Saint Remy de Provence warm up ride
We meet at TGV train station in Avignon at 12:15pm for a 30 min. group shuttle ride to Saint Remy de Provence. Check in and meet the group at 1pm for an orientation meeting with your guides during our first lunch together. Then your guides will conduct a bike fitting for everyone, and you will set out on a warm up ride into the area. This short ride is meant to get you suited to your surroundings and the bike.
Les Beaux de Provence
Travel on quiet vineyard roads past cypress trees and fruit orchards with the background resembling a small version of the Alps. The picturesque, medieval village of Les Baux de Provence affords some of the best views of the region. Perched on the hillside, this town of natural cliffs, lush greenery and ruined castles are legendary. In the evening, we’ll sample wines from some of St. Remy’s premier local producers.
Avignon and the Palace of the Popes
Today we ride to the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Avignon and explore the town famous for the Palace of the Popes. In 1309 the city was chosen by Pope Clement V as his residence, and until 1377 was the seat of the Papacy instead of Rome. This caused a schism in the Catholic Church. Avignon belonged to the Papacy until 1791, when, during the disorder of the French Revolution, it was reincorporated with France.
Activity day: St. Remy de Provence and Van Gogh’s inspirational sites
On this day we enjoy the town of Saint Remy with a visit with our guide who will lead us through the Vincent Van Gogh’s inspirational nature sites. We will stop also by the ancient settlement of Gianum which dates back to 1st Century B.C. and we’ll learn more about this precious historical remnant. Today you can also simply relax and enjoy the pool or take an optional bike ride. Dinner will be back at the hotel, accompanied by an evening stroll around town to enjoy the Provencal summer night.
Abbaye de Frigolet
Today we wind through many quaint villages and stop at the St. Michele de Frigolet abbey for our picnic and cooking lesson with Mathieu, local chef and manager of the Abbey’s restaurant. Relax in the beautiful and quiet atmosphere of the Abbaye. The religious community at Saint-Michel de Frigolet belongs to the Order of the Canons Regular of Prémontré. After this austere experience, tonight you will enjoy dinner with your family on your own exploring Saint Remy and some Provencal delicacies: ask the guides for suggestions.
Today we ride to Arles that has important remains of Roman times, and we’ll discover this beautiful town which has been listed as World Heritage Site since 1981. In the afternoon we’ll go back to the hotel to enjoy an aperitif before our final dinner and celebrate the conclusion of a wonderful tour together.
After breakfast, there will be a group shuttle at 9:00am to the TGV train station in Avignon where you can catch a train to other cities in France. This shuttle will take about 30 min, so please make your plans accordingly.