Chateau D’if – Marseille
Success or fail?
We drove the 2 hours to Marseilles in hopes of a pleasant day trip to break up our week.
Munchkin had tummy troubles the night before so the drive was a little “scary”. We stopped halfway for a potty break and he seemed alright, just tired and moody. This was the tone for the day. Baby girl fell asleep way too early, so when we arrived at 1030 am she was wide awake.
We walked along the old port and investigated the shuttles to Chateau d’if.
Hard Rock cafe was down the street so we decided to have an early lunch. We arrived and the place was empty. The host showed us around after my son mentioned he didn’t see any guitars in the entrance. It was funny to watch the guy show him all the guitars, each one bigger and flashier than the last. Not sure how big this location was but I feel it was the largest I have been to in Europe, and it was only 2 years old. Once we finally sat down and had our orders taken, it was starting to fill up so we had made it just in time.
After lunch we walked back towards the port and waited in line at the Frioul D’if express to purchase tickets, then another 30 min line to wait for the shuttle boat not leaving the harbour until 2:15pm. Toddler was tired of standing around, baby was just tired in general and then we all needed to pee. The shuttle had a toilet and all was good again.
Landing |Chateau d’if
At the dock there is a set of steps that required lifting the stroller a two person job, then long stairs that I could take easily myself, led us to the main entrance to buy tickets. This is where the gentleman told me that strollers are not allowed. This would have been nice if they had mentioned it when I bought the shuttle tickets; I had the stroller in hand and she asked for my destination. Baby girl ended up walking most of the site, save the stairs and catwalk. I also didn’t bring my harness because she is heavy and doesn’t really like it that much anymore; clearly this was the wrong choice.
The area is a barren waste land but the view and history are amazing. We had a great, hot time. The main area has a toilet and vending machine, I didn’t buy from it cause it looked a little dusty. Next door was a restaurant overlooking the harbour and nearby islands. It was a nice 30 min break; wine and apple pie, yummy.
They say to take 1.5 hours on the island. We didn’t think we had spent that much time but we ended up taking the 415 shuttle back to the mainland. It is a 45 min shuttle to land, but only 20 to the island, because there is a stop at Frioul island in between.
We got back fairly late and we were all exhausted. Baby fell asleep on the boat, of course. We grabbed snacks and drinks at a nearby cafe and headed home.
For some reason, the GPS refused to take us back the way we came in. The parking garage was 21€ for the half day we spent, and it was right at the port. We took the long tunnel that empties right in front of the garage. Not sure what was going on in the afternoon but it took us 1 hour to leave the city. By then the traffic was gone but we were also done.
It was a long, hot, driving filled day but I saw my castle/prison.
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