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on eating well along the corniche of marseille, or on the edge of the ledge of jfk

La Corniche Kennedy of Marseille is a beautiful route along the coast of Marseille. In English the Ledge of President John Fitzgerald Kennedy, a long boulevard, goes from the beach at Catalans to the beaches of Prado.

One can reach the Corniche in many ways. It is easy to walk from the Vieux Port; it might take 20 to 30 minutes without pauses for photographs or stopping at Le Pharo. Alternatively from the Vieux Port, one can take a number of buses, the best being #83, which will take you all the way along the coast, the full length of the Corniche, until it turns inland toward the Prado at La Plage.

If it is close enough to walk, bicycles and e-scooters will take you there as well. Tourist buses and a tourist train also make the trip.

Along the boulevard one will find a number of good restaurants. Le Petit Nice and Épuisette are Michelin star restaurants. Others that have excellent reputations are Le Rhul, Chez Michel, Peron, and Chez Fonfon(Click on any photo to see it larger and in more detail. Cliquez sur une vignette pour l’agrandir.)

One day I decided to eat lunch at Épuisette. From the vantage point before descending from the Corniche to the restaurant, I looked out to Chateau d’If, which inspired Le Comte de Monte-Cristo. I turned in the other direction and looked up to Notre-Dame de la Garde, the large basilica on the hill that overlooks Marseille. But wait, there’s more!

on remembering a visit to pigna

Once again I found myself in a small village perched above the Mediterranean Sea on Corsica. I had spent the previous day exploring Sant’Antonino, a village beyond Pigna. The road to Pigna and  to Sant’Antonino is the same.

Like the other villages above the western coast of Corsica, Pigna has extraordinary views, not as many as Sant’Antonino, but still plenty for pauses and certainly for some sips of wine.

Visiting Sant’Antonino and Pigna in one day is possible. I can imagine a morning in one, let’s say first in Pigna with a lunch at A Mandria di Pigna, and if the wine has not been too precious during lunch, a visit further along to Sant’Antonino in the afternoon would be an excellent trip.

Above Pigna on the road that goes further along to Sant’Antonino, there is a place to park and one can walk a short distance to the village. Most visitors will, however, choose the parking lot in Pigna and pay a small tariff for the privilege.  (Click on any photo to see it larger and in more detail. Cliquez sur une vignette pour l’agrandir.) But wait, there’s more!

on loving the million colors and little phrases on the walls in marseille

La rue est un musée pour tous ! ―Hergé

People say graffiti is ugly, irresponsible and childish . . . but that’s only if it’s done properly. ―Banksy, Wall and Piece

The Museum is not meant either for the wanderer to see by accident or for the pilgrim to see with awe. It is meant for the mere slave of a routine of self-education to stuff himself with every sort of incongruous intellectual food in one indigestible meal. —G. K. Chesterton

Going inside, walking into a museum, intending to spend two hours, when the sun is shining, the air is warm, the world is teeming, seems wrong, an error.

Why would you want to go inside to an art exhibit? Will it change your perspective of the world? Will it make you happy? Will it inspire you? Will you learn something? Will you have a good time? Will it encourage conversation? Yes.

Imagine a city where graffiti wasn’t illegal, a city where everybody could draw whatever they liked. Where every street was awash with a million colours and little phrases. Where standing at a bus stop was never boring. A city that felt like a party where everyone was invited, not just the estate agents and barons of big business. Imagine a city like that and stop leaning against the wall–it’s wet. –Banksy

What to do when you visit a place where the sun shines daily and you dread going inside? Yet you want to change your perspective of the world and you want something to make you happy and inspire you and maybe help you learn something? And you want to have a good time and talk to someone about what you experience?  (Click on any photo to see it larger and in more detail. Cliquez sur une vignette pour l’agrandir.) But wait, there’s more!

on riding the vaporetto in lyon

Lyon, France has two major rivers, the Saône and the Rhône, that meet at a confluence in the south of the city. A commuter and tourist boat called Le Vaporetto goes from Vaise (9 quai Arloing) in the north of Lyon to the Confluence in the south. It makes two stops along the way, one at Saint-Paul (16 Quai de Bondy) and one at Bellecour (11 Quai des Célestins).

The two middle stops, Saint-Paul (16 Quai de Bondy) and Bellecour (11 Quai des Célestins), are convenient because they are central to Lyon. Saint-Paul is near Vieux Lyon, a major tourist destination. Place Bellecour, a UNESCO Heritage site, is no less important to tourists.

Vieux Lyon, old Lyon, is the oldest quartier of Lyon with buildings dating from the Medieval and Renaissance periods. Like Place Bellecour it is classified by UNESCO as a historical site.

Place Bellecour is the center of the the presqu’île of Lyon, the ground zero, and is the starting point for most tourists: “Four major streets start from this famous square: rue de la République, which takes you up to Hôtel de Ville and the Opera; rue Victor Hugo and rue du Plat both leading to Perrache; and rue du Président Édouard Herriot, with a concentration of luxury shops all the way to the Place des Terreaux.”  (Click on any photo to see it larger and in more detail. Cliquez sur une vignette pour l’agrandir.) But wait, there’s more!