Provence in a day
Less than 30 kilometres from the port of Marseille, Provence is a rich tapestry of stunning scenery and traditional art de vivre. Before continuing on your cruise, take a day to explore the many ingredients that make up the eternal Provence through three iconic towns: Aubagne, Aix-en-Provence and Les Baux-de-Provence. You'll get to see the variety of Provençal architecture condensed into a day, taste sweet and savoury local specialities and admire breath-taking landscapes the colour of Bibemus stone.
A cultural excursion in Aix-en-Provence
After your tour of Pagnol country, make your way to Aix-en-Provence in time for lunch. Aix is made for strolling, in particular along Cours Mirabeau (the vibrant heart of the city) and through the Mazarin district with its well-preserved town houses and fountains. The cathedral is also worth a detour, especially since it also gives you the chance to visit the former archbishops' palace of Aix, a magnificent 17th century building that today houses the tapestry museum.
Les Baux-de-Provence: quintessential Provence
13520 Les Baux-de-Provence
After a tasty and fortifying breakfast, take to the road in the direction of Les Baux-de-Provence, a typical Provençal village in the heart of the Alpilles mountains less than an hour from Aix. Classified as one of the prettiest villages in France, Les Baux has carefully preserved its old Provençal charm. Its essential sights include the medieval castle that looks out over the plains all around and Carrières de Lumière whose spectacular multimedia displays are like nothing you'll have seen before.
- Pottering around Aix-en-Provence market on the square outside the town hall
- Taking home Provençal artisanal specialities as a souvenir of your stop-off (white nougat, tapenade, calisson sweets and more
- Immersing yourself in Provençal art de vivre through three towns bursting with charm
The best time to visit
- Late August to hear the clopping of horse hooves at the Grande Cavalcade d’Aubagne festival (even years)
- Early December to attend the international 'santonnier art' biennial Aubagne (even years)
- In summer and winter for the pottery and santon fairs in Aubagne
By public transport, Personal vehicle
- Visited cities
All year round
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The calanques of Marseille, Cassis and La Ciotat
Calanques National Park is an essential destination for any trip to Provence. A day is almost not enough to explore this mineral- and vegetation-rich natural asset! The magic begins in Marseille, at the Sormiou calanque (creek) to visit on foot. Next set sail for a tour of other calanques by boat from where you truly get the measure of the huge rocks rising up from the turquoise waters. Then it's onwards to La Ciotat where you can wrap up the day at the charming Petit Mugel creek. En route, you can't fail to be captivated by the soaring cliffs at Cap Canaille. Note: depending on the weather conditions, this site may be closed for walking due to the risk of forest fires. Get instant weather reports using the free Myprovence Balade app.
Shopping in Aix-en-Provence by Anais et Pedro
Aix-en-Provence, a small town not far from Marseille where everything can be done on foot, which is pretty cool! We are going to take you on a tour round the quaint cobbled streets to discover some great shops and show you some of our favourite places to spend a lovely day in the sun! Don’t forget to look up because there is some outstanding architecture to be seen here.
Aix-en-Provence prides in concocting 'Calisson' candies made with a thin candied melon paste and ground almonds topped with royal icing. Yummy
Art de vivre
The accent: our identity
Provence "à la mode"
Olive oil, olive soap and olives with herbs… A fruit you can't do without!