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- Welcome Dinner
- Hotel De Caumont – 18th Century Mansion
- Visit the village of Lourmarin – Dating back to the Middle Ages
- Wine tour & Tasting
- Carrières deLumiéres – Exhibition: Picasso and the modern Spanish
- Chateu Baux
- Hike the Alpilles
- Picnic in the Alpilles – Local delicacies
- Visit the historic Site Glanum
- City tour of Arles
- Horse riding Camargue
- Catamaran tour of Calanques
- Marseille’s Soap Workshop
- City Tour Marseille
- Aix in Provence
- Marseille Old Port
- Private transfers to/from Airport
Bonjour! Welcome to France!
Upon arrival at Marseille Airport, you will be met by a driver and assisted with your bags for a private transfer to your hotel.
At 7pm, you’re invited to a casual welcome dinner at the hotel to enjoy some traditional French nibbles and sweets.
Renaissance Aix-en-Provence Hotel| Welcome Dinner
HOTEL DE CAUMONT ARTS CENTRE | VISIT THE VILLAGE OF LOURMARIN
This morning we’ll go to Hotel De Caumont. Just a few steps from the Cours Mirabeau, a new Arts Centre is which has opened its doors to a stunning fully restored private mansion from the 18th century. Marvel at the fine art work and intricate décor. Hotel De Caumont aims at becoming a major culture centre in Aix; a place where art is discovered and shared with passion.
Afterwards we head to the tearoom and gardens to enjoy Brunch. A place that offers a haven of peace in the heart of the Mazarin district.
In the evening explore the rustic village of Lourmarin, extremely picturesque, the village is a magnet for tourists. Prominent sites are the village itself, the pretty Renaissance castle, the Catholic and Protestant churches and the view from the village of the Proches Bastides, a large fortified farmhouse dating to the Middle Ages.
Free time to enjoy dinner of your choice. Your guide can recommend a quaint French restaurant if your heart desires. Stroll along the streets of Aix before retreating to your room.
Renaissance Aix-en-Provence Hotel | Meals: B, L
PROVENCAL WINE TOUR AND TASTING | ST-RÉMY DE PROVENCE
After breakfast immerse yourself in the beautiful wine regions of Côtes de Provence Sainte-Victoire & Côteaux d’Aix-en-Provence, located at the foothills of the famous Sainte-Victoire mountain. With your wine guide, learn about these terroirs typicities : soil, climate, local grape varieties and about winemaking process while visiting family-owned wineries and cellars. Discover the elegant city of Aix-en-Provence during your lunch break.
In the evening Travel west to St-Rémy-de-Provence, a historic market town where will enjoy a group dinner before arriving at our new accommodation.
Le Vallon de Valrugues & Spa | Meals: B, L,
CARRIÈRES DE LUMIÉRES| CHÂTEAU DESBAUX-DE-PROVENCE |DINNER WITH A LOCAL FAMILY
Today we visit Carrières de Lumiéres-Center of Digital Art culture spaces. A Former quarry with art-based multimedia shows, projecting images of famous paintings set to music.
Muse at the art exhibition: Picasso and the modern Spanish, from March 2018.
After indulging in this Artists delight, we journey to Château des Baux-de-Provence. A medieval hamlet set in the Alpilles on a high rocky outcrop. Visit to the old castle built in the 10th century, the fortress and the small town it protects were ruled by the lords of Baux for five hundred years, in the thick of the ceaseless conflicts that ravaged Provence.
This evening we’ll enjoy a typical French dinner at with a local family at their farmhouse, where you’ll feast on traditional dishes and feel the ambience of living a Provencal life.
Le Vallon de Valrugues & Spa | Meals: B, D
HIKE ALPILLES | VISIT SITE GLANUM | LOCAL DELICACIES PICNIC | CITY TOUR OF ARLES
After breakfast we’ll go on a 4km hike in the Apilles. The walk will take approximately 1.5 hours with an elevation gain of around 150meteres. Enjoy panoramic views of flora and fauna. The hike will take us to the Site of Glanum. Set in the heart of the Alpilles Mountains, the Gallic city is steeped I Greek and Roman influences and found prosperity from the 2nd Century B.C.
A picnic with local delicacies will await the end of our journey.
Following this explore the city of Arles. Nicknamed the ‘Soul of Provence’ this historic city is the gateway to the Camargue Natural Park, nestled on the banks of the Rhone River. Arles was founded by the Greeks in 6th-centry BC and is one of the oldest cities in France. A 20,000-seat Roman amphitheatre, Les Arenes, sits at the heart of the medieval centre and a cluster of fascinating Roman ruins, including a 12,000-seat theatre, are dotted around the UNESCO-World Heritage listed city.
Learn about the cultural heritage of Vincent Van Gogh and Pablo Picasso.
Spend the evening at your own leisure in St-Rémy.
Le Vallon de Valrugues & Spa | Meals: B, L
HORSE RIDING AND VISIT TO CAMARGUE | MARSEILLE
The best way to explore Camargue is by foot or horse. We’ll set off by horse back for two hours of riding. In the Spring and Autumn the park’s wetlands are major staging points for hundreds of thousands of migrating birds. While the flamingos are the Camargue’s most emblematic birds, the area is more historically famous for its white horses. The Camargue’s horses are a special breed, reputedly one of the oldest breeds of horses in the world, and they have lived in the very particular environment of the Camargues saline wetlands for thousands of years.
This evening we go to Marseille where we will be staying for the next three nights and dining together as a group.
*Optional walking tour on foot if you do not wish to ride a horse
Hotel C2 | Meals: B, L, D
MARSEILLES SOAP WORKSHOP | CITY TOUR MARSEILLE
This morning discover the secrets of making the famous ‘Savon de Marseille’. A local expert will share the history and manufacturing of soap. You will then be lead you through the soap-making process, receiving exclusive tips as you mix, shape and stamp your own creation with the text of your choice.
Have some time to yourself for lunch before we begin our city tour of Marseille where you will discover all the main sights with fantastic views. See the Cathedral, “Le Panier”, the Old Port, and admire the architecture of the city.
This evening we’ll share a group dinner in a rustic local setting.
Hotel C2 | Meals: B, D
CATAMARAN TRIP TO THE CALANQUES
Private Catamaran boat trip from the port of Marseille, from where we will admire the famous creeks of the “Calanques National Park”. We will swim in these turquoise waters (optional) and will enjoy a picnic onboard the ship. This stunning area is often referred to as the Saint-Tropez of Provence.
Spend the evening exploring Marseille, dine at a local restaurant or simply stroll the streets of this old and alluring city.
Hotel C2 | Meals: B, L
Free morning at the hotel. Private return transfer to Marseille Provence international airport.
British, US, Canadian and Australian citizens do not currently require a visa to enter France. If you are not from these locations please check the relevant consulate or embassy in your home country for the most up to date information.
Your consulate will ensure you are pointed in the right direction with obtaining a visa. Please allow for processing time as visas can sometimes take up to several weeks.
You will need to provide flight information at the time of booking to your tour so we can arrange your private transfer to our first meeting point Renaissance Aix-en-Provence Hotel.
Our drivers will be waiting for you with a sign at the designated waiting area of the arrivals terminal, where you will be assisted with your luggage.
Renaissance Aix-en-Provence Hotel.
20 Avenue Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,
13100 Aix-en-Provence, France
Check in is from 2pm. If you want to arrive earlier this is absolutely fine, however please note that you may not be able to check into your room until 2pm. You are more than welcome to leave your bags in the foyer and the hotel staff can provide recommendations whilst you wait. There will be a casual welcome dinner on the first evening from 7pm for those who have arrived.
You will need a reasonable level of fitness to enjoy this trip. Some of our activities include short hikes which are considered to be easy however will be up to 1.5-2 hours at a time. Our walks will be at an enjoyable pace.
If you're happy with the services provided a tip - though not compulsory - is appropriate. Tips are greatly appreciated by the people who will take care of you whilst you are traveling as it’s of great significance to them.
Here are some of our suggestions based on past travellers experience and local considerations.
Local markets/Basic restaurants and cafes – Round up your bill to the nearest €1.
Upmarket restaurants – 5 to 10% of the bill
Throughout your trip you may at times have a local guide in addition to your tour hostess.
You may also consider tipping your hostess for outstanding service throughout your trip. The amount is entirely a personal preference, however as a guideline €2-€4 per person, per day can be used. Of course you are free to tip more or less as you see fit, depending on your perception of service quality and the length of your trip. Remember, a tip is not compulsory and should only be given when you receive excellent service. In total, we recommend you budget approx €5-€10 per day of your trip to cover tipping.
Your tour ends in Marseille at Hotel C2. We ask for your flight details prior to the trip to secure your private return transfer to Marseille Provence International airport. Should you be staying on in Provence or departing for a different location; our staff can assist. Please inquire with us upon booking.
acquire money in Europe is via an Automated Teller Machine (ATM) or Bancomat as they are often referred to. Check with your bank in advance concerning the suitability of your account / card overseas and any international fees that will be applied. You can obtain local currencies easily at airports and major train stations, but be sure to bring some extra emergency cash in a major currency that can be exchanged if the ATMs are not functioning. The safest option is to bring cash in either Euro or US dollars. When leaving home don't forget your PIN and make sure you know the telephone number for cancelling your card if it is stolen. Keep this in a safe place. Credit cards are not always accepted in stores and restaurants. While travelling we recommend you carry some cash to pay for restaurant bills and other services. Change can be difficult to obtain so throughout the day, try to gain as many small denominations as you can.
You might be advised to take some of your money as travellers' cheques from a major financial institute. Travellers' cheques have security advantages, however please be aware that the exchange rates may not be favourable and that it is difficult to change Travellers' cheques in most countries. Be particularly aware that after hours money exchanges and hotel receptions carry high commissions- sometimes up to 20%. Taking all that in to account, we do not advise bringing traveller’s cheques to France.
For money safety we recommend that you carry your cash and credit cards in a secure money belt or pouch concealed under your clothes.
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