Marseille is a principal Mediterranean port city in the south of France and is located 980km south from Amsterdam.
Let’s look at the options for travel between Amsterdam and Marseille by air, train or bus.
1. Amsterdam-Marseille by Train
Travel by train is possible between Amsterdam and Marseille and the journey can be done in about 8-10 hours.
The Amsterdam-Marseille rail journey comprises of 2 parts:
(1) Travel from Amsterdam to Brussels Zuid/Midi in the morning using either the high speed Thalys trains or the Intercity Brussels train. Thalys normally runs up to 11x daily and takes about 2 hours. Intercity Brussels runs 16x daily and takes 2 hours 50 minutes.
(2) Taking a TGV train which operates twice daily between Brussels Zuid/Midi and Marseille St Charles. It departs at 1317 and takes less than 6 hours. This train runs via Lille Europe, Paris Charles De Gaulle, Marne la Vallée-Chessy, Lyon Part Dieu, Avignon and Aix-en-Provence. It arrives at Marseille at 1849.
For those overnighting in Brussels there is also an early morning departure at 0702, arriving in Marseille at 1223.
It is also possible to take the Thalys from Amsterdam to Paris Nord then transfer across to Paris Gare de Lyon. From here there are more frequent TGV trains to Marseille St Charles. However connecting in Brussels is more convenient.
Marseille-Amsterdam rail journey: Take the 0636 TGV service departing Marseille which arrives at Brussels Zuid at 1211. Then connect onto the 1252 Thalys which arrives back in Amsterdam at 1444. Later Marseille departures are also possible but connections need to be made in Paris.
One-way fares for an Amsterdam-Marseille trip start at €84 (2nd class) or €119 (1st class). To secure the lowest fares it is essential to book well in advance.
How to book online: Amsterdam-Marseille by rail can be booked at the NS International site
There is a special Amsterdam-Marseille ZonThalys (Sun Thalys) direct service which runs weekly on Saturdays during July and August only.
The train operates as a normal Thalys from Amsterdam to Brussels but then continues on to Valence, Avignon, Aix-en-Provence and Marseille St Charles.
Total journey time between Amsterdam and Marseille is just over 7 hours and one-way tickets cost from €69 in Standard class and from €119 in Premium. This is a very popular service and the cheapest tickets sell out fast – so book early. Tickets normally go on sale around the end of February, also book at NS International
As both France and the Netherlands are part of the Schengen Zone you do not need to go through a passport control check when travelling between Amsterdam and Marseille.
2. Amsterdam-Marseille by Air
Flights between Amsterdam Schiphol (AMS) and Marseille Provence Airport (MRS) take around 2 hours. Flying is by far the quickest way to travel between the two cities.
Air France Hop flies up to 3x daily non-stop from Amsterdam to Marseille using smaller Canadair or Embraer aircraft.
Prices start from around €110 return not including checked luggage.
Air France-KLM also offers connecting flights throughout the day via Paris Charles De Gaulle.
Note, no frills airline Ryanair operates 4x weekly flights from Eindhoven (EIN) to Marseille Provence (MRS).
3. Amsterdam-Marseille by Coach
Flixbus normally offers a regular coach service from Amsterdam Sloterdijk to Marseille, with a change of bus in Paris Bercy. Travel time is around 19-22 hours and singles start at €38.
BlaBlaCar Bus (formerly OUIBUS) normally has up to 2x daily connections for Amsterdam Sloterdijk to Marseille, also with a change in Paris Bercy. Singles start at around €34 and the total journey time ranges 18-22 hours.
The coach stop in Marseille is next to Marseille St Charles station.
Looking for a convenient hotel near Amsterdam Central station? Check out the stylish Kimpton-De Witt which is a short walk from the station. For those on a budget the Ibis Amsterdam Centre is literally on top of the western edge of the station platforms.
The Iamsterdam City Card (1-5 days) offers free entry and discounts to numerous Amsterdam museums and attractions. It also includes a free public transport pass, a canal cruise and bike rental as well. You can order your Iamsterdam City Card online here
For hotels in Marseille – the Holiday Inn Express Marseille Saint Charles is just opposite the station; or consider the stylish and well-rated Alex Hotel & Spa or the charming Le Ryad Boutique Hôtel which is in Moroccan style.
The Marseille City Card (1-3 days) offers free public transport, tourist buses and mini trains, and free access to cultural activities. You can order your Marseille City Pass online here
This article was originally published in 2013 and has continuously been updated. Last update 23 May 2022.