Enjoy the best of Provence and FOUR cooking classes with Chef Kathy during this week-long culinary vacation. Stay in a stunning luxury villa in the Provence countryside. Experience the food, the wine, the vibrant markets, picturesque villages and the seaside towns. The week includes three full-meal market-to-table cooking classes and one French pastry-making class, guided visits to three Provencal outdoor markets, and the best dining experiences under the glorious Southern France sun. Fall in love with the flavors, the villages and the countryside of this enchanting region in the sunny south of France. On days when we don’t cook, we’ll explore other villages and cities in the area: the Luberon Valley, Chateauneuf du Pape wine region, Cassis, Aix-en-Provence, and Avignon.
Amazing accommodations – Stay in an 18th-century villa located within walking distance from the historic center of Aix-en-Provence. The grounds and all of the villa will entirely your group’s for the week!
>See the VIDEO OF THE VILLA
****BOOK BEFORE APRIL 1, 2017 AND SAVE $300 PER PERSON***
June 24 – July 1, 2017
June 16 – 23, 2018
$4,270 per person based upon double occupancy ($3,970 per person if booked by April 1, 2017)
$750 Single Supplement Charge
Maximum Group Size: 8 people
MAKE THIS A PRIVATE-GROUP VACATION: If you have a group of 4 – 10 people that would like to book this vacation during a different week than those posted above, we can work with you to make this a private vacation just for your group. Simply complete the vacation information request form with your request.
**Airfare, transportation to Marseille (if flying in from elsewhere into France/Europe), travel insurance and expenses of a personal nature (souvenirs and other personal items) are not included in the vacation package price.
THE COOKING CLASSES
We will have three market-to-table, full-meal cooking classes during the week. Ingredients for the classes will be the freshest from that day’s market in Aix-en-Provence. All meals will include a starter, main dish with vegetable side, and French pastry for dessert. We’ll indulge in a fourth, cheese course, during one of the classes, after having selected our cheese platter from our visit to a cheese shop. Along with the three full-meal classes, we’ll have a half-day French pastry-making class where you’ll learn the basics of the French pastry chef.
THE SIGHTS, ACTIVITIES AND EXPERIENCES
As the markets and villages of Provence are the focus of your week, you’ll have guided visits to three of the best markets of the region: Aix-en-Provence, and Arles. Enjoy famous French pastries during a guided visit, with tastings, to a local pastry shop. During a market day in Aix, we’ll stop at a cheese shop and learn how to create a perfectly French cheese course. Visit wineries in the famed Chateauneuf-du-Pape region and learn by tasting these and the Rose’ wines of Provence. You’ll spend an entire day exploring the villages of the Luberon Valley and appreciate its lush and diverse landscape.
CITIES AND TOWNS YOU’LL VISIT
Day 1: Welcome to Provence
After your pick up from the Marseille Airport or Aix-en-Provence TGV station, you’ll have time to settle into your accommodations in/around Aix-en-Provence.
We will meet each other in the late afternoon for a Champagne and wine reception followed by an orientation walk through Aix-en-Provence and a welcome dinner.
Day 2: Avignon and Wine in Chateauneuf-du-Pape
Spend the morning in the walled-city of Avignon, visiting the old city center, Les Halles market, Palais des Papes and the famous bridge, Pont Saint Benezet. You will have time to explore and shop in Avignon and then we’ll enjoy lunch at a gourmet bistro.
Our afternoon will be in the Southern Rhone Wine Valley. We’ll visit two wine chateau in the Chateauneuf-du-Pape wine region.
We’ll enjoy a delicious dinner in Aix a favorite restaurant of locals.
Day 3: Market Day in Aix – Market-to-Table Cooking Class
Explore the historic center of Aix-en-Provence and its huge Tuesday market. From the market, we’ll purchase ingredients for our full-meal four-course cooking class. Visit a pastry shop where we’ll have a guided tasting visit and learn all about French pastries. You’ll have time to explore the market on your own before meeting back up for a light apero buffet from the day’s purchases.
Create your own seasonal, three-course dinner with the freshest ingredients from the market during our full-day of food, fun and an educational cooking class.
Day 4: Seaside Villages along the Mediterranean
Spend the morning together at one of the biggest and best markets in the village of Sanary-sur-Mer, along the Mediterranean coast. You’ll have time to stroll the port and check out the colorful array of pointu (pointed) boats along the harbor. We’ll have lunch together along the port of Sanary looking out onto the sea
In the afternoon, we’ll head over to Cassis and take a boat tour along the Calanques, leaving time for a stroll through the cozy town. Dinner tonight will be together at an outdoor table along the sea.
Day 5: Morning at the Market in Aix – French cheese tasting – Cooking Class
The morning will be at the market, where you’ll have free time to explore the market on your own and pick up any food items and/or gifts to take home. We’ll meet back up to visit a cheese shop and purchase cheese for the all-important French cheese course, part of our four-course meal.
At our private kitchen in Aix, we’ll have another full day of food during our hands-on cooking class. We’ll create a four-course meal of typical Provencal dishes and desserts.
Day 6: Exploring the Luberon
Our day will focus on exploring the gorgeous villages of the Luberon valley, their beauty immortalized in words by many writers, most recently Peter Mayle. We’ll visit Lourmarin, Roussillon and the Fontaine du Vaucluse and stop for photo ops outside of Gordes and, when the lavender is in bloom, at the Abbey of Senanque.
Lunch will be on the terrace overlooking the red cliffs of Roussillon
You’ll have the evening free to explore Aix-en-Provence on your own before gathering together for a dinner at one of the best restaurants in Aix.
Day 7: Arles – Farewell dinner together
We’ll spend the morning at the big Saturday market in Arles and then take a guided walking tour of the old Roman city. We’ll have lunch together in Arles and then you’ll have free time to wander the city on your own.
Tonight’s farewell dinner and cooking class will be a traditional Provencal dinner
Day 8: Perfectly French Breakfast and Au Revoir Provence
Morning breakfast of pastries, baguette and cheese together before your departure to either the Aix-en-Provence TGV Station or the Marseille Airport at 9:30am.
**Sequence of classes, activities and excursions may vary. The final itinerary will be given to each guest on the first day of the vacation. Whenever there are local festivals or events happening during a tour, we will try to include them with adjustments to the itinerary to enhance your vacation experience.