Join us in Provence and Cote D’Azur!
September 20-October 1, 2013
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Sept. 20 Fly to France (Nice)
Sept. 21 After landing in Nice, we will meet our private coach for the trip to Villa Ephrussi Rothschild for lunch, and a tour of the garden and Villa. http://www.villa-ephrussi.com/en/home Beatrice Rothschild had practically unlimited money when she built this villa and garden in the early 1900’s, and it shows. We will have lunch in the tea room and tour the upper level of the villa. After lunch, we will visit the garden. Lunch included, dinner on your own. Hotel Victoria.
Sept. 22 Breakfast will be at our hotel, as it will each morning of the trip. After breakfast, we will visit the garden at Val Rahmeh http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jardin_botanique_exotique_de_Menton followed by our first chance to visit a real French market as we stop in Menton for the Saturday morning market there. After the market, we will have lunch at the Mirazur http://www.mirazur.fr/ which has been listed as one of the world’s 50 best restaurants. After our lunch we will continue to Villa Hanbury to visit the garden. This is a vertical garden with some of the most magnificent views you have ever seen! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giardini_Botanici_Hanbury Breakfast & Lunch included, Dinner on your own. Hotel Victoria
Sept. 23 The world renowned Monaco Botanical Garden will be our first stop today. http://www.jardin-exotique.mc/en/ After this we will visit Monaco where you will have lunch on your own and have an opportunity to visit the palace and other sites in Monaco. Breakfast included. Hotel Victoria
Sept. 24 We will head for the heart of Provence today. Our first stop will be at the Abbey Thoronet which is a Cistercian Abbey built between 1160 and 1230 without mortar. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Le_Thoronet_Abbey Our next stop will be the Chateau Barben, which we will tour. Barben is one of the oldest chateaus in Provence, dating back to 1054. http://www.chateaudelabarben.fr/index2.php?lang=en Avignon will be our next stop and hopefully we will be there in time to visit the Palace of the Popes. This is one of the greatest Gothic palaces in the world built in the 14th century. Pope Clement V moved the papacy to Avignon to flee from political unrest. The palace housed 7 popes between 1309 and 1378. http://www.palais-des-papes.com/anglais/ Our hotel for the night will be the Mecure which is located in the center of Avignon. Lunch included.
Sept. 25 A visit to the garden of the Abbey of Saint Andre in Villeneuve les Avignon will be our first stop today http://www.fantasticprovence.com/section/nature_r7/the-discreet-charm-of-the-saint-andre-abbey_a733/1 followed Pont du Gard, the magnificent Roman aqueduct. It is a magical site! The aqueduct was built in 1 century BC and carried 44 million gallons of water each day from Uzes to Nimes. It was used until the 6th century AD when it is believed that minerals clogged the passage of the water. http://www.pontdugard.fr/en Our final sightseeing stop for today will be Nimes. Nimes is a lovely town with several interesting sites. We will visit the Maison Carree which is a Vitruvian Roman Temple built in the 1st century AD. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maison_Carr%C3%A9e The temple survived because it became a church in the 4th century AD. This temple was the inspiration for the Virginia state capitol. Jefferson had a model made of it when he was Ambassador to France. Nimes also has a Roman arena, an interesting shade garden, a nice museum, and good shopping. When we depart Nimes we will go to Isle sur la Sorgue and Hotel Nevons, our home for the next several days. Lunch included.
Sept. 26 France would not be France if we did not visit a winery. Today we visit Chateau Val Jonais for a tour of the winery, garden, and lunch. http://www.val-joanis.com/ We will also visit a French hill town. Lunch included. Hotel Nevons.
Sept. 27 Today will be spent in Arles which is a short distance from Isle sur la Sorgue. We will stop at Abbaye de Montmajour on the way to Arles. Built on an island, it was founded in 948 by the Benedictines. http://montmajour.monuments-nationaux.fr/en/ Arles has more in a short walking distance than any other place we have been. We will see the Church of Saint Trophime with its wonderful 2 story cloister. The church is Romanesque and classified as a world heritage site. We will also see the Roman arena, the Roman baths, and the Cryptoportiques. We will also visit one of Ron’s favorite sites in the world, the les Alyscamps. Greek, Roman, and Christian tombs line the Aurelian way as it passes through Arles. The sarcophages are magnificent. You will have free time to visit other sites or shop. Hotel Nevons.
Sept. 28 This Saturday takes us to St. Remy and nearby sites. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint-R%C3%A9my-de-Provence We will stop for a visit to the St. Remy Sat. market. Our stops will take us to Glanum, a ruined Roman/Greek town, as well as Les Antiques and St-Paul-de-Mausolee where Van Gogh was hospitalized. We will also visit Les Baux before returning to Isle sur la Sorgue. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Les_Baux-de-Provence Dinner included. Hotel Nevons.
Sept. 29 The best market in France, the land of markets, is in Isle sur la Sorgue. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/L'Isle-sur-la-Sorgue Today, you will have the whole day to spend in Isle sur la Sorgue at the market. Believe us when we say, this market has everything and even if you are not a shopper you will enjoy this day. Hotel Nevons.
Sept. 30 Today we will visit Cassis http://www.beyond.fr/villages/cassis.html and take a boat ride to see the Calanques http://www.marseille-provence.info/places/sights-and-attractions/237-the-calanques.html which are wonderful geological features. We will stay close to the airport tonight.
Oct. 1 Fly home from Marseilles.
COST: The cost of this trip is $3250.00 per person based on Double Occupancy. Airfare is NOT included in this price. We will assist in booking plane tickets so that everyone gets the best possible price and that we are all traveling over and back together, unless other arrangements are being made. A single supplement is available. Please inquire at firstname.lastname@example.org if you will be traveling singly or have any further questions.
The price of this trip is based on 1.30 exchange rate. If the exchange rate changes the trip is
subject to an additional charge. The price is based on double occupancy. There is a single
supplement. The itinerary can be changed if required.