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14 Days Self-Driving Tour in Provence and French Riviera

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Christiana

French Side Travel

Your local travel agency: We develop authentic custom tours throughout France - 100% personalized!

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14 Days Self-Driving Tour in Provence and French Riviera

Get away in the Provençal lands of the Midi, then discover the famous French Riviera! Between nature, gastronomy and charming hotels, this trip is a mix of fragrances, flavors and colors. Taste wines in Provence, visit interesting cities such as Marseille and Cannes, create your own perfume, and go on a boat ride to Monaco. Explore two of the most beautiful regions of France in full freedom and with comfort in high-quality establishments.

DAY 1

Arrival in Marseille

Pick Up of your Rental Car at the Airport: At your arrival at the Marseille airport a rental car of category G Auto (Auris, Megane or similar) will be at your disposal for 14 days. Thus, you can move freely and comfortably around the island. On the day of departure you will drop off the vehicle at the airport. The charges for optional accessory are to be paid on-site : Additional driver, young driver extra charge - 25 years, GPS, One way. Arrival at your accomodation. After the check in, you will dispose of the rest of the day to visit the surroundings. Night and breakfast in a standard room in a 4* Hotel in the center of Aix en Provence Read more

Night in Aix-en-Provence
DAY 2

Gourmet Tour in Aix-en-Provence

Suggestion: Gourmet Tour and Visit of Traditional Craft Workshops: Aix as it lives and breathes! Laurent, an experienced chef and sommelier, will take you on a discovery tour and let you participate in the city’s typical activities. Your excursion will start with the visit of a colorful Provencal market. Enjoy the beautiful well-filled fruit and vegetable stands, they are a real treat for the palate and the eyes! In the city of the thousand fountains, there is no getting around a picturesque rippling fountain. Laurent has taken care of everything. After the feast for the eyes, follows the treat: you will enjoy a tasting in a Provencal ambiance: macaroons, the renowned regional almond pastry “calissons d’Aix" for amateurs of sweets, freshly baked bread, traditionally produced goat cheese from a local cheese maker, savory olive oil and wine from a regional winegrower will delight the foodies. Aren’t the French also known for rather unusual food tastes? You must not miss a detour to a snail breeder! On your way you will pass by a Christmas Crib maker and, of course, stop in the craft workshop of a typical fountain builder, hidden in a small alley. At the end of your tour, Laurent will share with you some secrets and anecdotes about the town… Duration: 3 hours. Night and breakfast in a standard room in a 4* Hotel in the center of Aix en Provence Read more

Night in Aix-en-Provence
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DAY 3

Guided Walk at Mount Saint-Victoire

Suggestion: Guided nature walk near Mount Saint-Victoire, a story of water: Departure from Tholonet, close to Aix-en-Provence, nature guide Stéphane offers you a discovery walk to the Zola dam which offers an unrivaled view on the Sainte Victoire and the Zola lake. This dam, built in 1854 by Emile Zola's father, supplies water to Aix-enProvence city. Exploited until 1877, it has no longer the water supply function but it is used as a flood controller for the Cause and the Arc. During this walk, you'll learn more about the regional history and legends. You'll understand why water management is so important here but also discover the geology, and local flora and fauna. Duration: around 3 hours – Sharing economy services. Night and breakfast in a standard room in a 4* Hotel in the center of Aix en Provence Read more

Night in Aix-en-Provence
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DAY 4

Wine Tasting in Aix-en-Provence

Suggestion: discover the vineyards of Aix-en-Provence with wine tasting: Brice, a passionate oenologist, will guide you through the local vineyards where you will discover the finest wines of the region. Starting at Aix-en-Provence, your guide will drive you in an air-conditioned luxury car on the beautiful Aix-en-Provence Wine Roads (Route des Vins de Provence), along the impressive Mont Sainte-Victoire. Your visit includes four renowned wineries, producing the labels AOC Côtes-de-Provence and Côtes-de-Provence Sainte-Victoire. In each of them you will walk through the vineyards, where Brice will introduce you to the art of wine growing, and then visit the wine cellars and the production facilities.. Your discovery tour will finish in style with a tasting of several fine wines, during which you will be given a few tips and tricks about proper wine sampling and the finesse of oenology. Duration : approximately 7 hours; Night and breakfast in a standard room in a 4* Hotel in the center of Aix en Provence Read more

Night in Aix-en-Provence
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DAY 5

Visit of village Les Baux-de-Provence

Suggestion: visit of Les Baux-de-Provence: Les Baux-de-Provence is a village within the Regional Natural Park of the Alpilles. Said to be the most visited village in France, apparently two million visitors a year crowd on to the streets of Les Baux-de-Provence. It is listed among the "most beautiful villages of France". As well as the village a major highlight of Les Baux-de-Provence is its great location - nestling in the Alpilles mountains it has great views across the plains that stretch to the south and on to the Mediterranean beyond, as well as the attractive rocky landscape of the Alpilles. Les Baux-de-Provence is a typical "Provence perched village" and the drive up to the village is very scenic. The village is pedestrianized: on arriving you can park just outside the northern end of the village. The village that you visit today largely dates from the 15th-16th centuries. The ruined castle - the Chateau of Les Baux-de-Provence - sits on top of a rocky outcrop above the village and is one of the most popular attractions in Provence. You don't realize how large the castle grounds are until you enter, but the chateau occupies about seven hectares - it is as large as the village - and there are lots of ruined walls and towers to evoke the history of the place, as well as a small 12th century chapel. After exploring the village and castle we suggest you follow the road that leaves Les Baux-de-Provence from the north towards Maillane (it's not far, an easy walk) to reach the Carrieres de Lumiere (also known as the Cathédrale d'Images). The Carrieres de Lumieres are an ancient quarry that is now used for regular exhibitions with artworks projected against the quarry walls and music, a real spectacle of light and sound. The spectacle changes each year. Night and breakfast in a standard room in a 4* Hotel in the center of Aix en Provence Read more

Night in Aix-en-Provence
DAY 6

Visit of Marseille and Frioul Islands

Suggestion: visit of Marseille, the City of a Thousand Faces: Nestled between the turquoise Mediterranean Sea, rocky inlets, and scenic hills, the Southern French metropolis is overhung and protected by the impressive Basilica “Bonne Mère” (the “Good Mother”). France’s oldest and second biggest city was founded by Greek traders 2,600 years ago and is full of surprises ever since. As in other troubled port cities, Marseille had a reputation of crime and defiant bombast, but the city has polished its image. Today it skillfully combines tradition with modernity. New or refurbished trams, designer hotels, galleries, museums, cultural centers, sights, and chic restaurants make the Mediterranean city a fascinating attraction. Not to be missed are the museum MUCEM (about history and culture of the Mediterranean Region) and the MAC, exhibiting contemporary art. Marseille life still focuses on the Vieux Port, the Old Port with its vibrant nightlife and many restaurants. A must try is the delicious Bouillabaisse, the local fish soup. Worth visiting are the Château d’If, an old fort converted into a prison whose most famous prisoner was immortalized by Alexandre Dumas in his novel the Count of MonteCristo, or the off the coast Frioul Islands where you can admire original protected plant life. And if you fancy taking a break, find your own hidden little bay, the typical Calanques where you can swim, relax and sunbathe! Suggestion: Excursion to the untouched Nature of the Frioul Archipelago Your guide Christian lives on the Frioul Archipelago and is a passionate globetrotter. He is the member of an association organizing excursions on the archipelago with emphasize on its culture, history and environment protection. The islands are situated four kilometers offshore from Marseille. Take the ferry boat at the port of Marseille, Christian will welcome you on the landing at your arrival. How did and do live the habitants of these islands? Christian will tell you all about it! He will take you through the untouched nature and let you in on the mostly unknown history of this archipelago. You will visit the islands Pomègues and Ratonneau connected by a dam. During an epidemic of yellow fever in the 19th century a quarantine hospital was built on the archipelago, meanwhile it has been transformed into a cultural center hosting exhibitions and events. Christian will guide you through trails amid the untouched nature and attract your attention to the rich bird life, plant growth and monuments. The boat tickets for the Marseille-Iles du Frioul crossing are not included. Duration: half day trip – 3 hours and 30 minutes – Sharing economy services. Night and breakfast in a standard room in a 4* Hotel in the center of Aix en Provence Read more

Night in Aix-en-Provence
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DAY 7

Visit of Cannes

Suggestion: visit of Cannes: Cannes enjoys an international reputation. It has welcomed the great and good of this world for nearly two centuries. It is also home to the most famous film festival. It’s not all frivolity - an obsession with red carpets and evening gowns. It has a more serious side too – busy with business events for a large portion of the year. It has a reputation for being modern, cosmopolitan, fashion trend setter which is undoubtedly true! But it has also lovingly preserved its roots and its traditions, an authenticity that can be enjoyed by the visitors that slip away from the Croisette to savour the picturesque charm of a Mediterranean city. The hill of the "Suquet" is where Cannes began. We suggest you start your tour of Cannes with the old town. You can reach it from various angles, taking steeply sloping narrow streets, crisscrossed with picturesque flights of winding steps where the pedestrian is king. Visit the ramparts, the Musée de la Castre, the square tower and the church. Admire the view over the city, the port, the Croisette, the Iles de Lérins and a substantial portion of the Bay of Cannes, Forville market with its rows of food shops (butchers, fishmongers, bakers, wine merchants, etc). The old port unfurls below the Suquet. In 1850, the Croisette was nothing more than a path running parallel to the sea across sand dunes. The Croisette is now an avenue renowned for its prestigious shops and the luxury hotels that have established Cannes' history, including the Carlton, the Martinez, and the Majestic. A short boat ride from the Croisette, opposite Cannes Bay, the Lérins Islands are a welcoming sight. Enjoying an unspoilt natural setting, these beauty spots in the Mediterranean offer visitors a unique combination of flora and fauna as well as an unusual history that includes the mysteries of the Man in the Iron Mask and the calm of Cistercian monks. The cool of early morning is the perfect time to take a look around Forville market. The fragrance of thyme, verbena and basil fills the air. The market sellers sing out the virtues of local produce in their lilting accent: tomatoes, olive oil, freshly-caught fish, tasty aniseed biscuits… A stroll around Forville market is like exploring the whole of Provence, taking a delicious journey steeped in the atmosphere of the South. Night and breakfast in a Classic room in a charming 4* Hotel in Nice Read more

Night in Nice
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DAY 8

Visit of Vineyards near Cannes

Suggestion: A Stroll through the Vineyards off the Coast of Cannes: Frederic is a sommelier and loves sharing his passion and experience. He will take you to a natural green setting of exceptional beauty off the coast, a unique terroir enjoying a special microclimate. You will join him at the port of Cannes to take the ferry to Saint-Honorat. After a fifteenminute crossing, you will disembark on the island’s jetty. While strolling along the stunning scenery, you will cross two vine parcels. All along the excursion, Frederic will be happy to let you in on the turbulent history of the island and its renowned vineyard, grown by the monks. To finish your excursion in style, Frederic takes you to a wine tasting of three grape varieties grown on the island, one white and two red. After this delight, the ferry will take you back to Cannes. Duration: 3 hours – Sharing economy services. Night and breakfast in a Classic room in a charming 4* Hotel in Nice Read more

Night in Nice
DAY 9

Private Sailing Excursion along the Fren

Suggestion: Private Sailing Cruise along the Coast of the French Riviera with Lunch on Board: At the harbor of Cannes, Olivier, a skipper, and his girlfriend Fabienne, welcome you on board of their twelve-meter long, comfortable, sailing boat for an unforgettable cruise: a sea getaway along the coast of the Alpes-Maritimes and the Var. This cruise is yours! Let yourself be rocked by the sea waves, while enjoying the beautiful panorama or take part in the navigation manoeuvers. Around midday, you will drop anchor so that you may take a swim in the turquoise water! At lunch, you will be served a variety of savory tapas, accompanied by a delicious cool Sangria or a seasonal Mediterranean lunch with salads and fresh fruit. Duration: 7 hours and 30 minutes - Sharing economy services. Night and breakfast in a Classic room in a charming 4* Hotel in Nice Read more

Night in Nice
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DAY 10

Guided Walk and Picnic

Suggestion: Guided walk through the “Baous” (“rocky spur”): We start the day with a guided tour through the medieval part of the village Saint Jeannet and will then reach the crest of the Baou via an easily accessible route. From the summit, you enjoy a wonderful view over the coast and the French Alpes. Homemade picnic on top of the cliff. Then comfortable stroll back to the village. Duration: 7 hours - from approx. 10am until approx. 5.30pm Night and breakfast in a Classic room in a charming 4* Hotel in Nice Read more

Night in Nice
DAY 11

Perfume Workshop in Grasse

Suggestion: Perfume Workshop: During an educational and creative workshop, Guy, master perfumer in Grasse, will make you discover a combination of traditional manual work methods and contemporary techniques used in the manufacturing of perfume. On this occasion, you will learn about the major perfume “families” and the raw materials used for the making for perfume. Guy will teach you how to create your own perfume! The workshop includes a guided tour of the Grasse d'Antan Museum, an initiation to the main perfume “families” and its multiple essences, the olfactory pyramid, as well as the development of your senses: olfactory memory linked to memories and emotions. At the end of the workshop, you can take back home your “self-made” perfume (100ml of eau de perfume spray), its formula, the training booklet and a certificate honoring you as a “perfumer apprentice”. Duration: approx. 2 hours – Sharing economy services. Night and breakfast in a Classic room in a charming 4* Hotel in Nice Read more

Night in Nice
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DAY 12

Half-Day Motor Cruise

Suggestion: half-day motor cruise between Nice and Monaco: Vincent, born-and-bred on the coast and a passionate sailor, knows these waters like his own hand. He proposes a sailing trip along the beautiful creeks of the French Riviera. Once everyone on board, Vincent will set sail in direction of Monaco, along the Cape of Nice, the Bay of Villefranche, its port and beaches, Cap Ferrat with its luxurious villas, the Bay of Beaulieu-sur-Mer and the picturesque mountain village of Eze. As you enter the impressive Port Hercules in Monaco, in use since ancient times, you may be flabbergasted by the view of the glamorous and pompous yachts. If you wish so, it is possible to make stops for a dive into the refreshing water. A light meal will be served on board, depending on the time of the day, either a breakfast, a snack or an aperitif. At your disposal: diving mask, snorkel and towels. Duration: 4 hours - Departure 9h30 Night and breakfast in a Classic room in a charming 4* Hotel in Nice Read more

Night in Nice
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DAY 13

Visit of Monaco

Suggestion: visit of Monaco: Explore Monaco, the second smallest country in the world, located between the south of France and Italy. Home to the glamorous Monte Carlo Casino, the Grand Prix and lush gardens, Monaco is full of style waiting to be discovered. You have the whole day to discover the Principality, its museums, its monuments, its walks and, above all, its magic. During the day, you will be able to visit as you wish, coming and going from discoveries to surprises. Visit the Casino of Monte Carlo, its gardens and the nearby Hotel de Paris. At any time of the day or the night, visitors rush around this mythical and probably the most glamorous place in the Principality. Explore its fabulous architecture and its impressive rooms, where people are playing or only watching. You may take a seat at the Café de Paris’ terrace, where you chose to eat an ice cream while contemplating the view around you: the Casino’s gardens, the fountains, the palm trees ... Walk through the old city, by the Cathedral and the Prince’s Palace; try to be present for the spectacular change of the guard at 11.55am. Then visit Port Hercule, with its luxury yachts and "James Bond" atmosphere, the Grand Prix circuit and the Oceanographic Museum (also known as "Temple of the Sea"). Night and breakfast in a Classic room in a charming 4* Hotel in Nice Read more

Night in Nice
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DAY 14

Day of Departure

End of your trip: You will drop off your rental car at Nice airport

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ACCOMMODATIONS

Day in trip
Location
Hotel
Day 1
Location Aix-en-Provence
Hotel 4*-Hotel in the City Centre
Day 7
Location Nice, centre
Hotel 4*-Hotel near the Beach

TRIP PACKAGE

Package includes

  • 13 Nights in charming guesthouses
  • 13x Breakfast
  • Rental car during your whole trip
  • A travel folder with the reservation vouchers.
  • A phone contact in case of an emergency during your trip

Package excludes

  • Airfare
  • Visa, consular fees or any other formalities
  • Cancellation and repatriation insurances, all-risks coverage
  • The suggestions (can be booked on demand)
  • Meals and Beverages (unless indicated otherwise)
  • Personal expenses (drinks, tips etc.)
  • The tourist tax has to be paid on the spot

More information

  • Price per Person in Standard twin room
  • This trip can be 100% personalised!

REVIEWS

1 Reviews

Geoff Silk, Australia

We had our trip arranged at very late notice and all the arrangements worked out despite this (...). Our agent at French Side Travel, Nicola, was very helpful and responded rapidly to emails and also accommodated our plans very well. All the transfers to trips, accommodation etc worked out. (...)

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French Side Travel
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Your local travel agency: We develop authentic custom tours throughout France - 100% personalized!

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