Christmas market and truffle tour
Christmas market and truffle tour in Provence
The magic of a Christmas market and truffle tour
A cultural evasion this holiday season to divert your senses to the extraordinary pleasures of Provence during the holidays
- Black winter truffle
- Fine wines from the Ventoux, Cotes-du-Rhone, Chateauneuf-du-Pape
- Fine dining and local specialities only found during the holiday traditions
- Cozy fireplaces and spa time
- A tour to relax and discover the sounds, sites and senses of a Christmas in Provence
December 16 – 22, 2016
Small Group Christmas Market and Truffle Tour (8 max) – 6 nights, 7 days
Price – $2,727 per person based on double occupancy – Single Supplement add $360
Avignon TGV pick-up at 2pm.
Our Christmas market and truffle tour will start with a short drive from the train station to the heart of Avignon for a historical walking tour of Avignon. During our tour we will enjoy the magnificent Hotel Mirande and it’s 18th century interior for a gourmet snack & tea time (Mirande is a luxury hotel on the backside of the Popes’ Palace).
We will arrive at our B&B in the Ventoux region (a 45 minute drive from Avignon) around 6pm. At 7 we will mingle around the fireplace in the common room that was once used as the chapel for the 12th century priory (our B&B was formerly a 12 century priory). Dinner served at 7:30 pm in the chapel room next to the fireplace.
After a leisurely breakfast with fresh croissants and French press coffee (among other local specialities), we will venture to Richerenches for the truffle market. There are two parts to this unique market; one for the common person coming to make some common purchases, the other for the professional truffle buyer coming to make some deals and furnish his restaurant with the best truffles in Provence. We will be sure to experience both parts for cultural immersing. Richerenches is also a beautiful medieval village that you will enjoy roaming and photographing. Lunch in the village.
After lunch, our wine guide, Philip (the owner of our B&B) will meet us at our first winery tour near the village Seguret (village rated as one of the most beautiful in France). and tasting. With his contacts, we have the privilege of getting to know the wine makers; their passion, story and techniques.Dinner at the B&B
Today we start with a little pampering – it’s spa morning. Our B&B is just minutes away from the Ventoux spa where a 50 minute massage is scheduled for you and time to enjoy the heated indoor swimming pool, sauna and steam room.
Lunch will be back at the B&B with time for a siesta or a country walk if you should be feeling rejuvenated.
The afternoon will be spent with Philip, our wine guide, who will escort us to the renowned region of Chateauneuf-du-Pape for two winery visits. We will also see the the Popes’s Castle used as a second residency when they reigned in Avignon during the 1300’s.Dinner at the B&B
From country to city we go. Today we leave the Ventoux region for Aix-en-Provence stopping on the way in the magnificent region known as the South Luberon. By 11:30 we will be in Lourmarin -village rated as one of the most beautiful in France – for a historical walking tour and a light lunch (lunch on your own) before embarking on our truffle hunt.
Our exploratory walk thru the truffle oaks with the truffle hunting dog, as well as a walk thru the olive groves and vineyards will be topped off with gourmet truffle tasting and champagne. By the way, the black winter truffle is a rare treat for many people in the world – no comparison to the summer truffle.
By 5pm we should be settling into Aix-en-Provence just as the Christmas lights begin to glow and light up our night. You have the early evening to roam the city as you wish until we meet up for a drink together on the Cours Mirabeau at the popular and historic brasserie, Les Deux Garçons. Dinner together at nearby restaurant.
This morning we meet up with Gilles, our local chef, at 10 am in Marseille to go through the fish market as well as the fruit and vegetable market. With groceries in hand we’ll head to his family house near the port for our Christmas in Provence cooking lesson.
We will be back in Aix around 4pm for you to explore Aix some more. Perhaps you’ll enjoy walking in the steps of Cezanne or photographing the Renaissance facades. Maybe you’ll be in the mood for boutique shopping or a Museum visit. The choice is yours – your guide will lead you in the right direction.
Dinner this evening is on your own (with guidance from your guide to the best restaurant for you).
Wednesday 21stOur last day of a Christmas in Provence will be in Arles. Arles is particularly festive for the holiday season. Christmas street shows will entertain us as we pass from one Roman monument to another. Lunch will be at my favourite Arlesian restaurant next to the fireplace. Dinner in Aix together to say our farewells and cheers to a lovely Christmas tour in Provence.
Transfers to Avignon TGV train station or Marseille airport in the morning after breakfast.