Great Hikes and Cuisine of Provence

Perched Villages, Country Walks, Culinary Delights

Great Hikes and Cuisine of Provence route-map

Trip Details at-a-Glance

Cost From: $5795  
Length: 9 days
Arrive: Avignon, France
Depart: Marseilles, France
Lodging: 8 nights in charming hotels
Meals: All meals included except 1 lunch and 2 dinners
Activity: Hiking / Trekking
Trip Level: A mix of moderate walks and hikes, 2-4 hours on most days, van support


  • Meet vintners, olive oil makers, truffle and honey producers
  • Experience the natural beauty of Provence with fantastic hikes each day
  • Historic and charming hotels, including the captivating Domaine de Capelongue
  • Great meals of Provencal specialties, including a restaurant with two Michelin stars

Choosing the Right Trip

We work hard to help you choose the right trip for you, paying attention to your individual interests, abilities, and needs. If you have questions about the level of comfort or any of the activities described in this itinerary, please contact us.


We are proud to have an exceptionally high rate of repeat travelers. For more information, we would be happy to put you in touch with a client who has traveled with us.

Departure Notes

Once you have signed up on the trip, we send a complete packing list, relevant health information, and required travel documents.

Read about our new culinary programs recently featured in this article. Click here!

Think of Provence and what comes to mind? Lavender-scented honey, savory truffles, and golden olive oil. We’ve created a hiking and cultural journey brimming with all that makes Provence so enchanting, with hikes in the herb-scented hills of the Luberon, to the remote 12th century Senanque Abbey, encircled by lavender fields, and through Provence’s spectacular “perched villages.” All along the way, we meet cheesemakers, winemakers, and learn the secrets of the terroir that produces such world-renowned cuisine and wine. Great hikes, Provence’s most traditional villages, historic, charming hotels, and meals of legendary local cuisine (including a grand dinner at a two-starred Michelin restaurant) make this Provence for all the senses!

Itinerary at a Glance

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Days 1-2
Avignon / Pernes-les-Fontaines

From Pernes-les-Fontaines, with its massive 18th century fountains, our hike brings us along a stone-built canal and to visit a truffle and olive oil producer.

Days 3-4
Carpentras / Gorge de la Nesque / Mazan

Before our lively cooking class, we explore the produce market amid the squares and arcades of Carpentras, then head out for a vineyard walk, where we meet a local winemaker. The craggy Gorge de la Nesque between Mont Ventoux and the Vaucluse, makes perfect hiking territory. Our chateau-hotel in the walled village of Mazan was once the home of the Marquis de Sade.

Days 5-6
Gordes / Senanque Abbey

Our hikes bring us above Fontaine de Vaucluse, where France’s most famous spring gives birth to the Sorge River, and across the garrigue, Provence’s aromatic terrain of dwarf oak, thyme, and rosemary, to spectacular 12th century Senanque Abbey. Overnights are in ancient Gordes, with its panoramic views over the Luberon.

Days 7-9
Roussillon / Pont Julien / Bonnieux / Menerbes

We explore the winding streets of Roussillon, perched on a ridge above dazzling ocher quarries, hike from the Pont Julien, a renowned Roman aqueduct, go wine-tasting in lovely Menerbes, and visit Bonnieux, summer home of the Popes of Avignon. Overnights are in Menerbes. Depart via Marseilles on Day 9.

For a more complete description, Download Full Detailed Itinerary

What the Trip is Like

This trip is Level 3, Moderate. We enjoy day walks and hikes averaging from three to five miles per day over variable terrain, including rolling countryside, riverside trails, cliffside paths, and village to village on country roads. The trails are generally shaded by trees, and there are some stony sections, but no tricky conditions or scrambling. We will carry just a daypack. Sturdy, well broken-in hiking boots are recommended for this area, though trail walking shoes with very good traction can work. The meals included in the itinerary will be taken at the hotels where we are staying or at restaurants in town, with some picnic lunches.

This is a new Wilderness Travel trip for 2014. We have worked closely with one of our most veteran Trip Leaders in developing the itinerary, but as with all new adventures, flexibility and a spirit of adventure are always appreciated! Hiking times are noted, but these can vary, sometimes considerably, depending on weather conditions, the group, and other factors. We ask that you make a special effort to bring flexibility and a spirit of adventure to this unique trip.

In an effort to capture the spirit of old Europe, the hotels that we use are often family-run converted chateaux or inns, full of ambiance and colorful local history. Although the rooms are not always of uniform or international size, our leaders try their best to assign rooms in a fair way so that all participants experience an equal advantage throughout the trip as a whole.

Explanation of Trip Levels


Departures & Leaders

May 18-26, 2014

Sep 20-28, 2014

Trip Cost

Prices are for 2014
$5795 (13-15 members)
$6095 (10-12 members)
$6395 (6-9 members)
Single supplement: $1290
Forced single supplement: $1090
more on pricing

Trip Cost Includes:

  • Expert leadership of a Wilderness Travel Trip Leader
  • Accommodations as noted
  • All meals included except 1 lunch and 2 dinners
  • Entrance fees for museums and sites as part of the itinerary
  • Land transportation, transfers to/from Avignon train station

Trip Cost Does Not Include:

International airfare, any meals not specified after each itinerary day, optional gratuities to leaders or staff, additional hotel nights that may be necessitated by airline schedule changes or other factors; pre-trip expenses of medical immunizations (if any), travel insurance, or passports and visas; and other expenses of a personal nature (alcoholic beverages, laundry, etc.).

Trip Payment Schedule

At time of reservation: $500
120 days prior to departure: 20%
60 days prior to departure: Balance

Cancellation and Transfer Fee Schedule

Minimum fee: None per person
46-90 days prior to departure: 25% of trip cost
45 days or less: 100% of trip cost

Hotel L'Hermitage

Hotel L'Hermitage

Days 1 to 2 (2 nights), Pernes-les-Fontaines, France

L’Hermitage is a calm oasis just outside the town of Le Pernes. It provides the atmosphere of a French country house with its acres of ...
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Chateau de Mazan

Chateau de Mazan

Days 3 to 4 (2 nights), Mazan, France

This historic property, once owned by Provence’s powerful Sade family (of Marquis de Sade fame) is located in a lovely, quiet village and has ...
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La Bastide de Gordes

La Bastide de Gordes

Days 5 to 6 (2 nights), Gordes, France

The Bastide de Gordes boasts one of the most spectacular settings in Provence, tucked into a hillside in the tiny town of Gordes with vast panoramas ...
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Hostellerie Le Roy Soleil

Hostellerie Le Roy Soleil

Days 7 to 8 (2 nights), Menerbes, France

Located below the medieval village of Mènerbes, Hostellerie Le Roy Soleil is a restored 17th century stone mansion that offers Provencal decor ...
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Note: Listed above are our signature accommodations for this trip. Although it is highly unlikely, we may make substitutions when necessary.

Our Trip Leaders

Here are the Trip Leaders scheduled for this journey (please note that leader assignments are subject to change).

Nicos Caravellas

Departure Dates: May 18-26, 2014, September 20-28, 2014

Nicos Caravellas, born and raised in Greece, gained his love of nature early on family outings in northern Greece's mountainous countryside. During his university years, while earning his degree in teaching, he developed his mountaineering skills and decided to become a professional guide."I ...
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Laurence Frison

Departure Dates: May 18-26, 2014

Laurence Frison, of France, earned her diploma in graphic design but prefers the life of traveling, hiking, skiing, and guiding. She spent a decade exploring the world from Africa to Australia, including a three-month road trip from Vancouver to Los Angeles, and for the last two years she has ...
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James Fuss

Departure Dates: September 20-28, 2014

James Fuss is a trekking guide, photographer, bicyclist, and chef extraordinaire. Born and bred in South Australia, James acquired his wanderlust early while exploring Australia extensively on camping trips with his parents. His love of the cooking arts began early, as well, and after embarking on ...
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Annie Hawkins

Departure Dates: May 18-26, 2014

Annie Hawkins, born and raised in a small village in Burgundy, is a passionate world traveler and one of our most enchanting Trip Leaders. After studying art history in Provence, Annie moved to California, where she led adventure tours in the American Southwest and realized that leading adventure ...
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