Insiders Walking Journey Cote d’Azur to Provence

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The secrets of Southern France are best explored by foot!

Over 10 fully guided, all-inclusive days, you’ll enjoy stunning sea-cliffs, conquer Mt Ventoux, explore the vibrant streets of Nice and indulge your senses in the world-renowned Cote du Rhone valleys.

 

With carefully planned walks, delightful culinary experiences, and knowledgeable guides leading the way, this journey promises an immersive and rewarding experience for nature lovers, history enthusiasts, and food aficionados alike. This is a bucket-list holiday of a lifetime!

For all enquiries and bookings please contact our international departures team.

 

Why not extend your journey with the Verdon Gorge Add-On and join us on a one of the must-see natural wonders of Provence. This exclusive 4-day add-on tour, departing 17 September 2024 can only be booked with the Guided by Nature Cote d’Azur to Provence September 2024 departure.

 


Insiders Walking Journey Cote d’Azur to Provence
 

  • Departure: 8 September 2024
  • Fully guided: 10 Days / 9 nights
  • Premium hand-picked accommodation
  • Max group size: 12, plus 2 experienced guides
  • Min group size: 8
  • Guided by Nature company support host
  • Activity level: Moderate
  • Trip start: Nice, France
  • Trip end: Avignon, France
  • Distance: 64.5kms 
  • Cost: AUD$10,995 / single supplement: AUD$3,090
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Your Itinerary

Nice France 2

Day
1

Arrive in Nice

Welcome to the French Riviera! Arrive at Nice airport and be greeted for a 3pm transfer to your hotel. After settling in and enjoying some free time, join us for pre-dinner cocktails and dinner in a charming bistro located in the Old Town.

Accommodation: 
The Deck Hotel, Nice

Meals included: 
Dinner

Day 2 villefranche
Fort Boron

Day
2

Walk to Villefranche and Mt Boron

Approximately 3-4 hours of walking (11km)

Enjoy a relaxed breakfast at your hotel before our first hike to beautiful Villefranche. This village east of Nice along the coastal path has lovely views across the Mediterranean. Enjoy some free time wandering around this charming village and crescent shaped beach. Find the ideal shady spot for a lunch in the old town. 

Our route home takes us up and over Mt Boron, a green wilderness via Fort Boron, a 16th-century military fort perched 220 meters above the sea for a 360-degree view of the surrounding coastline and the Alpes Maritime mountains. Dinner tonight will be in our favourite local bistro in the old town.

Accommodation: 
The Deck Hotel, Nice

Meals included: 
Breakfast and Dinner

Day 3 Provencal hilltops 1

Day
3

Coastal Cannes and Provencal hilltops

Approximately 1 hours of walking (3km)

After breakfast we’ll hike up to the Castle Hill for spectacular views of Nice, the coast and the port then down to the old town where we’ll visit the flower and food Market operating since 1897 to get a taste of local life and culture, discovering Nice’s rich and varied history as we wander through some of our favourite streets and shops.

Late morning we’ll head west along the French Riviera stopping inland from Cannes at one of Provence’s most beautiful villages, its most famous former resident being Picasso, explore it’s 20 art galleries, and admire the fabulous valley views and street sculptures.

We then continue west to our home for the next 3 nights in an idyllic Provencal hilltop town, off the beaten track with its small flower filled streets steeped in medieval history. Our hotel’s location ensures you can wander the village at dusk and people watch before dinner in a local bistro.

Accommodation: 
La Cadiere D’Azur boutique hotel

Transfers: 
Drive from Nice to from La Cadiere, 180kms

Meals included: 
Breakfast and Dinner

Day 4 la cadiere dazur
Day 4 calanques

Day
4

Explore Calanques National Park

Approximately 4-5 hours of walking (12.5km)

Enjoy a stunning breakfast in our sunny, light filled hotel restaurant overlooking the Bandol wine regions valleys. We’ll then take a drive over the highest sea cliff in France stopping for breathtaking views until we reach the gorgeous fishing port of Cassis.  Today we’ll hike through the Calanques, a beautiful national park and one of the largest in France plus the only European national park to encompass land, sea and urban areas.  It’s a unique area with over 1600 species of plants. 

There are some steep rocks to scramble up and down and it’s a stunning walk in a pristine area. We’ll stop for a picnic lunch on the beach and a swim in the most sparkling turquoise waters surrounded by towering limestone cliffs before returning to Cassis. Dinner at your leisure this evening after a full day of enjoying the Calanques region.

Accommodation: 
La Cadiere D’Azur boutique hotel

Transfers: 
Drive from Cassis (30 minutes)

Meals included: 
Breakfast and Lunch

Hiking near cassis

Day
5

Cassis coastal walk

Approximately 3-4 hours walking (9km)

You can’t get enough of Cassis and its views so we’ll do a morning return coastal hike from Cassis up to the top of the Cap Canaille, the 2nd highest sea cliff in Western Europe.  The views from the top are spectacular. Enjoy lunch in this gorgeous port village before our private boat tour through the Calanques which are narrow limestone inlets with spectacular turquoise coves. We’ll have plenty of time for a swim, a glass or 2 of rose and optional swimming in sea caves whilst meandering through this spectacular maritime national park for the afternoon.

Indulge in a culinary highlight tonight as we dine in a superb Michelin-starred restaurant. Smart casual dress required.

Accommodation: 
La Cadiere D’Azur boutique hotel

Transfers: 
Drive from Cassis (30 minutes)

Meals included: 
Breakfast and Dinner

Day 6 le village des baux de provence et son chateau
Hotel Crillon le Brave

Day
6

Vineyards and Art in Provencal Hills

A well earned rest day (no walking)

This morning we leave the Cote D’ Azur and drive north into the spectacular countryside of the Luberon, made famous by the author Peter Mayle. On the way visit a one-of-a-kind art gallery set in a 2500-square foot soaring underground limestone quarry. This amazing installation projects gigantic works of art across every surface and is choreographed to exquisite music. 

Afterwards enjoy lunch in the gardens of one of our favourite chateaux before continuing into the Provencal hills and an area little known to most. Our home for the next four nights is in a beautiful French boutique hotel surrounded by Cote du Rhone vineyards in the foothills of Mt Ventoux, “The Giant of Provence”. The hotel is located in a charming village with amazing vistas wherever you look. Cocktails on the terrace and a friendly Pétanque match then spend the evening at leisure.

Accommodation: 
Hotel Crillon-le-Brave, Crillon le Brave

Transfers: 
Cote D’ Azur to Provencal Hills (2.5 hours)

Meals included: 
Breakfast and Lunch

Day 7 crillon le brave

Day
7

Culinary adventure in Provence

Approximately 4-5 hours walking (17km)

Today we head into a very remote part of Provence for an immersive walk along an ancient riverbed (weather permitting) as per the French style we will walk in the river which deepens through various gorges. We’ll continue hiking up the valley before heading up to perhaps the most beautiful village in Provence.  

Walk around the village foraging for edible plants and flowers and learn the homeopathic and medicinal qualities of the plants.  Then we adjourn to a private home in this idyllic village and take part in a fun and hands- on cooking class hosted by our chef, a delightful fourth-generation villager. We’ll dine early evening on the terrace, overlooking the valley with Mt Ventoux as a backdrop. 

Accommodation: 
Hotel Crillon-le-Brave, Crillon le Brave

Meals included: 
Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Chateauneuf
Day 8 vineyards

Day
8

Private vineyard's Chateauneuf-Du-Pape

No walking today

Embark on an exciting day of exploring and tasting some of the best wines in the world. Your host for the day will be our private sommelier and expert internationally renowned wine guide (former head sommelier for Alan Ducasse) - who will take you to some of the pre-eminent private vineyards of the southern Cote du Rhone. Stop in the charming world acclaimed village of Chateauneuf-Du-Pape, then visit the historic ruins of the Pope’s summer palace which was the seat of the Vatican for 70 years.

Your private sommelier will share his vast knowledge during the spectacular 3 course wine and food pairing lunch. Then we’ll wind our way home, perhaps stopping at a friend’s vineyard for more tasting before returning to the hotel terrace for sunset drinks and an introduction to the “nez du vin’’ where you’ll learn how sommeliers train their sense of smell.

Accommodation: 
Hotel Crillon-le-Brave, Crillon le Brave

Transfers: 
Private vehicle transfer (2 hours)

Meals included: 
Breakfast and Lunch

Day 9 Mont Ventoux 1

Day
9

Mont Ventoux ascent

Approximately 7-8 hours walking (12km)

We will head out after breakfast for a short drive through beautiful countryside and then into the hills for the ascent up Mont Ventoux, ‘The Giant of Provence’, of the Tour de France fame with one of the most gruelling climbs on the circuit which ascends it every 2 years. Stop for lunch in a rustic bistro at the foot of a tiny ski village. 

Mont Ventoux is a UNESCO protected biosphere reserve with over 60 species of flora and fauna found nowhere else in the world. This is a big day of hiking, it’s a steep climb however the views from the top are spectacular.  Well hike up and drive down before enjoying some rest time by the pool and some more pétanque before dinner in a favourite lovely local village bistro.

Accommodation: 
Hotel Crillon-le-Brave, Crillon le Brave

Transfers: 
Drive to start of walk (20 minutes)

Meals included: 
Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Breakfast

Day
10

Avignon

As our adventure comes to an end, we'll cherish the memories made in Provence over breakfast. With a fond farewell to the group, it's time to continue our journey or depart for home. Transfers will be available to Avignon TGV station for those heading to Paris and beyond. For those departing from Marseille airport, we can arrange transfers at an additional cost.

 

Extend your journey with the Verdon Gorge Add-On and join us on a one of the must-see natural wonders of Provence. This exclusive 4-day add-on tour, departing 17 September 2024 can only be booked with the Guided by Nature Cote d’Azur to Provence September 2024 departure.

Meals included: 
Breakfast

Frequently Asked Questions 

  • Small group
  • Fully hosted walking journey with experienced guides
  • Pre-trip customer care service available to answer any questions
  • Most meals (except where indicated, so you can experience local cuisine independently!)
  • Non-alcoholic beverages included in evening meals (wine and beer as indicated, or available for purchase)
  • Twin share accommodation at carefully selected premium hotels
  • Picnic, hiking lunches & unique destination walking provisions
  • Specially curated surprise moments throughout tour
  • All activities described in trip itinerary
  • All transportation from the beginning until the end of trip
  • All gratuities for hotels, restaurants, and activities
  • All park and entry fees

Please Note: Whilst every effort will be made to secure the accommodation as detailed in the itinerary, there may be circumstances where Guided by Nature provides a similar accommodation standard.

  • International Flights
  • Visa where required
  • Hiking equipment - you will need to bring your own daypack and hiking gear (a full gear list will be provided)
  • Travel insurance
  • Gratuities

Each trip requires a minimum of 8 guests, three months prior to departure. The maximum group size is 12 guests (plus guides).

  • We strongly recommend travel insurance. Consideration needs to be given to our cancellation policy, injury, evacuation, delayed flights, illness, etc. Please see our Booking Terms & Conditions for details and contact us if you have any questions.

Book Your Journey

Come join us and discover the secrets of Provence.

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Hiking near cassis