Rolling vineyards, lush green olive groves, scented pine forests, and endless lavender fields. That is what Provence are made of.
Obviously the first language is French, but within the tourist areas, hotels and restaurants, they do speak English.
However try and make the effort to learn a few basic words in French like:
Provence is home to the famous French Riviera, and it is a part of the official administrative region of Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur. It includes the départements of Var, Bouches-du-Rhônes, Alpes-de-Haute-Provence and parts of Alpes-Maritimes and Vaucluse.
Marseille (the 2nd biggest city in France) is the biggest city in Provence, and it borders the stunning French Riviera. It is also the most popular city in Provence for travelers from all over the world.
So the first thing you must see and experience while you’re in Provence, is the lavender fields. With the right timing, you can get the most beautiful photos of the lavender fields early morning or late afternoon at sunset. (This might be the perfect Instagram photo spot.)
While visiting Valensole or Sault make sure to support the local farmers by buying a bunch of lavender, some soap or essential oil. After all the smell is simply devine and the soap and essential oil is the perfect travel souvenir or gift to take home.
You might find the streets of Aix en Provence a bit difficult to navigate if you’re a first time visitor. However, the whole point is to get lost! 🙂
Take your time and wander the winding streets. Enjoy the shopping and little markets with fabulous fresh fruit, etc.. and stop to enjoy a cup of coffee at each square you come upon. It is all about the experience, the calmness, enjoying the moment. Don’t stress. See it as an opportunity to discover what locals do.
We would definitely recommend renting a car in Provence because visiting this beautiful part of France is all about the stunning country roads and hilltop towns.
It is definitely also one of the most picture-perfect road trip destinations in the world.
Discovering the country villages and stopping along the way for the perfect photo of Provence.
One of the incredible local sites, just outside of Provence in Occitanie, is the Pont du Gard. This is an ancient Roman aqueduct and there is a very nice museum you can visit as well, which is all about the construction of the aqueduct.
Provence is one of the most beautiful regions in France. It has beauty in overload and it is definitely worth a visit. You’ll have the opportunity to explore beautiful places like:
Keeping in mind that Provence is a region in France not a city or tiny country village, you need at least 9 days to explore a few of the best and prettiest places. But a two week road trip is the ideal time to spend in this lovely region.
The best option is to fly in to Nice Airport (Code: NCE). There are easy access into the city of Nice which is just eight kilometers away. Regular bus departures, connecting with a regional train service and bus shuttles every 20 minutes throughout the day. You can easily pick up your car rental, which you can book before you go.
The region Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur has a Mediterranean climate. The summers are hot and dry, and the temperature is mild in the winter.
May through October are the hot summer months. With July and August reaching the highest temperatures.
Day 1 and 2: Fly in to Nice. Spend a day by doing a self-guided walk and getting to know the local cuisine.
Day 3 and 4: Do day trips to: Monaco, Villefranche-sur-Mer, Vence, St-Paul-de-Vence and/or Grasse.
Day 5 and 6: Travel to Antibe (during the weekends you can spend the day exploring the markets and enjoying the cafes.) Overnight here and spend a day doing a walk about.
Day 7 and 8: Next stop Cannes. And from Cannes you can travel to Marseille. Maybe if you have your own car stop at Saint Tropez and Toulon along the way.
Day 9: Day trip via Isle-sur-la-Sorgue to Avignon
Day 10: Day trip to see Pont du Gard and spend some extra time in Avignon.
Day 11: From Avignon make your way back via Arles to Marseille – spending the night and exploring Cassis from here or on your way back to Nice.
Travel Tips: Give yourself extra time to explore, maybe just spend a lazy day at your hotel, or to do some walkabouts on your own. If you spend the money to book a lovely place (with a view), why not take the time to enjoy your stay… Book day trips or short tours with the links below – saving you the worries and there is no need to stand in long lines for tickets:
Book ahead, skip the lines and save:
You might also want to read more about Antibes on the beautiful French Riviera: Read more…