Southern France, from Marseille to the Spanish border

Mucem museum Marseille banner

From Marseille to the Spanish border, southwest France has much to offer to art enthusiasts and curious travelers. The area roughly stretches from Marseille, the second-largest city of France, to Perpignan and includes two regions – Occitanie to the west and the western part of Provence to the east. In ancient times, it was the home of Greek settlements, such as the ancient Massalía which we know now as Marseille, and thereafter one of the wealthiest provinces of the Roman Empire; many traces of that glorious past survive today, such as the many monumental Roman buildings still visible in Nîmes, Orange, and Arles, for example.

But the rich history of this portion of the Midi is not limited to Antiquity: from the Provençal-Catalan culture of the Middle ages and the Avignon Papacy in the 14th century to the French Revolution with its La Marseillaise anthem and the great artists of the 19th and 20th century who chose this part of the Mediterranean coast as their favorite retreat, this part of France has been, and still is, one of the most culturally vibrant regions of Europe.

Our advice: along with the largest cities, take your time to visit also the countryside and smaller towns, such as Ceret and Rivesaltes, which can provide you a pleasant, relaxing, and unorthodox voyage across over twenty centuries of great culture.

Cover image: the Mucem Museum in Marseille; © Lisa Ricciotti – Rudy Ricciotti – Roland Carta


museums in Southern France, from Marseille to the Spanish border

Carré d’Art musée d’art contemporain | Nîmes

Carré d’Art musée d’art contemporain | Nîmes

Nîmes - Place de la Maison Carree, 16
closed: Monday
The Carré d'Art- Musée d'art contemporain in Nîmes is a contemporary art museum facing the Maison Carrée, one of the best-preserved Roman temples in Europe
Carré Sainte-Anne | Montpellier

Carré Sainte-Anne | Montpellier

Montpellier - rue Philippy, 2
closed: Monday (during exhibitions)
The Carré Sainte-Anne in Montepellier is an exhibition centre dedicated to contemporary art housed in a fascinating Gothic revival church
Château La Coste – winery and art center | Provence, France

Château La Coste – winery and art center | Provence, France

Le Puy-Sainte-Réparade - 2750 Route de la Gride
closed: open daily
Château La Coste is an art center, winery, and resort in Southern France renowned for its collection of contemporary sculpture and its architectural complex
Fondation Vasarely | Aix-en-Provence

Fondation Vasarely | Aix-en-Provence

Aix-en-Provence - avenue Marcel Pagnol, 1
closed: open all days
The Vasarely Foundation in Aix-en-Provence, southern France, is both an art museum and a total artwork created by Optical Art master Victor Vasarely in 1976
Mucem museum, Marseille

Mucem museum, Marseille

Marseille - Esplanade du J4, 1
closed: Tuesdays, May 1 and December 25
The Mucem in Marseille is a large museum focused on Mediterranean civilizations, housed in an iconic building designed by French architect Rudy Ricciotti
Musée Arles Antique

Musée Arles Antique

Arles - île du Cirque Romain
closed: Tuesdays
The Musée Départemental Arles Antique is an archaeological museum, located in the city of Arles, among the most important in southern France and Provence
Musée Cantini | Marseille

Musée Cantini | Marseille

Marseille - rue Grignan, 19
closed: Monday
The Musée Cantini in Marseille is a modern art museum housed in a late-17th century palace with an important collection of art from 1900 to 1960
Musée d’art moderne et contemporain de Céret

Musée d’art moderne et contemporain de Céret

Céret - Boulevard Maréchal Joffre, 8
closed: Tuesday
The Musée d'art moderne et contemporain de Céret is a modern and contemporary art museum located the French Pyrenées with works by Picasso, Miró and more
Musée de la Romanité, Nîmes

Musée de la Romanité, Nîmes

Nîmes - 16, Boulevard des Arènes
closed: Tuesdays, January 1, December 25
The Musée de la Romanité is an archaeological museum in Nîmes, southern France, housed in a translucent building designed by French-Brazilian architect Elizabeth de Portzamparc
Musée du Petit Palais | Avignon

Musée du Petit Palais | Avignon

Avignon - place du Palais des Papes
closed: Tuesday
The Musée du Petit Palais in Avignon is an art museum housed in the former Archbishop's palace, with collections dating from Antiquity to the Renaissance
Musée Fabre | Montpellier

Musée Fabre | Montpellier

Montpellier - rue Montpelliéret, 13
closed: Monday
The Musée Fabre in Montpellier is an important museum featuring mostly art from the 15th century on, including works by Breughel, Rubens, Manet and Raphael
Rivesaltes Memorial and Museum

Rivesaltes Memorial and Museum

Salses-le-Château - Avenue Christian Bourquin
closed: Open daily, except January 1, May 1, November 1, and December 25
Designed by Rudy Ricciotti, the Rivesaltes Memorial in southern France commemorates the people interned in the Rivesaltes detention camp from 1938 to 2007, including over 2,000 Jews during WWII
Villa Méditerranée | Marseille

Villa Méditerranée | Marseille

Marseille - Esplanade du J4
closed: currently closed
Villa Méditerranée in Marseille is a new museum dedicated to various cultural and scientific aspects of the countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea

sponsored links

in-depth articles: museums in Southern France, from Marseille to the Spanish border


Renzo Piano’s exhibition pavilion at Château La Coste, southern France

Renzo Piano’s exhibition pavilion at Château La Coste, southern France

Renzo Piano designed a tensile-fabric covered art pavilion for the Château La Coste wine resort and factory near Aix-en-Provence, southern France

archive of exhibitions, news, and events in Southern France, from Marseille to the Spanish border


Marseille | The design of the 24H Architecture

Marseille | The design of the 24H Architecture

The design project developed by the office PAN Architecture for the 24H d' Architecture in Marseille was aimed to create an array of inter-connected spaces.

sponsored links


copyright Inexhibit 2020 - ISSN: 2283-5474