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7 days in provence

Travelling to Provence in July and looking for a suggested itinerary for 7-8 days starting from Avignon and ending in Lyon?
Any ideas?

Posted by
1113 posts

Your tour depends on your age and interest. If you have children you may want more outdoor activities....whereas an adult group might enjoy the Cote du Rhone Wineries and all the great Restaurants. Artists would love all the history and scenery available here...fabulous Museums. You can ride the $5.00 commuter train along the sea coast...but be aware that it stops running late night. Taxi cabs can be expensive. I would visit Marsailles, Arles, Aix-en-Provence, Grass, and Nice.


Posted by
913 posts

We just got back after spending over two weeks in Provence. We were based in Carpentras (baby sitting some friends critters while they went to Greece). We had a great time, and drove and explored somewhere different each day. The weather was fantastic; we even had some 80 degree days!

We will need some info; will you have a car? What do you like to do or see? Where are you staying? What type of lodging? (why the lodging question? We shopped many of the huge and awesome markets,[Sundays; Isle sur la Sorgue!!!!) did wine tasting, and then brought our spoils "home" to make fantastic dinners. French law is really strict on alcohol consumption, so we stayed at 'home' and drank many wonderful local wines with our dinners. )

I can't stress how much we like to use Rick's book to pick and choose itineraries. And don't forget to go to the local TI and pick up the brochures. Lots of good ideas there. Much of the area is flat and there are some good biking options if this is your thing. We headed for the coast on the two really warm days. (They have some awesome boat tours out of Cassis, with all types of pricing and journey times.)One day we explored the Carmague, saw the pink Flamingos and wild horses, then headed for a lunch on the beach at Sante Marie de la Mare. My bother's girlfriend went swimming in the Med there! (too cold for the rest of us.)

We saw the Roman coliseum In Arles and Orange, drove the wine road of the Cote du Rhone, and had wondrful lunches at small town each day on our drives.

There is so much to see and do. Let us know what "floats your boat".

Posted by
508 posts

Take the train from wherever you are flying into France (assume Paris, Marseilles or Nice) to Avignon (the TGV station) and take the shuttle or taxi into town. If your entire trip in in Provence consider a RT ticket into Marseilles or Nice unless Paris is part of your trip. Spend one night in Avignon, or more if you are so inclined, then go back to the TGV and pick up a car the next day. You can rent a car from Hertz at a reasonable price and book it before you leave home. There are a lot of choices on where to stay, many of which are listed in Rick's France book. We rented a farmhouse in St. Remy de Provence, a 20 minute drive from the TGV and pretty centrally located to much of Provence. We left the train station late morning and drove to the Pont du Gard which is quite a work of art. Not even a RS video does it justice. Allow sufficient time to wander around and below it and go through the museum that shows you how the Romans built it. After getting to St. Remy we took day trips to Nimes, Gordes, Orange, Cassis (boat trip to the Calanques), Aix-en-Provence and several other towns. Did not make it to Marseilles or Arles, but I'm going back solo in September to do a list of things I didn't get to do traveling with family. Lyon is an easy train ride from the Avignon TGV station, or you could drive there and turn in your car at the train station in Lyon. You don't say where you arrive or depart, so giving that may help others to provide better advice. I highly recommend you see the Pont du Gard first before going to Nimes so that you can learn how the water got to Nimes before seeing where it comes out of the aqueduct there. Any questions please send me a private message. Happy travels.

Posted by
508 posts

One other thing. Check your guide book for the market day in each the towns you want to visit. Adds a little spice and more culture to your travels and helps you get to know the locals.

Posted by
253 posts

First off, try to stay in Arles. It is centrally located, has a convenient train station and easy access to car rental and parking. It also, and I have no idea why, has some of the best restaurants in the south of France. As for sights, other than Avignon and Orange, I would go to L'Isle-Sur-La-Sorgue. Do some research on it and you will want to go there.

The suggestion to see the Pont du Gard is very true, but if you want to do something very "French" while there, and the weather is good, find your way to the river below. There is a swimming area right below the Pont du Gard, very safe and family oriented. Talk about impressive views of the Roman Aquaduct, plus you get to cool off in a most pleasant location.

Posted by
4 posts

don't forget the bullring in Arles and the Chateau neuf de Pape along the route. The Roman theatre in Orange is magnificent. There are Roman ruins all over the region. Peter Mayle penned "A year in Provence" while living in the Luberon. Makes a great audio book prior to your travels. We are going in June. If anyone is interested Cannes hosts an international realtor event in March each year. Cannes is also great for touring as well as St. Paul de Vence, a small, artist walled cars as the streets are too narrow.

Posted by
7124 posts

Avignon - Pont du Gard - St Remy de Provence - Les Baux de Provence - Arles - Nimes - Montpellier - Aigues Mortes - St Maries de la Mer - Marseille - Aix en Provence- Orange is a nice routing to drive in Provence.