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CruiseDirection - Magazine May 2019

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If you are looking for a small French provincial town to visit for a quiet and romantic getaway, Toulon could be the place for you. A natural harbour, the town has Mont Faron as the backdrop for its skyline. Toulon is a place full of contrasts. Visitors to this quaint French town can stay in one of the many different hotels, furnished apartments and rooms or campsites in the town while they enjoy exploring Toulon.  

The town is old and picturesque with daily markets and the smell of food cooking in the many cafes and restaurants can really make the mouth water. It is also a military port where the French Navy is stationed to patrol the Mediterranean. There is a large marina in Toulon and it is a favourite starting point for visits to Corsica and Sardinia. The beaches of Morillon are only a short distance from Toulon’s centre and they are well equipped for young and old alike with plenty of water sports available for those who enjoy fishing, snorkelling, diving and more.

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Why visit Toulon ?

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The town is old and picturesque

A favourite starting point for visits to Corsica and Sardinia

Historic sites in the city include the usual array of museums and cathedrals, most notably the Cathedral Ste Marie de la Seds, the doors of the Musee Naval, the St Francois de Paul Church, the ruins of the city’s walls, and the 18 different fountains that are scattered throughout Toulon.  

In the old town you will find many different squares and exploring it without a map makes for an adventure and a very pleasant stroll. There are plenty of eateries and shops here as well as the Place de la Liberte, the railway station. Between all the streets are interesting covered passages that are well worth exploring. In fact the intrepid visitor may find a gem hidden along one of these passageways. As you wend your way to the seafront, you will hear the sounds of a working fishing town. Once at the seafront there are tour boat excursions available, yachts moving in and out of the marina, and the background noise that goes with a working Naval harbour.  

If you enjoy seeing the natural side of places like Toulon, then you can take a cable car ride to the top of Mont Faron and enjoy the view over the city and the sea. There is a small zoo at the top that the kids will enjoy and the scenery is simply breathtaking. When you return to the city proper, take in the Trompe l’Oeil Murals, some of them seemingly 3-dimensional. Or you could enjoy a cup of coffee at one of the many bistros and sidewalk cafes.  

Toulon is also a modern city and as such it has its own shopping mall with the typical commercial and international boutiques and shops located inside. There is another mall heading towards Hyeres and Nice, and both of these malls are for everyday items rather than the unique souvenirs and gifts that you will find in the smaller shops in Toulon.

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