Canabiére Area, Marseilles
Marseilles' Canabiére area is the busy center of town containing the Bourse and a historical museum.
The principal traffic artery of the extremely busy inner city of Marseilles is the Canebière (Provençal Canebiero), a broad highway which begins at the harbor. This street, about 1km/0.5mi long, carries a great deal of traffic and is lined with shops and offices. The name is derived from Cannabis (hemp) and means "ropewalk". Fields of hemp could once be seen near the Old Harbor to which the raw material was delivered to the rope-makers.The former boulevard - it was once compared to the Champs-Elysées - now forms a social and cultural boundary, separating the poor Belsunce quarter in the north from the more affluent southern part of the city. Various redevelopment programs are attempting to ameliorate the situation.Not far to the east of the Stock Exchange the Canebière crosses the broad cours St Louis (on the right) which leads into the rue de Rome and on the left the cours de Belsunce which is continued by the rue d'Aix. This crossing is the intersection of the main roads leading east to west and north to south and is also the southwestern corner of the Arab quarter which extends to the north as far as the Porte d'Aix and the Gare St Charles. About 250m/275yd farther on is the intersection with the Bbulevard Dugommier (to the left) and the boulevard Garibaldi (to the right). At the end of the Canebière stands the neo-Gothic Church of St Vincent-de-Paul.
Coming from the harbor, on the left of the Canebière stands the Bourse (Stock Exchange), an impressive building of 1852-60, with the Musée de la Marine de Marseille (marine museum; collection of pictures and other artistic exhibits of the Marseilles Chamber of Trade; many drawings and plans of 17th C ships).
Marseille - Musée d'Histoire de Marseille
The redesigned Center de la Bourse in Marseilles (Stock Exchange Center; department store, etc.) gives access to the excavation site where remains of the Greek fortifications of the port of Massalia (third-second century B.C.) were uncovered, and which has been laid out as a park (Jardin des Vestiges) and open-air museum. On the ground floor of the Stock Exchange Center can be seen a collection of the finds, including the hull of a third century Roman ship.
South of the Canebière, at rue de Grignan 19, which is reached by way of rue Paradis, is the Musée Cantini. As well as old porcelain the museum has an important collection of 20th century applied art (there are also temporary exhibitions).
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