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Bike and Barge - Van Gogh Tours - Provence France

Provence Camargue (Aigues-Mortes)

From: $1,450 USD

8 Days / 7 Nights
Type: Guided
Level of Difficulty: Moderate to Challenging

Imagine Yourself…

  • Biking country lanes past castles and abbeys
  • Dipping your toes in the Mediterranean at the charming fishing village of Le Grau-du-Roi
  • Uncovering Roman history and heritage from the Middle Ages
  • Standing in the sanitarium where Vincent van Gogh painted famous works
  • Watching flamingos wade in the marshland park of Camargue

Overview

Along the rice fields and Mediterranean waterways of the Camargue and the landscapes that were so dear to Vincent van Gogh, this tour will lead you through quaint Provencal villages, vineyards, and dramatic landscapes. Our tour includes visits to one of the Seven World Wonders, the Roman Pont du Gard. You’ll experience wonderful Saint-Rémy where Van Gogh stayed for a year, and Les Baux de Provence spectacularly set atop a rocky outcrop and crowned with a ruined castle. You’ll stay in Arles and explore its Gallo-Roman treasures, sampling the ambiance that attracted Van Gogh and Gauguin to its cobblestones and cafes. You’ll visit the Camargue National Park where you’ll find wading flamingos, wild bulls, and white horses in the expansive marshland. Many art and music festivals also take place in Provence during the summer months.This delightful cycling vacation includes the best bike routes of the region that you can enjoy at your own pace or with our helpful, multilingual guide.

REVERSE ROUTE:   Provence Camargue (Avignon)

Daily Itinerary

  • Day 1: Arrival in Aigues-Mortes

    ‘Bienvenue à Aigues-Mortes’
    Our barge is moored in Aigues-Mortes, a medieval town and ancient military and commercial port on the Mediterranean. Your cabin will be available at 6 p.m.. AiguesMortes is a historic city in the middle of one of the most beautiful spots of Provence, the Camargue. In 1240 Saint Louis decided to build a city close to his kingdom in order to have direct access to the Mediterranean Sea. Seven hundred years later the fortifications still dominate the Camargue. You can admire the original city ramparts with six prestigious towers and ten gates as you walk around the town walls (about 1.5 km) before entering the charming and narrow streets of this wonderful Mediterranean town. After dinner on the boat, we’ll preview the week’s highlights and cycling itinerary.

  • Day 2: Aigues-Mortes – round trip - 34 miles (55 km) – 20-meter elevation gain

    Going through small country lanes of the Camargue between canals, lagoons and small villages you will have the chance to see the famous black bulls and the white horses typical of this region, as well as the pink flamingos. In the afternoon you will reach the charming fishermen’s village Le Grau-du-Roi. Possibility of a refreshing bath on the beach.

  • Day 3: Aigues-Mortes – Arles – 16 miles (25 km) – no elevation gain

    We will sail for a couple of hours up to Franquevaux and then cycle to today’s destination: Arles, a Roman capital in the time of Julius Caesar and a major religious center in the Middle Ages. You’ll have the option of taking a guided tour of the city or exploring on your own. You can visit the remains of the Roman Amphitheatre, dating from the end of the first century, and the slightly more damaged Roman Theatre. The magnificent Cloister and Church of St. Trophime are two gems of Romanesque art dating from the Middle Ages. On the Place du Forum inside the old city walls you’ll find Van Gogh’s famous “Night Café.” Vincent van Gogh came to Arles in 1888 and rented a small house on the Place Lamartine that, unfortunately, has been destroyed. The Provencal countryside and the peculiar light inspired Van Gogh and he painted here non-stop.

  • Day 4: Arles - Les Baux - St Rémy - Vallabreguès - 34 miles (55 km) – 300-meter elevation gain

    This is a breathtaking stage of our tour, which will bring us to the Alpilles with the haunting medieval village of Les Baux de Provence – one of the most visited tourist sites in all France, and justifiably so. If you prefer to skip the hills, you can take a van up to Les Baux instead (you will bike after the visit to Les Baux). Definitely visit the Chateaux de Baux for a spectacular view on the surrounding Alpilles Mountains. We’ll then glide down to Saint Rémy de Provence. St. Rémy is the birthplace of Nostradamus but it’s better known as the place where Vincent van Gogh stayed in a sanitarium for more than a year, producing an incredible 150 paintings. We’ll travel through a landscape of limestone cliffs and olive trees. In the evening we will moor in Vallabrègues, a pretty village on the banks of the Rhône.

  • Day 5: Vallabreguès – Aramon – 22 miles (35 km) – 90-meter elevation gain

    Today we’ll take lovely country roads to Barbentane with its castle at the confluence of the Rhone and Durance rivers. We will cycle to the magnificent Abbey of Saint Michel de Frigolet and afterwards go down to the medieval village of Boulbon. In the afternoon, we’ll make our way to Aramon where we’ll spend the night and enjoy its beautiful view over the Mont Ventoux.

  • Day 6: Aramon - Avignon - 25 miles (40 km) – 110-meter elevation gain

    Today we’ll discover the best preserved Roman aqueduct in Europe: Pont du Gard, a three-tiered aqueduct over 2,000 years old. Heading back to Aramon in the afternoon, we will then sail to Avignon, the City of the Popes. We’ll moor here for the night at the Quai de la Ligne next to the famous Pont St. Bénezet. Tonight we have dinner on our own.

  • Day 7: Avignon – Ile de la Barthelasse - Avignon - 19 miles (30 km) – 100-meter elevation gain

    Today we’ll get to the other side of the river Rhone by crossing the island Ile de la Barthelasse, and we’ll ride in the typical garrigue landscape, between vineyards and orchards. Before going back we’ll visit Villeneuve Les Avignon, once known to be the town of the cardinals. In the afternoon a guided visit will let us discover the historic city of Avignon.

  • Day 8: Tour Ends

    After breakfast, we’ll part ways.

Dates & Prices

Green = Open | Yellow = Limited | Red = Full

2024

Departure

Barge

Double

Twin

Single

Twin for Single use

June 22

L’Estello

$ 2110

$ 2110

$ 2980

July 20

Caprice

$ 1790

$ 1790

$ 2180

$ 2870

August 17

Caprice

$ 1790

$ 1790

$ 2180

$ 2870

October 26

L’Estello

$ 1900

$ 1900

$ 2980

Prices are per person in US Dollars / inclusive bike rental

2025

Departure

Barge

Double

Twin

Single

Twin for Single use

March 29

Caprice

$ 1450

$ 1450

$ 1790

$ 2460

March 29

L’Estello

$ 1450

$ 1450

$ 2460

April 12

Caprice

$ 1450

$ 1450

$ 1790

$ 2460

April 12

L’Estello

$ 1450

$ 1450

$ 2460

April 26

Caprice

$ 1880

$ 1880

$ 2210

$ 2880

April 26

L’Estello

$ 1880

$ 1880

$ 2880

May 10

Caprice

$ 1990

$ 1990

$ 2320

$ 2990

May 10

L’Estello

$ 1990

$ 1990

$ 2990

May 24

Caprice

$ 1990

$ 1990

$ 2320

$ 2990

Full


May 24

L’Estello

$ 1990

$ 1990

$ 2990

Full


June 7

Caprice

$ 1990

$ 1990

$ 2320

$ 2990

June 7

L’Estello

$ 1990

$ 1990

$ 2990

June 21

Caprice

$ 1990

$ 1990

$ 2320

$ 2990

June 21

L’Estello

$ 1990

$ 1990

$ 2990

July 5

Caprice

$ 1880

$ 1880

$ 2210

$ 2880

July 5

L’Estello

$ 1880

$ 1880

$ 2880

July 19

Caprice

$ 1880

$ 1880

$ 2210

$ 2880

July 19

L’Estello

$ 1880

$ 1880

$ 2880

August 2

Caprice

$ 1880

$ 1880

$ 2210

$ 2880

August 2

L’Estello

$ 1880

$ 1880

$ 2880

August 16

Caprice

$ 1880

$ 1880

$ 2210

$ 2880

August 16

L’Estello

$ 1880

$ 1880

$ 2880

August 30

Caprice

$ 2100

$ 2100

$ 2430

$ 3100

August 30

L’Estello

$ 2100

$ 2100

$ 3100

September 13

Caprice

$ 2100

$ 2100

$ 2430

$ 3100

September 13

L’Estello

$ 2100

$ 2100

$ 3100

September 27

Caprice

$ 2100

$ 2100

$ 2430

$ 3100

September 27

L’Estello

$ 2100

$ 2100

$ 3100

October 11

Caprice

$ 2100

$ 2100

$ 2430

$ 3100

October 11

L’Estello

$ 2100

$ 2100

$ 3100

October 25

Caprice

$ 1990

$ 1990

$ 2320

$ 2990

October 25

L’Estello

$ 1990

$ 1990

$ 2990

  • What's included

    • 7 nights on board the ship (sheets, blankets, and two towels)
    • 7 breakfasts, 6 packed lunches, and 6 dinners
    • Coffee and tea on board
    • 27-speed hybrid bicycle rental, including helmet, pannier, cycle computer, lock
    • Multilingual tour leader
    • Guided visit of Arles
    • Information pack, route descriptions and maps
    • Mid-week service of cabin cleaning and towel change
    • Reservation costs
  • Bikes

    Well-maintained, comfortable 27-speed hybrid bikes are included. These unisex bike models come in sizes appropriate to your height. The bikes have a side pannier, helmet, water bottle, and lock. If you prefer to bring your own bike you’re welcome to do so but realize that bikes cannot be transported on the TGV (high-speed train) in France. A map holder/front bag is also given to the people that want to do this tour as a self-guided tour. An electric bike is also available for this tour ($160 per person). Depending on your height, you will be assigned one of the electric bikes below. We advise you only to rent an electric bike if you have first tried one at home. They’re heavier than regular bikes and therefore can be difficult to maneuver. In addition, you can rent children’s bikes, child seats, bike trailers, and tag-alongs.

    Girolibero - Unisex
    Unisex
    E-Bike - Girolibero
    E-Bike
  • Meals

    The cook prepares all meals: a substantial breakfast and a three-course dinner of very good quality. A packed lunch may be prepared after breakfast. Tea and coffee will be ready when you arrive on board in the afternoon. There’s a bar on the boat with reasonably priced beer, wine and soft drinks. If you have special meal requirements, we ask you to mention this when booking. In the case of a Vegan, gluten- or lactose free diet there is an additional charge of $60 per week.

  • Not included

    • Airfare
    • Museum entrance fees and private expenses
    • 1 Dinner
    • Drinks(other than coffee & tea) on board
    • Trip cancellation insurance

Accommodations

The accommodations listed below are examples of those usually used on the tour. Depending on availability, you may be booked in a different accommodation of equal quality.

L’Estello

L’Estello

Deluxe barge
  • Individually controlled air conditioning
  • Panorama windows
  • Cozy lounge & restaurant area

Reviews

 Cycling in an unfamiliar setting and doing so with interesting group of people. Michela is an excellent tour leader and we really appreciated all that she did to ensure that everyone was cycling safely.

Will Burbank, April 2023


 This was my first VanGogh tour and it was amazing. Beginning with Denise during the registration process, the correspondence, the barge, the bikes, the crew, the itinerary – it was all top-notch. The barge was clean and comfortable (excellent air conditioning for our 90+ degree days), the bikes well-equipped and maintained, and Fillippo, Irene, Rafael, and Melanie were the best. They were cheerfully helpful, professional and a lot of fun. It was clear they enjoyed their jobs. Melanie’s calm presence and guidance ensured that the ride was safe and doable for all of us. The crew truly made the trip.

Jane Renkes, May 2022


 

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