||Provence offers unparalleled variety along the Mediterranean. Except for the unmistakeable French language, you will think you are visiting at least six different countries. And, if you include Marseilles, make it dozens!
Starting in Avignon serves up an intense Roman history from Pont du Gard to Nimes to the Alpes, not to be confused with the Alps on the eastern border of France. The Van Gogh countryside to the south and west – Arles, Rousillon, Saintes-Maries-sur-la-Mer – is fragrant with lavender, peaches, cherries, sunflowers and olives. Orchards and vineyards dominate the landscape from Menerbes to the rolling fields of the Camargue.
Heading east, do not skip Marseilles. This old port mixes cultures and flavors from North Africa, Europe and Asia in one pulsating town, and there is no better place to learn the art of bouillabaisse than a grandmother’s kitchen in the old port.
Moving eastward still, one is welcomed to Aix by Cezanne, Matisse and Picasso. Further eastward still, are trendy Cannes, charming St Paul de Vence and stylish Nice. Prepare your palate for freshly grilled seafood, chilled roses and the delicate whiff of flowers wafting in the breezes from the fields in Grasse.
Choose your hotel carefully, as you will want to leave your car in the garage to truly experience the rich offerings of Promenade de la Croisette, let alone, Cote d’Azur!