Journey with us to the South of France and discover the light, colors and landscapes that inspired painters from Cezanne to Picasso. This unique tour will explore Provence and the nearby French Riviera. First we will follow the footsteps of Paul Cezanne in Aix en Provence and visit the luminous sites that van Gogh so vividly painted in Arles and St. Remy de Provence. This will be followed by an exploration of the French Riviera where painters like Picasso, Matisse and Renoir captured the beauty and light of the land to create their most famous works of art.
- Walking tour of historic Aix en Provence
- Visit of Cezanne’s studio and his family estate at Jas de Bouffan
- Excursion to Arles and St. Remy de Provence
- Visit St. Tropez and the Annonciade Museum
- Guided tour of Nice and the Matisse Museum
- Guided tour of Vence and Chapelle Matisse
- Tour of Antibes and the Picasso Museum
- Excursion to the Riviera Coast to visit the pretty harbor of Villefranche sur Mer and explore the picturesque perched town of Eze.
- Tour Renoir’s estate in the south of France-Domaine des Collettes
- 8 nights accommodation in charming and memorable boutique hotels in the center of town (4 nights in Aix en Provence and 4 nights in Nice)
- Daily breakfasts
- Six meals (3 dinners and 3 lunches)
- Professionally guided tours by local expert guides
- Professional and bilingual tour leader at your disposal throughout the trip
- All museum and monument entry fees including: Picasso Museum in Antibes; Matisse Museum; Annonciade Museum in St. Tropez; Cezanne’s studio and Family Estate; Renoir’s estate in Cagnes sur Mer; St. Paul de Mausole in St. Remy de Provence and more…..
- A/C spacious minicoach transportation in Provence
- Small intimate friendly group of 10-15 people
- Porter, service charge and gratuities
- Added bonus: some free time for you to explore on your own or just relax
Date: October 6-14, 2018
Price: starts at $3340 per person double occupancy --Land ONLY
Single supplement: $800
Space limited to 15 participants.
Airfare, transfers and additional nights in Paris, Provence or beyond can be arranged through Enchanted France.
To get to Provence:
Fly from USA to Paris or Marseille you land in Paris you will need to connect with a flight preferably to Marseille or take the TGV
high speed train to Avignon.
To Return to USA
You may return to USA from Nice or Paris
Day 1- Welcome to Aix en Provence
Arrival in Aix en Provence. After check-in, free time to go on exploring this lively Provençal town. Stroll along its wide and leafy boulevards, picturesque squares and sit at a café terrace to watch a lively street scene. Aix was the birthplace of Paul Cezanne and where he lived for most of his life. We will meet with our fellow travelers for a welcome dinner. D
Day 2- Aix en Provence
After breakfast enjoy a guided walking tour of the historic town and learn about Aix’s rich history dating back to when the Romans settled it as a spa town and named it “Aqua Sextius”. In your walk, you will discover beautiful medieval and renaissance architecture, lively narrow alleys filled with shops and picturesque squares with splashing fountains. We will also discover some of Cezanne’s favorite haunts in the city. After lunch in a bistro in Aix, you will have the afternoon at leisure. B/L
Day 3- Cezanne’s Studio, Jas de Bouffan and Mont St. Victoire
This morning we will explore the surrounding countryside that inspired Cezanne. We will take a guided tour of Jas de Boufan, Cezanne’s family home and of his workshop at Les Lauves. We will also gaze at the nearby Mount Saint Victoire, Cezanne’s favorite subject, appearing in more that 80 paintings. Enjoy the afternoon at leisure to explore the town on your own or take a painting class with a local artist (optional). B
Day 4- Van Gogh’s inspiration in Arles and St. Remy de Provence
Today we will visit the charming towns of Arles and Saint Remy de Provence. It is here that Vincent van Gogh came to set up an art colony in 1888 and where he produced over 150 canvases, notably, the Irises and Starry Night. Our tour in historic Arles will include the Roman Arena and Saint Trophime cathedral noted for it magnificent Romanesque doorway. After lunch in a quaint Provencal restaurant, we will head to the picturesque town of St. Remy de Provence, birthplace of Nostradamus. Here we also will be able to tour St. Paul de Mausole, the convent turned convalescent home where Vincent Van Gogh entered in 1889. Return to Aix en Provence for an evening and dinner at leisure. B/L
Day 5- St. Tropez, Musee de l’Annonciade and Nice
We will leave today Aix en Provence and head to Nice, the famed French town on the French Riviera . On the way, we will stop in the picturesque fishing harbor of St.Tropez which was a favorite artistic subject to many modern painters like Signac, Duffy, Matisse and others. Here, we will visit the lovely Annonciade Museum. Housed in a 16th century chapel, this museum traces the evolution of painting from neo-Impressionism to Fauvism. It was Paul Signac, master of Pointillism who was first inspired by the beauty and light of this fishing village. Many others followed like Matisse, Dufy, Derain and Vlaminck to name a few whose works are displayed at the museum. There will be time to explore the old port, the Place des Lices and enjoy lunch on your own. In the afternoon, we will continue to Nice where we will spend the remainder of our stay. After check -in at our hotel, we will meet for dinner in town. B/D
Day 6- Nice and Matisse Museum
After breakfast, we will go on a guided tour of this legendary French Rivera town. We will stroll along the beautiful beachfront Promenade des Anglais, visit the picturesque “old town” and its colorful market on Cours Saleya. After free time for lunch at the market, we will head to Cimiez Hill to visit the Matisse Museum which holds a collection of works that the artist and his heirs donated to the city of Nice where he lived from 1918 to 1954. Evening at leisure. B.
Day 7- Vence, Chapelle Matisse, Antibes and Picasso Exhibit
Today we will go for a visit of Vence, a picturesque hilltop town above the Mediterranean Sea. Many famous painters found refuge in Vence including Dufy, Soutine, Matisse, Chagall and Dubuffet. We will visit the Chapelle Matisse (aka Chapelle du Rosaire des Dominicaines de Vence). It was designed and decorated by Henri Matisse between 1947 and 1951 in gratitude to the nuns who helped him recover from a serious illness. Matisse used stained glass to bring “natural” colors inside this all white chapel and he considered this to be his masterpiece. In the afternoon our tour will take us back to the coast to Antibes, a pretty coastal resort town where we will visit at the newly renovated Picasso Museum. Return to Nice. B/L
Day 8- Villefranche sur Mer, Eze, Renoir’s estate in Cagnes sur Mer
On our last day on the Rivera we will go on a drive along the coast to visit the pretty harbor of Villefranche sur Mer home of luxury estates and where million dollars yachts lay anchor. Here, at harbor side we will visit the small 14th century chapel St. Pierre restored and decorated by artist Jean Cocteau in 1957 with pastel colored frescoes depicting the life of the saint and of local fisher folks. We will then continue on to explore the medieval hilltop town of Eze where we will enjoy panoramic views of the coast. After free time for lunch in Eze, we will continue with a visit of Impressionist painter Pierre August Renoir’s estate in Cagnes sur Mer—Domaine des Collettes. This is where the painter lived till his death in 1919. Set in the middle of a parkland filled with olive trees, the house turned museum features an eclectic collection of the artist’s paintings, sculptures and lithographs. We will return to Nice for the evening and a farewell dinner. B/D
Day 9- After breakfast tour ends. Au revoir et a bientot!
Painting class in Aix en Provence with local artist.
* These rates are subject to availability and currency fluctuations. Single supplement: $800
Flight arrangements to any city can be arranged. Extra days in Paris, Nice or Provence can be arranged.
B= breakfast; L: Lunch: D= Dinner
For these and other specialized tours call us at 866-313-2856 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org>