Fort Saint Nicolas Marseille

The Fort Saint Nicolas is a historical monument that has been built in the 17th century.


The construction of the Fort Saint-Nicolas was decided by Louis XIV in the 17th century to protect the harbour of Marseille against a possible attack. But the aim was also to keep an eye on the city and its population in case of rebellion.


The fort was built by the Knight Clerville between 1660 and 1664 and overlooks the harbour of MarseilleIt held a garrison during the 18th century before being partially destroyed in 1790 by revolutionaries. However, it was important for the authorities that the fort keeps its defensive aspect in spite of the reluctance of the people and it was not until 1834 that it was restored.


The citadel was divided in two forts under the orders of Napoleon III, resulting in the opening of a boulevard known as the Boulevard Charles Livon since 1922. In 1887, the upper part of the upper fort was renamed “Fort Entrecasteaux”, after the name of a French navigator, and the lower part, “Fort Ganteaume” in honour of a former vice admiral who was the maritime prefect of Toulon.

In parallel, we can mention that since 1696, the fort had been used as a prison for years, including during World War II. Jean Giono and Habib Bourguiba were prisoners there in 1939.

Classified as a historical monument on January 14, 1969, the fort is today partly occupied by the army and the visits are limited. However, it offers an interesting walk and from there, you will enjoy a magnificent view of the Old Port. At night, the ramparts of Fort Saint Nicolas are lit up with beautiful coloured lights. They were indeed colored by red and blue lights at the opening of MP2013.


We would be glad to welcome you in our 4-star hotel in Marseille, located only a few-minute walk away from this historic monument. Its pool and its restaurant  will give you all the comfort you need to enjoy fully all the events organized on the occasion of Marseille Provence 2013.


Practical Information:

Fort Saint Nicolas - Marseille
Boulevard Charles Livon
13007 Marseille

Phone: +33 4 91 13 89 00