🏰 “Escape from the Chateau d’If” or “Le Defi de Monte-Cristo” is a swimming competition created in 1999. Organizers, inspired by the legendary escape of the hero of Dumas’s novel The Count of Monte Cristo, created one of the largest events for swimmers around the world. Every year, several thousand athletes come to Marseille to repeat the feat of Edmond Dantes and swim from the Chateau d’If to the shore.
The swim takes place every year at the end of May beginning of June at distances of 5 km, 2.5 km and 1 km - suitable for both amateurs and professionals.
The competition takes place over two days:
1️⃣ On the first day, participants in the 5 km swim with fins will start.
2️⃣ On the second day, participants in the 1 km, 2.5 km and 5 km swims without fins. The 1 km and 2.5 km races start and finish in the same place - Village Monte Cristo.
✔️ The course is laid out in a clockwise loop: the 5 km race starts from the Château d'If and ends at the Village Monte Cristo. There is no time limit for the 5 km swim, but after 2.5 hours the boat begins to control the swimmers; perhaps the rescuers will ask you to finish, since it is dangerous to stay in the water for too long.
✔️ During the swim itself, boats and kayaks float around the swimmers all the time, indicating the direction if someone gets lost. The distance is conventionally divided into three segments: from the Chateau d'If to the shore, then to the right along the shore to the pre-finish buoy, then you need to go around the buoy, turn around and swim to the finish line, from the buoy there are 300 meters left.