo" . We stopped for 30 mins at the Basilica --
But there was a gale-force wind so we had to be VERY careful climbing steps and clinging tightly to railings!
We were rewarded with a magnificent Church interior..
Inside notre Dame - Marseilles

Inside notre Dame - Marseilles

Inside notre Dame - Marseilles

Inside notre Dame - Marseilles

Posted by timd 05:47 Archived in France Comments (0)

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