You hesitate and you don’t know if it is possible to visit Marseille in a secure way because you hear everywhere that Marseille is a dangerous city ?
So, before showing you all Marseille best places, it is necessary to make a point on its dangerousness !
Marseille reputation as a dangerous city
TV, radios, newspapers and even social networks are fond of evoking that Marseille is very very dangerous… For years, they have been involved in rooting people’s bad reputation…
Especially since the site Numbeo published last September a ranking highlighting Marseille as the “most dangerous city in Europe” in front of Naples, Catania or Turin in Italy !
I will not contradict this study but simply point out (as some editorialists have already done) that the ranking was made on the basis of a survey of visitors who gave their simple impression of insecurity in Marseille. No records, no figures, no official statistics confirm this ranking.
Moreover, with only about sixty people having answered concerning Marseille, one can have doubts on the value of the results …
But we cannot say either that Marseille is a totally secure city where we can walk quietly everywhere and without risk… Indeed, it is unfortunately well known for its trafficking of all kinds (prostitution, drugs, arms) and for its high crime rate. But it must also be pointed out that the crime rate in question mainly concerns settling scores between rival gangs or for drug-trafficking cases…
Is Marseille really dangerous ?
Just as we can say that there are dangerous districts in New York but that not all districts in New York are dangerous…
We can say that there are dangerous districts in Marseille but that not all areas of Marseille are dangerous !
Nobody is going to stop staying in Manhattan to celebrate the New Year because the Bronx or some areas of the Queens have crime rates almost greater than in Medellin !
So do not miss a splendid day in the sun of the old port (Vieux Port) in Marseille simply because there are some dangerous places in Marseille…
In Marseille, there are also some neighborhoods that are safe and secure, you just have to know them !
What are the dangerous districts in Marseille ?
If it is necessary to avoid certain places in Marseille, it is undoubtedly the northern districts.
Yes but not only!
When talking about the northern neighborhoods of Marseille, it includes the boroughs of the 13th, 14th, 15th and 16th arrondissements (see on map above all districts around the 15th).
And to these 4 districts, it’s necessary, unfortunately, to add some others …
The 3rd arrondissement with, in particular, Bellevue or Felix Pyat.
The 11th district and its city Air Bel.
But also some areas of the 9th arrondissement including the Hauts de Mazargues (Cayolle-la Soda).
Which are the least dangerous districts in Marseille ?
All are normal except the neighborhoods listed above !
Are Marseille’s tourist areas dangerous?
NO ! Not more than in other big cities.
On the map below, you can locate the main tourist attractions of Marseille in the 1st, 4th, 6th and 7th arrondissements.
These neighborhoods are not defined as dangerous. Of course, as in all major cities, tourists must be careful, pay attention to pickpockets, do not leave their bag unattended in cafes or restaurants or even venture into a narrow and dark alley at night …
Where to choose your hotel in Marseille ?
The most chic areas to live in Marseille are around the Prado and the 7th and 8th arrondissements.
But for tourists who want to be closer to tourist sites and in lively places (cafes, restaurants …), the Old Port district (Vieux Port) is perfect.
The tourists who choose the district of the Old Port will be near the old port obviously, the main historical monuments, museums, other typical districts but also restaurants, cafes, and other animations.
And for those who want to stay in the typical place of “Marseille postcards”, I recommend the oldest district of Marseille : Le Panier.
Located in the historic center of Marseille next to the Vieux Port, it’s a well-placed district with its narrow streets and pretty Provencal facades … The Panier district is ideal for a tourist stay in the center of the city !
Finally, I would also recommend the Saint-Victor district located south of the Vieux Port. It’s a quiet neighborhood that is becoming fashionable and has some good restaurants. This neighborhood is nice and is cheaper than Le Vieux Port.
Cheap hotel in Marseille – My best choice in the city center
NH Collection Marseille – 37 Boulevard des Dames, 13002 Marseille
In a beautiful building of 1864, this hotel is very well located in the quiet area of La Joliette.
This is the new business and leisure district of Marseille located in the 2nd district next to the « Vieux Port » and the « Panier ».
Its location is perfect because it is located in the city center, close to tourist sites, 15 minutes walk from Saint Charles Station and next to the metro station La Joliette.
Its value for money is exceptional for Marseille. Indeed, for 100 Euros per night, you can enjoy a hotel whose benefits are very high and exceptional service !
In addition, the breakfast buffet consists of fresh products, varied and delicious!
Cheap hotel in Marseille – My favorite
Château Beaupin – 37 avenue Beau Pin, 13008 Marseille
If you are looking for peace, quiet and secure place, the best is to get away from the hustle and bustle of the tourist center ! You will enjoy resting (between two visits) in a place a little atypical !
This beautiful house is located in the chic and residential district of the 8th arrondissement and close to a beautiful beach. In addition, this mansion has a small garden, a pool, a barbecue… so everything you need for a good sunny holiday !
Castle life at the price of a simple hotel : an apartment for 4 people at 120 Euros per night ! Do the math and you will understand that it is definitely a very good plan to stay in Marseille !
If you want to look at cheap hotels in Marseille : The 3 best cheap hotels in Marseille
or continue with a road trip in Provence?
or a city trip to Nice?
or a city trip to Avignon?