"He who has seen Paris and not Cassis has seen nothing," said Fréderic Mistral. Wouldn’t you want to visit this little fishing port in the Bouches-du-Rhône?
Around a dozen miles from Marseilles, this little town has the scent of Provence and the Mediterranean. With its vineyards and pine forests, the picturesque road leading to Cassis is charming. Walk around the town's little narrow streets, discovering the typically southern French small squares and colourful fisherman's houses. Head for the port, where the boats are moored, and wait for the sunset on one of the nearby terraces, sipping a drink.
Cassis is nestled between two major natural sites: Cap Canaille and the Calanques. At 394 metres, Cap Canaille is the highest cliff in France. The colourful limestone rock hangs over the Mediterranean Sea. By taking the Route des Crêtes between Cassis and La Ciotat you can admire the view from the belvederes.
The Calanques massif extends over 12 miles between Cassis and Marseilles. It is a protected natural site that can be explored on foot, for a stunning view over the turquoise waters of the Mediterranean. The Calanques can also be explored by sea: head for Cassis port and climb aboard a boat that will take you as close as you can get to the impressive limestone cliffs. You can even explore them at your own pace by kayak, to get an original perspective! In any case, the view and landscapes will leave you speechless and, as an added bonus, you can enjoy a swim in the turquoise waters to cool off.
In addition to its idyllic setting, Cassis is also renowned for its wine and food, which will delight any food-lover. Of course, the cuisine is heavily influenced by the Mediterranean, so you can enjoy sardines, tuna, scorpion fish, mussels, sea urchin and more. The land is also bountiful, with delicacies such as olives, fresh herbs, honey from the calanques and vegetables grown in the Provençal sunshine. A treat for the eyes and the taste buds, all washed down with a glass of white or red Cassis, the local appellation d’origine contrôlée wine.
Cassis's pleasant climate makes it a holiday destination all year round, though September is the perfect time to visit, as the temperature means you can swim all the time and the summer holidaymakers have left (the town is very popular with tourists in high season).
To get to Cassis, you can take the train to Marseilles, then take a bus or taxi to Cassis. The nearest airport is Marseille-Provence, around 35 miles away.
Fancy exploring this dream location? What are you waiting for?