HOTEL BARGES / LE PHéNICIEN
Transfer from a defined picking point to Le Phénicien which is moored close to the Avignon ramparts. It is time for a little nap or a free visit of the city. Our first dinner on board gives an indication of the high standard of cuisine that will be served during the cruise and the accompanying wines have been specially chosen from top-notch local vineyards.
History and wines are our centers of interest today. We first take a guided tour to learn about the religious and artistic importance of the city’s prestigious past with the palace of the Popes visit. Then a first nice lunch cruise takes us closer to one of the best cellars of Châteauneuf-du-Pape where we have a guided visit followed by a wine tasting. This evening we sail to Villeneuve lès Avignon where we will stay overnight. The wines tasted in the morning are back on the table at dinner!
This morning the gigantic Roman aqueduct “Le Pont du Gard”, its recently made-up site and its modern museum are waiting for you. After this intriguing guided visit we get back to the barge and sail down to Vallabrègues a quiet and charming little port where it is good to rest, have a bike ride or play the pétanque under the plane trees.
Spots of legend are many in the surroundings and after breakfast, we will visit the charming mediaeval village of Les Baux de Provence and take some time to shop around!
Back to the barge we pass through the huge 36 feet high lock of Beaucaire and sail down to Arles, the open-air Museum of Provence.
Our guided visit in Arles this morning will delve deep into antiquity and, at the same time, unravel the joys and despair of Van Gogh who painted 300 canvases during his year here in 1888.
The most impressive navigation is for today heading for the Camargue! We cruise the Rhône river, the petit Rhône and the canal to reach the quiet and typical village of Gallician.
For our last day of excursion, what would you say about a nice trip to visit the wild Camargue? There we reach a manade, a typical ranch, where the gardians à cheval, the local authentic cowboys, show us how they tend the herds of bulls on their superb white horses. Our final destination is Aigues-Mortes, a 14th century walled city rising from a flat landscape from which St Louis set sail on his Holly Crusades. The Camargue never fails to surprise and welcomes us for our farewell dinner!
After breakfast, morning departure to the defined transfer point.