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Journeys in SlowMotion in France

  • Slow Motion journeys in France
  • Slow Motion journeys in France
  • Slow Motion journeys in France
  • Slow Motion journeys in France
42  holidays found view
See for yourself...
  • embrace the warm spirit of the south
  • scents & flavours; landscapes of lyrical beauty
  • a choice of journeys by rail or car
  • authentic, hand-picked rural & city hotels
  • delicious food, splendid wines & great art

 

Among the wonderfully varied regions of France, those of the warm south have a distinct appeal, suffused by that famous quality of light and unique, sun-drenched atmosphere that have drawn artists and writers for generations. From the wine country around Bordeaux to the elegance of Nice on the palm-tree-lined Riviera, and from vast and beautiful Languedoc-Roussillon to the very heart of rural Provence with its swathes of lavender, hill-top villages and refreshing rosé wines, you will be enchanted by all there is to discover. Above all, southern France is a treat for the senses, and whether you choose our journey by rail from the Atlantic to the Mediterranean or our self-drive meander through the Heart of Provence, you will come across sights, scents and flavours that will leave a lasting imprint on the memory.


Bordeaux Beckons

Surrounded by some of the world’s most celebrated vineyards, the attractive and vibrant city of Bordeaux has long been deliciously intertwined with the wine trade. Wander its broad avenues and squares, by all means, and admire works by Rubens, Matisse and others in the Museum of Fine Arts; but be sure to enjoy a dégustation and a look around the Musée du Vin et du Négoce, before enjoying a glass or two of red at a pavement café or restaurant as you savour one of the delicious blends that has made this city synonymous with the noble grape.

Medieval Carcassonne

Few people know about Carcassonne’s alter ego as a busy port on the Canal du Midi; but that’s for good reason as this medieval citadel, perched on a rocky hilltop and bristling with zigzag battlements, is one of France's most extraordinary sights. The view from afar – of its watchtowers, turrets, spires and gates – is like something out of a children’s storybook, and a stroll around the lices (the area between its stout, double-layered walls) offers tantalising glimpses of the countryside, and panoramic views of the Pyrenees away to the south.

Roman Provence & the Pont Du Gard

Two thousand years ago, Provence was part of Gaul, and the Romans left behind a rich legacy of monuments and buildings – not to mention some of France's first vineyards. Admire the splendid amphitheatres in Nîmes and Arles, but don’t miss the magnificent Pont du Gard aqueduct: for compagnons, the travelling stonemasons who were apprenticed to master craftsmen before the time of the French Revolution, the ‘Pont’ became the symbolic end of their travels, and if you look closely, you will find their initials and personal symbols – a kind of ancient graffiti – carved into the stonework.

Banon

Cheese fiends and bookworms – behold the village of Banon! Not only is it home to Le Bleuet, a fabulous bookshop aiming to hold France’s largest collection of reading matter amid its labyrinth of shelving, alcoves and reading rooms (it’s already in sixth place); it is also where you will find the aptly named Super Banon fromagerie, purveyors of the renowned local goat’s cheese. Carefully hand-wrapped in chestnut leaves which, once unfurled, yield an enticing aroma and an even more intense flavour, these discs of artisan delight go perfectly with a hunk of French bread, a glass of rosé and a generous dose of Provençal sunshine.

Nice & the French Riviera

Much of what attracted northern European aristocrats to Nice – not to mention artists such as Matisse and Chagall – remains of great appeal today: plentiful sunshine, swaying palm trees, the proximity of mountains and sea, the elegance of Baroque palazzi and the clarity of the light. And although a stroll along the sweeping, seafront Promenade des Anglais is a must, it’s the winding streets of Vieux Nice that capture our attention. Nose around quirky boutiques, and take in the vibrant, sweet-smelling Marché aux Fleurs, recalling the days when, at the very end of the 19th century, Nice held the very first flower market of all.
To delve deeper and linger longer, we suggest:
Atlantic to the Mediterranean
Journey in France
Across the south of France
Bordeaux, Carcassonne, Avignon and Nice are very different in character, history and architecture and thus reveal various aspects of southern France on this journey by rail.
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1 Apr-31 Jul & 1 Sep-31 Oct 2016
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Heart of Provence
Journey in France
Hill-top villages & rolling countryside
Few holidays have such a broad appeal. The lyrical scenery is complemented by abbeys, colourful markets, ‘villages perchés’ and Roman monuments, making for a varied tour by car.
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26 Mar-31 Jul & 1 Sep-31 Oct 2016
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