The Cote d’Azur & Provence: Inspiration to the Great Writers & Artists

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  • France
  • May 31 – June 6, 2022
  • 7 days / 6 nights
  • 6-12 guests


“Traveling – it leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller.” ~ Ibn Batuta

France has inspired a flood of writers and artists dating back from Roman times to the present. Writers such as Victor Hugo, Alexis de Toqueville and Simone de Beauvoire changed the landscape of France, those who came over from abroad such as Oscar Wilde, Henry Miller and Henry James found comfort in Paris and of course Hemingway and Fitzgerald who found adventure. Artists inspired by this region such as Van Gogh and Cezanne have also left their indelible mark as did their benefactors, families like the Rothschilds. Come with us to discover why creatives have flooded to the South of France for inspiration as far back as we can remember.


  • Enjoy tea the former home of F. Scott Fitzgerald and his wife Zelda
  • Visit the Villa Ephrussi
  • Walk in the footsteps of the great African American writer James Baldwin in St. Paul de Vence
  • Lunch in the courtyard of the Caumont Mansion
  • Visit Cezanne’s Atelier
  • Dine at one of the most celebrated restaurants in the south of France surrounded by Picasso’s and other
  • Tour the French writer Frederic Mistral’s home in Provence
  • Watch the Paris of Henry Miller and Ernest Hemingway come alive
  • Visit the setting for Phantom of the Opera by Leroux
  • Discover the little-known museum of the Romance writers, where George Sand (a female) stayed to write

This women-only tour is designed to take you back in time in order to soak up the atmosphere, museums, boardwalk strolls, literary haunts, and the spirits of literature’s greatest talents plus some of France’s best artists as well. This is a very luxurious trip that spans the most famous and beloved regions in the South of France starting in Nice, traveling up to Arles making a stop in Aix-en-Provence.


Day 1 – May 31st, Tuesday

After checking in at your leisure at our 4-star boutique hotel in the center of the historical old town of Nice which back in the day was a favorite of Matisse, Fitzgerald, Nietzsche & Chekov, enjoy a rest in your room or stroll along the iconic Promenade des Anglais and gaze out to the majestic Mediterranean Sea, a few feet from our hotel.

At 7:00pm we will meet in the hotel courtyard for a welcome drink before heading out for dinner at the iconic Negresco hotel Chagall, the Beatles, and where Grace Kelly once stayed.


Day 2 – June 1st, Wednesday

This morning we will discover the hidden secrets of some famous writers’ haunts in Nice. We’ll then head up to the charming ancient hill town of nearby Èze where we will enjoy a leisurely lunch before exploring the incredible Villa Ephrussi a Rothschild mansion, and its magical gardens.

We’ll return to Nice in the afternoon, for some rest and relaxation before having dinner at a gourmet local treasure, Le Sens.


Day 3 – June 2nd, Thursday

Today is dedicated to St Paul de Vence, where you will walk in the footsteps of artists and writers such as James Baldwin who spent the last 7 years of his life writing in a rental home perched in the countryside here. The Foundation in his memory is happy to welcome us and we will meet with some of their writers in residence.

Lunch will be at the iconic Colombe D’Or where you can peer around at the paintings of Picasso, Leger and mobiles by Calder. The place is legendary, and you’ll learn the whole story of this incredible hotel and restaurant while on site. Then we’ll head to enjoy an initiation tour of the Fragonard perfume factory in Grasse, the flower and perfume capital of France.

Afterwards we will have tea at Belles Rives where the Fitzgerald’s of Great Gatsby fame stayed for some time back when it was a private villa.

In the evening will enjoy a scrumptious dinner at Le Bistro Marcel a place that feels as if you’ve stepped back in time to the 1920’s.


Day 4 – June 3rd, Friday

Today we will transfer to Arles with a stop on the way in charming Aix-en-Provence where Peter Mayle enjoyed people watching and having a café on the Cours Mirabeau. A light lunch in the courtyard of the Caumont mansion and art center will be followed by an audio tour.

In the afternoon we will visit Cezanne’s atelier up in the hills, where you’ll swear he just left for a walk as everything is still  in-tact. He painted the St. Victoire mountain in this studio over 60 times.

In Arles you will be staying in the 5-star Jules Cesar Hotel which has been renovated and decorated by haute couture fashion designer Christian Lacroix. Upon arrival and check-in, you’ll have time to go to the spa or relax by the pool.

Arles was Van Gogh’s home in the South of France as well as home to a number of writers including American poet and novelist Jim Harrison.
“I’d have often thought that if I received an early warning that I would pass on sooner than later, I’d get myself to Lyon and eat for a solid month….maybe I’d swim all the way downstream to Arles for my last supper.”

During your afternoon break you might want to enjoy some time at the pool or in their spa. Dinner will be at the casual Mediterranean bistro Le Criquet.

HOTEL: Jules Cesar

Day 5 – June 4th, Saturday

This morning is free for you to discover the glories of the outdoor market right outside of your hotel. It’s one of the most interesting and vibrant markets in the south.

After a light lunch, we will meet a writer in residence at the outstanding Luma Foundation in Arles designed by no less than architect Frank Gehry!

In the evening we will diner at the artistic Arlatan, which is belongs to the owner of Luma.

HOTEL: Jules Cesar

Day 6 – June 5th, Sunday

Today will commence with a tour of French Provençal writer, Frederic Mistral’s home filled with original items celebrating his life, friendships and other surprising encounters. You’ll enjoy lunch in the gardens of a family owned mansion in the vineyards where you will be welcomed by the owner who will share their passion for the wines of Provence.

On the way back to Arles, you’ll meet two women who produce some of the best olive oils in the area followed by a photo stop at short story writer Alphonse Daudet’s windmill, his favorite spot and the inspiration for writing his short sentimental stories about provincial life titled “letters from my windmill”.

HOTEL: Jules Cesar

Day 7 – June 6th, Monday

Time to say goodbye to the south of France and to good friends made.


GG2P always reserves the right to alter the itinerary based on weather or availability as well as exciting opportunities that might crop up!

NOTE -> Not to worry – Vegetarians will be well fed in all cafés and restaurants as well as those allergic to seafood or gluten. Options are plentiful.

Trip Cost

Trip Cost: 5195 Euros 

  • * All our trips are organized and priced based on single occupancy at all the places we stay. Everyone gets their own fabulous room! If you’re traveling with a friend/relative, or would prefer to save some money by sharing a room, we can usually organize double occupancy at a reduction in cost. Please inquire.
  • * All our trips are priced in the home currency of the trip’s location; however, we will invoice you in the equivalent USD calculated at the exchange rate at the time of invoice.
  • Interest-free payment plans are available. Please inquire.

What’s included?

  • Everything stated in itinerary above including all meals + wine with dinner
  • All guides and tastings
  • Museum or other entry fees
  • All in-country transport including transfers to and from the train station, pick up and drop off

What’s not Included?

  • Roundtrip airfare to France
  • Transfers to and from hotels
  • Train to the South of France
  • Any Spa Treatments desired
  • Any personal souvenirs or purchases
  • Additional wine, beer or spirits beyond what is offered at meals
  • Travel insurance (highly recommended) and trip medical coverage (required for travelers over 50 years of age).

I’m interested, so what do I do next?

If you have questions, press the Inquire Now button above, and complete the form. We’ll get back to you ASAP.

If you’d like to come, press the Reserve Now button above. You will be prompted to complete a form with your pertinent details, put down a refundable $250 deposit, and schedule a time to speak with a GG2P representative. We like to speak with everyone before they embark on their first trip with Girls’ Guide to Paris & Beyond. This allows you to ask any questions or voice any concerns you may have. These are intimate, small group trips; a quick yet personal conversation allows you to get to know how our trips work and make sure it’s right for you. If it’s not, we’ll immediately refund your $250 deposit.

If it’s a Go! after your call, we’ll bill you for a non-refundable deposit, usually 35% of the trip’s cost (less the $250 place-holder deposit, if you already paid it) and your place is reserved. At this point, you’re committed to the trip, so we recommend that you purchase Travel Insurance to protect you in case your plans change unexpectedly. The balance will be due approximately 2 months before the trip.

Our cancellation policy is here.

Inquire About This Trip

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