Irish Language column: Diamant Garbh

Irish Language column Diamant Garbh

Christy Evans loves Marseilles – the rough diamond of the Mediterranean

Is cathair corraitheach í, Marseilles. Is gnóthach, plódaithe agus idir bocht agus saibhir. Tá an droch-cháill atá air éagórach – ‘The Slum in the Sun’, deirtear, ach i ndáiríre, níl aon easpa rudaí le moladh ann. Seasann an ard-eaglais Notre Dame de la Garde os cionn na Cathrach. Taobh istigh agus amuigh, tá 150 dealbh. Tá fuinneoga gloine dhaite den scoth le feiceáil ann. Tá radharc fairsing ar an mullach dochreidte. Tá radharc leathan de chathair, an fharraige, na sléibhte agus na hoileain. Is ceantar suimiúil é, Vieux Port. In aice láimhe, tá oileán agus Le Chateau d’If. D’úsáidtí an chateau ar an oileán mar phríosún leis na céadta bliain. Bhí ‘The Man in the Iron Mask’ ann ina measc. Bíonn bád farantóireachta ag trasnú go dtí Chateau d’If go rialta. Is turas an-álainn é. Is breá liom Marseilles agus tá Les Calanques, Monaco, St Tropez, Cannes agus Monte Carlo in aice láimhe, freisin. Sin fíor – is diamant garbh é, Marseilles. Tá tránna deasa, foirgneamh stairiúla, siopaí sofaisticúla agus bialanna blasta ann. Tá seirbhís ag Ryanair agus Aer Lingus go dtí Marseilles. Tá sí ag suite ar an Meánmhuir agus bheadh fáilte ‘s fiche romhat ann!

Irish Language column Diamant Garbh

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Marseilles is an exciting travel destination. Hectic and crowded, France’s second city has an unfair reputation as ‘The Slum in the Sun’, but in reality, it’s a great place to visit. Standing above the city is the Cathedral of Notre Dame de la Garde. A golden statue of Our Lady and the infant Jesus rises serenely above the grime and mayhem below. The view of the coast and the offshore islands from the cathedral terrace is superb. Down below in the Vieux Port, a regular ferry takes a steady stream of visitors to the historic island prison of Chateau d’If.

Irish Language column Diamant Garbh

‘The Man in the Iron Mask’ – yes, he really existed – was just one of the unfortunate prisoners held there. A short journey from Marseilles is the rugged beauty of the Calanque, and the glitzy resorts of Monaco, Cannes and St Tropez. Marseilles certainly is a rough diamond, but it also has its fair share of sandy beaches, upscale boutiques and lovely restaurants. Ryanair and Aer Lingus serve Marseilles and much of France’s Mediterranean coast. If you fancy a city break with a bit more ‘edge’, Marseilles could be the destination for you!

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