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Trip Report

My two favorite cities in France

I’m going to talk about the french capital, Paris, in opposition to an another amazing big city, Marseille.

  • Marseille+ 3
  • Paris
  • Paris
  • My two favorite cities in France
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EuropeFrance375 days / January - February - March - April - May - June - July - August - September - October - November - December 2021

Highs & Lows

Cities with many activities to do all the year (outdoor & indoor).

Cities with many tourists.

Itinerary Overview

France is undeniably a popular country internationally. Many of us could name a piece of French culture, such as a part of its gastronomy or a well-known tourist spot. However, like every country, being a tourist, we can miss some particularities that only the natives know.

I am Maxime, a Frenchman who had the chance to live in various places of this beautiful country. I have lived for a long time in the South-East and South-West but also in the North. Not to mention my numerous trips to all corners of this territory.

To be honest, I am still a real city dweller. I have a real addiction to the effervescence that can be found in the big French cities.

Thus, I have nurtured a particularly strong emotional bond with two large French cities that everything opposes: Paris and Marseille.

Here is their comparison!

  • 365 Nights: Paris
  • 10 Nights: Marseille
Paris - null


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Paris - null - null

Paris is definitely the first city of my heart for its infinite culture. A few suggestions to get out of the traditional tourist circuits and not have to sell your kidney to go there.

First of all, for accommodation, I can only recommend one place, tested many times and approved: the hostel "BVJ". The ones I prefer: Opéra-Montmartre and Champs-Élysées-Monceau. Breakfast is included, the rooms are clean and the location is ideal for venturing out on foot in the French capital.

Now let's tackle the non-touristy cultural places. Some examples of museums: Lafayette-Anticipation, European of photography, Méllies and Institut du monde arabe...

Theatres: Théâtre 13, La Cartoucherie, Huchette, À la folie...

The restaurants : Bouillon-Chartier, 'Les enfants Rouges', 'À la folie'...

It is now possible to enjoy Parisian culture without breaking the bank! Don't hesitate to ask the Parisians.

Marseille - null


Marseille - null - null
Marseille - null - null
Marseille - null - null

Marseille is also a very popular city with the French, but it contrasts with Paris in many ways. In Marseille, the inhabitants take time to enjoy life. Moreover, the climate and its geographical location (by the sea) make outdoor activities absolutely enjoyable.

For accommodation, Airbnb is not financially excessive. I stayed near the train station, which was perfect for transportation.

Walk around the districts 1,2,3,4,5,6,8,12. You will find, for example, one of the most beautiful cathedrals in France: "Notre Dame de la Garde". A festive and artistic square: "Cours Julien". And also, a magnificent museum "MUCEM" with a breathtaking view on the Mediterranean Sea.

Many associative projects are located there. I advise you to visit the third place: "Friche la Belle de Mai".

Last but not least, enjoy long walks in the "calanques".

Q & A

  • What would you have changed?

    I would have liked to walk around a bit more. For example, discover the fishermen's villages near of Marseille.
  • Anything go wrong during the trip?

    Absolutely no.
  • Restaurant recommendations?

    Eat Mediterranean food in Marseille and avoid touristy places in Paris. But many choices to be happy.
  • Tips you would give a friend?

    Not to be afraid to walk instead of taking transport to really immerse yourself in the culture.
  • Packing tips?

    The people of Marseille are generous and can easily accommodate you through applications such as couch-surfing.
  • Transportation Tips?

    Not to be afraid to walk instead of taking transport to really immerse yourself in the culture.
  • Any surprises?

    The city can be polluted with a lot of rubbish on the ground depending on the time of year and certain places. The only real downside.