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France Food, Wine and Traditional Markets in the Heart of Provence

  • Off the beaten track
See the heart of Provence. Stroll through markets, visit vineyards, and see its most famous sites. You’ll spend your evenings in luxury accommodation in the charming cities of Avignon and Aix-en-Provence. Go on a gourmet walking tour of Avignon and visit the Palais des Papes, the center of the Catholic world under 7 popes in the 14th century. In Aix tour a traditional market and prepare a traditio...

See the heart of Provence. Stroll through markets, visit vineyards, and see its most famous sites. You’ll spend your evenings in luxury accommodation in the charming cities of Avignon and Aix-en-Provence. Go on a gourmet walking tour of Avignon and visit the Palais des Papes, the center of the Catholic world under 7 popes in the 14th century. In Aix tour a traditional market and prepare a traditional Provençal meal with a cooking instructor and guide.  Day tours will take you to see the Roman ruins in Arles and Orange, the vineyards in Châteauneuf-du-Pape and Côtes de Provence Sainte-Victoire wine regions, and the famous villages Les Baux-de-Provence, Bonnieux, Roussillon, and Gordes.

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Tour itinerary includes
  • City
    City
  • Food and drink
    Food and drink
  • Countryside
    Countryside
  • Wine tasting
    Wine tasting
  • Local cuisine
    Local cuisine

Customizable tour itinerary

This tour idea is fully customizable

This itinerary has been crafted by our Local Agency with one idea in mind: to inspire you. Every element can be adapted to your needs and your interests, from duration to accommodation and activities.

Day 1: Private transfer to your accommodation

A chauffeur will meet you for a private transfer between the airport and your lodging.


Night and breakfast in a superior room in a charming Avignon hotel.


Included:  transfer arrival , bedroom and breakfast.

Visited:
Avignon
Accommodation
Hôtel de l'Horloge (Avignon)

Day 2: Gourmet walking tour of Avignon

This unique itinerary through the alleys of Avignon gives you the opportunity to meet local artisans and taste regional products. The tour is designed for small groups (max 8 people), so personal attention and great fun are guaranteed.


Your taste buds will be stimulated as you walk through picturesque parts of the town and learn about culinary traditions and local history.


On this foodie tour, you will be taken to where the locals go for their shopping, from the oldest bakery in town to the best artisan chocolate maker.


At the end of the tour, you will wash everything down with a glass of Châteauneuf du Pape, the region’s most prestigious wine.


The tour includes 10 produce tastings, olive oil, and one wine tasting.


The tour does not include: Hotel pick-up and drop-off.


Duration: approximately 3 hours and 30 minutes - in groups up to 8 people.


Suggestion: visit Avignon, "la cité des Papes"


Perhaps most famous for being home to the Popes in the Middle Ages, Avignon has today embraced the avant-garde and is a vibrant destination with a respect for culture, the arts, and a long-standing tradition of exceptional wines.


Stroll the boutique-lined streets and through leafy squares, dine in some excellent restaurants and see the impressive medieval wall that entirely encircles the old city.


The main feast for the eyes in Avignon is another of Provence’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the Palais des Papes. It’s one of the largest medieval Gothic buildings in Europe, former home to nine successive popes during the 14th century. Amazingly, it took less than 20 years to build this immense religious structure, with its imposing walls and four impressive towers, and today palace tours give visitors the chance to explore – 25 rooms are open to the public, also adorned with watercolor paintings from the most important artists of the French and Italian schools of the time. Must-see rooms include the Consistoire (Audience Room), the Grande Chapelle (Great Chapel), the Grand Tinel (Banquet Hall) and the private papal apartments. From the terrace the views are superb, taking in the city, the Rhône river and the famous Pont d’Avignon (Pont Saint-Bénézet).


The Pont d’Avignon is a testament to the exciting history of the capital of Vaucluse. Built between 1177 and 1185, the Saint-Bénezet Bridge, known as “Pont d’Avignon”, originally consisted of 22 arches connecting Avignon with Villeneuve lez Avignon. Extensive subsequent damage from war and flooding from the Rhone river means that now only 4 arches remain. Originally, it was the only existing link over the river between Lyon and the sea. Today, globally recognized by the song “Sur le pont d’Avignon”, it is declared a UNESCO World Heritage site.


Smell the Papalines d’Avignon, chocolate specialties made with aromatic oregano liqueur from Mont Ventoux. They are handmade and only sold by shops affiliated with the Vaucluse master confectioners; some five tonnes are sold each year. Taste asparagus. It’s revered and celebrated in Avignon; nearly every menu in town lists fresh asparagus soup, roasted or grilled green asparagus, or lightly sautéed, gently sauced dishes of the white variety.


Night and breakfast in a superior room in a charming Avignon hotel.


Included:  guide , bedroom and breakfast.

Visited:
Avignon
Accommodation
Hôtel de l'Horloge (Avignon)

Day 3: Small group full day guided tour of the treasures of Provence

Visit the city of Orange and discover the Roman Arch of Triumph, a symbol of Roman Imperialism and the impressive Roman Theater, one of the finest ruins of the Roman Empire (entrance ticket and audio-guide included). It is part of the UNESCO World Heritage list as the best preserved ancient theater in Europe. It owes its fame in particular to its magnificent stage wall, amazingly well-preserved and unique.


Drive through the vineyards between Orange and Châteauneuf-du-Pape; then stop for a panoramic view on the Rhône river valley from the old castle of Châteauneuf-du-Pape. Take part in a wine-tasting session in a local cellar and learn the history of this famous winery, born in Châteauneuf-du-Pape over 100 years ago. In the traditional shop you will find a wide range of wines and Provençal specialties.


On the way to Les Baux de Provence take a quick look at Saint Paul de Mausole, in Saint Rémy de Provence, the mental institution where Van Gogh created some of his most famous works.


Stop at the Val d’Enfer lookout for a panoramic view over the small village of Les Baux de Provence, officially classified as "one of the most beautiful villages in France". The village can only be visited by foot and you will admire the ancient houses that have been carefully restored, beautiful Renaissance façades and several magnificent "hôtels particuliers" which today serve as art galleries or museums.


Enjoy a visit to the Carrières de Lumières and their sound and light show (ticket included): a multimedia exhibition of famous paintings projected on the walls of an old quarry and accompanied by music. Picasso will be the theme in 2018 (the Carrières de Lumière are closed from January to the beginning of March: more time will be allowed in the village of Les Baux during this period).


Your tour will end with a walking tour of Arles. Walk through the city to discover its Roman heritage: the amphitheater, the Roman theater, and the well-preserved ancient sites and the location of street scenes painted by Van Gogh between 1888 and 1890 (La Maison Jaune, Le Cafe la Nuit, Le Jardin de l'Hôtel Dieu).


Pick-up and drop-off from Avignon. Lunch at own expense.


Duration: 9 hours.


Night and breakfast in a superior room in a charming Avignon hotel.


Included:  chauffeur/guide , entrance fees , transportation , bedroom and breakfast.

Visited:
Avignon
Accommodation
Hôtel de l'Horloge (Avignon)

Day 4: Private transfer from Avignon to Aix-en-Provence

A chauffeur will meet you for a private transfer between your lodging in Avignon and your lodging in Aix-en-Provence. 


Private walking tour of Aix-en-Provence 


Visit Aix-en-Provence with Mylène and Arthur, your local professional guides. They will share their knowledge and their passion, tell many historical anecdotes and you will discover the secrets of a city steeped in history.


A rich heritage lies along the streets, the fountains and the shaded squares: the Cathedral, the Town Hall Square, the Grain Market, the private mansions of Cours Mirabeau and the Mazarin district, Place de la Rotonde, Saint Jean de Malte Church, and the curiosities of Aix-en-Provence including the hidden Roman and medieval remains, indiscreet balconies, and enigmatic bars.


Walking through the town you will discover the beauty of this place: the architecture from the 17th and 18th centuries, thanks to many private mansions, the famous Cours Mirabeau lined with plane trees and the charming squares decorated with fountains.


Listen to the stories of famous locals like King René, Mirabeau, Paul Cezanne, and Emile Zola.


Do not miss the opportunity to taste the local specialty 'Calisson', cooked for the first time on the wedding day of King René, or have a fresh drink at "Les Deux Garçons", the oldest café of Aix-en-Provence often frequented by the famous post-impressionist painter Paul Cézanne.


Duration: approximately 2 hours.


Overnight stay including breakfast at an elegant 18th century Provençal manor in Aix-en-Provence.


Included:  transportation , excursion , guide , bedroom and breakfast.

Visited:
Avignon Aix-en-Provence
Accommodation
Villa Gallici (Aix-en-Provence)

Day 5: Guided walking tour of a local market followed by a Provençal cooking class

Meet Gilles in Aix-en-Provence, spend the day with him and learn the art of living (and eating!) in Provence.


He will guide you through local markets to choose the best seasonal products. You will then visit the wine cellar of a famous local winery to choose your wine and stop by a goat cheese producer to pick your cheese.


Once you have all the ingredients, Gilles will welcome you in his countryside home, surrounded by oak and pine trees, and start the cooking course. You will prepare together all the meal courses that are typical of Provence.


Finally, lunch time! Eat all together, outside in the garden if weather conditions permit, in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere.


In the afternoon walk around Gilles' garden and collect aromatic herbs or, on your way back to Aix-en-Provence, stop at the Sainte-Victoire mountain for a short walk and visit the field where Cezanne used to paint his favorite landscape.


The tour does not include hotel pick-up and drop-off.


Departure point: Aix-en-Provence Tourist Office.


Duration: 6 hours.


Overnight stay including breakfast at an elegant 18th century Provençal manor in Aix-en-Provence.


Included:  lunch , excursion , guide , bedroom and breakfast.

Visited:
Aix-en-Provence
Accommodation
Villa Gallici (Aix-en-Provence)

Day 6: Full day private guided tour of Provence wines and hilltop villages

This morning journey to the nearby Sainte-Victoire Mountain, which was a source of inspiration for the famous painter Cézanne from 1880 to 1883.


The vineyards of Côtes de Provence Sainte-Victoire are located at the foot of the Sainte-Victoire Mountain.


This region is protected from maritime influences to the south by the Sainte-Victoire's rocky ridge; the Mistral wind can blow very hard here, also protecting the vines from disease. The Côtes de Provence Sainte-Victoire wine region is considered to be one of the most natural in France, thanks to the drying effects of the Mistral.


The relatively shallow soil, formed of limestone and clay sandstone, bears quality vineyards: great red wines that are delicate or robust and generous, as well as elegant rosés with subtle flavors.


Enjoy wine-tasting sessions in two wineries producing this AOC wine (Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée).


This afternoon drive through the Luberon Natural Regional Parc, an off-the-beaten-track area in the Vaucluse department (Provence). The picturesque villages of the Luberon are some of Provence's most charming, unspoiled tourist destinations.


Visit the colorful hilltop village of Bonnieux and the picturesque and winding Combe de Lourmarin. In the charming village of Lourmarin, famous for its Renaissance castle, you will have free time to enjoy as you wish.


Roussillon is the capital of ochre. This small village, classified as one of the most beautiful villages in France, blends into the surrounding cliffs. As you walk through the narrow streets and enjoy the small squares, you see and feel the color that is an inherent part of its history.


The hilltop village of Gordes, also listed as one of the most beautiful villages in France, looks like the scene of a painting. In fact, artists Victor Vasarély and Marc Chagall found inspiration for their paintings here. An ancient "village perché" (perched village), Gordes has a dramatic setting. The village stands on a steep slope descending from the plateau to the valley; the perched location provided protection from invasions during the Middle Ages. At the center of Gordes, the Place du Château de Gordes is a lively town square with many cafés, restaurants, art galleries, and souvenir shops.


Pick-up and drop-off in Aix-en-Provence. Lunch at own expense.


Duration: 9 hours.


Overnight stay including breakfast at an elegant 18th century Provençal manor in Aix-en-Provence.


Included:  chauffeur/guide , transportation , bedroom and breakfast

Visited:
Aix-en-Provence
Accommodation
Villa Gallici (Aix-en-Provence)

Day 7: Private transfer from your accommodation

A chauffeur will meet you for a private transfer between your lodging and the airport.


Included:  transfer departure.

Visited:
Aix-en-Provence

Avignon Aix-en-Provence

Price details

This tour idea is fully customizable

The price reflects this specific itinerary and is designed to give you an idea of the budget required for this destination. Throughout the trip-planning process, our local agency will tailor your itinerary around your budget.

Approx. $3,190 / 7 days
Excluding international flights
2 pax 4 pax
Price per person $3,190 $2,570

Included in price:

  • All services set out under “included in the program”
  • A travel folder with the reservation vouchers
  • A phone contact in case of an emergency during your trip

Not included in price:

  • The suggestions (can be booked on demand)
  • Transport (unless indicated otherwise)
  • Cancellation and repatriation insurances, all-risks coverage
  • Meals (unless indicated otherwise)
  • Personal expenses (drinks, tips etc.)
  • The tourist tax has to be paid on the spot

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