Insider's Guide to Aix-en-Provence

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5 star rating: Highly Recommended 3 Reviews

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  • Location: Aix-en-Provence, France
  • Duration:  9 hours (approx.)
Follow the footsteps of Vincent van Gogh, see Roman monuments and visit one of Provence’s best open-air markets on this action-packed day trip from Aix-en-Provence! First stop is St Rémy de Provence, for a market visit and a look at St Paul de Mausole (where Van Gogh stayed after cutting off his ear). Relax in the cliff-top village of Les Baux de Provence, and then enjoy a walking tour in the UNESCO-listed town of Arles. Learn about Van Gogh’s life in town, while seeing Roman ruins like Arles Amphitheatre!

Highlights

  • Van Goth-themed day trip from Aix-en-Provence
  • Discover the Provencal towns where Vincent van Gogh lived: St Rémy de Provence and Arles
  • Browse the wares of St Rémy’s open-air market and admire monuments like St Paul de Mausole
  • Spend time at leisure in Les Baux de Provence and marvel at its sweeping views over the Provencal countryside
  • See the yellow café from Van Gogh’s painting The Café Terrace in the UNESCO-listed town of Arles

What You Can Expect

Provence Day Trip from Aix-en-Provence: On the Trail of Van Gogh

Provence Day Trip from Aix-en-Provence: On the Trail of Van Gogh

Leave central Aix-en-Provence and travel northwest by air-conditioned minibus through the scenic Provencal countryside to the northern slopes of the Alpilles mountain range. Your destination is the pretty village of St Rémy de Provence; once a walled Roman town, it is now a thriving market village popular with locals and visitors alike.

Spend time here at leisure, doing whatever you please. Perhaps visit its picturesque open-air market (one of the region’s finest), or stroll to finding St Rémy’s best monuments, such as St Paul de Mausole. This gorgeous Romanesque monastery was formerly a psychiatric hospital that treated St Rémy’s most famous ex-resident -- Vincent van Gogh -- when he cut off his ear. Entrance fees to any monuments are at your own expense.

Continue your tour by minibus to the medieval cliff-top village of Les Baux de Provence to admire its postcard-perfect views and enjoy lunch at leisure (own expense). If time permits, take a wander around the village’s lovely cobblestone streets to soak up its historic charm.

Meet your guide at the pre-arranged time, and travel to Arles -- an ancient city that’s made its way onto the UNESCO World Heritage list in recognition of its beautifully preserved Roman monuments. Like St Rémy, Arles was once home to Vincent van Gogh, and you’ll follow in his footsteps on a walking tour of the town. As you learn about Van Gogh’s life in the city, watch out for the places that inspired the artist’s works, like Café Van Gogh in Forum Square. The distinctive yellow-fronted café is said to be the building in Van Gogh’s acclaimed The Café Terrace painting.

Marvel at Arles’ Roman monuments, too, including the ruins of Arles Amphitheater and the city’s Roman Theater. Pass St-Trophime church, admiring its carved 12th-century doorway, and then return to your minibus for the journey back to Aix-en-Provence. Your tour finishes at the start point in the later afternoon.

Customer Reviews

5 star rating: Highly Recommended June 2015

Excellent. Very good info.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended June 2015

The tour was great! Lea was a fantastic guide. I highly recommend it.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended June 2014

Lovely trip to Arles, Les Baux and St Remy. Arles has a rich Roman history as well as being a city that inspired Van Gogh (café and gardens) - all pointed out with great knowledge by our guide Florence. We were also lucky that there was a small exhibit of original Van Gogh on display in Arles.The second stop was Les Baux- a beautiful small village in the Alpilles (little alps). Florence took us to lookout point over the city that was breathtaking. We had free time to walk around the village and do some shopping! The last stop was St Remy. Our guide pointed out the mountain just outside St Remy that inspired Van Gogh. Also just outside the town is the sanatorium that Van Gogh stayed and where he painted a great deal of art. You can choose to visit or go direct to St Remy. The town of St Remy is not as interesting as Les Baux; however, there were many local artisans and we bought a painting there. Overall a very pleasant day!

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Tour code: 5849BAUXDEPROVENCE

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