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FranceRoad trip: Paris to the South East

  • Highlights
Cultural, gastronomic tour of France with a bilingual driver. You begin with two days of sightseeing in Paris then head South-East to discover the rich history, culture, cuisine and, of course, wine of France. With its numerous charming cities, castles, vineyards and Michelin starred restaurants, this 16 day tour offers the perfect balance of excitement and relaxation.

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Day 1: Settling in

Conveniently located in the north/central region of France, Paris is the clear starting point for any trip to Europe. The capital and most popular city in France has no shortage of amazing sights, incredible shows, historic landmarks, world-renowned museums, delicious restaurants and trendy bars sure to hold the attention of every type of traveler.  
You will be greeted at the airport by your personal driver and ushered to your iconic and centrally located hotel for check-in, for check-in. 

Afterward, you will have the pleasure of exploring a city where the possibilities are truly endless. 

 Countless museums provide insight into the rich history and culture of the city: The Louvre is the world's largest and most well-stocked museum and home to some of the most famous art and antiquities are known to man. (I.E. The Mona Lisa, Ancient Egyptian mummies, etc.) Other popular museums include the following: Musee d'Orsay, the Centre Pompidou, the Musee des Arts et Metier, the Petit Palais, and the Grand Palais. 

Next, your choice of one of Paris' famous cabarets will help you start the night off with some excitement: The Moulin Rouge, Lido de Paris, and Crazy Horse all offer magical evenings, with stunning spectacles of song, dance, and acrobatics together with both comedic and erotic undertones.  

Visited:
Paris
Accommodation
Hôtel Mercure Paris Arc de Triomphe Étoile (Paris)

Day 2: Explore the city

This morning dive into the life of France's most famous king with a guided tour of the famous Chateau de Versaille. The castle and primary residence of Louis XIV, "The King of the Sun," allows you to step into the extravagant life and mind of a 17th-century monarch. 

Then take a panoramic tour of the city to get a first look at famous districts such as Montmartre or the Marais, as well as monuments like the Eiffel Tower and the Arc de Triomphe, offering excellent photo opportunities and breathtaking views.

Guided boat and bus tours allow you to see even more of the city while taking a load off after a few hours of walking through busy streets and museums. 

Rendezvous at 6 pm for a wine tasting in Saint Germain Des Pres then take a short walk for an exquisite dinner at Le Christine Restaurant. As a member of the esteemed “French Association of Masterful Cuisine,” Le Christine offers a modern, yet authentic, French dining experience in a comfortable setting. 

Visited:
Paris
Accommodation
Hôtel Mercure Paris Arc de Triomphe Étoile (Paris)

Day 3: The road trip begins

After a thrilling night on the town, you make way for the second leg of the trip, Dijon. Some time on the road will give you a chance to see the beautiful countryside. If the name, Dijon, sounds familiar it is because it is, in fact, the "mustard capital of the world." This gem of the Burgundy region is also well known for its delicious cuisine and wine. The obvious first stop is the Museum of Mustard where you can learn about the interesting history and production process of France's favorite condiment. Then explore the sights of the historically preserved city stocked with its own Gothic architectural masterpiece, The "Notre Dame" of Dijon. 
Meet up for an in-depth wine and cheese tasting at Nuit St. Georges from 2 pm to 6 pm. Then take a short walk for a gastronomic treat at Loiseau des Ducs.  

Loiseau des Ducs- , housed in the 16th-century national landmark Hotel de Talmay, overlooks the famous "Place de la Liberation." With cuisine from renowned chef Louis-Philippe Vigilant and "Duval-Leroy Trophy" winner Lucile Darosey, this Michelin starred restaurant offers an unforgettable dining experience. 

Visited:
Paris, Dijon
Accommodation
Grand Hotel La Cloche (Dijon)

Day 4: Les Halles de Dijon then discover Beaune

You begin with a morning walk through the famous covered market, Halles Centrale de Dijon. Accompanied by your driver, you will find a plethora of regional products that will make up a picnic-style lunch personalized to your individual tastes. 

Next, you will take a short drive to the wine capital of the Burgundy region, Beaune. Here you will visit one of France's premier landmarks; Les Hospices de Beaune, a prestigious hospital facility of the middle ages which has been converted into a medieval museum. 

Take the evening, to visit the city after checking into your chic, yet cozy bed and breakfast. 

Visited:
Dijon, Beaune
Accommodation
La Maison Blanche (Beaune)

Day 5: Bird's eye view and a regal palette

Continue your discovery of Burgundy from 3000 ft with an early morning hot air balloon ride. On which, you will not only see the stunning landscape, castles and vineyards from a perspective shared by only a select few but also have an unforgettable mile-high wine tasting experience.  
Followed by a tour (and optional wine tasting) at the historic 14th-century castle of Duke Eude, Chateau de Savigny. 

(* Suggested Option) Enjoy an exclusive lunch at the Michelin Starred Montrachet - where head Chef Romain Versino uses his deep connection with local tradition and passion for gastronomy to create the epitome of Burgundy cuisine. Three resident sommeliers guarantee that each dish is perfectly paired with one of the many exceptional wines of the region.  

After a full morning you have the rest of the afternoon to do as you please (or take some time to relax if needed).

Visited:
Beaune
Accommodation
La Maison Blanche (Beaune)

Day 6: Arrival in Lyon

Arriving in France's second most populous city you will immediately notice why Lyon has become a European mecca for both French culture and gastronomy. With over 3000 restaurants boasting 15+ Michelin stars, several amazing museums, and a vibrant nightlife, Lyon is another city in which one could spend weeks and still feel as though there is much more to see. 
You can feel the history around you as you check in to your breathtaking hotel. Built into a renovated 19th-century convent this historic landmark is itself an homage to the culture of Lyon and the forefathers that shaped it.  

Meet up with your personal private city guide who will accompany you for the next three days, offering an insider’s point of view and ensuring that you don’t miss anything Lyon has to offer.   

Have lunch at one of Lyon's classic "Bouchons" offering traditional Lyonnaise cuisine then take the time to check out some of the famous landmarks like the Basilica of Fourviere and the Croix Rousse district before an exquisite dinner aboard The Wagon Bar. A mobile gastronomic experience providing a panoramic tour of the city with a virtual guide installed into the table, along with gourmet cuisine.

Visited:
Beaune, Lyon
Accommodation
Hotel Fourvière (Lyon)

Day 7: Explore the city

Begin the day with a dramatic, 2 hour tour of the city, in the theme of the french resistance of WW2. 

Then take advantage of an afternoon with nothing specific planned to explore the city at your leisure. 

Followed by an exquisite dinner aboard "The Wagon Bar." Which provides a panoramic tour of the city with a virtual guide installed into the table, along with a gourmet dining experience.   

Visited:
Lyon
Accommodation
Hotel Fourvière (Lyon)

Day 8: Castles and Wine

Along the short route to Tournon, you have the opportunity to stop at the Cave de Lionel Faury, for an exclusive wine tasting and tour of their incredible facilities. 

Arriving at these sister cities resting on opposite sides of the Rhone River you will quickly notice that as with many towns in France, history has been well preserved. Take in the beautiful landscape at the Jardins D'Eden (Gardens of Eden) as well as the awe-inspiring architecture of the ancient bridges, churches, and castles. 

(*Optional) Once again you will have a unique and luxurious dining experience another gem of the Michelin list. Maison Gambert () - offers refined and inventive cuisine in a 19th-century mansion resting at the heart of the Hermitage vineyards. 

Visited:
Lyon,
Accommodation
Hotel La Villeon ()

Day 9: Medieval Villages

Continuing the journey, you will take another step into the past in Figeac. This breathtaking town nestled among several other 8th to 10th-century villages remains largely unchanged since medieval times.  
In the afternoon, explore the city to take in all of the ancient charm. Then stop into the Champollion Museum, in the original home of Jean-Francois Champollion, the first man to decipher Egyptian hieroglyphics; equipped with an enormous copy of the Rosetta Stone.  

Finally, relax in the style of royalty in your hotel built into the castle of medieval "Viguiers.

Visited:
, Figeac
Accommodation
Mercure Figeac Viguier du Roy ()

Day 10: Mas de Garrigue

After checking into the 15th century fortified hunting lodge "Mas de Garrigue," you will have some time to lounge by the pool, or if you wish, explore the lush nature of the surrounding area. 
Later, you will have the good fortune of being accompanied on a trip to the local market by Michelin Star chef, Claude-Emmanuel Robin. This well-read, experienced and cultured Chef boasts an impressive resume of four-star restaurants around the world, before starting his own L’Allee Des Vignes. At the market he will assist you in choosing the perfect ingredients for an exclusive and personalized cooking class, covering regional gourmet cuisine.

Visited:
Figeac,
Accommodation
Mas De Garrigue ()

Day 11: Explore the landscape

You begin the day with a morning cruise/hike along the Lot river, giving you an up close view of the "7 Wonders of Lot" including The quaint, historic villages, vaulting cliffs, a troglodyte castle, and much more. The cruise consists of a 1-hour boat ride aboard an authentic 19th-century gabare restored for your pleasure. Then you return by foot on the "Tow Path." This semi tunnel carved into the side of the mountain along the river with hand-carved sculptures lining the walls makes one feel as if they have been transported to a simpler time and offers a true feeling of oneness with nature. Then take the afternoon to explore the breathtaking landscape and tiny villages of the region surrounding your medieval oasis. 

Visited:
Accommodation
Mas De Garrigue ()

Day 12: Road to Uzes 

Along the way to Uzes you will find two necessary stopping points:  
First, the majestic Cirque de Moreze, with its immense, natural limestone columns and incredible views will transport you to another world. The historic site offers numerous hiking trails, as well as a truly ancient antiquities and structures dating back as far as 350BC. Take the time to soak in the beautiful views and disconnect a bit with a specially made picnic stocked with authentic regional delights.  

Next, a wine tasting at the award-winning "Domaine Decalage." A celebrated and unique vineyard with a versatile array of 100% organic wine sure to please any palate.  

Once you arrive you will have some time to visit the charming town of Uzes. With its Medieval Gardens, Le Duche Palace, and St. Theodorit Cathedral, this small village is brimming with rich culture and history.

Visited:
, Uzès
Accommodation
La Maison d'Uzès (Uzès)

Day 13: Les plus beaux villages

Today you begin early with a short ride to Nimes, where you will visit stunning Roman-style landmarks like the Pont du Gard and Torero Arena, before a stop at the famous market: Les Halles de Nimes. 
After lunch in the fashion of the locals, you take to the road again, making stops in the towns of Bonnieux (with a wine tasting at the Castle of Canorgue), Lacoste, Oppede and Orgon. All of which hold places on France's coveted list: "Les plus beaux villages de France." (Translated: The most beautiful villages of France). 

Upon checking into your charming 17th-century manor you may have some time to view the magnificent lavender fields before a "provencal" dinner at the celebrated “Mas-Rose,” including only the finest ingredients, many of which are grown directly on the property and prepared by five-star chefs that live (and cook) by three simple rules: Beautiful, Good, and Healthy.

Visited:
Uzès, Nîmes,
Accommodation
Le Domaine de la Rose ()

Day 14: Lavender, wine and perfume

Being another full day, you will once again have an early start, as you head to Puget, a town famous for its superb olive oil and wine. Take advantage of a tasting at Le Chateau de la Verrerie, which offers a refined selection of both reds and whites presented by a knowledgeable sommelier. 
Then visit the national park of Luberon with its "Thomassine," coined "a living museum of forgotten plants." 

Afterwards you will take the scenic route to Nice with a stop in Valensol for a chance to view the famous lavender fields in the light of day. Then traverse the gorgeous Gorges du Verdon where you may want to stop for a moment to revel at the strikingly blue water from the bridge above the canyon.  

Before your arrival in Nice, you will make one last stop in Grasse, the city of perfume, for a visit to its famous museum, dedicated to the art of perfumery. 

Visited:
, , Nice
Accommodation
La Parare (Nice)

Day 15: Enjoy the Beach

You choose how you would like to discover the beautiful French Riviera in this famous coastal city: 
Explore the city, including both new and old Nice; full of historic passages/alleys, museums and the beautiful "Parc Du Chateau" built around the second castle and summer home of Louis XIV (*Excellent ocean views and a waterfall!) 

Relax on the beach and/or walk the famous "Promenade des Anglais" boardwalk. Or charter a yacht excursion for a more a bit more privacy. 

Visited:
Nice
Accommodation
La Parare (Nice)

Day 16: Heading Home

After a majestic journey takes a few last photos and prepares for the flight back home. All good things must come to an end - OR NOT Ask about our French Riviera Extension Packages offering a more extensive exploration of Nice and the entire region, including nearby Monaco, Eze, and St Jean Cap Ferrat. 

Visited:
Nice

ParisDijonBeauneLyonFigeacUzèsNîmesNice

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.

SeasonPrice Per Adult
Average trip price
All year round $9,740

Included in the price:

  • Accommodation
  • Breakfast
  • In-trip ground transportation
  • Activities according to your customized trip
  • Airport transfers
  • 24/7 local agency support
  • Trip creation with an expert local agent

Not included in the price:

  • Arrival and departure flights
  • Meals and beverages not indicated
  • Personal expenses
  • Service gratuities
  • Visa fees
  • Travel insurance
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