Roman monuments, Vincent Van Gogh, and an olive oil tasting - this tour has it all!
A relaxing one hour drive will bring you to Arles, a former major Roman city dating back to the 7th century BC. Arles is a good example of the adaptation of an ancient city to medieval European civilization. It has some impressive Roman monuments, of which the earliest – the arena, the Roman theatre and the cryptoporticus (subterranean galleries) – date back to the 1st century B.C. Leter Arles once again became one of the most attractive cities in the Mediterranean. Within the city walls, Saint-Trophime, with its cloister, is one of Provence's major Romanesque monuments. This is a city that is best seen walking but it is an easy walk through town and can be done at your own pace.
Arles is also closely associated with the name Vincent Van Gogh, who arrived there in 1888 and completed nearly 300 paintings during his stay, including "Evening Café," "Hospital Garden," and "the Bridge Langlois." You will get a chance to view the sites of many of his most famous paintings. It was also here that he cut off a piece of his ear on the evening of the 24th of December, 1888.
After some free time and lunch (on your own), you and your guide will head back to the car, where you will drive through the landscape of the Alpilles, complete with vines and olive trees, to one of the numerous olive estates. This chain of limestone hills running east-west is where bauxite was first discovered and named after the village of Baux-de-Provence. The Alpilles are an extension of the Luberon mountains, which stretch out to the east.
Although the ridge along the top seems white and barren, the Alpilles have been rich in almonds, apricot, olives and grain since the middle ages. The steep slopes were terraced, and the trees and grains were planted because of their adaptability to the arid conditions. End your day with an olive oil tasting, before heading back to Marseille.
- Entrance fees to monuments are not included in this tour. Most are visible from the outside, but you can also see the inside if you wish.
- You must be comfortable walking on flat though uneven surfaces.
- Wear comfortable shoes, and don't forget your camera!
- Please keep in mind that the order of this tour is approximate. Your guide will adapt to the rhythms and interests of your group, so please let her know of any special questions or interests that you may have.
Please note that on Sundays many shops are closed.
Days offered: 7 days a week