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“Chateau D'If - a cool retreat” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Castle of If

Castle of If
1 Quai de la Fraternite, 13000 Marseille, France
33 04 91 59 02 30
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Top Rated
$30*
and up
Marseille City Pass
Ranked #21 of 94 Attractions in Marseille
Type: Historic Sites, Islands, Landmarks/ Points of Interest, Cultural
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Attraction details
Owner description: This famous fortress, standing on a rocky island off the coast of Marseille, was immortalised by Alexandre Dumas in The Count of Monte Cristo as the prison where the novel’s hero, Edmond Dantes, was incarcerated before ultimately escaping. The castle was built by Francois I in 1524 and over the centuries it gained a fearsome reputation as many opponents of royal power were jailed and died in the fortress. The Castle of If has been perfectly preserved and is one of the most impressive historical sites on the Mediterranean coastline. Open:> 15th May to 20th September: from 9.30 a.m. to 6.15 p.m.> 21st September to 14th May: from 9.30 a.m. to 5.30 p.m. The last visit depends on the timetable of boats, information at the tourist information center, on our website monuments-nationaux.fr or on Frioul If express. Closed:> Mondays from 21st September to 14th May.> 1st January, 25th December and subject to bad weather. Admission fees: Adults : 5,50 €; Concessions (18 to 25) = 4 €; Free admission: minors under 18*; Free admission: 18-25 years old* (citizens of one of the 27 countries of the EU or are non-European permanent residents of France) * excluding school groups.
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
5 attraction reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Chateau D'If - a cool retreat”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 4, 2013

This is an interesting excursion if you are in Marseille for more than one day. It is a peaceful ferry ride that affords a lovely view of the harbour of Marseille. The castle is interesting and there is a little restaurant there for light food and refreshments. There is good information in many different languages and a cute little gift shop.

Visited April 2013
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16 reviews 16 reviews
7 attraction reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Count of Monte Cristo”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 3, 2013 via mobile

Since i've seen the Count of Monte Cristo, it made sense for me to visit this place while in Marseille. Spectacular views on the boat and from the castle itself. The emptiness of the rooms and the walls bring a sense of calm and meditation. It seems that the surroundings compensate for the lack of decoration and ornaments inside.

Visited April 2013
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Lyon, France
Senior Contributor
42 reviews 42 reviews
29 attraction reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“scenic views and a breath from overcrowded city”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 19, 2013

The trip by boat itself is relaxing, providing that you bought your tickets in advance. If not, be prepared to queue. The castle is huge and inside, it's chilly, regardless the temperatures outside. We have spent great morning there.

Visited August 2013
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Halifax, United Kingdom
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25 reviews 25 reviews
7 attraction reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Very evocative”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2013

The boat trip across gives great views of the port and the castle. Inside the castle you can see cells of famous real- and literary- prisoners. It made me read the Count of Monte Cristo which I also thoroughly recommend!

Visited July 2013
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Paris, France
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
19 attraction reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
“fascinated a seven-year-old (and us)”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 15, 2013

It is a fantastical place, well-developed for informative visits, introducing its history as well as its fictional hero and his author. The 7-year-old who was with us found the Dumas character interesting, but was also fascinated by details of the real prisoners. Just one thing: she was upset at the recent graffiti, often overlying the scratches of the original prisoners.

Visited August 2013
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