France·May 5 - 11 2025

Provence in the Footsteps of Van Gogh

Witness the countryside that inspired Van Gogh's greatest paintings

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LoumarinPortrait

Overview

If you've never been to Provence, it's a must-see destination. The quaint hilltop villages, the history imbued in the Roman aqueducts and coliseum, the fields of sunflowers and lavender, the markets of St. Remy, hunting for truffles - I could go on and on. Then, there's the food & wine. April can't come quickly enough! This was the first Girls’ Guide trip I ever did, and we’ve perfected the offerings over the years, so in one short week, you’ll see and experience the very best this region has to offer. Provence will live in your heart for many years to come.

Highlights

Learn to hunt for truffles, black gold

Learn to hunt for truffles, black gold

Stay in an exquisitely beautiful Provençal hotel

Stay in an exquisitely beautiful Provençal hotel

Visit Van Gogh’s bedroom in Saint Paul de Mausole

Visit Van Gogh’s bedroom in Saint Paul de Mausole

Take selfies in a field of red poppies

Take selfies in a field of red poppies

Savor an authentic gourmet Provençal meal with a glass of fresh rosé

Savor an authentic gourmet Provençal meal with a glass of fresh rosé

Explore picturesque ancient Les Baux

Explore picturesque ancient Les Baux

Play pétanque with the boys

Play pétanque with the boys

Participate in a Provençal cooking class with a French chef

Participate in a Provençal cooking class with a French chef

Visit Cezanne’s atelier in Aix

Visit Cezanne’s atelier in Aix

Explore the Roman amphitheater in Arles

Explore the Roman amphitheater in Arles

Itinerary

Here's a day-by-day itinerary of the trip

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Day 1: Monday, May 6th, 2024

Take the fast TGV train* from Paris into Avignon, arriving at 2:21 p.m. Our driver will pick you up at the train station. It's a 30-minute drive to the 4-star Villa and Spa hotel in Fontvieille. Check in, unpack, and relax.

We can help you make jet-lag curing spa appointments** upon arrival if you wish.

Drinks start at 6:30 p.m., followed by dinner at the hotel, where our guide, Nancy, will take us over the plans for the week.

*There is also a train you can take directly from CDG airport with one change. It arrives slightly earlier

**Optional jet lag massage is not included.

Included

Dinner

uzes

Day 2: Tuesday, May 7th, 2024

Today, we're headed to Uzès, the gorgeous walled town with a circular town square. We’ll participate in a Provençal cooking workshop followed by lunch. Spend free time after lunch strolling and shopping in this stunning town.

Before we return to the hotel, we’ll visit the famous Pont du Gard, the ancient Roman aqueduct bridge built over 2,000 years ago.

You’ll have free time to relax at the hotel before dinner at the colorful Le Patio in Fontvieille.

Included

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

StRemyMarketWoman

Day 3: Wednesday, May 8th, 2024

We’ll rise earlier today to experience the early morning at the beautiful market in St. Remy. The market sells freshly picked produce, espadrilles, provencal fabrics, olives, and other goodies, perfect gifts to take home. Don’t worry. You’ll also have time to duck into the lovely boutiques that line every street.

After the market, we’ll have an Italian lunch at Da Pepe in St. Remy to change things up a bit.

Then, we’ll visit the monastery of La Mausole de St. Paul. It's the hospital where Van Gogh stayed after the ear incident and where he created some of his most famous paintings. You’ll visit his room and, if you're lucky, catch irises, which he captured in several of his paintings, still in bloom behind the building. 

In the late afternoon, we’ll learn how to play Petanque in St. Remy. Petanque is the Provençal version of Boule, a game played outside with metal balls. You get better the more rosé you drink!

Dinner will be at the wonderful L’Ail ou la Cuisse in St. Remy. Save room for dessert. The chef here specializes in spectacular French pastries.

Included

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

olives

Day 4: Thursday, May 9th, 2024

After breakfast, we're off to an olive oil mill to learn how the unctuous local oil is made. A tasting is in order.

Then, we’ll lunch at Bistro du Paradou in Le Paradou, a tiny medieval village.

This afternoon, we'll attend an interactive show at Carriere des Lumieres, followed by a stroll in the famous town of Les Baux. This is the first location that started the interactive, music, and light show museum craze that has traveled across the globe.

After a full day, dinner is yours to enjoy as you please tonight. There are loads of places within walking distance of our hotel.

Included

Breakfast

Lunch

Not Included

Dinner

LoumarinPortrait

Day 5: Friday, May 10th, 2024

Today, after breakfast, we’ll drive and meet up with our truffle-hunting companions. Here, on a typical Provençal farm, you’ll learn everything about growing and hunting truffles with trained dogs. Luckily, the truffle guides are funny and produce superb products. After the hunt, you’ll enjoy a tasting of the less intense summer truffle outside at the family pool. It's served with bubbly, of course!

Afterward, we’ll have time to explore Lourmarin (one of Peter Mayle’s favorites) and its wonderful shops. Grab a bite or a dessert if the truffle tasting didn’t fill you up. This charming village is where the famous French writer Albert Camus once lived and worked.

We’ll move on to the über famous small city of Aix-en-Provence for a guided tour focusing on Cezanne. You’ll get to visit his atelier. It looks as if he’s just walked out for lunch.

Dinner tonight is back in our village at Le Bel Oustau in Fontvieille.

Included

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

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Day 6: Saturday, May 11th, 2024

We're off to the city of Arles today. It's famous for its Roman amphitheater. It is also another stop on the trail of Van Gogh.

You’ll have free time here to visit the market. We’re having lunch at the Brasserie La Malarte. Then, we’ll take a guided tour of the city with Heather from Lost in Arles, focusing on Van Gogh.

Tonight, we're having a magnificent farewell dinner and wine tasting at Château Estoublon.

Included

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

LeMonastereSaintPauldeMausole

Day 7: Sunday, May 12th, 2024

Breakfast, photo sharing & departure. You’ll be dropped off at the TGV station for your trip back up to Paris. Should you want to fly back from Marseille, there will be a small extra charge.

Included

Breakfast

You'll Be Staying Here

Your home for the week

Your home for the week

La Regalido, a charming residence in the heart of Provence.

Hosts

Nancy McGee

Nancy McGee

Born and raised bilingual in Quebec, Nancy was naturally attracted to France. She seized a work opportunity that brought her to the south of France. The love story has lasted since.

After a career in corporate and international event management for the United Nations and Coca-Cola, Nancy wanted to share her passion for this beautiful area with others. She's now having fun using her creative skills and local knowledge, leading trips to Provence and the Cote D'Azur.

Nancy lives in Sète with her papillon spaniel, Jewel.

Add Ons

Arrive one day early Provence

Arrive one day early Provence

Includes transfer to and from the Avignon train station and one night at the Villa and Spa Hotel in Fontevieille

PRICE$355.00

There is nothing quite like a Provençal village

Provence

Provence is famous for its beautiful scenery, light, and colors. Because of this, the region is associated with more than its share of gifted artists. Such great artists include Vincent Van Gogh, Paul Cézanne, and Pablo Picasso.

Provence

What's Included

What's Included

Everything stated in itinerary above including all meals except where indicated plus wine with dinner

All classes and hunts as described

All Museum or other entry fees

All transport in Provence including transfers to and from the train station in Avignon

Accommodations at unique, 4-star or better hotels

Expert Guides and Trip Leaders

A small group experience

Roundtrip airfare to France

Roundtrip train from Paris to Avignon

Any spa treatments desired

Any personal souvenirs or purchases

Additional wine, beer or spirits beyond what is offered at meals

Travel and Medical Insurance (required)

FAQs

The trip officially starts the afternoon of May 6th, but if you’re traveling across an ocean to get to France, consider arriving a day or two early so you have time to relax and adjust to the local time zone. If you do decide to arrive early, let us know and we’ll help you with arrangements.

Because everyone is arriving at different times and it’s not difficult to get into town, we have not included the cost of private airport transfers in the trip. When you land in Paris, just hop in a cab or an Uber after you collect your luggage. They are clean, comfortable and plentiful at Charles de Gaule airport and get to the train station.

You should fly into The Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport.

We will have a zoom call about 6 weeks before the trip starts to discuss all that information and give you a packing list Here is a great website that we love that will help you with packing and travel trips.

In the month of May, the maximum temperature is 67°F and the minimum temperature is 52°F (for an average temperature of 59°F). The climate is rather cool around this time of year.

Nancy McGee will be your trip leader. Nancy was born and raised bilingual in Quebec, Nancy was naturally attracted to France. She seized a work opportunity that brought her to the south of France which led to a love story that's lasted ever since

Inquire about this trip

Provence in the Footsteps of Van Gogh

France· May 5 - 11 2025· 6 nights

COMING SOON