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Introduction

Toulon is a city in the southern French region of Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur with around 175,000 inhabitants.

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Sights and Activities

Vieille Ville (old town) or Basse Ville (lower town) is a historical centre of the city. It is NE of the harbour. As it was built in the Middle Ages, it's a really a maze of narrow streets. A couple of bigger ones, Rue d'Alger and Cours Lafayette, are bordered by numerous shops and crowded every Saturday.

  • Vieux Port. Visit the old harbour and its promenade. The folk of old Provence, the typical accent of locals, and some wooden boats on the still sea (the folk is better in smaller town along the coast, however). Numerous souvenir shops, coffee shops and fish restaurants. Also on the port square, you'll see the statue of the Spirit of Navigation pointing at the sea, locally known as "cul vers ville" for its buttocks are turned toward the city. The statue was hidden and thought lost, during World War II, until it was found by chance in a local carpenter's shop who returned it to the authorities.
  • Place Puget. In the historical center, it's the ancient center of the town. There is a fountain built in 1780 with a sculpture of three dolphins, now completely covered by ivy. You'll enjoy staying in the shade of this place, at a coffee shop, during a hot afternoon.
  • Cathedral Notre-Dame-de-la-Seds (near Place Puget). (aka Saint Marie de la Seds Cathedral) Built in the 11th century, it has never been finished, but widened in 1738. There are numerous paintings of the 18th century.
  • Tour de l'horloge. (aka Tour Carrée), a monumental clock at the entry of the naval base (at the west of the port), formerly used to ring at the beginning and at the end of the working day. (updated May 2015 | edit)
  • The Genius of Navigation (near the City Hall). By Louis-Joseph Daumas, erected in 1847.
  • Church of Saint François de Paule. Just between the harbour and the south of Cours Lafeyette. Built in the 18th century, it is of typical baroque style.

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Weather

Toulon has a Mediterranean climate with temperatures during the dry and warm summer (June-August) around 27-30 °C and averages lows around or just below 20 °C. Winters from December to February are mostly around 15 °C and nights around 5-7 °C. Most of the precipitation falls from October to March and the average annual amount is about 675 mm.

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Getting There

By Plane

Toulon-Hyères Airport (TLN) has flights to Paris, Ajaccio, Brest, Brussels, London and Rotterdam.

A bus runs from the train station to the airport 4 times a day (€1.40). The last bus leaves for the airport at 19:30. If you arrive on a late night flight into the airport, you'd need to take a taxi (around €60 to Toulon). Other airports are Marseille-Provence (100 km west of Toulon), and Nice-Côte d'Azur (150 km east of Toulon). There are two roads drive to Toulon from Toulon-Hyères airport. Either you follow the highway (free, fast, but not very interesting) (French: Toulon par autoroute) or you choose the road that follows the coast (French: Toulon par la côte). It may take a longer time, but this is nicer and on rush hour you may avoid traffic jam on the highway.

By Train

French Railways, SNCF offers services to Marseille, Nice, Paris and regional destinations.

By Car

The A50 autoroute connects Toulon to Marseille, the A57 autoroute runs from Toulon to Le Luc, connecting to the A8 autoroute to Aix-en-Provence and Nice.

By Boat

Italy:

Corsica:
Société Nationale Maritime Corse-Mediterranée to Ajaccio, Bastia and several other places on Corsica.

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Getting Around

Metropolitan bus and ferry network is operated by Réseau Mistral.

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Eat

  • Le Pascalou, 3 Place À l'Huile, ☏ +33 4 94 62 87 02. Fish restaurant in the centre.
  • Brasserie Le Saint Gabriel, 334 Avenue de la République, ☏ +33 4 94 89 14 10. Provençal cuisine.
  • Pizzeria La Flambée, 518 Boulevard Bazeilles, ☏ +33 4 94 42 12 07. Reasonable prices and good food.
  • Le Grand Café de la Rade, 224 Avenue République (in the harbour, facing the statue of the spirit of navigation), ☏ +33 4 94 24 87 02. Big coffee shop and restaurant, easy to find. There are really numerous coffee shops and restaurants on the harbour, this is only an example. Mixed reviews.
  • Lycée des Métiers de l'Hôtellerie et du Tourisme de Toulon (Toulon's Catering and Tourism School), Rue César Vezzani, ☏ +33 4 94 09 70 81 (09:00 - 16:00). lunch Monday to Friday, arrivals 12:00-12:30, end 13:45; dinner Tuesday and Thursday, arrivals 19:00-19:30, end 22:30; closed during school holidays. This is quite unusual venue, but they have 2 restaurants where their students are practising: Le restaurant Provence with menu imposé (fixed menu, approx €20) and Le restaurant Cote d’Azur with menu a la carte. Great prices and good reviews. There is also Boutique Gourmande (opened 09:00-15:00) on the ground floor where they sell ready meals, pastries and bakery.

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Drink

Le Chantilly, 15 place Pierre Puget. A historic brasserie founded in 1907.

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Sleep

You can use the form below to search for availability (Travellerspoint receives a commission for bookings made through the form)

Booking.com

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Keep Connected

Internet

France is one of the best connected countries in the world, with data speed for upload/download ranked among the top 5 in the world. Most hotels and hostels would have in-house facilities to provide free internet access. Many major cities also have initiatives put in place to provide free wi-fi connection in public spaces. Alternatively there are internet cafés available in most cities/towns at a reasonable rate. Some private businesses, such as local cafés (or even the Starbuck's chain), may also provide wi-fi connectivity - keep an eye out for the signs by the shop windows/doors. Also look for the @ symbol prominently displayed, which indicates internet availability. However, with most homes now wired for the internet, cyber cafés are increasingly hard to find, especially outside the major cities.

Phone

See also: International Telephone Calls

To dial an international number from France, the IDD is 00, followed by the country code that you wish to dial, the area code and the phone number.
To call France from abroad, start with the international direct dialing (IDD) code from the country you're in, followed by French country code 33, the area code (drop the first zero in front of the area code), and the phone number. French telephone numbers are rarely given without the area code. The telephone number, including the area code, is made up of 10 digits. They are written in a set of 5 pairs of digits (i.e. 01 xx xx xx xx xx).
In France, the area code designations are: 01 - Paris Area ("Région Ile-de-France"), 02 - northwest, 03 - northeast, 04 - southeast, 05 - southwest, 06 - mobile phone providers. From 2010 onwards, 07 will also be assigned to mobile phone providers in order to cater for the surging demands for mobile phones.

Emergency numbers are 15 (medical aid), 17 (police station) and 18 (fire/rescue). You can also use the European emergency number 112 (perhaps a better choice if you don't speak French). These calls are free and accessible from virtually any phone, including locked cellphones.

France uses the GSM standard of cellular phones (900 MHz and 1800 MHz bands) used in most of the world outside of the U.S. There are several companies (Orange, SFR, Free, Bouygues Télécom and some others MVNOs like Virgin Mobile) offering wireless service. The country is almost totally covered but you may have difficulties using your mobile phone in rural or mountainous areas. If you stay for some time, it may be advisable to buy a pre-paid cell phone card that you can use in any phone that supports the GSM standard on the 900/1800 MHz bands. Then incoming calls and SMSes are free.

Post

La Poste in France is also referred to as the PTT (short for postes, télégraphes et téléphones). The mailboxes are painted bright yellow and often there is a slot for local city mail and another slot for "outside mail". Normally there is a queue in the post office, but most of the post offices have the self service machine installed which is quite easy to operate. Nowadays many of the tabac and even some of the souvenir shops also sell postage stamps. Normally an overseas postcard costs almost as much as sending a letter. Mails sent in France also have a zip code. The first two numbers represent the administrative department (e.g. in Paris' case that would be 75).

Post offices are generally open from 8:00am to 7:00pm Monday through Friday, and 8:00am to noon on Saturdays. Apart from the basic job of mailing letters, most of the post offices do some banking activities also and some even have photocopy machines and cyber cafes for internet access.

For international package services, you might also check options with companies like DHL, UPS or TNT, which have competitive services and prices and might be faster in most cases.

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Accommodation in Toulon

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This is version 7. Last edited at 10:04 on Sep 11, 19 by Utrecht. 9 articles link to this page.

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