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Marseille – with 852,395 inhabitants (2007) – is France’s second largest city.Taking the entire metropolitan area, the population almost doubled (approx. 1.6 million). The town is located south of the country, where the river Rhone flows into the Mediterranean Sea, and administrative center in the Ministry of Bouches-du-Rhone and Provence-Alpes-Cote d’Azur. Marseille was founded by the Greeks already around 600 BCKr. – And thus has a very long history.
The most famous attraction in Marseille, the city’s landmark: the Basilica of Notre Dame de la Garde, which is located on a hill near the harbor. There is no old church (built in the 1880s), but it is monumental – and also has a 11 meter high gilded statue of the Virgin Mary with baby Jesus on top.
A city like Marseille are otherwise of course a variety of attractions to offer. Among the most popular is the Abbaye Saint-Victor (France’s oldest church, begun in 400’s), Musée des Dock Romains (the remains of a harbor warehouse from Roman times) and the traditional fish market in the Vieux Port (Old Port).
Otherwise, many tourists also like to carry an excursion to the small island of If, which is just outside the city. This is where the famous fortress of Chateau d’If, known among other things from the story “The Count of Monte Christo”.
The international airport of Marseille called Aéroport Marseille Provence , and it is 27 km northwest of the city.