9 June
Our journey out of the world of the Cathars and into the soul of Provence begins with a visit to the lovely village of Minerve, a significant site in the history of the Cathars. We will have dinner and spend the night at the Relais du Val d’Orbieu, in the heart of the Corbières vineyards.

10 June
Our day begins with a visit to Uzès, a delightful town on the border between Languedoc and the Rhône Valley, where we will explore its winding, medieval streets and open air market, and have lunch. We then visit Avignon, the papal seat during the suppression of the Knights Templar, and a UNESCO World Heritage site. We conclude our day in the picturesque town of St. Rémy de Provence, where will have a free evening and spend our overnight.

11 June
We travel deeper into beauty of Provence with a visit to a biodynamic vineyard, located on a historic site where the fruit of the vine has been cultivated since the fourth century BC.  We then move on to Arles, a powerful center of classical civilization, where the Roman presence still abounds. Finally, we end our day with a drive into the Camargue, a unique natural region of meandering waterways, marshes and pine forests, wild horses, black bulls and flamingos, where we will have dinner and spend the following two nights.

12 June
Our morning begins with a boat trip into the heart of la Camargue, from the mouth of the Petit Rhône to the Bac du Sauvage, stopping along the way to explore a herd of the Camargue’s famous white horses. We will have lunch in a  one-star camarguais restaurant featuring local and organic agriculture. Our afternoon will be available for either a guided hike or horseback ride through the Camargue, as well as for a walking tour of the village of Saintes Maries de la Mer, the point of departure for the Holy Land for French crusaders and today a center of major significance for Gypsy culture. Dinner and overnight will be at our hotel.

13 June
We travel next to Aix en Provence, home of the painter Paul Cézanne.  Our walking tour will take us through the leafy boulevards, abundant fountains and public squares of this historic and elegant city. We will have lunch together and take the afternoon to visit Cézanne’s beloved Mont Ste. Victoire, where a pedestrian walk allows us to wander along paths peppered with old stone walls. We will have a free evening in Aix, and spend the following two nights at the Hotel Aquabella, whose spa is built atop the old Roman baths and Aix’s  underground thermal springs.

14 June
The last day of our journey takes us into the dramatically mountainous region to the east of the Rhône Valley, and in the landscapes for which Provence is most famous. We start by visiting the lavender fields of Valensole, taking our lunch at a lavender farm. Our afternoon is spent on a boat trip through the turquoise-green waters and wondrous canyons of the Gorges du Verdon, with its rich archeological heritage, an opportunity to experience the silence and spirit of this unique place. We return to Aix for a farewell dinner together.

15 June
Our program concludes after breakfast. Participants will be able to access the airport shuttle to the Marseilles Provence Airport for departures after 12:30pm.