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Discovering Provence

With the French Riviera

From $4,297
total price from Boston, New York
$3,695 air & land inclusive plus $602 airline taxes and fees
Tour Days
12 days
Tour Membership
12-24 guests

Overview

Assuredly part of France, but altogether Provençal, the beloved region nestled between the Rhone and the Mediterranean has seduced visitors since Roman times – as it will you. Our small group travels from hill towns to the Camargue plains, medieval villages and on to the storied French Riviera on this journey par excellence.

Tour Details

Discovering Provence

With the French Riviera

From $4,297

total price from Boston, New York
$3,695 air & land inclusive plus $602 airline taxes and fees

Tour Days
12 days

Tour Membership
12-24 guests

Tour Days
12 days

Tour Membership
12-24 guests

Overview

Assuredly part of France, but altogether Provençal, the beloved region nestled between the Rhone and the Mediterranean has seduced visitors since Roman times – as it will you. Our small group travels from hill towns to the Camargue plains, medieval villages and on to the storied French Riviera on this journey par excellence.

Small Group Highlights

  • Visits to quintessential Provençal villages of Lourmarin, Rousillon, Les Baux, Saint-Rémy
  • Aix touring, including Atelier Cézanne
  • Tasting and dinner at local winery
  • UNESCO sites of Roman Arles
  • Pont du Gard excursion
  • Avignon sightseeing, including Papal Palace
  • Private Provençal cooking lesson and dinner
  • Carrières de Lumières multimedia art show
  • Two-night stay in rugged, beautiful Camargue region
  • Visit to a working Camargue ranch
  • Birdlife at Pont de Gau ornithological reserve
  • Art haven of Saint-Paul-de-Vence
  • Two-night stay on the French Riviera

Day-by-Day Itinerary

Please note: This trip involves considerable walking up hills or stairs, and on uneven or cobblestone streets. You should be in good physical condition to enjoy the tour to its fullest.

B
= Breakfast Included
L
= Lunch Included
D
= Dinner Included
1
Depart U.S. for Marseille, France
Depart U.S. for Marseille, France
2
Arrive Marseille/Aix-en-Provence
D
D
Arrive Marseille/Aix-en-Provence

We arrive in Marseille and transfer to the Provençal town of Aix-en-Provence (“Aix”). Tonight, we meet our Odysseys Unlimited Tour Director and fellow travelers at a briefing about the journey ahead, followed by a welcome dinner at our hotel.

We arrive in Marseille and transfer to the Provençal town of Aix-en-Provence (“Aix”). Tonight, we meet our Odysseys Unlimited Tour Director and fellow travelers at a briefing about the journey ahead, followed by a welcome dinner at our hotel.

3
Aix-en-Provence
B
D
B
D
Aix-en-Provence

We discover this lovely university town today, known for the beautiful Cours-Mirabeau, the plane tree-lined main boulevard bordered by stately homes and the many elegant Roman fountains decorating city squares. On our walking tour, we admire Aix’s rich architectural heritage and the “Vieille Ville” (Old Town). After a guided visit to the Atelier Cézanne, the studio where artist Paul Cézanne worked from 1902 to 1906, we have free time to explore as we wish. Late afternoon we leave for a wine tasting then dinner at a local restaurant.

We discover this lovely university town today, known for the beautiful Cours-Mirabeau, the plane tree-lined main boulevard bordered by stately homes and the many elegant Roman fountains decorating city squares. On our walking tour, we admire Aix’s rich architectural heritage and the “Vieille Ville” (Old Town). After a guided visit to the Atelier Cézanne, the studio where artist Paul Cézanne worked from 1902 to 1906, we have free time to explore as we wish. Late afternoon we leave for a wine tasting then dinner at a local restaurant.

4
Aix-en-Provence/Roussillon/Lourmarin
B
L
B
L
Aix-en-Provence/Roussillon/Lourmarin

Today’s excursion to the beloved Luberon region of charming hilltop villages overlooking vineyards and orchards reveals Provence in all its storied beauty. We first visit the town of Roussillon, perched atop a striking ochre ridge surrounded by vivid green pine trees. After exploring this historic town, we continue on to Lourmarin, set amidst vineyards, olive groves, and almond trees, and considered “one of the most beautiful villages in France.” After lunch together at a local restaurant, we tour the landmark Renaissance castle and stroll the narrow winding streets lined with restored Mediterranean houses, boutiques, cafés, and restaurants. Late this afternoon, we return to Aix, where the evening is free for dinner on our own.

Today’s excursion to the beloved Luberon region of charming hilltop villages overlooking vineyards and orchards reveals Provence in all its storied beauty. We first visit the town of Roussillon, perched atop a striking ochre ridge surrounded by vivid green pine trees. After exploring this historic town, we continue on to Lourmarin, set amidst vineyards, olive groves, and almond trees, and considered “one of the most beautiful villages in France.” After lunch together at a local restaurant, we tour the landmark Renaissance castle and stroll the narrow winding streets lined with restored Mediterranean houses, boutiques, cafés, and restaurants. Late this afternoon, we return to Aix, where the evening is free for dinner on our own.

5
Aix-en-Provence/Arles/Pont du Gard/Avignon
B
D
B
D
Aix-en-Provence/Arles/Pont du Gard/Avignon

This morning we travel to Arles, once part of Roman Gaul then a clarion of Christianity and, more recently, where van Gogh painted. We see much of that history on our tour here, which includes a visit to the Roman Amphitheater, a UNESCO site dating to 90 CE and preserved virtually intact. Then we continue on towards Avignon, stopping at Pont du Gard, the 1st-century Roman aqueduct whose three tiers of arches span the Gardon River. Late this afternoon, we reach Avignon and our hotel, where we dine together tonight.

This morning we travel to Arles, once part of Roman Gaul then a clarion of Christianity and, more recently, where van Gogh painted. We see much of that history on our tour here, which includes a visit to the Roman Amphitheater, a UNESCO site dating to 90 CE and preserved virtually intact. Then we continue on towards Avignon, stopping at Pont du Gard, the 1st-century Roman aqueduct whose three tiers of arches span the Gardon River. Late this afternoon, we reach Avignon and our hotel, where we dine together tonight.

6
Avignon
B
D
B
D
Avignon

This morning, we encounter the ancient Roman city that was the capital of Christendom in the Middle Ages. We visit Avignon’s historic city center (a UNESCO site), with its cathedral, medieval Saint-Bénézet Bridge, and the Palais des Papes (Papal Palace), one of the world’s largest and most important Gothic structures. We tour the palace, where seven successive popes lived during the 14th century. Then we have free time to explore on our own before tonight’s small group highlight as we join a local chef for a Provençal cooking class followed by dinner.

This morning, we encounter the ancient Roman city that was the capital of Christendom in the Middle Ages. We visit Avignon’s historic city center (a UNESCO site), with its cathedral, medieval Saint-Bénézet Bridge, and the Palais des Papes (Papal Palace), one of the world’s largest and most important Gothic structures. We tour the palace, where seven successive popes lived during the 14th century. Then we have free time to explore on our own before tonight’s small group highlight as we join a local chef for a Provençal cooking class followed by dinner.

7
Avignon/Les-Baux-de-Provence/Saint-Rémy-de-Provence
B
L
B
L
Avignon/Les-Baux-de-Provence/Saint-Rémy-de-Provence

We set out this morning for Les Baux, a gem of a medieval village perched atop a rock spur. Our first stop: the Carrières de Lumières multimedia/art exhibition set in a former stone quarry. Then we explore Les Baux itself, considered another of the country’s most beautiful villages, with its restored ancient houses, Renaissance-era façades, historic monuments, and stone citadel. We then continue on to the picturesque village of Saint Rémy, in the heart of the Alpilles where, between May of 1889 and May of 1890, Vincent van Gogh painted Starry Night, among other of his most acclaimed paintings. We enjoy lunch together at a local restaurant before visiting the Romanesque jewel of St-Paul de Mausole, the former monastery turned asylum where van Gogh was confined after severing his ear. We return to Avignon late this afternoon; dinner tonight is on our own.

We set out this morning for Les Baux, a gem of a medieval village perched atop a rock spur. Our first stop: the Carrières de Lumières multimedia/art exhibition set in a former stone quarry. Then we explore Les Baux itself, considered another of the country’s most beautiful villages, with its restored ancient houses, Renaissance-era façades, historic monuments, and stone citadel. We then continue on to the picturesque village of Saint Rémy, in the heart of the Alpilles where, between May of 1889 and May of 1890, Vincent van Gogh painted Starry Night, among other of his most acclaimed paintings. We enjoy lunch together at a local restaurant before visiting the Romanesque jewel of St-Paul de Mausole, the former monastery turned asylum where van Gogh was confined after severing his ear. We return to Avignon late this afternoon; dinner tonight is on our own.

8
Avignon/Aigues-Mortes/Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer
B
D
B
D
Avignon/Aigues-Mortes/Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer

As we approach Aigues-Mortes this morning, we see the rose-hued salins (salt marshes) that produce the famed Camarguais salt. In town, we take a walking tour that features the entrance to the medieval city walls and ramparts. After time for lunch on our own here, we continue on to Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer, capital of the Camargue region of vast plains, wetlands, lakes, and lagoons. A UNECO Biosphere Reserve at 360 square miles, the Camargue is known for unique breeds of white horses and bulls, its pink flamingos, and as a staging point for thousands of migratory birds. We dine tonight at our hotel

As we approach Aigues-Mortes this morning, we see the rose-hued salins (salt marshes) that produce the famed Camarguais salt. In town, we take a walking tour that features the entrance to the medieval city walls and ramparts. After time for lunch on our own here, we continue on to Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer, capital of the Camargue region of vast plains, wetlands, lakes, and lagoons. A UNECO Biosphere Reserve at 360 square miles, the Camargue is known for unique breeds of white horses and bulls, its pink flamingos, and as a staging point for thousands of migratory birds. We dine tonight at our hotel

9
Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer
B
L
B
L
Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer

Our exploration of the Camargue begins with a visit to a manade, a traditional ranch where gardians (cowboys) raise bulls both for meat and to perform in local arenas. We learn about the traditional way of life as we tour the manade, watch the gardians manage their herds while on horseback, and enjoy a lunch of local specialties. Then we head to the Pont de Gau ornithological reserve in the heart of the Camargue Regional Natural Park. We’re likely to see the pink flamingos for which the park is known, as well as species of heron, birds of prey, and seasonal migratory birds.

Our exploration of the Camargue begins with a visit to a manade, a traditional ranch where gardians (cowboys) raise bulls both for meat and to perform in local arenas. We learn about the traditional way of life as we tour the manade, watch the gardians manage their herds while on horseback, and enjoy a lunch of local specialties. Then we head to the Pont de Gau ornithological reserve in the heart of the Camargue Regional Natural Park. We’re likely to see the pink flamingos for which the park is known, as well as species of heron, birds of prey, and seasonal migratory birds.

10
Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer/Saint-Paul-de-Vence/Nice
B
B
Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer/Saint-Paul-de-Vence/Nice

We’re bound today for the Cote d’Azur, the fabled French Riviera. Mid-day we reach Saint-Paul-de-Vence, the beautiful medieval hilltop village once home to many prominent artists, including Marc Chagall. After a walking tour together, we’re free to explore as we wish. Then we continue on to Nice, capital of the French Riviera, arriving late this afternoon.

We’re bound today for the Cote d’Azur, the fabled French Riviera. Mid-day we reach Saint-Paul-de-Vence, the beautiful medieval hilltop village once home to many prominent artists, including Marc Chagall. After a walking tour together, we’re free to explore as we wish. Then we continue on to Nice, capital of the French Riviera, arriving late this afternoon.

11
Nice
B
D
B
D
Nice

This morning’s sightseeing begins with spectacular views of Nice and its prized setting along the Baie des Anges from atop Colline du Chateau (Castle Hill), once a citadel and now a park. We stroll along the iconic seaside boulevard, Promenade des Anglais; explore “Vieux Nice” (Old Nice), with its colorful pastel buildings; and visit the historic Marché aux Fleurs (flower market). Tonight, we celebrate our adventure over a farewell dinner at a local restaurant.

This morning’s sightseeing begins with spectacular views of Nice and its prized setting along the Baie des Anges from atop Colline du Chateau (Castle Hill), once a citadel and now a park. We stroll along the iconic seaside boulevard, Promenade des Anglais; explore “Vieux Nice” (Old Nice), with its colorful pastel buildings; and visit the historic Marché aux Fleurs (flower market). Tonight, we celebrate our adventure over a farewell dinner at a local restaurant.

12
Depart for U.S.
B
B
Depart for U.S.

Today we depart for the Nice airport for our return flights to the U.S.

Today we depart for the Nice airport for our return flights to the U.S.

Tour Price Includes

  • Round-trip air transportation from listed cities
  • 10 nights’ accommodations in Deluxe and First Class hotels
  • 19 meals: 10 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 6 dinners
  • Extensive sightseeing as described, including all entrance fees
  • Services of an Odysseys Unlimited Tour Director
  • Private motorcoach transportation throughout your trip
  • Luggage handling for one bag per person
  • Gratuities for local guides, dining room servers, airport and hotel porters, and all drivers
  • $100 frequent traveler credit towards your next Odysseys Unlimited tour ($200 after 3 tours; $300 after 10 tours)

Average Daily High by Month (°F )

  Apr May Jun Aug Sep Oct
Aix-en-Provence 65 73 81 82 78 69
Nice 63 69 76 80 76 70

Average Temperature (°F )

  Apr May Jun Aug Sep Oct
Aix-en-Provence 65 73 81 82 78 69
Nice 63 69 76 80 76 70

Dates & Prices

Please wait while we retrieve this information.

Post-Tour Extension

The French Riviera – On Your Own

3 days, 2 nights
From
$245
+ from $195 Single Supplement

The French Riviera – On Your Own

3 days, 2 nights
From
$245
+ from $195 Single Supplement

Savor the good life in this celebrated spot, with splendid scenery, museums, beaches, and rustic villages close at hand.

Post-Tour Extension Price Includes

  • 2 nights’ accommodations in Nice at Hôtel le Grimaldi (First Class)
  • 2 meals: 2 breakfasts
  • Transfer to Nice airport

Pricing: $245 Apr, Oct; $295 all other dates. Single Supplement: $195 Apr, Oct; $225 all other dates

Accommodations

Tour Directors

Fanny Poirier

“‘Fabulous’ Fanny – fun, friendly, informative, superior knowledge of all of France. A 5-star guide!”

Karen & Gary Wilson
Sperryville, VA

Muriel Gosselin

“Muriel is wonderful – her knowledge of French history, culture and food/wine is amazing. Traveling with her was a pleasure!”

Tacy Trippe & John Bryer
Wiscasset, ME

Florence Hebert

“Florence Hebert was fantastic! Knowledgeable, energetic, great sense of humor – in short, a true ambassador for France. I cannot praise her more highly.”

Robert Delis
Oceanside, CA

Catherine Chamoux

“Catherine is an excellent tour guide! Her knowledge, organization, friendliness, and sense of humor are wonderful assets…It’s very clear that she loves showing guests her France.”

Christine Walker & Janet Jourdain
Belchertown, MA

Martine Rey

“Martine is a well-qualified and experienced tour director. She did a fantastic job in handling all the many details. We enjoyed our time with her.”

Kenneth & Martha Wilkinson
Alexandria, VA

Tour Directors

Martine Rey

“Martine is a well-qualified and experienced tour director. She did a fantastic job in handling all the many details. We enjoyed our time with her.”

Kenneth & Martha Wilkinson
Alexandria, VA

Fanny Poirier

“‘Fabulous’ Fanny – fun, friendly, informative, superior knowledge of all of France. A 5-star guide!”

Karen & Gary Wilson
Sperryville, VA

Muriel Gosselin

“Muriel is wonderful – her knowledge of French history, culture and food/wine is amazing. Traveling with her was a pleasure!”

Tacy Trippe & John Bryer
Wiscasset, ME

Florence Hebert

“Florence Hebert was fantastic! Knowledgeable, energetic, great sense of humor – in short, a true ambassador for France. I cannot praise her more highly.”

Robert Delis
Oceanside, CA

Catherine Chamoux

“Catherine is an excellent tour guide! Her knowledge, organization, friendliness, and sense of humor are wonderful assets…It’s very clear that she loves showing guests her France.”

Christine Walker & Janet Jourdain
Belchertown, MA

Destination Insights

Exploring...

Recommended Books & Films

Exploring...

Guest Photos & Testimonials

Logistics were taken off our hands and [everything] went flawlessly. We felt we had more experiences than we would have if we tried to do it on our own.
Kevin & Lorraine Walsh
Kennebunkport, ME
This was my first tour, so I have only my independent travel to compare it to and it was so much easier and informative.
Patricia Cajigas
Riverhead, NY
Logistics were taken off our hands and [everything] went flawlessly. We felt we had more experiences than we would have if we tried to do it on our own.
Kevin & Lorraine Walsh
Kennebunkport, ME
This was my first tour, so I have only my independent travel to compare it to and it was so much easier and informative.
Patricia Cajigas
Riverhead, NY
Monday-Friday 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. ET

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