A few hours in Toulon

As I mentioned last month, things have been progressively getting better since we got here in late April. We are now able to eat in restaurants again (even indoors!), and the curfew has first been extended from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m, then to 11 p.m., and by now it has been lifted completely. Face masks are no longer required outdoors, more and more businesses are open, in short, life is getting back to normal. We decided to enjoy our newfound freedom by taking a day trip to Toulon, just under an hour and a half away by train.

While I fondly remember a previous trip to Toulon with my friend Didier, Vicki had never been there other than to catch a ferry to Corsica; this and the fact that it was relatively close by made this destination an ideal choice for a first trip. We took our time exploring the old town, had lunch in one of the many squares, walked along the waterfront, and checked out the huge market. We had a great time, and longer trips are already being planned. Stay tuned!

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We enjoyed breakfast in a little café on the 'place de la Liberté'

We enjoyed breakfast in a little café on the place de la Liberté


The 'Fontaine de la Fédération' in front of the former Grand Hotel on the 'Place de la Liberté'

The Fontaine de la Fédération in front of the former Grand Hotel on the Place de la Liberté

The fountain was inaugurated in 1890; it features three allegorical figures: France, Strength, and Justice. These are sculpted in Calisanne stone, frequently used as a replacement for marble in Provence. It stands in front of the Grand Hôtel that was built during the Second French Empire in 1870. The establishment was requisitioned by the occupying forces during World War II. In subsequent years, it was converted to apartments before it closed permanently in 1997. Today, this iconic Toulon landmark is home to the théâtre Liberté which was inaugurated in 2011.


Detail view of the 'Fontaine de la Fédération'

Detail view of the Fontaine de la Fédération


Mediterranean Center of [contemporary] Art on the 'boulevard Général Leclerc'

Mediterranean Center of [contemporary] Art on the boulevard Général Leclerc


Tempting treats on the narrow 'rue Larmodieu'

Tempting treats on the narrow rue Larmodieu


Looking up the 'rue Molière' The 'rue Jean Jaurès' skirts the 'place Victor Hugo'

Looking up the rue Molière

The rue Jean Jaurès skirts the place Victor Hugo


On the 'place Victor Hugo'

On the place Victor Hugo


The Toulon Opera on the 'place Victor Hugo' is the second largest opera house in France after the 'Palais Garnier' in Paris

The Toulon Opera on the place Victor Hugo is the second largest opera house in France after the Palais Garnier in Paris


The fountain of the three dolphins on the 'place Puget'

The fountain of the three dolphins on the place Puget


Strolling down the 'rue Hoche'

Strolling down the rue Hoche


The 'place Camille Ledeau' and its beautiful fountain

The place Camille Ledeau and its beautiful fountain


On the 'place Gustave Lambert'

On the place Gustave Lambert


Looking down the 'rue d'Alger' Looking towards the 'rue Albert'

Looking down the rue d'Alger

Looking towards the rue Albert


View from the 'quai Cronstadt' over the harbor

View from the quai Cronstadt over the harbor


Looking across the 'avenue de la République' to the market on the 'place Louis Blanc'

Looking across the avenue de la République to the market on the place Louis Blanc


Checking out the market

Checking out the market


The 'Saint-François de Paule' church at the western end of the market

The Saint-François de Paule church at the western end of the market


All kind of items are being sold at the market...

All kind of items are being sold at the market...


...but most people shop here for fruit, vegetables, and other edible items.

...but most people shop here for fruit, vegetables, and other edible items.


Leaving the market on the 'Cours Lafayette' on the northern end

Leaving the market on the Cours Lafayette on the northern end


Many streets in the old town are decorated wit these colorful butterflies

Many streets in the old town are decorated wit these colorful butterflies


The Toulon cathedral, 'Notre-Dame-de-la-Seds', on the 'rue Émile Zola'

The Toulon cathedral, Notre-Dame-de-la-Seds, on the rue Émile Zola


We never did find out what ceremony these marine officers with their flowers rushed to the cathedral for...

We never did find out what ceremony these marine officers with their flowers rushed to the cathedral for...


...but we decided to take a closer look.

...but we decided to take a closer look.


On the 'rue Émile Zola'

On the rue Émile Zola


This replica of 18th Century frigate "La Flore".. ...is located on the 'place Vatel'.

This replica of 18th Century frigate "La Flore"...

...is located on the place Vatel.


The figurehead depicts Neptune, the Roman god of the sea. The original is in the 'Musée national de la Marine'.

The figurehead depicts Neptune, the Roman god of the sea. The original is in the Musée national de la Marine.


On the 'place de l'Équerre'

On the place de l'Équerre


The 'Musée National de la Marine de Toulon', the French Navy Museum of Toulon

The Musée National de la Marine de Toulon, the French Navy Museum of Toulon


A closer look at the butterflies that decorate parts of the old town

A closer look at the butterflies that decorate parts of the old town


The 'place Amiral Sénès'

The place Amiral Sénès


Back at the station in time for our return trip to Cannes

Back at the station in time for our return trip to Cannes


The photos on this page were taken on June 11, 2021.
They may also be viewed in a gallery or slide show.




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