South of France's Finest

Itinerary

Day 1Depart the USA
Head for the South of France!

Day 2Arrive St. Tropez
St. Tropez was founded by the Greeks of Marseille as a small fishing village, then destroyed and later fortified during the Middle Ages. Sticking out into the Mediterranean Ocean, this wide peninsula never warranted real roads and could only be easily reached by boat. In the 19th century, St. Tropez became a popular destination for French artists. By the onset of WWI, St. Tropez was a well established hang out for artists and bohemians alike. Painters, playwrights and journalists continued to flock to St. Tropez throughout the 20th century.

Check-in to your hotel and take in the sights and sounds of the South of France’s finest!

Day 3Beyond the Beaches Wine Tasting
This morning meet your English-speaking guide for a full day excursion. You will be escorted in a private car through the forest of Les Maures, where you can admire the beautiful cork oaks in one of 2 regions in the world where these trees grow!

Today, you will tour two Côte de Provence vineyards and taste several varieties while an Oenologist tells you all their secrets about wine! You will discover the quality and the wide variety of the wines in this region and learn how to appreciate a Côte de Provence wine.

You will visit an 11th Century Castle, enjoy a stop in the Provence village les Arcs sur Argens where you can have a typical Provençal lunch and learn about the history of vineyards in the solid mass of the Moors and on the peninsula of St. Tropez.

Day 4The Story of St. Tropez
St. Tropez is not only a famous seaside resort but also a genuine Provençal village with a rich cultural heritage. Your guide will lead you on an unforgettable discovery of the architectural and traditional highlights of St. Tropez. Visit the Annonciade Museum, a heaven for Impressionist’s lovers, located in a former Chapel. Next, you will visit Ramatuelle, built in the shape of a snail, the Romanesque parish church of Notre Dame sits against the ancient fortifications of this village. After strolling through the narrow streets of Ramatuelle you’re off to one of the 40 famous beaches of St. Tropez.

After touring this seaside resort you will continue on and arrive at the perched village of Grimaud with breathtaking views of its remarkable monumental fountain and the ruins of a medieval castle. Your last stop is at Port Grimaud Harbor, a village with unique charm, designed by the famous French architect François Spoerry. You will board a small boat and cruise the harbor passing colored houses covered with Roman tiles, linked by canals, alleys, tiny squares, and bridges.

Day 5Verdon Gorge Rafting Excursion
Rise early this morning, as your guide will take you on an experience through Europe's most beautiful river canyon.
As the worlds second largest gorge the Verdon Gorge was formed by the Verdon River, which is named after its startling turquoise-green color. Your tour begins with a visit to Moustier-Sainte-Marie, renowned for its earthenware tiles and pottery, especially the variety of Faïence. After a short tour of the village you will have lunch before descending by raft down the river!
You will meet your river guide and board your raft for a leisurely ride through the Verdon Gorge. Upon completion of your tour your guide will escort you to your hotel in Tourrettes.

Day 6Grasse, Cannes & the Picasso Museum
This morning, your guide will meet you for a full day tour, beginning with a visit to Grasse, the perfume capital of the world! You will experience why Grasse has made this industry an art, combining luxury, refinement and quality in the products it creates or transforms. You will visit a perfumery, where you can create your own perfume!
Next you will visit Cannes, known as the “queen of festivals.” Here you will have time to shop and enjoy lunch on a private beach if you wish. Before returning to your hotel you will make your final stop in Antibes and tour the Picasso Museum.

Day 7Cooking Class & Wine Tour
Today, you will enjoy a traditional French lunch prepared by a French chef - you! A formula variation around a main course of elaborate and sophisticated flavors will be prepared, with the assistance of a world class chef. The main dish will take about an hour to prepare, but the experience will last a lifetime!

Following class you will visit a winery near St. Paul de Vence, where a picturesque family-owned and operated vineyard has been perfecting winemaking since Roman times. You will taste about 7 varieties of the hand-made wines while learning the history of the vineyards and their winemaking techniques.

Day 8St. Paul de Vence, Nice & Monaco
Today you will tour the Rue Grande, in the medieval village of St. Paul de Vence, perched on a rocky spur sheltered by its 16th century rampart; this medieval village is among the jewels of the French Riviera. It was discovered in the 1920’s by painters and even now art galleries are nestled in the old stables of St. Paul de Vence.

Next, you will visit the Greek and Roman ruins of Nice and have lunch in one of the colorful squares. Your last stop will be Monaco where you can choose to tour any of the many attractions found here.

After your excursion, your driver will escort you to your hotel in Eze.

Day 9Sailing the French Riviera
There is no better way to spend your last day than aboard a private sailboat! You will have a full day of sailing on a large, private 45-foot sailboat, with an English speaking captain. You will depart from Cannes in the morning and sail around Cannes and Cap d’Antibes. Lunch will be on a beautiful island famous for its ancient monastery from the 11th century, still active with 30 Cistercian monks and includes the very famous wines made by the monks and fresh Mediterranean fish in a beautiful setting with views of Cannes. This afternoon, you have the choice of swimming as long as you want in a protected bay between two islands facing Cannes.

Day 10Departure
Savor your last morning with a café au lait at a nearby bakery before you begin your journey home.
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