Bonjour Provence

Provence is a land of fresh, delectable produce, inviting locals, and a relaxing lifestyle. All of these will be yours to enjoy during your stay in a private villa in the charming town of Maussane-les-Alpilles. From Maussane the rest of Provence is yours to explore: the famed market of Isle-sur-la-Sorgue, the historical cities of Avignon and Cassis, the charming villages of St. Remy-de-Provence, Gordes, and Bonnieux. You will taste the delectable wines of Provence and enjoy its amazing, fresh cuisine during hands-on cooking lessons and dinners prepared by your own private chef, as well as out at local restaurants.


Latest Review

We gave this trip 5 stars
Jayne & Stephen
Virginia
Trip taken September 2017
Bonjour Provence was an absolutely delightful tour! Every detail was thoughtfully planned, and our local contact, Amelie Chouanneau, was extremely professional and one of the best tour guides we have ever encountered. Her attention to detail is to be commended. Our cooking workshops were educational and entertaining. Both Chef Yvan Cadiou and Chef Pascal Barnouin made us feel at home in their kitchens. We greatly appreciated their kindness and patience, and the food we prepared was simply divine! Our daily trips to many of the local villages gave us a good feel for the Provençal history and culture. We highly recommend Mas de Baux Arts in Maussane les Alpilles as a place to stay when in Provence. It is very comfortable, has lovely gardens, interesting art and decor, and is conveniently located for exploring this beautiful part of France. This was our first trip with The International Kitchen. It went beyond our expectations, and we will certainly check their offerings when planning our next trip. If you love food and travel, as we do, this tour was the perfect combination of both.

Trip Details

Your 3 cooking classes will be led by popular local chef Yvan, as well as by Chef John, who will lead a cooking class in Avignon, and private chefs Anne Chalier and Veronique Boiron. The hands-on classes will be held in the villa’s fully equipped kitchen and in Avignon, and will feature the best of Provencal cuisine, from the freshest seasonal produce, to its seafood, foie gras, and truffles.


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Itinerary

Welcome to your Provence cooking vacation

Day One

Order of activities subject to change depending on season and specific dates booked.

  • Arrival at Avignon TGV station and transfer to your accommodations. Time to settle in and rest.
  • This evening, enjoy a welcome aperitif and your first Provencal dinner, prepared by your private chef at the villa. (Or, for groups of 2-3, dinner out at a local restaurant.)
  • Overnight.

Cheese at market


Day Two

  • After breakfast, head to the town of Isle sur la Sorgue, which is famous for its Sunday antiques market. The town is known as the “Venice of Provence” because of its many canals, as it is built on five branches of the Sorgues River. You will have time to explore this charming town.
  • Lunch on your own in Isle sur la Sorgue (your driver can make suggestions).
  • Transfer back to your accommodations, with time for a rest or a swim (in season).
  • This afternoon, enjoy a cooking class with Chef Cadiou, a celebrity cook, in which you will prepare a wonderful French meal.
  • Dinner to follow based on your efforts.
  • Overnight.

The village at Roussillon


Day Three

  • Breakfast, then depart for an excursion to the hilltop villages of Gordes and Bonnieux and the famed ochre “Red Canyon” of Roussillon. This is the land of Peter Mayle’s famed Year in Provence!
  • Enjoy an outdoor picnic, perhaps in a lavender field (in season). Or, in case of bad weather, lunch in a local restaurant.
  • Return to Maussane and dinner tonight at the villa (groups of 4 or more), or at one of the town’s many wonderful restaurants (groups of 2-3).
  • Overnight.

Palais des Papes in Avignon


Day Four

  • Breakfast and depart for Avignon. You will tour the indoor market with chef John, who will explain the local specialties to you before taking you back for a hands-on cooking class.
  • Lunch to follow based on your efforts.
  • Free time to explore Avignon on your own, perhaps with a trip to the famed “Pont d’Avignon,” or the “Palais des Papes.”
  • Stop on your way back to the villa for a wine tasting of Provencal wines.
  • Dinner tonight on your own.
  • Overnight.

Market in Provence


Day Five

  • Breakfast and depart for St. Remy de Provence, a delightful village that hosts a lively open-air market every Wednesday. St. Remy has inspired writers, musicians, and painters for centures. Enjoy a 90-minute guided tour of the market, and then time to explore the market and shop for everything from food products to linens, handicrafts, clothing, etc. Enjoy lunch on your own, perhaps a picnic based on the items you purchase at the market!
  • In the afternoon, stop at a local olive oil mill for a tasting of this Provencal staple.
  • On your return to Maussane, stop at an old quarry that has been transformed into a a magnificent gallery in which master works of art are projected onto the giant limestone walls surrounding you.
  • Transfer back to your villa for your evening cooking class led by private chefs Anne and Veronique. Dinner to follow.
  • Overnight.

The port of Cassis


Day Six

  • After breakfast, depart for the village of Cassis on the French Riviera. The ancient fishing village is also a well-known vacation spot. Have a sea food lunch at the old port before embarking on a boat to explore the breathtaking white “Calanques,” the French Mediterranean’s version of fjords.
  • Enjoy free time to explore on your own.
  • Transfer to Maussane for a farewell dinner at the villa (groups of 4 or more), or at a local restaurant (groups of 2-3).
  • Overnight.

Provence cheese at market


Day Seven

  • Breakfast and group transfer to the Avignon TGV station.

Trip Details

Included in the 6-Night Trip

Accommodations

6 nights accommodations in double or double twin room

Food & Beverages

  • Daily breakfast
  • 2 lunches out (beverages not included)
  • 1 lunch and 2 dinners following the cooking classes (wine included)
  • 3 dinners either at a local restaurant or at the villa, depending on the size of the party (beverages not included)

Classes & Instructors

Your 3 cooking classes will be led by popular local chef Yvan, as well as by Chef John, who will lead a cooking class in Avignon, and private chefs Anne Chalier and Veronique Boiron. The hands-on classes will be held in the villa’s fully equipped kitchen and in Avignon, and will feature the best of Provencal cuisine, from the freshest seasonal produce, to its seafood, foie gras, and truffles.

Excursions

  • Market visits in Isle sur la Sorgue, St. Remy, and Avignon
  • Visits of olive farm and winery (with tastings)
  • Excursion to the hilltop villages of Gordes, Bonnieux, and Roussillon
  • Visit of Avignon (with time to explore on your own)
  • Visit of old quarry turned into image gallery
  • Excursion to Cassis

Transfer Details

  • Roundtrip transfers from/to the Avignon TGV station. (Transfers from Marseille can be arranged at an additional cost of US$80 per person each way.)

Miscellaneous

  • Transportation and English-speaking guide for excursions

Accommodation Information

Your home in Provence will be a private villa loving restored by the owners into a deluxe residence. There are 2 suites and 3 large bedrooms, all en suite, each with air conditioning and all expected amenities. One of the rooms can be a double twin (two-bedded) room. The villa also boasts exquisite decor and art, a large living room, piano lounge, fully equipped kitchen, heated swimming pool (in season), terrace, and exceptional location in the middle of the village of Maussane. Although not staffed like a hotel, there is staff that comes in daily to prepare breakfast, tidy the rooms, and change the linens on request.

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Pricing & Tour Dates

Looking for tour date information?


High Season Pricing:
May through September

6-night Program
US$4690 per person based on double occupancy

    30% deposit due to confirm booking.
    Balance payment due 60 days prior to tour start date. Questions? Please contact us!

    Single occupancy pricing: please inquire.

    Transfers from Avignon included. Transfers from Marseille are an additional US$80 per person each way.

    Low Season Pricing:
    October through April

    6-night Program
    US$4490 per person based on double occupancy

      30% deposit due to confirm booking.
      Balance payment due 60 days prior to tour start date. Questions? Please contact us!


      Tour Dates

      Available the following weeks for a minimum of 2 people. Itinerary generally starts on Saturday.

      2019
      July 27-August 2
      August 3-9
      August 10-16
      August 17-23
      August 24-30
      August 31-September 6
      September 7-13
      September 14-20
      September 21-27
      September 28-October 4
      October 5-11
      October 12-18
      October 19-25
      October 26-November 1
      November 2-8
      November 9-15
      November 16-22
      November 23-29
      November 30-December 6
      December 7-13
      December 14-20

      2020
      January 4-10
      January 11-17
      January 18-24
      January 25-31
      February 1-7
      February 8-14
      February 15-21
      February 22-28
      February 29-March 6
      March 7-13
      March 14-20
      March 21-27
      March 28-April 3
      April 4-10
      April 11-17
      April 18-24
      April 25-May 1
      May 2-8
      May 9-15
      May 16-22
      May 23-29
      May 30-June 5
      June 6-12
      June 13-19
      June 20-26
      June 27-July 3
      July 4-10
      July 11-17
      July 18-24
      July 25-31
      August 1-7
      August 8-14
      August 15-21
      August 22-28
      August 29-September 4
      September 5-11
      September 12-18
      September 19-25
      September 26-October 2
      October 3-9
      October 10-16
      October 17-23
      October 24-30
      October 31-November 6
      November 7-13
      November 14-20
      November 21-27
      November 28-December 4
      December 5-11
      December 12-18

      Pricing & Dates

      Class Pricing

      Reviews

      We gave this trip 5 stars
      Jayne & Stephen
      Virginia
      Trip taken September 2017
      Bonjour Provence was an absolutely delightful tour! Every detail was thoughtfully planned, and our local contact, Amelie Chouanneau, was extremely professional and one of the best tour guides we have ever encountered. Her attention to detail is to be commended. Our cooking workshops were educational and entertaining. Both Chef Yvan Cadiou and Chef Pascal Barnouin made us feel at home in their kitchens. We greatly appreciated their kindness and patience, and the food we prepared was simply divine! Our daily trips to many of the local villages gave us a good feel for the Provençal history and culture. We highly recommend Mas de Baux Arts in Maussane les Alpilles as a place to stay when in Provence. It is very comfortable, has lovely gardens, interesting art and decor, and is conveniently located for exploring this beautiful part of France. This was our first trip with The International Kitchen. It went beyond our expectations, and we will certainly check their offerings when planning our next trip. If you love food and travel, as we do, this tour was the perfect combination of both.
      We gave this trip 5 stars
      Linda & Christopher
      Ontario
      Trip taken September 2016
      The Provencal culinary tour included an interesting variety of experiences. It was well planned. The drivers and guide were on time, fun and knowledgeable. We went from markets, to restaurants, mountains to the sea town of Cassis. The cooking classes too were fun and informative, each one very different. One class in an old French house with an artist and chef, another in the market of Avignon and the third with two jolly sisters and large amounts of foie gras and truffles. The picnic in the lavender field was lovely and the house in Massane was comfortable, with a nice pool, important on hot summer days and good air conditioning. The host was friendly and helpful. More bath towels and toilet paper would have been nice. The breakfasts were lovely with croissants and breads and fresh fruits and home made jam. It was a wonderful trip!