Millionaires and Carnivals on the chic Côte d’Azur
Experience the delights of the sophisticated Côte d’Azur as we travel to the French Riviera. Each year, as part of the Lent celebrations, the city of Nice holds its Carnival Parades, generally considered to be the biggest in Europe. These include the “Batailles de Fleurs” during which thousands of flowers are thrown into the crowds from elaborate floats and the illuminated evening “Mardi Gras” Parade; to both we include tickets for you within the tour.
Other highlights include a visit to the Gallimard Perfume Factory and Museum in Grasse, the perfume capital of France. Here you will see antique machinery and our guide will explain the techniques involved in the production process including how the aromatic raw materials are extracted from flowers, plants and fragrant woods to make the perfumes.
The tour will also take you to wonderful Monte Carlo where you can view how many of the other half live. Although being the world’s second smallest country, it boasts the highest number of millionaires and billionaires per head of population. Whilst in Monte Carlo we’ve included for you a guided tour of the legendary Belle Époque Casino and a visit to the fascinating Oceanographic Museum.
During our stay, there’s also time for an excursion through the beautiful Provence as it follows the Loup River through the dramatic Loup Gorge, to Gourdon, climbing ever higher through the rocky forested valley, you can’t help but be impressed by your first view of the village. Gourdon sits high on top of a rocky promontory from where it has magnificent views over the valley of the Loup River and beyond to the Mediterranean.
A fabulous way to start your year!
Liz & Steve Clark, Cote d’Azur – February 2016
‘Having toured with other organisation, we can highly recommend GB Motorhome Tours. Martin & Joan were great fun to holiday with and held a good balance between friendliness and professionalism’
Anonymous, Cote d’Azur – February 2016
‘The trip more than lived up to the description. Leaders were ever present with help and guidance. An excellent tour overall with a wealth of happy memories’
Day One – Saturday 17th February
The group will meet at the majestic city of Avignon, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Our campsite is right on the River Rhone and tonight we will have a meal in the campsites Cafe restaurant which has lovely views across the river to the city
Day Two – Sunday 18th February
Today, we will have a guided tour of the magnificent Palace of the Popes, seat of the papacy in the 14th Century and one of the largest and most important Gothic buildings in Europe. Lunch will be provided in a city bistro and after there will be a guided walking tour of this historic city
Day Three – Monday 19th February
We arrive on the Cote D’Azur. Our site is at Villeneuve-Loubet-Plage on the outskirts of Nice, where we will be staying for the next 12 nights 153 miles
Day Four – Tuesday 20th February
A free day to relax and take in your surroundings
Day Five – Wednesday 21st February
A free morning before we are taken to Nice by train to see the “Batailles de Fleurs” during which thousands of flowers are thrown into the crowds from the elaborate floats. Nice is the capital of the Cote d’Azur and has been attracting visitors since the 19th Century. Its Lent-time carnivals are the oldest in Europe and amongst the oldest in the world. They now take place over a period of twelve days, packed with parades, floats, street stalls and entertainment and truly represent the joie de vivre of the city
Day Six – Thursday 22nd February
A free day. Nice is a fascinating city to explore and has a plethora of wonderful Museums to visit, or you could use the excellent public transport links from near our campsite to travel further afield
Day Seven – Friday 23rd February
We are collected by coach this morning and taken to Grasse, the perfume capital of France, where we will visit the Gallimard Parfumerie. After a light lunch at St Donat Golf Club, we visit St Paul-de-Vence, a lovely Provencal walled town with many sites of interest and a rich cultural heritage. The artist Marc Chagall is buried in the churchyard.
Day Eight – Saturday 24th February
We are back in Nice this evening for the final “Mardi Gras” Carnival Parade. This is the biggest winter event on the French Riviera and the enjoyment is infectious and spectacular under the evening lights. You will almost certainly want to join in throwing streamers and confetti.
Day Nine – Sunday 25th February
A free day for independent sightseeing. A good option is to take a short train ride into Antibes. Picasso lived and worked here in the Chateau Grimaldi in the late 1940s. The Chateau is now a museum and aside from giving a fascinating insight into Picasso’s work during this period it has glorious views over the coastline and is well worth a visit.
Day Ten – Monday 26th February
We are taken by coach to the tiny Mediterranean Principality of Monaco. Although it is the second smallest country, it boasts the highest number of millionaires and billionaires per head of population in the world. We have a guided tour of the legendary Casino de Monte-Carlo (out of gaming hours). A magnificent fusion of Belle Époque style, the building retains its gildings, chandeliers and sumptuous decor. It is perhaps salutary to note that citizens of Monaco are not permitted to enter. After lunch we visit the Oceanographic Museum of Monaco which is housed in a monumental building that towers over the sheer cliff face to a height of 279 feet. The underwater explorer Jacques Cousteau was a director here from 1957 to 1988.
Day Eleven – Tuesday 27th February
A free day today. It is easy to return to Monaco or Nice by train for further sightseeing, or perhaps make use of the excellent cycle routes to arrive in Nice or Antibes.
Day Twelve – Wednesday 28th February
An excursion into some of the most beautiful Provencal countryside today taking in the Loup Gorge and the ancient village of Gourdon perched on its promontory overlooking the Mediterranean. On the way we visit the little village of Tourettes-sur-Loup, and “Confisierie Florian” famed for the manufacture of traditional, floral-scented crystallised flowers and fruit, which are specialities of the region
Day Thirteen – Thursday 1st March
A free day with the chance to take the train to Cannes or Ventimiglia or perhaps a walk to the hill top village of Biot with its artisan’s artistic glass blowing studios
Day Fourteen – Friday 2nd March
Our final day and time to relax as this evening we have our Farewell Dinner in an excellent restaurant in the marina of Villeneuve-Loubet-Plage
Day Fifteen – Saturday 3rd March
The tour ends this morning. You may decide to extend your time on the continent or make your way to back to the UK. Please note that subsequent costs incurred are not included in the tour.
Motorhome with 2 people = £1059 per person
Motorhome with 1 person = £1329
DEPOSIT = £250
INCLUDED IN PRICE
- 14 Campsite nights with hook-ups
- All transfers required for Excursions/Events as per the itinerary
- Entrance fees on excursions unless otherwise specified
- Tour information pack with suggested routes & GPS Coordinates
- Services of Tour Directors travelling in their own motorhome
Excursions, Events & Meals:
- Dinner in the Avignon Café restaurant
- Guided tour of the Palace of the Popes
- Lunch in the City Bistro
- Entrance Tickets to the Batailles de Fleurs
- Lunch at St Donat Golf Club
- Tickets for the Nice Mardi Gras Parade
- Excursion to Monte Carlo, Monaco
- Guided tour of the Casino de Monte-Carlo
- Lunch in Monaco
- Entrance tickets to Oceanographic Museum of Monaco
- Galimard Parfumerie visit and St Paul de Vence
- Loup Gorge, Gourdon, Tourrettes sur Loup, Confisierie Florian excursion
- Farewell Dinner with wine
This tour will start in Avignon, but if you would like to travel on the outward journey with the Tour Directors, please book the Optional Package so that everything can be arranged on your behalf
OPTIONAL TOUR PACKAGE
- Return Dover/Calais Ferry with 60-day flexible ticket + Club Class Lounge
- Three additional campsite nights with electric hook-up in France starting on Wednesday 14th February
- Dinner in campsite restaurant one evening
- Tour information pack with suggested routes & GPS Coordinates
- Services of the Tour Directors travelling in their own motorhome
OPTIONAL PACKAGE PRICE
Motorhome with 2 people @ £199 per person
Motorhome with 1 person @ £359