Provence, France Tour Testimonials – Tour Reviews From Our Provence Tours! Voted Best Walking, Foodie Tour in Provence!
Mimi Hyde – The Needle Lady Group gave Off the Beaten Path, LLC 5 stars!
I have just returned from an absolutely fabulous vacation experience with Off the Beaten Path tours. The experiences that Off the Beaten Path provided for our group were so rich and varied. …The tour was so rich and varied; everyday brought a new and delightful experience. I organized this trip for 15 travelers, so we were a complete group. Provence is one of my favorite places in the world and I’ve been fortunate to have visited 3 or 4 times. My experience this time with Off the Beaten Path was very different from my other visits and offered such a rich and personal itinerary—experiences almost impossible to capture as a tourist on your own. It was as if we were visiting family and friends anxious to show off their home. Our hotel was a wonderful oasis complete with croissants and champagne. …We were in St. Remy for Bastille Day and were treated to the running of the bulls and an outdoor concert on our doorstep. … Language and cultural barriers disappeared because of the bridge provided by our guides. …The sign of a good vacation is the memories once you are home—this Off the Beaten Path vacation stands out as one of my best. I speak for our group of 15 as I unreservedly recommend this tour!
Bob & Susan Horn gave Off the Beaten Path, LLC 5 stars!
A Week in Provence: Our Delightful Adventure
When my wife and I decided that it was time for us to visit the south of France, we knew that, if we tried to do it on our own, we would miss out on too many experiences that we might enjoy if we only had some guidance. …After spending a great deal of time researching tours and looking at travel options for the south of France, we began seeing comments, here and there, about someone named Christy Destremau and the tour company that she built and owns, Off the Beaten Path Tours. We were immediately drawn to the OTBP offering, both for the interesting tour locations visited and the daily outings that combine walking, great food and education about the local customs. Once we initially discovered Christy and her company, we did more digging and found that Christy doesn’t just have fans, she has devotees! That doesn’t come by accident – it only comes when it has been earned, and if you choose an Off the Beaten Path tour, I’m confident that you’ll agree that she has earned this sort of following. We had flexible vacation schedules, and since one of our hopes was to see the famous lavender fields in bloom, I emailed Christy to ask about the best time of year to see the lavender. She responded quickly with a range of tour dates, and we booked the tour right in the middle of the range. …Every meal was a new experience: We had a picnic in a park one day, where we dined on Charcuterie and fruits purchased at a local market, fresh cherries that we picked from a tree that morning, and wonderful wine! We had an incredible dinner at a Michelin star restaurant. …The 13th century restored wine cellar in the Chateauneuf-du-Pape region was incredible (especially since my wife and I both love to drink Chateauneuf-du-Pape)! And the private lunch at the wine cellar, prepared for us by our dedicated chef. We chose to do the walks each day and saw some incredibly gorgeous countryside, and of course the blooming lavender fields which was a highlight of the trip. But for those who wanted less walking, there was a private bus available to provide alternate destinations and activities on any given day. Our hotel in Saint Remy was perfectly located in town, a fun, eclectic, historic building. It was easy to get to restaurants and shops during our free time. We also really enjoyed market day in St Remy, the fresh produce was so beautiful. …The group size for OTBP tours is limited to 16. I’ve read of one of the major tour companies that brags that they keep their tours small and personal by “limiting the group size to 30”. I have to say that we loved the trip, we loved our guides, and we loved the South of France. We hope to return often and soon. Thank you to Christy and the entire Off the Beaten Path crew for giving us such wonderful memories.
Bill Zilinek gave Off the Beaten Path, LLC 5 stars!
Exceeded my High Expectations
As a seasoned traveller and a retired Art Educator residing in Canada, I thoroughly researched ‘France Off the Beaten Path Tour’ with a cautious optimism. The testimonials, particularly with regard to the flexibility of the program and particularly the award-winning talents of the tour leaders, Philippe and David, were very impressive. My expectations were extremely high. Could the company, as promised, seamlessly provide the varied personal levels of physical activity and intellectual stimulation to keep each individual in the group fully and joyfully engaged? Could they deliver a singular experience within Provence known for its vibrant culture and most inspiring walking paths among bucolic hilltop panoramas? Could they fulfill one’s wish for meticulously arranging and flawlessly implementing a trip of a lifetime of unforgettable memories? Well, emphatically yes, yes and yes! It was all I had hoped for and more. If you have the opportunity to do so, do not hesitate. Sign up and go. You will not regret it !
More Provence Tour guest reviews —
“Would you recommend OUR Best Adventures in Provence tour to friends and family?”
We loved the OBP tour of Provence June 30th thru July 5th of this year. We completed your survey and hope our compliments and suggestions are helpful. I just wanted to share with you one more time that we were delighted with the tour. The guides were fun, informative, humorous, and very attentive to the needs of everyone on the tour. One thing in particular made the trip more comfortable for all of us: the guides helped us deal with the very warm weather by providing lots of cold water, finding shade whenever possible on tours, and adjusting the pace of the tour to keep us comfortable. The meals were treats for our palates. The wine choices were nicely matched to the meals and poured generously. We loved being able to participate in the cooking class and the 3-course lunch Chef Yvan taught us to prepare. Another fun moment was helping set up the country picnic while braver members of the tour walked in the countryside. The trip to Cassis was exceptional, particularly the boat tour of the fjord-like calanques and the gourmet lunch at the hillside restaruant with the dramatic views of the harbor and town below to accompany the delicious food and wine. Other highlights for us included the tour and taking at the olive oil mill. Who knew there are so many flavors and textures from the oil of olives? And the guided tour of the St. Paul de Mausole Hospital showed Philippe’s exceptional knowledge and passion for Vincent Van Gogh’s life and art. At this point, the only thing missing are the photos and recipes. Still looking forward to those reminders of our wonderful week in Provence.
Randy & Sharon Young
“WOULD YOU RECOMMEND OUR BEST ADVENTURES IN PROVENCE TOUR TO FRIENDS AND FAMILY?”
“Yes, we would definitely recommend this tour!! The variety of activities and excellent tour guides made this an excellent experience! We did so much that we could never have done on our own. We really liked the walks, towns, cooking class, and Arles. Seeing Arles and the Roman ruins and Van Gogh exhibit was great. Our guides were fabulous. They really have a profound knowledge of the history of the region, and they were very attentive and thoughtful to guests, ensuring a good time for everyone. Merci beaucoup, it was fabulous!” — Norman & Pat Scott, Mercer Island, WA — Provence, France Tour Testimonials
“Yes, absolutely would and will recommend this tour to friends and family who want an intimate experience of food, fun and adventures in some of the most beautiful places in France. What a wonderful adventure. The guides, the fellow travelers, the chefs we met along the way were all delightful. We saw things and discovered things we would never have found on our own. Never a boring moment! Never a time when we said “too much”. This was a perfect mixture of great food, wonderful wine, and delightful new friends!” — Archie & Selma Andrews, Mount Pleasant, SC — Provence, France Tour Testimonials
“Yes, I would recommend this trip to a friend if they wanted a “gourmet” experience in Provence. I really enjoyed the walks — fabulous scenery, enjoyed experiencing that first hand. The food was lovely — all restaurants were good, and loved the cooking class because it was so different. We also like all of the small villages, especially those in the Luberon. Thank you! — John & Helen Wynn, Gooseberry Hill, WA, Australia — Provence, France Tour Testimonials
“Yes, this tour allows you to interact with others with similar likes during spectacular activities. There is a lot of variety and flexibility, and allows you to choose which activities you want to do. We loved the walks, the picnic and cooking class. Thanks for everything, even the funny jokes!” — Michael Odishelidze & Mimi Torres, San Juan, Puerto Rico
“Yes, would recommend this tour! The cooking class experience was awesome. The village visits were very picturesque. The guides were very helpful, friendly, and knowledgeable. Activities were offered at our exercise comfort level and we really enjoyed the walks. The entire tour was a wonderful time, thank you!” — friends, Martha Richardson from Rochester, NY and Marquetta Knight, Jacksonville, FL — Provence, France Tour Testimonials
“Yes, I will recommend this Provence trip most highly to both friends and family because every aspect was so thoughtfully planned and executed. As compared to other tour companies we’ve traveled with including both Backroads and National Geographic, your meticulous planning of a trip that was a complete success, adventure and delight each day is superior! The expertise demonstrated by our guides was appreciated; they were very helpful in every way, very professional, knowledgeable, and made our trip a joy! LOVED the balance of walking with gourmet meals and artisan visits. The walks were wonderful, the restaurants were each superb, and the wine tasting with lunch and cooking class dinner were terrific. We loved Hotel Gounod, it was a real treat, and great location. The transportation was great as well. Many thanks also Christy for all of the unexpected extras and gifts! We also missed our TGV train coming into Avignon and expected to have to take a taxi, but your team was so nice and organized for your driver to return to the station and meet us. This really was going the extra mile to provide thoughtful service. We so appreciated that! With gratitude — Ben & Toni Coplan, Sunol, CA” – Read their additional review of our Provence Tour on Trustpilot!
“Yes – overall the trip has been wonderful! The guests and the tour operator made us feel as if we were with family all week long! The food was exceptional, our guides were helpful and informative and kept us fascinated and were clearly concerned for our welfare throughtout the trip. The driver Philippe was skillful and courteous, the accommodations were very comfortable and beautiful! We loved the daily walks, choices were wonderful!” – Harvey and Sandy Schuster, San Carlos, California
“I would be happy to recommend this trip — everything was well planned, and our guides attended to everyone’s requests and needs expertly and professionally. The small group, walking and gourmet aspect of this tour was the attraction for me. Staying in one location for the duration of the tour was also important. Hotel and restaurant choices were excellent, and cooking class was fun! Thank you!” — Yvonne King, Prospect, SA, Australia — Provence, France Tour Testimonials
“Yes, it was very well organized, great guides — a wonderful way to experience Provence! Really enjoyed visiting the olive oil mill. The villages were nice and the walks were wonderful. The restaurants were very good (nice that they accommodated vegetarians so well). The Cassis boat ride was beautiful, and we really loved the first day lunch at the brasserie. Thank you for a great trip!” — Sisters, Maya and Simone Key, Boulder, CO — Provence, France Tour Testimonials
“YES! Well organized tours in a beautiful place with great food, wine and company! Food was great and cooking class was fun. Guides did a wonderful job taking care of us and going the extra mile to accommodate. Picnic was lovely, great wines throughout the trip, and the hotel was also very nice. Thanks for another wonderful trip! ” — Steve Keller and Michelle Tidwell, Los Gatos, CA (3rd tour with OTBP – 2nd time on our Best Adventures in Provence Tour)
“YES! Caryl and I do not enjoy going on tour with others, BUT this tour was EXTRAORDINARY in many aspects! Our guides were fantastic, knowledgeable and fun. They easily accommodated everyone. Their patience and leadership skills were unparalleled. They truly cared about all of us, ensuring we were always satisfied and happy with all aspects of the tour. They really went above and beyond! Every town, excursion, lunch and dinner were fabulous. The constant flow of information was outstanding. The hotel was beautiful and very comfortable – all the staff very helpful. We would definitely recommend this tour to everyone and we will attend another tour in a different section in France. What a life altering experience. You will see us again!” — Eric & Caryl Pomales, Stuart, FL — Provence, France Tour Testimonials
“Yes – ABSOLUTELY! Our tour guides were knowledgeable, helpful and personable. Logistics are great and guides kept the tour on schedule — we never felt rushed. Well curated choice of restaurants and experiences. We had a variety of choices for daily activities. Plenty of free time and help to arrange or visit additional sites. Our favorite things of the tour included cooking class with Chef (our very favorite experience), the day in Cassis, the picnic, the companionship of our fellow tour guests and our fun tour guides, the choice of St. Remy de Provence as a home base for the tour, the comfortable bus, the many fine meals, and the olive oil demonstration. The hotel was beautiful and clean, and the staff very friendly and helpful.” — Andy & Jane Mallor, Bloomington, Indiana — Andy and Jane have traveled on 2 OTBP Tours – our Provence and Loire Valley Tours. — Provence, France Tour Testimonials
“Yes! We would definitely highly recommend this trip because it is very unique! It’s a great combination of physical activity, wonderful food and wine, and cultural experiences. We enjoyed our entire time in Provence. Highlights were cooking class, picnic lunch and day in Cassis. Guides were the most knowledgeable and attentive guides we have ever had on a tour. They made every day a new adventure, always being flexible to anyone’s particular interest. Looking forward to receiving the recipes and photos! Thank you!!” —Jeanne & Claire Pernsteiner, Canton, OH — Provence, France Tour Testimonials
“Yes! I would definitely recommend this trip to anyone! I feel that I received a full feeling of Provence and the charms it has to offer. The biggest proof that I had a great journey is that I know I want to return to another Off the Beaten Path tour! Both guides were so friendly, helpful and informative. The entire group worked well together. I can’t think of anything I didn’t like. No detail was overlooked! Thank you for a memorable time in Provence!” — Laura Weingart, San Rafael, CA — Provence, France Tour Testimonials
“Yes!! The guides are knowledgeable, considerate and professional. The experience of Provence on this tour is excellent! The professional driver was very capable and friendly. The length of the tour is just perfect to see and experience all of the wonderful activities of the tour. The activities are designed to accommodate people of all physical capabilities, and offer a variety of fun experiences. We enjoyed the food and wine very much! Thank you for a great tour!” — Jerry and Jennifer Yoneji, Great Falls, MT
“Yes would recommend, absolutely! We liked the guides, small group size and charming hotel the most. Enjoyed all the destinations and activities (especially Cassis). The meals and locations were wonderful! Cooking class was a wonderful experience also. Thank you for a wonderful trip!” — Jennifer Wheeler, Christine Covell, Tacoma, WA — Provence, France Tour Testimonials
“Yes. The pace of the trip allows time to sit and watch people and feel more part of the villages and less like a tourist. The quality location and comfort of the hotel were excellent. The town of Saint Remy is delightful! Loved the group size and enjoyed everyone on the tour. The picnic was fabulous. Cassis was gorgeous. Having two dinners on our own was nice to be able to enjoy private time and unwind. Thanks again!!!” — Frank & Margaret Drinkwine, Overland Park, KS
“Yes! The tour was relaxing, personable and offered incredible food. The ancient villages were beautiful and Saint Remy as a base was wonderful for walking and exploring town, and there was the right amount of free time. Guides went out of their way to be helpful. We had amazing food and congenial atmosphere in the group. Cassis was WONDERFUL, Cooking class chef Yvan was incredible! Thank you to everyone for making this trip so special and for being so helpful throughout!” — Jim & Mary Ann Arnott, Iola, KS — Provence, France Tour Testimonials
“Yes – Our guides were great, very knowledgeable, and they clearly work hard to make the trip remarkable. We saw a lot during the week. The food was VERY GOOD! We loved the Cassis day, the boat ride, the photo stops in the cherry fields, lavender and sunflower fields, the market day in St. Remy, the picnic and the excellent group of other travelers. Thank you for a fun experience!” — Gib & Diane Conover, Providence, RI — Provence, France Tour Testimonials
“Yes, variety of sites, great and easy way to learn a lot about this part of the world. We loved staying in St. Remy as a base and staying in the same hotel for the entire tour. We had wonderful days! In particular, we liked the choices and variety, the option for personalized touring, enjoyed the walks, hotel was very nice, and loved all the history of the region shared by the guides. All of the restaurants were excellent and each had a different flavor and ambiance. This was an excellent way to discover Provence. Thank you so much!” — Chris & Celia Lang, West Chester, PA – Booked by recommendation of 2 time returning guest Jim Butts who has traveled on our 2014 Provence Tour and 2015 Bordeaux Harvest Tour — Provence, France Tour Testimonials
“Yes…Loved the tour, the villages, knowledgeable guides whose love of Provence shines through. Walking and cooking class were an A+, and excellent hotel choice for the tour. Our fellow travelers were quite lovely and interesting, we had a lot of fun with them. Thank you!” — Gloria Feld and Alex Barbanell, San Antonia, TX
“Yes, would recommend the tour. The group was very enjoyable and engaging. We appreciated the flexibility of the guides. Our favorite meal of the trip was at cooking class with Yvan. Appreciated dining on our own a couple of nights. All the meals were beautifully prepared. Really enjoyed the flower photo ops and the hotel was a very good choice, staff very helpful.” — Bill Israel and Ellie Breslin, San Antonia, TX — Provence, France Tour Testimonials
“Yes absolutely we would recommend this trip to a friend who would like a unique, Off the Beaten Path, Tour! We loved our excellent room at the hotel, outstanding guides and activities. We enjoyed the walks and the cooking class was our favorite activity. We’re looking forward to seeing the pictures! Thanks for everything!! — Jeff and Jane Goodell, Carrollton, TX — this was Jeff and Jane’s 2nd tour with OTBP — they previously travelled on our Loire Valley Tour in 2013.
“Yes! Our guides were absolute treasures! They clearly enjoy what they do and were the perfect mix of professional, informative and fun. Learning the history of Provence was fun. Thank you for a wonderful week!” — Jamie and Antoinette Smerge, Chicago, IL
“Yes I would recommend it. I liked the flexibility of choosing your experiences each day. I loved all parts of the tour; mountain top villages with beautiful vistas, ocean views in Cassis, cooking class (incredible!!), great restaurants, St. Paul de Mausole, the hotel and our informative tour guides! Wish I had more time to sit in the hotel gardens with a glass of wine, fabulous!! I liked being in our hotel, located in the center with lots of shops and restaurants and cafes. The tour offers a variety of experiences and though it is described as a walking tour, there is never any pressure to do long walks or any walks. All staff, hotel and tour guides, were fun and accommodating. Six days is just the right length. And finally, the guides have a love of the region that made the trip much more personal for everyone.” — Carolyn O’Neill, North Port, FL (Has done 2 tours with us, Provence and Loire Valley) — Provence, France Tour Testimonials
“Yes – it was a good overview of Provence. The dinners were exquisite and beautifully served! Loved the cooking school lunch experience! We loved the optional side trips offered by our guides. And the guides were very helpful and flexible and we really enjoyed our experience with them. We have very active friends so they would probably opt for the optional extensions offered for each walk. This was a very nice group to share this experience with. Thank you for a wonderful time!” — Barb and Peter Klinke, Victoria, Canada — Provence, France Tour Testimonials
“Yes, I would recommend th”is trip. Our guides were attentive, and went above and beyond the call of duty to ensure that we had a good time. The restaurants and wine selections were outstanding! The cooking class was also a highlight. And, our driver was terrific.” — Kimberly Chaney, Macungie, PA
“Yes would recommend it. Enjoyed all of the people we met (including our guides). Hotel staff more than helpful and friendly.Picnic was fun. Cooking with chef was loads of fun! All-in-all good food, nice folks, good wine. Tour guides were very accommodating.” — Friends, Marilyn Chutjian and Connie Rhodes, Port Orange, FL
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