Day 1 Landed in Marseille excited to spend a special rendezvous with my oldest daughter Sadie who had a one week break before her finals and finishing up her study abroad program in Ireland. I love walking european cities and headed up the hill to visit Marseilles’s landmark overlooking the harbor Notre-Dame de la Garde
Day 2 Walked to the train station and took the TGV up to Avignon. After arriving I had a couple hours before Sadie’s train arrived to meet me from Paris. I hopped on the train from the Avignon TGV station to the town center (Centre-Ville) it was a short ride and only cost 1.60 euros. Avignon was my first experience walking through the walled villages and picturesque windy roads of Provence. The souvenir specialties of the area are an abundance of lavender, soaps and table linens. I put them together and purchased a purple tablecloth and walked over to see St. Benezet Bridge and Palace of the Popes. I was brimming with excitement and realized that my daughter was going to be arriving soon and hurried back to the train station. I couldn’t help to cry when I saw her get off the train. It always happens when a piece of your heart is away from you.
We chatted excitedly and picked up our rental car and were off to St.-Remy-de-Provence after we had the europcar worker switch our GPS to english. The GPS in the car was the best upgrade I ever purchased. We checked in to Mas des Tourterelles Chambres a lovely little B&B.
Day 3 Morning breakfast bread and more bread. Sugar covered bread, sourdough bread and sweet roll accompanied with a tangerine and fresh orange juice. Pont Du Gard boasts one of the worlds most beautiful monuments and is a UNESCO World heritage site. It is a perfectly preserved Roman aqueduct that supplied Nimes with running water throughout five centuries.
Next stop Arles a city that inspired Van Gogh when he left Paris in 1888 for Provence where he cranked out a masterpiece every few days here. Unfortunately none of the 200 painting are here but they have them posted at each of the sights of their inspiration. One being the Roman Arena.
Next we drove to Les Baux and tasted some fresh nougat which was much softer than what I remember of the packaged pieces I had tried as a kid. Beyond Les Baux on our drive back to St. Remy there are pull outs with great vistas and caves.
Day 4 We love markets and decided to wake up early to hit up the famed market day of I’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue. It was in full swing when we arrived and we got lost in the little streets full of treasures to buy, wear and eat. We stocked up on some fresh almonds, olives, cheese and of course baguettes. We bought baskets to carry all the goodies and had to buy matching scarfs. After several hours we headed back to the car and found a lovely shaded area to sit and have a picnic.
Next stop was Gordes voted one of the most beautiful hilltop villages in Provence. We enjoyed some more great shopping and scored some chic shoes.
Next visiting the Abbay de Senanque which is surrounded by lavender getting ready to bloom.
Lastly checking in to our hotel in Roussillon. The highlight of this town was the Ochre Cliffs
Day 5 In search of more picturesque poppy fields along our way to Aix-en-Provence.
Stopped at Chateau de la Canorgue Winery for a tasting along the way. We purchased 2 bottles of wine for 15 euros. We loved the Rose!
Lunch in Bonnieux with a view.
Day 6 It feels like big city driving after being in the country side. We drove to Cassis to get some information and a map for our hike in the Calanques.