This page contains information on how to reach the CNRS campus in Marseilles, and also shows our location on the campus, in Bâtiment BM.
You will arrive at the Airport Marseille-Provence (usually known as Marignane). From there a taxi to the CNRS will cost around 50 euros. It is much cheaper to take the airport bus (about 8 euros) to St Charles and proceed from there by taxi or metro.
To arrive by train you should buy a ticket to Marseille St Charles. From there you can continue by taxi (about 15 euros) or metro (about 1.60 euros).
A taxi from from the main station (St Charles) should cost about 15 euros. Taxi drivers in Marseilles usually know where the CNRS is, but it is wise to specify Joseph-Aiguier, because although this is the only CNRS campus as such, there are CNRS laboratories on the university campuses as well (Luminy, St Charles, St Jérome, etc.). If there is any doubt, you should head along the Boulevard Michelet in the direction of Cassis until you see signs for the CNRS. If you arrive at the Obelisk in Mazargues and appear to be leaving the city you have gone too far: do a U-turn around the Obelisk and head back about 300 metres, turning right, where marked for the CNRS, into the chemin de la Bonneaude. All taxi drivers know the Boulevard Michelet.
In general it is easier to use the metro and bus, but if you are already in the area of the Centre Bourse (a shopping centre), the bus may be equally convenient. Take the No. 21 bus (validate your ticket in the machine provided at the beginning of the journey: ticket inspections are frequent) from there to the stop Michelet-Bonneaude. Cross the Boulevard Michelet and then walk along the chemin de la Bonneaude until you see the main entrance to the CNRS. You can see the bus route by clicking on the icon at the left. Using the bus in Marseilles is easy: all bus stops have names that are clearly marked both inside the bus and at the stop itself. You can buy the ticket from the driver. (Tickets are somewhat cheaper if you buy several at a time from shops that display the Metro logo or from Metro stations).
Take the metro at any station and proceed to the station Ste. Marguerite Dromel. Don’t throw away your ticket but keep it for the bus. Take the No. 48 bus. This bus stops very close to the CNRS. Get out at the Aiguier CNRS stop and you will see the entrance to the CNRS in front of you.
If you prefer, you can get out from the Metro at Rond Point du Prado and take a No. 21, 22 or 45 bus, and continue as above, but the No. 48 from Ste. Marguerite Dromel is better.
Each time you switch between metro and bus you need to revalidate your ticket in the machine at entry to the station or bus. The ticket is valid for 90 minutes from the first validation, and can be used as many times as you wish (and for journeys in any direction, including reversing the previous direction) during the period of validity. These rules have changed since this page was first posted. Also, the period of validity varies from time. It is probably safe to assume that it is at least an hour, and in any case if you try to validate an outdated ticket the machine will refuse it.
Getting to the CNRS by car
is not easy unless you know Marseilles quite well already or are coming from the direction
of Cassis. From the north (autoroute A7), the easiest and most scenic (though not the
shortest) route is to take the exit for Vieux Port and follow the
Autoroute du Littoral. Follow signs for La Plage, which will take you
through the tunnel under the Vieux Port. On emerging from the tunnel do not
continue into the second tunnel (Prado Carénage) but continue following for signs for La
Plage. This will turn you through 450° clockwise, so don’t even think about
relying on your sense of direction, but follow the signs. Continue along the coast road
(Promenade de la Corniche Président Kennedy) 4.5 km until you reach
the David (a large and easily recognizable replica of Michelangelo’s
statue). Turn left onto the Avenue du Prado, and follow it about 2 km to
the large roundabout called le Rond Point du Prado, at which point turn
right onto the Boulevard Michelet. Follow this about 2 km until you see
signs for the CNRS. If you follow these, they will take you off the Boulevard Michelet to the
right onto the feeder road. From there take the first left, across the main street and then
right onto the chemin de la Bonneaude. (If you arrive at the Obelisk in
Mazargues and appear to be leaving the city you have gone too far: do a U-turn around the
obelisk and head back about 300 metres, turning right, where marked for the CNRS, into the
chemin de la Bonneaude). The chemin de la Bonneaude looks like a road of
no importance but it carries a lot of traffic. Follow it to the end (about 300 metres), and the
main entrance to the CNRS will be in front of you across the chemin Joseph-Aiguier.
This information is also available in the form of a scheme,
and a cartographically more accurate map may also be helpful.
We are located in the ground floor of Bâtiment BM, in room BM 003 and an unnumbered room between rooms BM 001 and BM 003. To get
there from the main entrance at 31 chemin Joseph-Aiguier, follow the ring road anticlockwise as indicated on the aerial view. (You cannot go clockwise because there is a one-way system.)