Provence France Walking Tour Itinerary – Escorted Provence Tour
Provence France Walking Tour Itinerary – Experience Authentic Provence On Our Guided, Small Group Provence Tour! Designed for BOTH Walkers and NON-Walkers alike! *Our Provence Tour itinerary below is the itinerary you experience on our 6 Day/5 Night – 2017 and 2018 Provence Tours! Scroll to the bottom of the page to view photos from our ongoing 2017 Provence tour season!
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Provence France Walking Tour Itinerary
– A Quick Look at the Provence Tour Itinerary Details – 6 Days/5 Nights –
Knowledgeable Award Winning Provence Tour Guides • 3 Guided Provence Walks (2 Morning Walks, 1 Afternoon Walk – designed for interested guests) • Guided Cultural Options Daily for ALL Guests • Walk Provence Lavender Route in Valensole During Lavender Season • Fun, Hands-On Provence Cooking Class • Discover Best Provence Artisan & Craft Markets – No Forced Shopping • Privately Guided Van Gogh Tour at Saint Paul de Mausole • Chateauneuf-du-Pape Wine Tasting Excursion with Master Sommelier • Private Artisan Chocolate-maker Tour • Privately Guided Tour Arles Roman Ruins • Gourmet Michelin-Star Provence Meals • Lots of Flexibility • Stay in 1 Exceptional, Conde Nast Rated Premiere Boutique Hotel For Entire Tour (No Hotel Hopping) • Personalized Roundtrip Transfers Provided • True Small Groups – Maximum 14-16 Guests Per Tour
WALKERS & NON-WALKERS – Multiple Daily Options for BOTH walkers and non-walkers alike on our 6-Day/5 night Provence Tour!
Day 1 – Provence France Walking Tour Itinerary – Guided Tour:
Arrival Day – Provence Tour Begins
Meet and Greet by your Provence Tour guides at — We provide a complimentary 1:30 pm transfer from Marseille Airport and a complimentary 4 pm transfer from AVIGNON TGV Rail Station.
Your tour information package will include specific details on where your guides meet the group.
Transfer, as a group, to our Conde Nast recommended deluxe boutique hotel – Hotel Gounod in the heart of St. Remy-de-Provence. The hotel is owned and operated by our friends Karine and Heidi.
Check-in at the hotel for our 6 day/5 night tour.
Hotel Gounod serves as our base for the entire tour — NO HOTEL HOPPING! Owned by local friend Karine, Hotel Gounod, serves as a perfect base for discovering Provence and experiencing the very best of this magical region. The hotel is perfectly located for you to enjoy the peaceful hotel gardens and charming on-site wine bar, or step out the front door into the cobblestone streets of St. Remy to explore the town at any time during the tour. Click here to view our hotel photo gallery of the hotel’s fresh and chic look.
EVENING & DINNER – Following check-in at the hotel for our 6 day/5 night tour, you’re invited to join your guides for our welcome cocktail hour and dinner at our favorite celebrity hide-a-way made famous by Cookbook Author Patricia Wells – Dinner dress is resort chic. You’ll partake of your 1st taste of Provence specialties prepared by one of our favorite chefs of the region accompanied by classified regional Provence wines.
Throughout this exclusive Best Adventures in Provence Tour, we select different regional, classified wines for each group meal to ensure you the opportunity to try as many fabulous wines produced in this region as possible.
Provence France Walking Tour Itinerary
Day 2 – Provence France Walking Tour Itinerary – Guided TouR:
Les Alpilles & Villages of Baux de Provence Valley
MORNING – We start our morning with a personalized, private tour and chocolate tasting with our local friend, a World Famous “Chocolatier” (chocolate-maker), at his Artisan Chocolate Workshop. Enjoy tasting some of his famous creations – our personal favorite? Lavender chocolate. Afterwards, we continue on to enjoy the morning perusing and shopping at the weekly market in the town that inspired some of Van Gogh’s most famous art work. Market day in town is a must for any stay in Provence. Your OTBP tour guides provide a guided tour and introduction to the market after which guests enjoy time to explore and shop at leisure.
LUNCH: Together at our favorite gourmet celebrity hide-a-way in the countryside. All guests (walkers and non-walkers) shuttle to lunch.
AFTERNOON – CHOOSE an OPTION: Select an option from below — All options are available to all tour guests, and are designed for interested guests.
CHOOSE AN AFTERNOON OPTION —
Option #1 : Participate in a guided walk — VAN GOGH in Provence! — “HIDDEN GEMS OF PROVENCE” Walk – You’ll stroll through the countryside taking in the sites and smells that make Provence so mystical and magical, and learn fun facts about local history that make St. Remy-de-Provence a true gem! You’ll walk “La Via Dolmitia”, the first Roman road built in Gaul, to link Italy and Hispania through Gallia Narbonensis across what is now southern France with the most spectacular views of the Roman city of Glanum!! Along our path, experience in person many of the sites painted by Van Gogh during his year of confinement at the hospital. Olive orchards and vineyards of the AOC Les Baux de Provence dominate also your path to complement this unique walk! Plus, it’s a great way to walk off those fabulous foodie calories!!! Photo-ops all along your walk are endless.
Option #2 – Shuttle to/From St. Paul de Mausole & Glanum – VAN GOGH in Provence! Embark into the world of Van Gogh with one of your OTBP guides who is a specialist on Van Gogh: his life, art, and presence in Provence for a privately guided tour of St. Paul de Mausole Hospital where Van Gogh spent a year confined in the men’s pavilion. During this privately guided tour, you’ll imagine life as it was for Van Gogh, witness the landscapes he painted while confined, and learn rare information of the role his brother played in his daily life. A walk through the spectacular gardens completes our exclusive Van Gogh experience. Afterwards, you may opt to also available to guests to visit the Roman city of Glanum next door.
OPTION NO. 3–Enjoy the Afternoon at leisure to explore more of this picturesque Provence gem of a town.
DINNER – Independently this evening – try one of our recommended St. Remy’s restaurants – ask for details – we have a complete list of wonderful options – some offering bonuses for our guests.
Afternoon Walking Rating – WALK NO.1 –
WALKERS: The Guided walk – “Hidden Gems of Provence” walk is rated EASY (optional: designed for interested guests). Walking on country trails through picturesque landscapes featuring olive orchards and biodynamic vineyards along the “La Via Domitia” (Roman road) and French country architecture with beautiful village scenery, St. Paul de Mausole, sites painted by Van Gogh and the Roman city of Glanum. Ideal for those who walk for a morning or afternoon on a regular basis. Walk distance is 4 miles – approximately 1.5 hrs. depending on photo-op stops.
Provence France Walking Tour Itinerary
DAY 3 – Provence France Walking Tour Itinerary – Guided Tour:
The Luberon & Hilltop Villages
CHOOSE AN OPTION – We’ll visit the villages of GORDES and ROUSSILLON. You’ll shuttle to Gordes village from where you’ll embark on your day’s adventure by SELECTING AN OPTION BELOW.
OPTION NO. 1 – Morning — Awaken your senses today during our spectacular, guided, “Luberon Valley Village to Village” WALK. The Luberon countryside is absolutely beautiful with incredible, often unexpected variety of ladnscapes and architecture, and offers the perfect setting for a golden walking experience unlike any other. Ancient bories, a Roman oppidium, old mills, a 700-year old chapel, a truffle farm, and charming villages connect the dots along this unique walking trail. Also famous for its vineyard and lavender covered countryside, walking through the Luberon offers photo opportunities of spectacular colors of lavender, poppies and sunflowers (in season), and scenery that will completely contrast your experiences in the Alpilles and along the Mediterranean coast. Enjoy time to discover and visit Gordes and Roussillon villages pre- and post walk.Added note: During lavender season (mid-June thru end of July), our morning village to village walk is replaced by our morning lavender trail walk at the Valensole plateau!
OPTION NO. 2 – Shuttle from village to village where you enjoy privately guided tours of and free time to explore two of the most beautiful, perched villages in the picturesque “Luberon” area of Provence made famous by Peter Mayle’s books A Year in Provence and A Good Year – Roussillon and Gordes villages.
Gordes village, one of the most stunning of the perched villages of Provence, appears like an Atlantis surrounded by glorious vineyards, fruit orchards, and fields of flowers and grains instead of ocean. To one side looms the massif of Mount Ventoux, the Olympus of Provence, to the other, the pastoral whale-back of Mount Luberon. The breadth and height of this region balance in utter serenity in Gordes. The viewpoint at our first stop perches us dizzyingly at a canyon’s edge across from which the village could be mistaken for a masonery version of an anthill – the golden colors and ancient architecture complement the colorful valley below.
Roussillon village, the canto of color, holds a mythical story of a lover, a murder and the suicide of the faithful bereft near and dear that describes how the name of the village honors a redhead. The romance colors of the very ground and reddish walls of the buildings that line its winding streets are something from a fairytale.
LUNCH: A lighter fare, Gourmet French picnic together amidst the vineyards of the Luberon Valley. Our picnic is comprised of specialty and regional products and cuisine traditional to Provence accompanied by a selection of classified regional wines including Chateauneuf-du-Pape and Crozes-Hermitage wines (picnic is for entire group – both walkers and non-walkers).
AFTERNOON – Year Round: Visit a local, family owned and operated Lavender Distillery followed by return to the hotel in St. Remy-de-Provence.
DINNER – A gourmet Michelin-Star dinner together prepared by another of our favorite Chefs, and our family friend Christian.
Morning Walking Rating – WALK NO.2 –
WALKERS: The Guided walk – “Luberon Valley Village to Village” walk in the Luberon region of Provence is rated EASY to MODERATE (optional: designed for interested guests). Walking on vineyard and country trails through picturesque lansdcapes and French country architecture, lavender and sunflower fields with a variety of beautiful villages in the background. Ideal for those who walk for a morning or afternoon on a regular basis. Walk distance is 6 miles – approximately 2-2.5 hrs. depending on photo-op stops. Added note: During lavender season (mid-June thru end of July), our morning village to village walk is replaced by our morning lavender trail walk at the Valensole plateau, and the walking rating is the same!
Provence France Walking Tour Itinerary
“Thank you for organizing such a lovely trip! The restaurant selections were excellent. I truly enjoyed visiting all the different villages. Cooking with Marc and seeing his castle was top of my list. Also enjoyed the flexibility of having options each day. I never felt rushed or that I had to be with the group all of the time. I love Provence even more because of you. Your website is the BEST I have ever seen. You painted a great picture of what to expect, and you delivered everything as described. I wouldn’t change a thing, it was perfect! ” — Leslie Santarina, San Francisco, CA
DAY 4 – Provence France Walking Tour Itinerary – Guided Tour:
Mediterranean Coast – Terraced Wine Producing Village of Cassis
MORNING – We’ll spend a full day in the picturesque Mediterranean coastal, wine producing village of CASSIS, France. This spectacular coastal village dates back to 500 BC, is surrounded by vineyards, and bordered by the Mediterranean sea, colorful cliffs and beach. Stroll through this art deco style village’s pedestrian streets for photo-ops of the colorful port, historical architecture, and beautiful vineyard covered coastline. It’s market day also in Cassis, and coastal markets offer a completely different experience to that of inland Provence. Peruse the stands, taste artisan products, and photograph the colorful stands and products on offer.
A Day Along the Mediterranean Coast in CASSIS – On arrival in Cassis your guides introduce you to the village, after which you have the opportunity to shop at the morning market and village shops.
CULTURAL TOUR – Whether you’ve heard the stories about the origin of French perfume creation or not, we highly recommend not to miss visiting one of the French Riviera’s oldest and most famous artisan “perfumeries” with your OTBP cultural guide.
Late Morning – Embark on a scenic 45-minute cruise tour of the historical, Mediterranean calanques. These Roman ruins protrude into the Mediterranean Sea with grace, and transform the Mediterranean coast into a work of art for onlookers! (Optional and designed for interested guests).
LUNCH: Independently along the Mediterranean coast of Cassis. Try one of our recommendations and enjoy the Mediterranean ambiance!
AFTERNOON – Enjoy Leisure time in the village before our departure from Cassis.
LATE AFTERNOON return to St. Remy-de-Provence.
DINNER – Dinner with another of our personal favorite Chefs, and friend of the region. It’s been big news in France. Our friend, Chef Fanny has been the only woman to be awarded a Michelin Star in France in 2017. We’ve known her fabulous cuisine since before her appearance on Top Chef in 2011 where she became a finalist.
Provence France Walking Tour Itinerary
DAY 5 – Provence France Walking Tour Itinerary – Guided Tour:
Chateauneuf-du-Pape Wine & Cooking Class
MORNING: Begin your morning in Chateauneuf-du-Pape. In Provence, as well as in the entire country of France, it’s no secret that wine is a daily staple at meals. Today, our wine hosts welcome you to discover one of France’s best loved wine producing appellations.
CHOOSE AN OPTION:You’ll shuttle to Chateauneuf-du-Pape, and select one of the options below to begin to begin your day’s adventure.
OPTION NO. 1 –“CHATEAUNEUF-DU-PAPE AMIDST THE VINEYARDS” WALK. Walk beautiful trails of this historically famous wine region through the vineyards ending with the best view of Chateauneuf-du-Pape and the Rhone River as you descend into the village. Our walk takes us to the historic site of the former summer residence of the Popes, and surrounding vineyards. Its unique soil of rounded river stones and pebbles provides this papal land with a beautiful flora and fauna.
OPTION NO. 2 – Join your OTBP cultural guide for a privately guided tour of ORANGE to visit the Roman theatre, and explore this off the beaten path town’s historic sites. Afterwards, shuttle to Chateauneuf-du-Pape village to meet up with the walkers in the group for our wine tasting excursion and lunch at our 13th century wine cellar.
LATE MORNING – BOTH walkers and non-walkers are invited to one of the most famous historical wine cellars (13th century) of the region owned by our local French friends for a private wine tasting & introduction to the famous Chateauneuf-du-Pape wines (both red and the RARE white) – you are exclusive guests at their restored 13th Century Wine Cellar. French are very proud of their world-renowned reputation as the country of “savoir-faire” in wine-making. And our local friends enjoy opening their estate to welcome you!
LUNCH: THE ENTIRE GROUP — A fabulous privately hosted Provence lunch together prepared by our Friend, a Michelin-Star Chef at our friend’s 13th century Chateauneuf-du-Pape estate.
EARLY EVENING – CHOOSE AN OPTION – (1) COOKING CLASS OR (2) CULTURAL VISIT (ARLES ROMAN RUINS) – You’ll shuttle to cooking class early evening, and upon arrival to our Chef’s estate, you select an option to either participate in our fun, hands-on cooking class with our Chef, a family friend at her home, or participate in a guided cultural tour of the Arles Roman ruins with your OTBP cultural guide.
OPTION #1 – COOKING CLASS –Cooking class takes place at the family home of our Chef’s estate in the beautiful Provence countryside. Our dear friend and Master Chef has been featured in gourmet and culinary shows and magazines worldwide. A humble and happy chef whose passion for cooking and sharing that passion in a fun and easy-going, relaxed environment, welcomes us into her private home workshop during each of our Best Adventures in Provence Tours. Our chef loves welcoming us at home for a fun, hands-on cooking experience unlike any other that one might experience in the region. No Experience Necessary! During class, you learn about local Provence cuisine, put your hands to work chopping, slicing, and dicing, and are privy to learning the secrets of Provence recipes while preparing a traditional southern three course dinner. After you’ve finished, let’s sip some champagne and fabulous wines together in the garden along with a gourmet meal of the recipes prepared together in class. The focus of class is to have fun while learning about traditional Provence cuisine! It’s always lots of fun, and an authentic French experience spending time with our Chef!
OPTION #2 – CULTURAL VISIT – If you’re opting out of the actual cooking portion of cooking class in order to participate in another guided cultural visit — you’ll enjoy a privileged visit with a privately guided insider tour led by one of your OTBP cultural guides at the Roman Ruins in Arles. Following the cultural visit and photo ops to/from your visit in Arles, you’ll return to our chef’s family home to join the rest of the group for a gourmet dinner of recipes fellow travelers prepared in class.
DINNER: The entire group — Dine as VIP guests at our celebrity Chef’s table for our farewell dinner of the recipes prepared in cooking class with regional wines from our Chef’s private cellar. Time to celebrate a fun and fabulous week in Authentic Provence!
Morning Walking Rating – WALK NO.3 –
WALKERS: The Guided –“CHATEAUNEUF-DU-PAPE – Amidts the Vineyards Walk”- is rated EASY to MODERATE (optional: designed for interested guests). Sturdy walking shoes recommended. Walking on vineyard and country trails with occasional easy ascents and uneven terrain with large gravel stones and clay soil. The trail offers spectacular views of the Chateauneuf-du-Pape vineyards – The walk is rated moderate-Ideal for those who walk on a regular basis. Walk distance is 6 miles – approximately 2-2.5 hrs. of walking depending on photo-op stops.
Provence France Walking Tour Itinerary
DAY 6 – Provence France Walking Tour Itinerary – Guided Tour:
Provence Tour Concludes
Trip concludes — We provide a complimentary 9 AM transfer arrival at Marseille Airport and a complimentary 12 pm (Noon) transfer arrival at AVIGNON TGV Rail Station followed by drop-off at Avignon Centre rail station.
Complimentary Trip Insurance Included in Tour Prices! – Book a 2018 Tour BEFORE September 8, 2017 and Trip insurance is included in the 2018 tour price to cover the cost of your tour – Making your tour deposit and balance payment 100% refundable!
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France Off the Beaten Path trip insurance offers peace of mind and flexibility – This means that both your tour deposit and tour balance payment are 100% refundable up to sixty days before tour departure and 100% transferrable sixty days or less before tour departure! So you can book with confidence and ease.