Provence & the French Riviera 2014

Day 1: Nice - Monaco - Nice

Today is dedicated to Monaco, the playground of the rich and famous, known for its dazzling harbour and lively entertainment. Stroll through the narrow streets of the old town, sit in a street café and watch the world go by or wander around Port Hercule, famous for its superb yachts and glamorous lifestyle. Enjoy dinner at leisure tonight in Nice.

 

Note: BRSPFR 21 May - due to the Formula 1 Grand Prix in Monaco taking place from 22 to 25 May 2014, Monaco will not be accessible to touristic vehicles during the entire week. We will therefore substitute the visit to Monaco with visits of the beautiful coastal towns of Eze and/or La Turbie.

 

(Note dinner is no longer included on Day 1, but on Day 6, as per below)

 

Overnight: Hotel Splendid, Nice (or similar)


Day 2: Nice - Vence - Cap d’Antibes

Our first visit today is to the beautiful village of St-Paul-de-Vence before we make our way to the neighbouring town of Vence, known as the ‘City of Art’. Wander through its small streets and squares, which date from the 12th century, before we continue to Cap d’Antibes, where we stay for two nights. (B, D)

 

Overnight: Hotel La Garoupe-Gardiole (or similar)


Day 3: Cap d’Antibes - Cannes - Cap d’Antibes

In Cannes, the Jewel of the Riviera and world-famous for its film festival, glitzy hotels and shopping, we have time to explore the famous 'Croisette' and the Rue d'Antibes. Later we wind our way through the narrow and hilly roads to the delightful old town of Antibes with its pretty squares and narrow streets before returning to our hotel. (B)

 

Overnight: Hotel La Garoupe-Gardiole (or similar)


Day 4: Cap d’Antibes - Aix-en-Provence

This morning we travel to the cultural town of Aix-en-Provence, once the home of the artist Paul Cezanne. Here we visit his studio where dozens of works by the great painter were conceived, including his famous Bathers. This afternoon we discover the sites of Aix as we wander through the old town, seeing St Sauveur Cathedral and the site of the ancient Roman town. (B, D)

 

Overnight: Hotel des Augustins (or similar)


Day 5: Aix-en-Provence

Today we relax in the town of Aix-en-Provence. A walking tour allows us to follow in the footsteps of Cezanne, passing the hot thermal springs, the Pavillon de Vendome and the Musee des Tapisseries. This afternoon relax and enjoy the town at your own pace. (B)

 

Overnight: Hotel des Augustins (or similar)


Day 6: Aix-en-Provence - Avignon - Saint-Rémy-de-Provence

Traverse through spectacular landscapes, perfectly captured by Peter Mayle in A Year in Provence. The highlight of today is our stop in the 14th century city of Avignon, once home to Catholic Popes. The imposing Palais des Papes dominates the old historic centre and the St Benezet Bridge is a must-see. (B, D)

 

Overnight: Hotel Gounod (or similar)


Day 7: Saint-Rémy-de-Provence

We meander through the vineyards of the Cotes du Rhone, one of the most famous wine producing regions in France. Our first stop is the magnificent Roman Theatre at Orange. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is extraordinarily well-preserved and its Roman arch is particularly beautiful. We then make our way to a very special private vineyard, where we sit on the terrace and enjoy a tasty Provencal lunch, complemented beautifully by local wines. (B, L)

 

Overnight: Hotel Gounod (or similar)


Day 8: Saint-Rémy-de-Provence - Aigues-Mortes - Arles

Today begins with another stunning classical icon – the mighty Pont du Gard Aqueduct. Built by the

Romans in the 1st century, it is one of the region's most famous landmarks. We then head to the Camargue area, one of France’s most important areas of natural history, and stop in the fortified village of Aigues-Mortes, famous for its striking, walled medieval town. In Arles, where the town's narrow winding streets inspired paintings and drawings by both Van Gogh and Picasso, we have over 2000 years of history to discover. (B, D)

 

Overnight: Hotel du Forum (or similar)


Day 9: Arles

This morning enjoy the local sights and see scenes painted by Van Gogh himself, such as the famous 'Starlit Cafe'. The afternoon is yours to spend as you wish. (B)

 

Overnight: Hotel du Forum (or similar)


Day 10: Arles – the ‘Little Alps’ - Arles

Heading into the 'Little Alps', we explore the Huguenot stronghold of Les Baux-de-Provence. The town rewards us with remarkable views and has been painstakingly restored, boasting over 22 historical listed buildings. Back in Arles we enjoy our last evening together. (B, D)

 

Overnight: Hotel du Forum (or similar)


Day 11: Arles – Marseille

After breakfast we transfer to Marseille where our tour comes to an end. (B)

 

Pick-Up & Drop-Off

The tour commences from Nice, France at Hotel Splendid, 50 Boulevard Victor Hugo, 06000 Nice, at 8:30am. Please ensure you are at the meeting point at least 15 minutes prior to departure.

 

Drop-off 12:00pm at The Old Port, 13002, Marseille, France. Please bear in mind that drop-off time is an estimate only – traffic can be unpredictable!

 

Notes

Back-Roads Touring have hand-picked an extensive portfolio of quality properties across Europe and to ensure the very best experience on each of our tours, hotels may vary to those listed in this itinerary.

 

Mobility: All of our tours involve walking and require our guests to board and disembark our vehicles several times a day making this tour unsuitable for those with reduced mobility.




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