& Italian Riviera direct from Belfast
Departing June and September 2015 from £839pp
on the Mediterranean coastline between the French border to the west
and the Italian Gulf of La Spezia to the east lies the resort of
Diano Marina. Set in a wide, sun-kissed bay with an old town exuding
charismatic charm, the citrus lined streets of Diano Marina have
long been popular with tourists and the whole area is blessed with
an excellent climate, splendid beaches, and wonderful cuisine. Its
coastal setting is magnificent, with picturesque coves and hills
clad in olive groves and pine, lemon and orange trees. Whilst you
will no doubt find plenty to do in your resort, for a change of
scene two full-day escorted excursions are included in this holiday;
to the elegant, exclusive resorts of Santa Margherita and Portofino,
and back across the French border to the world-renowned principality
of Monaco and its capital, Monte Carlo.
|Return flight from your chosen airport to Nice Cote d’Azur,
|Return transfer from Nice airport to Diano Marina, Italy|
|Seven nights stay at the 3 star Hotel Arc en Ciel or Hotel
Piccolo, Diano Marina with dinner and breakfast (upgrade to the
4 star Hotel Metropol, Diano Marina for a supplement)|
|Two full-day escorted excursions; to Santa Margherita &
Portofino, and to Monaco & Monte Carlo|
|Boat from Santa Margherita to Portofino (weather conditions
|One piece of hold luggage per person (at least 20kg weight,
dependent on airline)|
|Services of an English-speaking representative|
|All airport taxes and security charges and the Government tax
on air travel (APD)|
|VAT at the government's prevailing rate at the date of travel|
Awaiting 2016 prices
tour of Arles, capital of Roman Gaul, with an iconic amphitheatre and
immortalised by Van Gogh|
of the Camargue, one of France’s finest nature reserves, famous for
its black bulls, white horses and pink flamingos|
of the Luberon Hills and it’s timeless Provencal villages so vividly
described in Peter Mayle’s book ‘A Year in Provence’|
to the Pont du Gard, one of the ancient Romans’ largest aqueducts|
by our experienced tour manager|
to Nice A coach will take you to your chosen hotel in
Aix-en-Provence, where you stay for seven nights’.
en Provence is a stunningly beautiful place, originally a spa town founded
by the Romans. It is a labyrinth of tiny alleyways and squares and is
known as the ‘city of a thousand fountains’. This is provincial France
at its best. Paul Cézanne was the city’s favourite son and he painted
300 paintings here and in the surrounding area, with his workshop
preserved exactly how it was when he died in 1906. This morning, you have
tour of the city after which you may explore as you wish.
breakfast you leave Aix and head for the nearby coast and the delta of the
great River Rhone - the Camargue – now designated a National Park, an
area of outstanding natural beauty famed for its iconic black bulls, white
horses and pink flamingos. Next you arrive in Arles, the ‘Pearl of
Provence’. Although not very large today, in Roman times it was the
imposing capital of Gaul, Britain and Spain with a range of monuments to
match. Its preservation has been remarkable and on go on a fascinating
walking tour you will see the forum, theatre and incredible amphitheatre
plus much more of this superb city. Van Gogh lived here for two years and,
inspired by the Provençal countryside, produced 200 paintings and 100
drawings including such famous works as ‘Sunflowers’, ‘Café de Nuit’,
‘The Red Vines’ and ‘The Sower’. After some free time, you are
then free to return to your hotel.
morning you head inland to the stunning scenery of the Luberon mountains.
It was here that Peter Mayle found inspiration for his book, A Year in
Provence. First of all, you cross the fertile plains adorned with olive
and peach groves which change to rich vineyards on the lower slopes. Then
as you climb, there is row upon row of fragrant lavender, together with
the mimosa and pine trees, that give the unmistakable aroma which is one
of Provence’s hallmarks. Once famous as the haunt of highwaymen, with
the castle of the Marquis de Sade, it is now a much prized nature reserve.
you visit nearby Avignon, one of Europe’s most historic cities. Its
destiny changed early in the 14th century with the exile of the Pope’s
court from Rome. Vast wealth poured in to build churches, convents and
elegant townhouses, but most of all the incredible Papal Palace. You have
time to visit this imposing building which from the outside resembles a
citadel rising from living rock flanked by turrets more than 150 feet
high. Alternatively, there is the Petit Palais museum which houses an
excellent collection of more than 1,000 paintings. You also visit the Pont
du Gard, an amazing Roman aqueduct, wider than the Thames in London and
one of the wonders of the ancient world. You then return to your hotel in
have a free day to spend as you wish. Perhaps sample some local produce at
one of the many markets to be found every morning tucked away on a pretty
square, perhaps visit the brilliant Musee Granet with a gallery entirely
devoted to Cezanne, plus works by Degas, Picasso, Renoir, Monet and host
of others or the fascinating Museum of Natural History, exhibiting a
collection of dinosaur eggs from the slopes of the nearby Mont Ste-Victoire.
Probably best though is just wander through Aix’s maze of ancient street
lined by its 17th and 18th century mansions, admire the graceful charm of
its fountains, the majesty of its avenues, the intimacy of its cafes
absorbing the entire inimitable atmosphere. Perhaps though, just relax
with a book, the choice is yours!
we head just south to the rugged Mediterranean Coast firstly visiting
delightful La Ciotat, whose pretty painted houses rise in tiers
overlooking the bay and old port. Along the coastline we start to discover
the amazing contorted limestone coastline, carved by the sea into the most
incredible almost contorted shapes, majestic needles, hidden coves and
almost vertical milk-white cliffs plunging spectacularly into the deep
blue sea. This really is one of Europe’s most astonishing seascapes.
Next it’s probably Provence’s most alluring port, Cassis, an utterly
charming little spot with its myriad of fishing boats riding at anchor,
overlooked by a mighty medieval fortress. This gorgeous bay has drawn many
famous visitors over the years including Virginia Woolfe and Sir Winston
Churchill, who took painting lessons here in the 1920s. Explore the sights
or taste some delicious local seafood before, for the finest possible
vistas, we explore by boat the stunning Massif des Calanques’s dazzling
white cliffs and pinnacles erupting from the sea.
you return to the airport at the appropriate time to return home.
Nice, Monte Carlo and St Tropez
Direct from Belfast
7 nights Half board with local excursions
us on the glorious French Riviera to discover resorts famed for their
glamour, history, sparkling sea and sunshine. Based in the pretty town of
Menton, enjoy the charms of the South of France, while excursions take you
over the border to royal Monaco and into the beauty of Italy.
sun-kissed charm, Menton sits close to the Italian border on the Baie du
Soleil. Unspoiled and elegant, its promenade runs along the pretty
beachfront, and past the casino and ancient fort. Menton's cafes and bars
provide perfect places to relax, while the quaint old town boasts a
delightful mix of Italianate and Baroque buildings.
transfer time from the airport to Menton is approximately one hour.
sometimes need to combine transfers to and from your hotel. We always try
to keep any wait to a minimum, but you may be asked to wait at the airport
for up to an hour, while other incoming flights arrive, before the
transfer to your hotel. Similarly, we may need to transfer you back to the
airport up to three hours before your flight home departs.
at the Ibis Styles Menton
meals will be served at a local restaurant called le Cafe des Arts (or
similar), located a two-minute walk from the hotel. You may arrive at your
convenience, between seven and eight o'clock in the evening.
note that there are several steps and inclines in Monaco, on the way to
the Casino Square.
and St Tropez excursion
extensive programme on this day of your holiday will involve an early
start and a late finish.
you have notified us of any special requirements, please check that they
have been noted and acknowledged. This is especially important with any
dietary needs you may have.
majority of our tours involve a certain amount of walking, including a
short walk from the coach stop to the town, attraction or venue you're
visiting. If you are bringing a wheelchair or electric scooter, please let
us know as soon as possible so that appropriate arrangements can be made.
to Nice and transfer to your hotel. After checking in, enjoy spending the
rest of the day getting to know your resort.
is free for you to spend at leisure, exploring or simply relaxing at your
along the scenic Moyenne Corniche, with its spectacular vistas of the Cote
d'Azur, enter the tiny Principality of Monaco. Take in Monte Carlo
harbour's magnificent yachts, admire the Palais Princier - home to the
royal Grimaldi family - and perhaps try your luck inside the famous
visit to stylish Nice will introduce the largest of the Mediterranean's
resorts, its famous promenade lined with grand Art Deco hotels, galleries
and boutiques. Wander the Old Town's narrow streets and see its ancient
churches, museums and hidden squares.
Your second visit of the day will explore St Paul de Vence, the famous
artists' retreat that was once home to the painter Marc Chagall.
for its international film festival, the delights of Cannes include the
charming Old Town, Le Suquet, overlooking stunning blue sea, and a stroll
along the seafront promenade, La Croisette. Equally glamorous, our next
stop is St Tropez, where delightful pavement cafes offer the chance for
people-watching and relaxation.
day is left free for relaxation and exploration.
Ventimiglia, over the border, sits on Italy's 'Riviera of Flowers'.
Explore its colourful flower market on our visit before we continue along
the coast to sunny, grand San Remo. Admire the Liberty-style buildings of
the old town, La Pigna, and its striking, onion-domed Russian Orthodox
church, and soak up the atmosphere on the harbour-front.
a wonderful holiday, transfer back to the airport to check-in for your
for operational reasons, we may have to change the order of the excursions
on your holiday. The final day-by-day itinerary will be confirmed on your
Final Travel Documents, which you will receive approximately three weeks
prior to your departure.
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