Flavours, colors and fragrances
Private Tour 6 Days/5 Nights
Day 1 – Essence of Provence
This morning we will meet at your hotel in Marseille & transfer to Cassis’s Harbour to embark for a private cruise; there we will meet our captain who will take us to admire the famous Calanques (coves), the rocky cliffs and bays so characteristic of the coastline between Marseilles and Cassis. We will have lunch at “Le grand large” a seafood restaurant facing the sea and where from the terrace we will enjoy the calm ballet of fishing and pleasure boats. In the afternoon the Cheynan family will host us in their Domain to show us around their wine and olive oil production. Pascal, the owners’ son and the head winemaker, will explain to us the philosophy the family apply in their wines and olive oils. We will then head to Les Baux-de-Provence, a beautiful medieval town with a rich architectural heritage and magic that you will explore through its narrow cobbled streets. In the village the beautiful 5-star Relais Château Domaine de Baumanière will accommodate us for the next two nights. It epitomises the definition of provencale luxury, the quintessential Mediterranean charm. The Welcome dinner will take place in their 3-star Michelin restaurant Oustau de Baumanière.
Day 2 – Impressive Impressionism!
After a wonderful breakfast at your hotel, we will pick you up and drive you to the countryside around Aix-en- Provence for a hike around the beautiful cliffs of Mont Sainte Victoire. On this gentle trail, with our local guide, we will have the opportunity to admire the different point of views from the Mont Sainte Victoire, just as the great Cézanne once did. At the end of our walk, we will enjoy a very pleasant picnic lunch with plenty of local specialties: cold-cuts, cheese, bread, wine. The whole thing is catered by local producers and we will have a thoroughly bucolic time. This afternoon we will head to Aix en Provence & stroll along its leafy boulevards and public squares lined with 17th- and 18th-century mansions, punctuated by fountains, where we will enjoy our delicious ice cream for dessert. Then we will continue to Saint-Rémy de Provence to visit the unique Carrières de Lumières, a multimedia contemporary art installation housed with works by Van Gogh and other iconic artists. A true wonder! We will then go back to our hotel, Domaine de Baumanière. Tonight we will enjoy our dinner at the gourmet restaurant La Cabro d’Or, the hotel’s bistrot.
Day 3 – More catholic than the pope
This morning we will discover the spectacular landscapes of the Alpilles range and cycle along small country roads. Our ride will end with a tasting of some of the best Provencal wines in the most renowned estate of Vallongue. Our host who runs an organic winery will define and explain to us their philosophy of producing amazing wines while retaining a real sense of ecological principles and respect for natural cycles. We will then transfer to the legendary town of Avignon, also known as the city of the Popes and the largest medieval fortress in Europe. Then we will head to the picturesque village of Eygalières, to enjoy lunch in a fine local restaurant. At the foot of the Palais des Papes, the 5 star hotel La Mirande is a sumptuous palace from the 16th century. You’ll have plenty of time before dinner to admire and enjoy their collection of impressionist paintings or to relax in their wonderfully manicured gardens. For dinner we will arrange a cooking class in La Mirande’s old kitchen which houses the “Le Marmiton” cooking school. Some of the greatest chefs of the region are invited to give cooking classes for all enthusiasts, from those who want an introduction to the art of Provencal cooking to those who wish to improve their knowledge of gastronomy. Bon appétit!
Day 4 – Roman Provence
Today we are heading south to the Camargue region, the delta of the Rhône River and its beautiful flatlands, so we better be ready for an adventurous day. On our way to Camargue, we will stop in Arles, a charming and picturesque town with Provençal ambience and a superb Roman Arena. In Arles we will enjoy our lunch on the terrace of a local Bistrot next to the main square. This afternoon, we will explore the Camargue Regional Park with a safari tour in 4wd land rovers and discover the ponds and marshes where flamingos and many other birds live or stop on their migratory routes. We will then head to Sainte Marie de la Mer, an amazing town built on the very southern point of the Camargue, surrounded by sea and marshes. A pretty unreal and singular place with stunning architecture. Right there on a peninsula our accommodation awaits us: Sainte-Hélène Lodge is a unique place situated in a unique environment. All the rooms have spectacular views, the heated pool makes you part of all the water surrounding you. After some relaxation, or having enjoyed one of their many massages, we will get ready for our dinner in the restaurant of the hotel, where they offer a typical regional cuisine with the freshest seafood and accompanied by the rice produced locally.
Day 5 – Purebreds and Flamingoes
After having enjoyed your buffet breakfast, we will head to the nearby Vaccares pond in the heart of Camargue. There, Olivier, our host for today, and owner of one of the oldest equestrian stables in the area, will wait for us with his Camargue breed horses and will come along with us for a unique ride into the regional park. We will spend our day discovering the extraordinary biodiversity of the Lower Camargue, with its mosaic of environments (reed beds, marshes, ponds…), its characteristic flora, and its emblematic fauna, with plenty of waterfowl including the famous pink flamingo. Exploring this unique and unspoilt nature spot in the best possible way, on horseback. We will then head back to our hotel for some down time, and get ready for our final night dinner in a beautifully typical Manade farm. There we will celebrate our trip with a live band playing traditional music and a spectacular dinner served for us.
Day 6 – The cradle of civilizations
After a glorious breakfast we will drive to Marseille, the second largest city in France. There we can’t miss visiting the MuCEM – Museum of Civilizations of Europe and the Mediterranean. An ultra-contemporary construction with plenty of cutting edge exhibitions of the new generation of artists from all over the Mediterranean basin. Settling in next to Marseille’s harbour, we will enjoy our lunch while admiring the ballet of fishing boats. From there we will drive either to the airport or to the train station, where you can enjoy the high speed train to Paris.
**It is possible to customize your itinerary
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*Package descriptions and pricing are subject to change without notice.