By Eurostar to Marseilles direct

Enjoying three days in Marseilles before joining the Alton Town Twinning Association visit to Pertuis. We are looking forward to staying with the couple we hosted last October.

Unlike the main party who will be arriving by plane tomorrow evening, we came all the way by high speed rail – Eurostar. 1,200km in just over six hours, arriving in the very heart of Marseilles and little more than five minutes walk from our lovely B&B. Smooth and quiet and incredibly free of hassle, the journey has left us feeling subtly but completely different from traveling by air. Premium tickets with good food and extra comfort cost us £180 down and going back standard will only be £60.

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With three day bus/metro/tram passes we are finding getting about here very straight forward. Thus, today we visited the Calanque coast to the East by Metro, two buses, and a two and a half mile walk each way. No problem. No charge. Especially as the isolated beach cafe at the end is closed as it is a Wednesday in September – the owner’s message said he hoped we’d understand! So we made up with an extraordinary Haagen Das ice cream extravaganza down by the harbour when we got back.

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