The Marseille Metro

Marseille is one of the oldest cities in France. It was built over 2500 years ago. Marseille is the capital of the region of Provence-Alpes-Cote d’Azur, and the capital of the Bouches-du-Rhone department. With a population of 900,000 inhabitants, Marseille is the second most populated city in France. The city’s airport is called the Marseille Provence Airport.

History

The Marseille Metro was inaugurated on November 26th, 1977, with the inauguration of Line 1. Among the first stations to be inaugurated were the Saint Charles and the La Rose-Technopole de Chateau-Gombert stations. Afterwards, Line 1 was expanded with the construction of the Castellane station on March 11th, 1978.

Line 2 was inaugurated on March 3rd, 1984, with the inauguration of the Joliette station. The next Line 2 station to be built was Saint-Marguerite Dromel, which was inaugurated on February 1st, 1986. The following station to be constructed was Bougainville, which was built on February 14th, 1987.

Line 1 was expanded on September 5th, 1992, with the construction of La Timone station. La Fourragère station was the last station to be built. This station was inaugurated on May 5th, 2010.

Lines and stations:

The Marseille Metro has two lines and 28 stations. The lines are called Line 1 and Line 2. The stations for each line are the following:

- Line 1: It has the following stations: La Fourragère , Louis Armand , Saint Barnabé , La Timone , La Blancarde , Castellane , Baille , Vieux-Port - Hôtel de Ville , Estrangin – Préfecture , Saint Charles , Colbert - Hôtel de Région , Cinq Avenues Longchamp , Réformés Canebière , Saint Just - Hôtel de Département , Chartreux , La Rose , Frais Vallon , Malpassé

- Line 2: It has the following stations: Bougainville , Désirée Clary , National , Jules Guesde , Joliette , Noailles , Saint Charles , Castellane , Notre Dame du Mont - Cours Julien , Rond Point du Prado , Périer , Sainte-Marguerite Dromel

Metro Marseille ND du Mont
    A few facts about some stations will be shown below:
  • a) Bougainville: It is located in Boulevard Ferdinand de Lesseps. It is near the regions of Saint-Mauront, Crottes, and Canet. The architects that built this station were AndrĂ© Mascarelli and Pierre Garnier.
  • b) MalpassĂ©: This station is elevated. The name of this station comes from the name of the district in which it is located. There is parking available.
  • c) La Rose: This is one of Line 1’s terminals. Parking services are available. One nearby place of interest is l’Avenue de la Rose, in which you can find a shopping center and a post office.
  • d) Colbert – Hotel de RĂ©gion: This station has an island platform. It was inaugurated on March 11th, 1978. The name of this station comes from a nearby hotel called Hotel de RĂ©gion. Some nearby places of interest are Belsunce and Jules-Guesde Plaza.
  • e) Saint Charles: This is the main station for the Marseille Metro. It is one of the two stations that connects both lines of the metro. One nearby place of interest is the University of Aix-Marseille. It was built by Jean Nogaro. This station is located inside a 7 story building. Within the station, you can find buses and trains from many companies.
  • f) Estrangin – PrĂ©fecture: This Station is located at PrĂ©fecture des Bouches-du-Rhone. Some places of interest nearby are the Saint-FerrĂ©sol shopping center and Estrangin-PastrĂ© Plaza.
  • g) Vieux-Port – Hotel de Ville: This station has two floors: one floor at surface level, and an underground floor. On one hand, you will find the station’s entrance, the escalators, and the ticket booths on the surface level floor. On the other hand, you will find the trains on the underground floor. This station has an island platform. As a fun fact, this station has works of art done by Pierre-Alain Hubert. One nearby place of interest is the City Hall.
  • h) Castellane: This is one of the two stations that connects Line 1 with Line 2. This station is located below Place Castellane, which is a fountain with an obelisk built circa 1774. It is one of the terminals for Line 1 and Line 2. It has two side platforms. It was built by Georges Rainant, Gabriel Carta, and Roland Carta. You can access this station by using any of the four entrances located around Place Castellane. Most of the station is purple, with the exception of the platforms for lines 1 and 2. The platform for Line 1 is decorated with yellow tiles, whereas the platform for Line 2 is decorated with white tiles.

Connections

The Marseille Metro makes connections with the Marseille Tramway, the TER Provence-Alpes-Cote d’Azur (TER PACA) regional railway service, the Marseille Buses, the ferries from Ferry Boat, and the ferries from Navette Maritime de Marseille. The connections available at each station are the following;

    Line 1:
  • 1. La Fourragère: Cartreize buses, and buses 7, 7B, 7T, 9, 10, and 509.
  • 2. Louis Armand: buses 10 and 67.
  • 3. Saint BarnabĂ©: buses 7, 7B, 7T, 9, and 10.
  • 4. La Timone: buses 12, 12B, 12S, 40, 52, 54, 72, 91, and 540.
  • 5. La Blancarde: bus 67, TER PACA’s trains, and tramways T1 and T2.
  • 6. Castellane: Tramway T3, buses 18, 19, 21, 41, 50, 54, 73, and 74, and Line 2 from the metro.
  • 7. Baille: buses 54 and 540.
  • 8. Vieux-Port - HĂ´tel de Ville: buses 31, 32, 41, 49, 55, 57, 60, 61, 70, 80, 81, 82, 82S, 83, 89, 97, 509, 518, 521, 526, 530, 533, 535, 540, 582, and 583.
  • 9. Estrangin – PrĂ©fecture: buses 41, 54, and 583.
  • 10. Saint Charles: Line 2 from the metro, buses 49, 52, 82S, 521, 533, TER PACA’s trains, Cartreize buses, the TGV high speed train, and the LER Provence-Alpes-Cote d’Azur bus.
  • 11. Colbert - HĂ´tel de RĂ©gion: buses 31, 32, 70, 89, 97, 521, 526, 530, 533, and 535.
  • 12. Cinq Avenues Longchamp: tramway T2, buses 6, 7, 7B, 42, 42T, 81, 509, and 582.
  • 13. RĂ©formĂ©s Canebière: tramway T2, buses 33, 34, 49, 52, 81, and 509.
  • 14. St Just - HĂ´tel de DĂ©partement: buses 42, 42T, 53, 72, and 81.
  • 15. Chartreux: buses 42, 42T, 67, and 72.
  • 16. La Rose: buses B3B, 1, 1S, 2, 3, 4, 4B, 5, 11, 27, 42, 42T, 142, 142J, 143, 144, 144J, 145, and B3.
  • 17. Frais Vallon: buses 6, 27, 39, 42, 42T, and B3.
  • 18. MalpassĂ©: buses B3A, 37, 38, 39, and B3.
Marseille Metro Image via Ingolf.
    - Line 2:
  • 1. Bougainville: buses de Cartreize and las buses B2, 25, 28, 30, 36B, 38, 70, 72, and 535.
  • 2. DĂ©sirĂ©e Clary: bus 70, 526, and 535.
  • 3. National: buses 88, 89, and 530.
  • 4. Jules Guesde: buses 31, 32, 49, 70, 89, 97, 521, 526, 530, 533, 535.
  • 5. Joliette: buses 35, 49, 55, 82, and tramways T2 and T3.
  • 6. Noailles: buses 8 and 509, and tramways T1 and T2.
  • 7. Notre Dame du Mont - Cours Julien: bus 74.
  • 8. Rond point du Prado: buses 19, 21, 22, 22S, 23, 41, 44, 45, 72, 83, and 521.
  • 9. PĂ©rier: buses 19, 21, 41, 73, 74, 86, and 521.
  • 10. Sainte-Marguerite Dromel: buses 15, 15S, 16, 16S, 16T, 17, 24, 24B, 24T, 46, 46S, 47, 48, 48T, 73, and 518.

Connection to the airport

The nearest metro station to Marseille’s airport is Saint Charles station. To go from the airport to this station, board the Navette Aeroport – Gare Saint Charles bus. The bus’s ticket costs 8.50€. The trip from the airport to the Saint Charles station lasts half an hour. This bus’s departure frequency is of 20 minutes.

Schedule, calendar, and timetables

    1) Departure frequency:
  • 1.1) Monday to Friday: four, five, or six minutes.
  • 1.2) Saturdays: between five and six minutes.
  • 1.3) Sundays: 9, 10, 11, or 12 minutes.

2) Opening and closing times: The opening and closing times from Monday through Friday from each station will be shown. The following format will show the name of the station, the opening time, and the closing time of the station.

    2.1) Line 1:
  • 1. La Fourragère: 5:00 am – 12:27 am.
  • 2. Louis Armand: 5:02 am – 12:29 am.
  • 3. Saint BarnabĂ©: 5:24 am – 12:54 am.
  • 4. La Timone: 5:05 am – 12:32 am.
  • 5. La Blancarde: 5:21 am – 12:51 am.
  • 6. Castellane: 5:17 am – 12:47 am.
  • 7. Baille: 5:06 am – 12:34 am.
  • 8. Vieux-Port - HĂ´tel de Ville: 5:13 am – 12:44 am.
  • 9. Estrangin – PrĂ©fecture: 5:15 am – 12:45 am.
  • 10. Saint Charles: 5:10 am – 12:41 am.
  • 11. Colbert - HĂ´tel de RĂ©gion: 5:12 am – 12:43 am.
  • 12. Cinq avenues Longchamp: 5:08 am – 12:38 am.
  • 13. RĂ©formĂ©s Canebière: 5:09 am – 12:40 am.
  • 14. St Just - HĂ´tel de DĂ©partement: 5:05 am – 12:35 am.
  • 15. Chartreux: 5:06 am – 12:37 am.
  • 16. La Rose: 5:00 am – 12:30 am.
  • 17. Frais Vallon: 5:01 am – 12:33 am.
  • 18. MalpassĂ©: 5:03 am – 12:33 am.
    2.2) Line 2:
  • 1. Bougainville: 4:50 am – 12:34 am.
  • 2. DĂ©sirĂ©e Clary: 5:13 am – 12:46 am.
  • 3. National: 5:14 am – 12:47 am.
  • 4. Jules Guesde: 5:10 am – 12:43 am.
  • 5. Joliette: 5:11 am – 12:45 am.
  • 6. Noailles: 5:07 am – 12:40 am.
  • 7. Saint Charles: 5:10 am – 12:41 am (this is the same station from Line 1).
  • 8. Castellane: 5:01 am – 12:46 am (this is the same station from Line 1).
  • 9. Notre Dame du Mont - Cours Julien: 5:06 am – 12:39 am.
  • 10. Rond point du Prado: 5:01 am – 12:33 am.
  • 11. PĂ©rier: 5:02 am – 12:47 am.
  • 12. Sainte-Marguerite Dromel: 5:00 am – 12:32 am.

Prices, tickets, and cards

Prices will be shown in euros.

- Tickets (occasional trip): They are divided into the following categories: Single Ride Ticket (1.70€), Single Ride With Manual Refill (1.36€), Single Ride Ticket (Sold by the Bus Driver) (2€), City Subscription for 72 Hours (41€), City Subscription for 48 Hours (33€), City Subscription for 24 Hours (26€), Card for Two Rides (3.30€), Group Card for Four People (4.90€), 10 Trip Card (13.70€), Ferry - One Ride (between 5€ and 8€), Subscription for 72 hours (10.80€), and Subscription for 24 Hours (5.20€).

- Subscriptions: They are divided into the following categories: Le Pass XL Permanent, Le Pass XL 30 Jours, Le Pass XL Annuel, Le Pass XL 7 Jours (13.70€).

  • 1) Le Pass XL Permanent: They are divided into: Jeune SolidaritĂ© (9.90€ per month), Pour Tous (37.10€ per month), Enfant Famille Nombreuse (14.70€ per month), SolidaritĂ© (18.55€ per month), and Jeunes (18.30€ per month). These subscriptions should be paid monthly, for a minimum of 12 months. Additionally, these subscriptions are automatically reloaded each year. They offer unlimited rides in the metro, the RTM buses, the tramways, and the ferries. They need to be stored on the Transpass card.
  • 2) Le Pass XL 30 Jours: It is divided into the following categories: Jeune (36.70€), Jeune SolidaritĂ© (23€), Pour Tous (46€), and SolidaritĂ© (23€).
  • 3) Le Pass XL Annuel: It is divided into the following categories: Pour Tous (446€), Jeune SolidaritĂ© (119€), Enfant Famille Nombreuse (178€), Jeune (220€), and SolidaritĂ© (223€).
    Note: The description for each Le Pass XL Permanent subscription will be shown below:
  • 1.1) Jeune SolidaritĂ©: Subscription for children below 10 years of age and above six years of age. It is also for people under 26 who won a university scholarship.
  • 1.2) Pour Tous: Subscription that can be bought by any person.
  • 1.3) Enfant Famille Nombreuse: Subscription for people that belong to families with a minimum of three children. The customer does not need to show proof of belonging to a large family if they have between 11 and 16 years of age.
  • 1.4) SolidaritĂ©: Subscription for unemployed people under the age of 26. The customer should show proof that they are unemployed or that they are on welfare.
  • 1.5) Jeunes: For people under the age of 26 that are studying. The customer should be enrolled in high school, university, or in a vocational training institute. The customer cannot be below 18 years of age.

Tips in Marseille Metro

  • 1) Strikes sometimes occur, which could cause delays in the train schedule. Therefore, read the news and check if there are any strikes in the station that you want to go.
  • 2) Avoid dimly lit areas in the stations if you ride the metro late at night. Robberies could occur during these hours.
  • 3) Wheelchair bound people could have difficulty boarding the metro. Some trains do not have ramps for people on wheelchairs. Additionally, some stations do not have elevators. Therefore, check RTM’s website (www.rtm.fr) to check if the station where you want to go has elevators or ramps.

Rules in Marseille Metro

The train driver could prohibit you from boarding the metro if you have a stroller. Strollers will only be allowed in a few trains.

- Parking:

You need an XL subscription or a Transpass card to use metro’s parking services. The payment required for the parking services depends whether you have an XL subscription or not. Here are the payment instructions:

a) People with an XL subscription: If you have any of the XL subscriptions, you can use the parking for free. You need to make a round trip in order to use the parking. You have up to two hours after your return trip to remove your car from the parking lot.

b) People without an XL subscription: If you possess a Transpass card but not a XL subscription, you will have to pay a fee to use the parking services. The fee will be discounted from your Transpass card. The parking service will be free if you remove your car from the parking lot in under 10 minutes. You cannot park your car for over 24 hours. The parking fees are the following:

  • b.1) Up to three hours: 0.30€ each 15 minutes.
  • b.2) Between three and 12 hours: 0.10€ each 10 minutes.
  • b.3) Between 12 and 24 hours: 0.30€ per hour.

- Bicycles:

RTM offers bicycles for rent. You need the Transpass Card or an XL subscription in order to rent them. Then, you will need to create an online account at RTM’s website (www.rtm.fr). Afterwards, you will need to log in into your account and click on the link called “Subscribe to the bike plan.” You need to accept the terms and conditions. Finally, you will have to pay a 1€ fee by using a credit or debit card.

You can use the bicycles at any time of the day. You can use the bicycles for free during the first 30 minutes. If you use the bicycle for over 30 minutes, you will have to pay 0.5€ per hour. To use a bicycle, you will have to use a Transpass Card or an XL Card at the card reader at any bike rack.

Fun Facts

  • 1) Saint Charles station has a unique decoration pattern that makes it different from the rest of the stations. First, the color of the interior of this station is turquoise. Additionally, the station is decorated with two frescoes. The first fresco shows a steam engine train, whereas the second fresco shows a contemporary train.
  • 2) All of the metro’s trains have air conditioning during summer.

Future expansions

All of the metro’s rail cars will be replaced by automatic trains. The replacement will take place in 2023. Additionally, the platform’s doors at the stations will be replaced with doors with a height of approximately 1.8 meters of height.

RTM plans to expand Line 2 in order to offer rides between Bonneveine and Rond-Point du Prado. They will finish this expansion by 2018, with the construction of a new station called Gèze.

Line 2 will also be expanded to offer rides between Saint-Marcel and Saint-Loup. To achieve this, RTM will add approximately four kilometers of railway to Line 2. RTM will finish this expansion by 2025.

Finally, the length of the metro’s entire railway will be doubled. RTM will finish this expansion by 2035.

Nearby attractions

The Saint Charles station will be used as a reference point. The closest touristic attractions to the Saint Charles station are the following:

1) Vieux Port: The trip lasts 10 minutes. From Saint Charles, board a Line 1 train from the metro, and head towards La Rose-La Fourragère for five minutes. Finally, get off at Vieux Port.

2) Notre-Dame de la Garde Basilica: The trip lasts 20 minutes. From Saint Charles, board a Line 1 train from the metro, and head towards La Fourragère during five minutes. After 12 stops, get off at Vieux Port. Walk towards Vieux Port (Cours Jean Ballard). Then, board bus 81, and head towards Le Pharo during five minutes. After three stops, get off at Place la Corderie. Finally, walk 760 meters towards Rue Fort du Sanctuaire.

3) Museé des Civilisations de l’Europe et de la Mediterranée (MuCEM): The trip lasts 15 minutes. From Saint Charles Station, board a Line 1 train from the metro, and head towards La Fourragère during five minutes. After two stops, get off at Vieux Port. Walk towards Metro Vieux Port. Then, board bus 82 S, and travel towards Gare Saint Charles during five minutes. After five stops, get off at La Major. Finally, walk 400 meters towards 7 Promenade Robert Laffont.

4) Saint-Victor Basilica: The trip lasts 15 minutes. From Saint Charles station, board a Line 1 train from the metro, and travel towards La Fourragère during five minutes. After two stops, get off at Vieux Port. Walk towards Vieux Port (Cours Jean Ballard). Board bus 81, and head towards Le Pharo during five minutes. After five stops, get off at Saint Victor. Finally, walk to 3 Rue de l’Abbaye.

5) Cathédrale de la Mayor: The trip lasts 15 minutes. From Saint Charles station, board a Line 2 train from the metro, and travel towards Bougainville during four minutes. After two stops, get off at Joliette. Finally, walk 700 meters towards Place de la Major.

Metro map of Marseille

Metro map of Marseille Full resolution
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Marseille MĂ©tro map

  • Also Known As: MĂ©tro
  • Passengers/Day 708000
  • Fares:
  • 24h operation: No
  • Air Conditioning: No
  • Walk between platforms: No
  • Driverless trains: No
  • Screen Doors Platforms: No
  • Average Speed: 35km/h
  • Max. Speed: 80km/h
  • Operator: RTM
  • 1,70€
  • Marseille Metro Official Website

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