France·September 28 - October 5 2023

The Best of the French Riviera and Provence

The French Riviera means the sparkling blue Mediterranean, candlelit dinner and celebrity sightings.

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Overview

Starting with Queen Victoria until present day, the Cote D'Azur has always been the place to see and be seen. But even if that side of life doesn’t interest you, the region's fame is well deserved. It’s stunningly beautiful and dotted with castles and villas as well as world famous art and drop dead gorgeous sea views. This is not just a tour of the obvious places during high season. We shy away from going in July & August to avoid the heat, the traffic and the crowds. In late September, the weather is divine and the crowds have left. We're also venturing off the beaten track a bit, taking you to the picture-perfect seaside town of Cassis (my personal favorite on the entire coast). We’ll be staying in two amazing hotels during this trip, visiting with knowledgeable chefs, getting out on the water to see the land from the best vantage point, as well as venturing up north into Provence to visit some of the most charming villages in France. For a first-timer to France or someone who is a veteran, this is the perfect trip.

Highlights

Go behind the scenes in Historic Nice

Go behind the scenes in Historic Nice

Visit the picture perfect medieval village of Eze perched high up in the hills

Visit the picture perfect medieval village of Eze perched high up in the hills

Explore the pink palace, the Villa Rothschild

Explore the pink palace, the Villa Rothschild

Dine on Provençal and fresh from the Mediterranean Sea delights

Dine on Provençal and fresh from the Mediterranean Sea delights

Tour the Picasso museum

Tour the Picasso museum

Watch at Glass blowing workshop

Watch at Glass blowing workshop

Lunch at the world famous Colombe D’Or as you stare at the real Picasso on the wall

Lunch at the world famous Colombe D’Or as you stare at the real Picasso on the wall

Enjoy tea at Hotel Belles Rives the former home of F. Scott Fitzgerald

Enjoy tea at Hotel Belles Rives the former home of F. Scott Fitzgerald

Take a sweet smelling perfume tour at Fragonard

Take a sweet smelling perfume tour at Fragonard

Visit the Calanques via boat in Cassis

Visit the Calanques via boat in Cassis

Snap photos of Van Gogh’s room at the Monastery in St. Remy

Snap photos of Van Gogh’s room at the Monastery in St. Remy

Savor a wine tasting and dinner at a stunning Chateau

Savor a wine tasting and dinner at a stunning Chateau

Schedule

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Day 1 - September 28

Arrive by mid-day via train or air to Nice. You’ll hop in a cab and check in to our hotel the 4-star Villa Victoria. Our hotel is situated right between the old town and the world famous Promenade des Anglais. 

Meet up with your guide Nancy at 6:30pm for a cocktail or bubbly followed by dinner at the iconic Negresco hotel. The pink domed belle époque hotel has been famous for over 100 years hosting celebrities, royals, millionaires, and politicians.

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Day 2 - September 29

We’ll begin our day with a tour of historic Nice in order to learn a bit more about the southern capital of France. Then we’ll venture up into the hills to explore the charm and near perfection of the medieval village of Eze. We’ll lunch here and pretend we’ve stepped back in time.

After lunch we’ll head down to visit the stunning Villa Rothschild imaged and designed for Béatrice de Rothschild from the famous French banking family. The castle sits pretty and proud in pink and its gardens are to die for. 

After some rest back at our hotel, well head over to Chez Davia known for its sophisticated Niçoise cooking. 

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Day 3 - September 30

Today we’ll arise and after breakfast depart for our visit to the Cours Saleya market in the old town, which is a must-do when in Nice.

Then we’ll head over to the Picasso museum in Cap D’Antibes. The museum is actually built on the ancient Greek Acropolis of Antipolis which later became the Chateau Grimaldi in the 14th century. A real mix of ancient and modern. 

Following our visit you’ll enjoy some free time in charming Antibes to shop or pick up a bite on your own. 

This afternoon we’ll head over to Didier’s workshop. He’s a master glassblower and you’ll watch a demonstration of his art.

After an art and artisan filled day you deserve a petite repose - so we are heading to tea at the Belle Rives hotel, formerly the home of Zelda and F. Scott Fitzgerald.

This is where he wrote his masterpiece, Tender is the Night. Something we highly recommend re-reading before your trip. 

Tonight after a rest back at your hotel, we’ll head over to the pretty in pink Le Comptoir de Nicole for a bite.  

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Day 4 - October 1

Today we’ll head out to wander the grounds of the Maeght foundation. Their sculpture garden is legendary known for it collection of abstract works from: Calder, Leger, Jean Arp, Eduardo Chillida, Erik Dietman, Barbara Hepworth, Joan Miró and many more. 

Then we’ll drive up to St. Paul de Vence and lunch at the celebrated Colombe D’Or. This is certainly one of the most famous restaurants in all of France. Be sure to order the crudité while you ponder the Matisse and Picasso paintings on the walls.

After our legendary lunch we’ll make time to stop and enjoy the scents and history of Fragonard, the perfume house who was at the forefront of making French perfume all the rave within the beau monde. 

Tonight upon your return to Nice and our hotel, which by now feels like home, you’ll enjoy a night off to wander and find your own café or spend time reading and relaxing back at the hotel.

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Day 5 - October 2

Today we’ll be checking out after breakfast and heading toward our countryside villa location in Fontvieille. Before checking into our hotel we’ll go over to Hostellerie Berard where we’ll take a garden tour followed by aperitif workshop with owner Chef Jeff. After our workshop we’ll dine at the eponymous Bistro Jeff at the same property.

This afternoon we’ll head down to Cassis for a boat ride to see the calanques (similar to fjords) which lie just offshore from this quaint harbor town. (Weather dependent)

Don’t worry we’ll leave time for you to pop in some shops here as there are a multitude of cute ones.

By now it will be time to check into our 4-star hotel, the Regalido where after some time to rest and refresh we’ll dine in the hotel in relaxing fashion.

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Day 6 - October 3

Today we’ll head up into the Luberon to Uzès, an ancient market town where we’ll take a guided stroll with Deborah the Barefoot blogger. We’ll lunch together at Midi à L’Ombre, which translated mean noon under the shade.

After a final wander around this appealing town we’ll stop by Pont Du Gard, the ancient Roman Aqueduct for some photos.

Back in town after a rest we’ll dine at the colorful Le Patio in Fontvielle enjoying some proper Provençal food. 

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Day 7 - October 4

Today we’ll visit historic St. Remy de Provence where Nostradamus was born, where Van Gogh resided for a time and where Princess Caroline of Monaco summers. Most agree its a near perfect French village with shopping to make every ladies heart jump a beat. 

We’ll start off with a market visit followed by lunch at Da Pepe for a change of pace.

This afternoon we’ll visit Van Gogh’s monastery just north of the walled town where he stayed for some time after the ear incident. You’ll visit his room and see where he painted so many of the 100 masterpieces he accomplished during his short stay here. 

For our final meal together we’re going all out. We’ll be having an olive oil and a wine tasting at the gorgeous Chateau Estoublon followed by a stupendous dinner.

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Day 8 - October 5

All things must come to an end. But your photos will endure keeping the memories of the magical time you had with your new friends in one of the most beautiful places in the world. 

Transfer back to Paris for your flight home via train from Avignon. 

Price

Private Room

Private Room

Everyone gets their own fabulous room!

FROM$7,195.00/pp

What's Included

What's Included

All meals unless stated

2 glasses of wine or beer with included dinners

All entrance fees, visits, tastings and guided tours

All transport while your trip

Transfer to Avignon TGV train station at the end of your trip

A boat ride

A perfume tour

An aperitif demonstration

A premium wine tasting

RT International Airfare

Train or air down to Nice and back from Avignon

Transfer to hotel in Nice

Additional wine or beer at meals beyond what’s offered

Any personal souvenirs

Any spa treatments desired

Tips for your driver

Inquire about this trip

The Best of the French Riviera and Provence

France· September 28 - October 5 2023· 7 nights

FROM$7195/pp