Tour description

9 DAYS PROVENCE SMALL GROUP TOUR

THE ESSENCE OF PROVENCE & NICE

Experience the Provence lifestyle with a 9 days small group of 12/14 travelers only! Secret Tours is thrilled to introduce a trip of a lifetime, the unspoiled Provence.The string of colors,whether bursting or subdued, will captivate, move and touch your core. It offers a kaleidoscope of discoveries. No wonder great artists like Renoir, Cezanne, Van Gogh, Picasso and many others found their inspirations here..where time is of no essence,you won’t even notice it passing by. The charm of this region is so unique you can feel it piercing your very soul. It is transparent and is clearly mirrored on every street and place that you will see and visit. You will feel it on every person that you will encounter and meet. You will quickly discover that Provence is an intriguing country with an amazing past.

Let your thoughts sway away with the beauty of Provence. Fill your imagination with the richness of its history. Wander away in a place of meandering beauty, scenic landscapes and colorful flower fields. Be out with olive trees, lavender, and vineyards. This is the place where clear light shines and pours through meadows, reflecting different hues that will play with your imagination. When darkness descends,it becomes all the more exciting as the whole scenario unfolds for the perfect location where you can drink and dine under the stars.

The romance of Provence is quintessential, it is poetic, with a classical twist. This will be a trip that will take you to a wonderful world of discoveries. You will be en route to a journey of a glorious era when remarkable civilizations existed, traces of which still stands proudly on this province. Travel down the path to a thousand or more years before us. The vistas are fascinating. Each town and city tells a story. One thing that shines through is the pride of its people. They are truly proud of their dramatic past which proves to be an endless source of inspiration.

This region is also the place of stimulating aromas and bright skies. Nowhere else is the scent of nature as magnificent as in Provence.

Have you imagined being in a place where colors playfully intermingle with nature? A place full of art and inspirations? A world of charm and romance? This …is PROVENCE

We have a real passion for this amazing land and look forward to sharing it with you all !


SMALL GROUP TOUR HIGHLIGHTS & INCLUSIONS: 9 DAYS/8 NIGHTS

  • Guaranteed departures group travel: small,friendly group of 12/14 participants only!
  • More than 10 included sightseeing tours and cultural experiences
  • Guided tour of MARSEILLE with its historical treasures & popular markets
  • Guided tour of stunning AIX-EN-PROVENCE, visiting the Cathedral of Saint-Seuver, the Granet Museum, The Cezanne studio
  • Tour and wine tasting at CHATEAUNEUF DU POPE
  • Marvel at the 2,000-year-old PONT DU GARD stretching across the GARDON river
  • Admire the COTE AZURE’S gardens which range from rustic groves of ancient olive trees to manicured visions of paradise
  • WINE and OLIVE OIL TASTINGS near ROUSSET
  • Visit popular UNESCO World heritage sites
  • Experienced Tour manager/Guide to accompany you throughout your journey
  • Entrances to main Provence historical sites are included as per itinerary
  • All transportation on tour, via private air-conditioned luxury 9 or 16 seats motorcoach
  • Included hotel city tax
  • No hidden extras
  • Early arrival/Late stay options: We strongly recommend arriving a day or more prior to tour start.We’ll be happy to make these arrangements for you
  • All transfers while overseas, baggage transfers and porters are included
  • Included meals: All breakfasts, 3 foodie experiences, 3 dinners, 3 lunches (main meals include regional wine, mineral water, local coffee/ tea only)
  • Arrival in Provence: The tour will begin with transfers from Marseille airport at scheduled times to our hotel in Avignon on Day 1 and transfers from our hotel to Nice airport on Day 9
  • Activity level: Moderate
  • Terms & conditions/Single supplement: (View Here) and FAQ ( View Here)
  • Trip Interruption & Cancellation insurance is not included. We highly recommend Travelex-Insurance.com to protect your vacation.
  • Purchase of European Travel & Health insurance is strongly recommended
OUR ACCOMMODATIONS
DAY-BY-DAY ITINERARY

 

THE ESSENCE OF PROVENCE TRAVEL ITINERARY

DAY 1 : WELCOME TO THE ENCHANTING PROVENCE & AVIGNON

With its shimmering coast and rustic Provencal heart, the Mediterranean south has a timeless allure. You’ll travel through wildly divergent landscapes: cinematic coastline, rugged hinterland and bucolic valleys. Arrival at Marseille airport and travel to the enchanting town of AVIGNON for the first three nights stay at the charming 5 stars “HOTEL D’EUROPE”, which enjoys an excellent location close to the village’s architecturally treasures. This evening join your local tour director and fellow travelers for a welcome drink followed by our first dinner together in an authentic Provencal restaurant.Overnight in AVIGNON

DAY 2 : HISTORIC ALPILLES: AVIGNON, CHATEAUNEUF DU POPE & PONT DU GARD

Today’s venture takes you to discover AVIGNON, a city of a rich historical past, surrounded by Medieval Walls and home to the pope for more than 100 years in the 14th century. We will visit the UNESCO World Heritage Site, PALAS DES PAPES, the largest Gothic palace in Europe, with an estimated floor area of 15,000 square meters. However,you will no longer see original furnishings within this edifice, but the legacy of its past is still visible through the shadows of this fortress-like structure. Continue to the stunning CATHEDRAL, built in the 12th century where you will marvel at the huge octagonal dome and a richly-decorated Romanesque interior. After some time on your own and a photo stop at the famous medieval bridge PONT ST BENEZET, one of Avignon’s famous landmarks, we drive to the wine country of CHATEAUNEUF-DU-PAPE where will visit a well-known domain for a wine tasting with lunch.We will end the day with a visit to the tallest of all Roman aqueducts at 48m (158ft) of PONT DU GARD. Dinner is on your own this evening.Overnight in AVIGNON

DAY 3 : ROMAN ARLES, SAINT REMY DE PROVENCE,LES BAUX DE PROVENCE & CARRIERES DE LUMIERES 

Today’s adventure starts with a visit to the Roman town of ARLES, founded by Julius Caesar 2000 years ago, a unique and well preserved declared UNESCO World Heritage sites.The most prominent of which is the ARLES AMPHITEATRE ,the largest and most complete ancient monument in the town, and the ST.TROPHINE CATHEDRAL ,located in the heart of the town. Arles is a place where you can see and feel the remarkable Roman influence in this Southern French province. Continue to the village of SAINT-REMY-DE-PROVENCE with its sun-soaked medieval walls, ornate fountains, one of the oldest arcs de Triomphe in the country, and the place that inspired some of Van Gogh’s most celebrated works. Surrounded by lush green perfumed valleys, its ancient streets are lined with beautifully restored old houses, old fountains, shady squares, picturesque restaurants and elegant boutiques.After lunch on your own, we will visit the magnificent perched fortress site of LES BAUX DE PROVENCE, named one of the most beautiful villages in France, largely due to its hilltop position and picturesque stone ruins of the upper old village and castle. Scenic drive through LES ALPILLES to visit the monumental CARRIERES DE LUMIERES, host to extraordinary multimedia shows and .Dinner is on your own this evening.Overnight in AVIGNON

DAY 4 : THE OCHRE VILLAGE OF ROUSSILLON, LIMESTONE GORDES, SENANQUE ABBEY & GORDES

Breakfast in hotel. Today’s tour takes you to discover the mountainous land of the LUBERON REGION with its bucolic rolling hills, golden-hued perched villages and hidden valley. Some two millennia ago, the Romans used the ochreous earth around the spectacular village of ROUSSILLON for producing pottery glazes. This makes the village famous for its magnificent red cliffs and ocher quarries. Continue to the pretty little hill town of GORDES, located on a rocky slope of the Vancluse plateau popular with artists since the academic Cubist painter Andre Lhote began visiting in 1938. Gordes is designated as one of the “most beautiful villages of France” and is dominated by a 16th century chateau and arcaded medieval cobblestone lanes that wind thru this spectacular village. After a walking tour and lunch on your own, we will end the day with a visit to the 12th century Cistercian ABBEY DE SENANQUE surrounded by a tranquil sea of lavender for a photo stop. Continue to the charming town of AIX-EN-PROVENCE, our base for your next three nights at “HOTEL LE PIGONNET” or similar with breakfast included. Dinner is included this evening in a local tavern. Overnight stay in AIX-EN-PROVENCE

DAY 5 : AIX-EN-PROVENCE: CITY OF FOUNTAINS & HOME OF PAUL CEZANNE

AIX-EN-PROVENCE is one of the most beautiful cities in France. Anywhere you look, you will feel the city’s unique ambiance and romantic character. After breakfast in your hotel, meet your tour guide for a stroll through the historic center, with its elegant 17th and 18th century hotels, fountains and the beauty of renaissance architecture, following the footsteps of Cezanne. Our walk finishes at the magnificent  Cathedral of Saint-Sauveur, which dates back farther than the early history of the city. The beauty of this church encompasses a variety of architectural styles and one of the historical highlights that you can see here is the 4th century Merovingian baptistery, an octagonal basin surrounded by a circle of 8 marble columns. After an included light lunch in one of the lively bistro scattered throughout the town, you’ll have time to meander through the colorful artist’s market to see the skillful craft of local artists and perhaps take the time to visit the Granet museum. The museum’s permanent collections including paintings by Cezanne make it one of the most visited museums outside of Paris. Paul Cezanne is a famous painter who lived and worked in Aix-en-Provence in the 18th century.Overnight stay in AIX-EN-PROVENCE

DAY 6 : THORONET ABBEY & TROGLODYTE VILLAGE OF COTIGNAC

This morning our expert guide will introduce you LE THORONET ABBEY, a former Cistercian abbey built in the late twelfth and early thirteenth century, now restored as a museum, a jewel of the Romanesque art. Nestled in a middle of an oak forest, it provides a stark beauty conform to St Benoit’s monastic ideal. We will end the day with a visit to the unique village of COTIGNAC, built against the foot of a tufa rock and classified among the Villages of Character of Provence. Walking through its streets full of history, the Provencal city offers its visitors a friendly and serene atmosphere, marked by traditions and simplicity of life.Overnight stay in AIX-EN-PROVENCE

DAY 7 : MEDITERRANEAN PROVENCE : CALANQUES CRUISE,CASSIS & NICE

Breakfast in hotel. With a varied topography that could easily be considered France’s finest, Provence boasts golden beaches, valleys and the fjord-like CALANQUES. Today you will be touring along the region’s prettiest roads to the rugged beauty of Cassis’s towering Calanques, passing resort towns that saw their heyday in the 1920s and verdant countryside full of vineyards. Explore the cliffs and coves cruising to the famous Calanques of Cassis (45 minutes) followed by a guided tour of the lively city port of CASSIS, hemmed in by the white cliffs of the Calanques to the west and the precipitous Route des Cretes to the east. Cassis was a famous trading port before the Nazis almost wiped out its entire fleet during World War II. Much of the town’s history can be discovered at the charming MUSEE MUNICIPAL which has many interesting exhibits, some recovered from the seabed, dating back to the Greeks. After an included lunch in the picturesque harbor of Cassis we will continue to the French Riviera and the elegant town of NICE for the last two nights at the central “HOTEL VILLA VICTORIA” or similar. This evening we’ll enjoy a final dinner together, sharing travel memories and toasting new friends. Salut! Overnight stay in NICE

DAY 8 : ENCHANTING NICE & THE FRENCH RIVIERA

This morning we’ll take a walking tour across NICE, starting with the busy Cours Saleya, the city’s main market square since the Middle Ages. We’ll then follow the narrow streets of the Italianate Old City to the spacious boulevards and shopping promenades of the city’s newer side. Here, in the late 19th century, visitors from the north seeking the elixir of warm, fresh sea air created Europe’s first tourism boom. Your afternoon will be free to wander through Nice’s beautiful Chagall and Matisse Museums, prowl the promenades or relax on the famous beach. Dinner is on your own this evening. Overnight stay in NICE

DAY 9 : GOODBYE BEAUTIFUL PROVENCE & FRENCH RIVIERA

Morning transfers to Nice airport.

2019 TOUR DATES & PRICING

2019 TOUR PRICE: € 3,800   SINGLE SUPPLEMENT: € 700     Currency Converter 

Price is per person based on double room occupancy for 9 days/8 nights

July 2-10         LIMITED SPACE

PROVENCE

PROVENCEProvence evokes picture-postcard images of lavander fields,medieval hilltop villages,bustling markets and superb food and wine. Less expected is Provence’s incredible diversity. The Vaucluse and Luberon epitomise the Provencal cliche’.But near the mouth of the Rhone in the Camargue,craggy limestone yields to bleached salt marshes specked pink with flamingos,and the light,which so captivated Van Gogh and Read more

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