Your 9.5-hour enchanting tour of Provence begins with coach pickup from Marseille Vieux Port (Old Port). Meet your guide in the morning and board the minivan for a short ride to Aix-en-Provence, a chic university town with a distinct bohemian vibe.
Your first stop is Cours Mirabeau, Aix’s main central boulevard dotted with rich architectural gems. Snap memorable photos of 17th- and 18th-century mansions, artistic fountains and tree-lined walkways as you make your way to Vieil Aix (Old Town). Explore the area’s warren of colorful streets, charming boutiques and squares. Afterwards, enjoy some free time to get your own lunch and perhaps visit the Atelier Paul Cézanne (own expense), the studio where the famous Post-Impressionist painter (and Aix-native) created pieces like Les Grandes Baigneuses.
Next, you’ll head to Cassis, a delightful Provençal fishing village and historic Roman maritime port. On the way, stop at Cape Canaille, situated on one of France’s highest sea bluffs, where can admire magnificent views of the Mediterranean and the Gulf of Cassis. Then head into town to wander around the lovely harbor and take a 45-minute sightseeing cruise (option) of the region’s three famous calanques, striking limestone rock formations that are called the ‘fjords of the French Riviera.’
An exciting sightseeing trip through Marseille marks the final leg of your tour. Enjoy the ride up to Notre-Dame de la Garde, a Neo-Byzantine Catholic basilica situated on city’s highest point. From here, marvel at the beauty of Marseille, the Mediterranean coastline and Chateau d’If, the island fortress featured in The Count of Monte Cristo. Stop by the 11th-century Abbey of St Victor before returning to Old Port, where your tour ends in early evening.