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The Joie de Vivre Road

6 Days / 5 Nights — Chateau Country, Dordogne, Provence

Paris to Nice, or Nice to Paris — it's your choice. La Belle France in one delightful sweep: Paris to the Cote d'Azur, and its joie de vivre all the way.

DAY 1 — Paris, Chateau Country

Leave Paris in the morning via Orleans to the Chateau de Chambord, the largest of the Loire chateaux, which was built in the early 16th century to serve as a hunting lodge for King François I. The Loire River was diverted to make a bit more space for its construction. Even Leonardo da Vinci was believed to have been involved in the design. Next you'll tour the historic Chateau de Blois, where Joan of Arc was to be blessed by the Archbishop of Reims in 1429 before departing with her army to drive the English from Orléans. After such a full day, sleep will come easily in the elegant Domaine des Hauts de Loire. Lodging: Domaine des Hauts de Loire

moulin de l abbaye

DAY 2 — Perigord

Today the chateaux of the Loire will keep your head moving from side to side. Continue on to Fontevraud l'Abbaye, which has a curious domed roof and the nation's only Romanesque kitchen to have survived the centuries. Journey to the south to the "Venice of Perigord," which has a luxurious landscape, prehistoric grottos and quaint bridges. Continue to your hotel, Le Moulin de l'Abbaye, on the banks of the Dronne to discover the fascinating heritage of this ancient mill, where monks used to come extract oil from walnuts. Lodging: Le Moulin de l'Abbaye

For us, the best part of having a chauffeur was the freedom. we did what we wanted, when we wanted. we slept in when we needed and stayed out late when it suited us.

DAY 3 — Dordogne

Drive to the prehistoric caves of Lascaux, and tour the model cave of Lascaux II, which is open to visitors. With more than 1,000 castles, it has some of the most intriguing visual feasts in Europe. Following the Dordogne, you soon discover a dream castle rising above the river: the Chateau de la Treyne, which will enchant you with the sweetness of its beautiful gardens and discreet luxury. A pleasant walk before dinner can be taken in the castle's 300 acres of park land with its age-old trees. Lodging: Chateau de la Treyne

Chateau de la Treyne

DAY 4 — Tarn Gorge

As you drive south, you pass through historical Albi, with its red-tiled roofs signaling your presence in the south of France. Soon you'll encounter the "Gorges du Tarn" undoubtedly one of the most striking scenic features in France. Most impressive between Les Vignes and Ste. Enimie. This valley was carved out in a number of different phases; the last extended over a million years, forming picturesque, sheer cliffs that tower up to 500 meters above the valley. Using flat-bottomed boats, the Cirque des Baumes is navigable at La Malene. The most eye- popping places along the Tarn River Gorges are floodlit every evening in the summer. Located on the Gorge's banks, the Chateau de la Caze is a rare, 15th century castle with its medieval character carefully preserved. Lodging: Chateau de la Caze

DAY 5 — Provence

Mediterranean magic begins with your morning drive into the heart of Provence. You'll wind your way through the villages made famous through the humorous books written by Peter Mayle. Soon the names of history start to visually come alive — Pont du Gard, Avignon, Arles and Les Baux. Here, in the middle of this celebrated region, the Auberge de Noves sits quietly and sedately in a fragrant world of flowers and olive trees where service and respect have become a tradition. Lodging: Auberge de Noves

DAY 6 — Nice

On your last morning, you will discover much along the way to the Riviera. Drive on the Aix-en-Provence with its fountains and mantel of tree-shaded boulevards before dropping down to the coast. There you'll drink in breathtaking sea vistas and the storied towns of St. Tropez, Cannes and Antibes. It's a splendid, chic end to your six-day adventure.

Land Costs Per Person

Private Car & Chauffeur/Guide Tour RatesSelf Drive Tour Rates
Starting from $8,775 per person Starting from $2,875 per person

Prices are per person, based on 2 passengers sharing a double. For larger parties and additional pricing contact us at 1-800-426-7502. Single Room Supplement: On Request