The beginnings of the Museum
The Museum of Fine Arts is the oldest museum in Marseille! Created in 1801 by the Consulate, the paintings and sculptures were exhibited in the Bernardines Convent Chapel. But, due to the lack of space, it later moved to the enchanting setting of the Palais Longchamp, a colossal building built by Napoleon 3 to celebrate the arrival of water in the Phocaean city.
To all those who are wondering what to do in Marseille, come and visit the Musée des Beaux Arts!
The Museum's collection
The Musée des Beaux Arts opened to the public in 1873 in one of the Palace's aisles.
Among the permanent collections of this museum there are more than 2000 paintings, 300 sculptures and 3000 works and drawings from the 16th to 19th centuries. Even if only 200 masterpieces have been hung in the rooms, new canvases regularly come out of their storage to be presented to the public.
On the ground floor, you can admire the oldest masterpieces (16th and 17th centuries) and when you go up to the first one, the collection is more recent (18th and 19th centuries). The paintings of the greatest Italian painters stand alongside those of French painters. Note the impressive collection of the French artist Pierre Puget!
Visit the Fine Arts Museum
For lovers of modern art who have come to visit Marseille, Marseille Tourisme also advises you to visit the Contemporary Art Museum.
It is one of the best activities in Marseille when the weather is not good. We suggest you go to the ticket office to avoid queuing during busy periods. Opening hours are from 10am to 6pm from Tuesday to Sunday.
There are plenty of restaurants in Marseille's 4th arrondissement and you should have no trouble to find a table to eat or have a drink.