I just returned from the RS Loire/South of France tour about one week ago. I have a few things you may want to take note of for your tour, since this won't be included/published in the tour evaluation questions page.
1). Canoeing: if you go in the Spring/Summer/early Fall, you will have a good chance to go canoeing. However, what wasn't mentioned in the tour preparation documents was that you should bring a change of clothes specifically for this activity. Although it should have occurred to me beforehand, it didn't so I wanted to let you all know. Canoeing was fit in between two small village stops in the Dordogne region. People obviously wanted to be dressed appropriately for walking around the town. Then they got in the canoes but every single member who canoed said their butts got wet (from dripping canoe paddles, etc.). But, then, they had to get out of the canoes and go for a quick visit to a viewpoint/chateau above the town and get back on the bus, still wet. Most people who had gone canoeing had brought a change of clothes, but a few people hadn't and they had to stand around in wet clothes until we got back to the hotel.
2) The Pont du Gard : the very top has been opened for people to walk across! This is brand new. Our tour guide told us the top (which is covered) has been closed for a long time to visitors. However, you can walk up either side of the aqueduct for great views. As we were coming back down, there was a guide at the opening who let us walk across for 4 euro. We mentioned to the guide that we were told it had been closed and she said they just reopened it on July 7th. It takes no more than 10 minutes and as I said, almost all of it has a top, so there's not much to see, but it was fun anyways.
3). There seemed to be a little less walking/somewhat less strenuous on this tour compared to the others I've taken. Other tour members had the same thought. One member brought his GPS so I'm waiting for his data to confirm this. :)
4) A few hotels had a spa plus with the Mediterranean Sea, you may want to bring a swimsuit. I didn't end up partaking, but some people did. In Nice, there are rocks and then the drop off is quick. Getting into the water isn't hard but some people found the angle tough to crawl back up because the rocks were swirling around them -go with the tide/waves!
5) The evening light show in Chartres is really cool! However, it doesn't start until sundown (around 10:30 in the mid-summer) so you may want to consider taking a quick nap and then going out to see all the buildings (they go for about 2 hours, until 12:30 am) if you are an early-to-bed person.
6) In Arles, The Van Gogh Foundation actually has 9 Van Gogh paintings right now (they usually don't have any).. I think this ends in August 2014 but it was a fun little museum to visit.
7). The weather was unpredictable. For instance in Chartres, it would be sunny, then start sprinkling 20 minutes later then downpour for 5 minutes, then get sunny again. This would repeat about 8-10 times during the afternoon. I don't know if this is typical or not, but you may want to bring a small umbrella or lightweight rain jacket. I will say overall we had great weather!
If I think of anything else, I will let you know.