Provence and Marseille Tour from Avignon - 6 days and five nights
The touring is not private, but rather the group minivan tours offered on a daily basis from Avignon (minimum of 2 people). The itinerary below is an example of a tour over a three day period.
- Tour days: Tuesday through Sunday throughout the year (except July)
- Duration: 5 days and 5 nights
- Included: Guided touring in English to Nimes, Uzes, Pont du Gard, Orange, Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Les Baux de Provence, Gordes, Roussillon, Saint Remy de Provence, Arles, Aix en Provence, Cassis, Marseille; 5 nights accommodations, breakfasts, transfers and transportation; tour will begin with a pickup at the Avignon TGV station when your train arrives from Paris (train tickets not included in tour price).
- Vehicle: Van or Minicoach
Tour price includes:
- 3 nights in 3*** hotel in Avignon center, including breakfasts (double room)
- 2 nights in a 3*** hotel in Marseille center, including breakfasts (double room)
- Transfers and transportation by minibus with English speaking driver guide
- Entrance fees as mentioned
- Meals other than breakfast
Provence on Tuesday: Arrival Transfer
Your Best of Provence and Marseille tour begins with a transfer from the TGV Station in Avignon to your Avignon hotel.
The rest of this day is at leisure. We'll be happy to give you suggestions and certainly, you'll just enjoy strolling Avignon and immersing yourself in Provence.
Dinner on your own and overnight in your 3*** hotel located in Avignon center.
Provence on Wednesday: Avignon's Popes' Palace, Nimes, Pont du Gard
Your morning will be at leisure for a self visit of Avignon with entrances to the Popes Palace and the Pont d'Avignon (English audioguides in both monuments).
In the afternoon, you will be picked up to do the group tour to Nimes for the visit of the Roman amphitheater and to see the Maison Caree. Then you'll continue to the medieval town of Uzes to experience the fabulous Pont du Gard, the best preserved (some 40 centuries) part of the Roman aqueduct.
Dinner on your own and overnight in Avignon
Provence on Thursday: Orange, Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Arles, Les Baux de Provence
The day will begin with a pickup at your Avignon hotel to visit the town of Orange. With its Roman history, it's thrilling to see the Triumphal Arch and the antique theater (entrance ticket and audioguide included).
Next stop will be the vineyards of Chateauneuf-du-Pape to do some wine-tasting in a cellar.
Van Gogh's Arles will delight your eyes as the day continues to this wonderful town, famous for its Roman heritage and for the sites painted and frequented by Vincent Van Gogh in 1888. Its easy to see why the light of Provence just permeates his pictures and the scenery of the area is magical.
You will stop at the Triumphal Arch and Funerary Monument of Saint Remy de Provence. Set among olive trees and in a peaceful Provencal landscape of Glanum, the centuries of history seem to quietly but powerfully attest to the life and culture which existed in that area in the 2nd century.
Les Baux de Provence is your next visit...and a true gem in the area with its setting perched in the hillsides.
Dinner on your own in Avignon and overnight at your Avignon hotel.
Provence on Friday: Luberon, Roussillon, Gordes, Lavender Museum, Aix-en-Provence
You will be picked up at 9:00 to depart for the Luberon, a regional park full of charm and gorgeous villages.
Roussillon is one of the Most Beautiful Villages in France and is famous for its red and yellow ochre cliffs as well as its unusual landscape.
Gordes is another village you'll visit. This perched village is also one of the Most Beautiful Villages in France (a very special label given to the most picturesque towns in France). It is completely built with dried stones.
Your tour will include a visit of the Lavender Museum to discover the flower symbol of Provence. (During July and August, you will get a demonstration of the distillation during the harvest.) The drive will take you through the lavender area with a stop for pictures in the fields...truly magical when the purple fills the scene as far as your eyes can view.
You'll return to the Avignon hotel to take your luggage and you will leave for Aix-en Provence. There you will enjoy a guided tour of Aix to discover the Cours Mirabeau (most bustling street in France after the Champs Elysees), the Rotonde, the many fountains that dot the city of Aix, and to see the private mansions from the 17th and 19th centuries. The city is the birthplace of the famous painter Paul Cezanne and there are landmarks which pinpoint his life. Of course, the gem of the city is the Saint Sauveur Cathedral. Its foundations are a treasure of Romanesque, Gothic, and Baroque architecture teeming with history as it towers over the town.
You will check into your 3*** hotel in Marseille center.
Dinner on your own and overnight in Marseille.
Marseille on Saturday: Cassis, Boat ride in Mediterranean Sea, Marseille
You'll be picked up in the morning and enjoy a visit to Cassis, a picturesque village on the Mediterranean Sea. Admiring the breath-taking view from the Cape Canaille, the highest maritime cliff in Europe, you'll seem to see forever!
From Cassis, you will be able to take a 45 minute cruise to see the calanques. These limestone cliffs line the shore and are a beautiful contrast to the clear blue waters of the Mediterranean Sea.
Returning to Marseille, you will have a panoramic tour of the city, including a photo stop at Notre-Dame de la Garde Basilica. This Basilica tops the city of Marseille and allows fabulous views on the Phocean city (founded in 600 BC by Greeks) of Marseille. Marseille is the second largest city in France after Paris. The Frioul Islands and If Castle can also be seen from Notre-Dame de la Garde. (Of course, the If Castle is famous for being one of the settings in Alexandre Dumas' adventure novel The Count of Monte Cristo!)
You will drive on the Corniche Road, a symbol of wealth and bourgeois from the 19th century since magnificent houses with ostenatious architecture abound along the way. Reaching the 11th Century Saint Victor Abbey, you will arrive at the Vieux Port, the Old Port of Marseille. This area is vibrant, charming, and full of shops to explore.
Dinner on your own and overnight in Marseille.
Departure from Marseille on Sunday
When you're ready to depart, you'll have a private transfer from your hotel to the Marseille airport or to the train station in Marseille.