Arles, city of art, history & photography a Unesco World Heritage Site. Most visitors come in search of Van Gogh & Roman history - look for the cafe in Place du Forum he painted Cafe Terrace at Night. Arles founded in 46BC by Julius Caesar developed by Augustus 2000 years ago. Van Gogh arrived in 1888, created 300 paintings. From Arles, we head into the Camargue region follow the River Rhône where it meets the Mediterranean & windswept beach of Piémanson, time to take in the air & beauty of the nature around. In the heart of the Camargue natural park, you will witness an amazing sight of wild animals & wild landscapes; pink flamingos, bulls & the famous white horses of Camargue. You also visit the capital of the regional park, Les Saintes Maries de la Mer, a town of Spanish gipsy traditions. Head to the rooftop of the town's church, admire the view of the Mediterranean before visiting the Ornithological park Pont de Gau with flamingos, egrets and many more species. It's a day discovering the secrets of the Camargue & Arles.
Tour itinerary & highlights
I will arrive to collect you from your hotel or guest house. (If you are staying in a rented apartment or villa, we can arrange that too) I will also be at the Cruise Ship terminal in Marseille if arriving by ship.
We leave by car driving to the town of Arles, (it's about an hours drive) then a leisurely walking tour of the old town to visit the Roman Amphiteatre, Théâtre Antiques d'Arles, Hôtel de Ville & Obelisk plus the café in Place du Forum made famous by the paintings of Vincent Van Gogh which will be one of the highlights of your visit. Visiting the old town shopping area full of narrow streets, bars & cafés - all very close to the river. We propose an early lunch break in Arles before driving to the Camargue and the sea. Combining Arles & the Camargue together is what makes this visit so unique. It is a full day, but we can pace it out so that you have time to visit and enjoy.
From Arles head for Salin de Giraud & the wild & windy beach at Piémanson. A walk on the beach returning into the Camargue regional parc ending up in the small Camarguaise town of Saintes Maries de la Mer the capital of the Camargue, before visiting the ornithological Pont de Gau park, afterwards return Marseille or Aix.
Language: English or French
Tour duration & schedule
The total duration of the tour is 9 hours, assuming pick-up in Aix-en-Provence or Marseille. We can also arrange to collect you from the TGV station (high speed train) at Aix-en-Provence. There is a scheduled lunch break at leisure, not included. (we can also organise a picnic lunch if preferred)
This is quite a busy schedule visiting, two interesting towns and drive through the national park to the beach & on to Saintes Maries de la Mer. Timings may vary slightly due to seasonal traffic conditions. Depending on the weather, time spent at each location may vary slightly.
Pick-up & drop-off at either the Cruise Terminal in Marseille or your hotel in Aix-en-Provence or Marseille. If your staying elsewhere we can coordinate a pick-up from your address. (There may be a suppliment payable) Dedicated guide/driver & return to your hotel, address or the cruise terminal. Admission to the sites & museums listed is not included - you have the choice to pre-book or pay on site. Refreshments, snacks & lunch is extra.
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