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Provence Odyssey Itinerary 2017



September 8 - 15, 2017

Friday September  8   Rendez-vous at Gare TGV, Avignon  at 4pm. Drive to Uzès.  Welcome dinner at Maison Theodorit, our home for the week.

Saturday, September 9  Morning free to visit the 'grand' open air market in the Place aux Herbes.  Lunch* and afternoon are open to explore the town's historic past, from Roman times to the present.  A detailed map allows you to find your way through streets filled with charming shops and cafes. An informal cooking class precedes dinner.

Sunday, September 10  Morning drive to the Gallo-Roman town of Arles to see its newly restored Roman Ampitheatre, the Baths of Constantine and small museums.  You can stroll the banks of the Rhone, visit the site of Vincent van Gogh's Maison Jaune and the new Van Gogh Museum.  After a special mid-day lunch we drive back to Uzès, stopping at Mas des Tourelles in Beaucaire, a modern winery located on the excavated site of a Gallo-Roman cave.  We will compare ancient and modern winemaking methods and taste recent vintages with recreations of wine in the Roman style.  Dinner* is open in Uzes that evening.

Monday, September 11   We  trace the route of an engineering masterpiece: the Roman aqueduct that began in Uzès, and reached its full expression at the  Pont du Gard, a UNESCO world heritage site.  There will be time to walk the bridge and learn how it was constructed in the remarkable museum on the site.  Then on the aquaduct's final destination, the ancient Gallo-Roman city of Nîmes for a late lunch*.  This city is home to the best preserved Roman temple in France, the Maison Carré and Les Arenes, a Roman Ampitheatre where an audioguide will introduce you to gladiatorial spectacles in vivid detail.  We return to Uzès, for dinner in a local restaurant

Tuesday, September 12   Our day is devoted to understanding the meaning of  'terroir'.  We'll visit local producers of wine, olive oil and goat cheese, tour their operations and taste their products.  We will find lunch* in one of the small towns along our route. That evening we dine in a local restaurant.

Wednesday, September 13 The producers market in the Place aux Herbes is our morning destination.  Lunch* and early afternoon are open to continue exploring the town.  There's a cooking class in the late afternoon followed by dinner at home.

Thursday, September 14  We drive to Avignon for a visit to Les Halles and a morning cooking class and lunch in the restored 19th century kitchen of the elegant La Mirande Hotel, once an 18th hotel particulier.  A self-guided tour of the Palais des Papes, a UNESCO World Heritage site follows lunch.  Farewell supper at home in Uzes.
Friday, September 15   8AM departure for the Gare TGV in Avignon.
*A meal not covered in the price of the tour.