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Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilisations

In a striking landmark building, find exhibits that aim to give a new understanding of the Mediterranean, and France’s relation to it, now and in the past.

The Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilizations (MuCEM) has exhibits that draw from a broad range of disciplines, from archaeology to political science to art history. Inside the building, which is perched on the edge of the Vieux Port next to the medieval Fort Saint Jean, discover artifacts and art from Greece, North Africa, Spain, Lebanon and more.

Pause before entering to appreciate the building itself, designed by Algerian-born architect Rudy Ricciotti to evoke the lacework screens common throughout North Africa. 

Enter and start in the first permanent exhibit, Connectivities, which looks at the relationships between and history of the Mediterranean’s ports from Marseille to Istanbul. 

In the adjacent Ruralités exhibit, see a traditional sailing vessel and well pump, among other items that present an overview of the industry behind the Mediterannean’s three major crops: wheat, olives and grapes. Listen to the music of North African folk singers, admire intricately designed breads from the Balkans and learn about how Provence’s wines are made.

Leave the main collection and stroll slowly up the ramp that wraps up the sides of the building, peeking occasionally through the intricate screen to catch glimpses of the sparkling waters of the Mediterranean below. 

Relax on the roof as you look out over the Marseille skyline. Wander through the gardens or see if the open-air theater is putting on a show. Head back in to the cool interior to take in the temporary exhibits, on subjects ranging from the sea to glass-blowing.

Walk to the MuCEM from the bottom of Marseille’s Vieux Port in 15 minutes. Take the metro from the Marseille-Saint-Charles station to the museum in 20 minutes, or walk in 30 minutes. Drive from the airport in 25 minutes. Metered parking is available in underground parking garages nearby. 

The museum is open daily except Tuesdays, from mid-morning to mid-evening. Opening hours change seasonally. There is a fee to enter the museum but you can access the gardens, restaurants and theater for free. A reduced family pass is available.


Guide to Exploring around Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilisations


Best Lodging Options Near Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilisations

See all 3,288 Properties near Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilisations
Golden Tulip Marseille Euromed ¥10,045
Golden Tulip Marseille Euromed

Golden Tulip Marseille Euromed

6 Place Henri Verneuil, Marseille
     
    4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in La Joliette, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Old Port of Marseille, Marseille Provence Cruise Terminal, and Grand Port Maritime de Marseille. Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilisations and Le Dôme are also within 3 mi (5 km). Arenc Euroméditerranée Station is 6 minutes by foot and Désirée Clary Metro Station is 12 minutes.

    Radisson Blu Hotel, Marseille Vieux Port ¥14,632
    Radisson Blu Hotel, Marseille Vieux Port

    Radisson Blu Hotel, Marseille Vieux Port

    38-40 Quai De Rive Neuve, Marseille, Bouches-du-Rhone
       
      4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Located in 7th Arrondissement, this romantic hotel is steps from Old Port of Marseille, La Criee National Theater of Marseille, and Abbaye de Saint Victor. Fort Saint Nicholas and Hotel de Ville are also within 15 minutes. Vieux-Port Station is 10 minutes by foot and Estrangin Station is 15 minutes.

      NH Collection Marseille ¥6,467
      NH Collection Marseille

      NH Collection Marseille

      37 Boulevard des Dames, Marseille, Bouches-du-Rhone
         
        4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in 2nd Arrondissement, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Old Port of Marseille and Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilisations. Marseille Provence Cruise Terminal and Grand Port Maritime de Marseille are also within 1 mi (2 km). Jules Guesde Station and Colbert Metro Station are within a 5-minute walk.

        Sofitel Marseille Vieux Port ¥19,053
        Sofitel Marseille Vieux Port

        Sofitel Marseille Vieux Port

        36 Boulevard Charles Livon, Marseille, Bouches-du-Rhone
           
          5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          This family-friendly Marseille hotel is located by the sea, within 1 mi (2 km) of Fort Saint Nicholas, La Corniche, and Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilisations. Old Port of Marseille and Marseille Provence Cruise Terminal are also within 3 mi (5 km). Vieux-Port Station is 15 minutes by foot and Estrangin Station is 21 minutes.

          Grand Hotel Beauvau Marseille Vieux-Port – MGallery ¥10,446
          Grand Hotel Beauvau Marseille Vieux-Port – MGallery

          Grand Hotel Beauvau Marseille Vieux-Port – MGallery

          4 Rue Beauvau, Marseille, Bouches-du-Rhone
             
            4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in 1st Arrondissement, this romantic hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Old Port of Marseille, Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilisations, and Notre-Dame de la Garde. Les Terrasses du Port and Marseille Provence Cruise Terminal are also within 2 mi (3 km). Vieux-Port Station is only a 2-minute walk and Noailles Station is 7 minutes.

            InterContinental Marseille - Hotel Dieu ¥19,842
            InterContinental Marseille - Hotel Dieu

            InterContinental Marseille - Hotel Dieu

            1 Place Daviel, Marseille, Bouches-du-Rhone
               
              5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in 2nd Arrondissement, this luxury hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Old Port of Marseille and Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilisations. Marseille Provence Cruise Terminal and Grand Port Maritime de Marseille are also within 2 mi (3 km). Vieux-Port Station is 8 minutes by foot and Colbert Metro Station is 8 minutes.

              Novotel Marseille Vieux Port ¥11,950
              Novotel Marseille Vieux Port

              Novotel Marseille Vieux Port

              36 Boulevard Charles Livon, Marseille, Bouches-du-Rhone
                 
                4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in 7th Arrondissement, this spa hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Fort Saint Nicholas and La Corniche. Old Port of Marseille and Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilisations are also within 2 mi (3 km). Vieux-Port Station is 16 minutes by foot and Estrangin Station is 22 minutes.

                Residhome Marseille Saint Charles ¥6,652
                Residhome Marseille Saint Charles

                Residhome Marseille Saint Charles

                10 boulevard Charles Nedelec, Marseille, Bouches-du-Rhone
                   
                  3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in 1st Arrondissement, this residence is within 1 mi (2 km) of La Canebiere, Old Port of Marseille, and Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilisations. Marseille Provence Cruise Terminal and Grand Port Maritime de Marseille are also within 2 mi (3 km). Jules Guesde Station and Colbert Metro Station are within a 5-minute walk.