Calanque de Sormiou

Bay in Les Calanques

The largest calanque hit headlines in 1991 when diver Henri Cosquer from Cassis swam through a 150m-long passage 36m underwater and into a cave, only to find its interior adorned with wall paintings dating from around 20,000 BC. Now named Grotte Cosquer, the cave is a protected historical monument and closed to the public.

To reach the calanque, take bus 23 from Marseilles’ Rond-Point du Prado metro to the La Cayolle stop, from where it is a 3km walk.

At the calanque you'll find the seasonal restaurant Le Château, which serves fabulous lunches with views to match, requires reservations and accepts no credit cards. Diners with reservations are allowed to drive into the calanque; otherwise, mid-April to May the road’s open to cars weekdays only and closed entirely June to September.