Hidden Provence

October 1 - 8, 2017

Come along with Tour de Forks to experience and explore the essence of Haute Provence in the Var, an untouristed part of Provence with spectacular scenery. This is a journey about breathing in your surroundings…the places, the people, meeting the chefs, touring their kitchens and uncovering their passion for food and wine. Discover the French art de vivre - not siteseeing or touring - it’s an uncommon epicurean adventure.

Day 1: October 1

Our journey begins in an elegant country home filled with the esprit de Provence. Located a short walking distance from the vibrant spa and market town of Aix, it’s a haven of peace. Stroll in a gorgeous rose garden surrounded by 100 year old chestnut trees, where Cezanne found inspiration. You’ll be welcomed by our local guide and meet your traveling companions with a glass of champagne, followed by a welcome dinner in a gastronomic restaurant.

Day 2: October 2

Breakfast at the hotel.
Wander around town before savoring a lunch of local products. In the afternoon, our local guide takes us through this town of marvelous stately mansions and fountains of healing water. Your evening is free to enjoy the nightlife of Aix.

Day 3: October 3

Breakfast at your hotel.
After breakfast at the hotel, depart for a private tour of L’Occitane factory, where products are developed with essential oils and natural fragrances. We’ll go behind the scenes and stroll through the Mediterranean garden of sustainable ingredients used in making their products. Enjoy a discount in the boutique! Scents of lavender, wild flowers and wild herbs follow us to our next stop at a well -known perfume university. Our perfume expert will show you how to make your own scent with all the indigenous flora of the region…a perfect and unique souvenir!

Day 4: October 4

Breakfast at your hotel.
The terrain and isolation of France’s most spectacular natural phenomen beckons as we visit the Gorges de Verdon. After discovering the Gorges, weather permitting, sit with a view over the canyon with a glass of rosé and a picnic lunch. Tonight stay at the childhood home of a famous chef, who has won several James Beard awards for his ground-breaking cuisine.

Day 5: October 5

Breakfast at your hotel.
Into the hinterland of Provence you’ll find vast forests, vineyards and old villages. Home tonight is a chateau surrounded by over 1,200 acres of vines and olive trees. Before a cooking class with the chef, a wine expert gives a cellar tour of the highly acclaimed wines. The piece de resistance: cocktails by the fireplace before indulging in your own culinary creations.

Day 6: October 6

Breakfast at your hotel.
After visiting a few off-the-beaten path villages and market towns, our friends Nadia and Serge welcome us to their domaine. Go from earth to glass with a visit of the wine cellar and a tour of the olive oil mill, to learn the art of tasting olive oil. Rest tonight in a countryside setting with a view of the spectacular Mount Saint Victoire, that Cezanne so loved to paint.

Day 7: October 7

Breakfast at your hotel.
Saturday is market day in Aix en Provence – and what a market it is! So many Provencal products to taste, fabrics to touch, lavender and soaps to take home. If you’re adventurous, enjoy an afternoon hike around Mount Sainte Victoire. Or perhaps a spa treatment at the hotel. Savor the esprit of Provence with a gastronomic farewell dinner offered by the hotel’s Michelin starred chef. Meet Chef Dandine and tour his kitchen.

Day 8: October 8

Breakfast at your hotel.
Time to say au revoir! Transfers to TGV station, or to Marseille Airport

Le Pigonnet
Bastide de Moustiers
Chateau de Berne
Les Lodges de Saint Victoire