Fields of lavender and the wonderful smells of fresh rosemary, thyme and olive trees are just a few of the pleasures that await you each day on the wonderful ride. Riding Spanish Barb and Selle Francais horses, you will see this fertile area in the south of France the way the villagers did 200 years ago.
This part of the Luberon region of Provence is very friendly, sun drenched and will leave your taste buds overflowing with wonderful experiences. It is often a favorite and many clients have repeatedly chosen this ride as the area is even today, virtually undiscovered by tourists.
Each day you will ride through vineyards, olive groves and forests where you arrive to find lunch waiting you. You will continue after lunch on old Roman roads built over 2,000 years ago and if the day is clear, you will see the Mediterranean Sea on one side and the snow capped Alps on the other with the quintessential Provencal villages spread out beneath you.
The ride will take you through the lower part of the French Alps and along part of the unspoiled areas of France. This is the France of Cezanne, Van Gogh, Gaugin and more recently, the home and setting of Peter Mayles famous novel “A Year in Provence”.
2023 Dates: May 21-27, Oct. 29-Nov. 4
Rates: $1,995.00 USD per person sharing (Single Supplement: $365.00 USD)
- 6 nights accommodation
- 5 days of riding
- Horse and all tack
- All meals
- Wine with meals
- Luggage transfers
- Support Staff
- Guiding services
- All local taxes
- Travel insurance
- Gratuities for the team at the end of the stay
- Beverages outside of meals
- Visits or tips not outlined in the itinerary
Sunday: The group will gather after 6 pm at the guesthouse in Lauris for a briefing and apertif. Dinner and night at the guesthouse.
Day 2: Lauris – Merindol
You will follow the vines, sheltered by the southern side of the Luberon. On the way, chance of a wine tasting visit in a “Cave de Vins”. Picnic in a pine grove: a copious buffet prepared by our assistant. In the evening, horses stay in Merindol, riders are transfered to the accommodation in Lauris. A pleasant meal accompanied by a “Coteaux d’Aix-en-Provence”.
Day 3: Merindol – Oppède
After breakfast, transfer bach to the horses in Merindol. Ride through pine forests with wonderful views of the Durance valley with orchards, whose fruit you will taste at the picnic. In the afternoon, landscapes of cliffs where eagles and other birds of prey nest. Arrive at Oppède where the horses will stay for the night. For the riders transfer to Coustellet. Dinner at the restaurant and night at the hotel.
Day 4: Oppède – Venasque
Today, you enter into the “Côtes de Ventoux” producing area, via the Vaucluse mounts. You will reach the “mur du peste” a wall constructed in 1720 to protect the populations from the great epidemic that spread from Marseille. Night near Venasque, a historical village.
Day 5: Venasque – Crillon le Brave
Countryside of rolling hills, through pine forests and cherry trees, facing the “Mont Ventoux” called the "Giant of Provence". Before lunch wine taste at the Domaine des Anges. In the late afternoon, you will arrive at the Moulin d'Antelon or other guesthouse near the village Crillon le Brave. The village takes its full name of Crillon-le-Brave from the most legendary of its dukes: Louis des Balbes de Berton de Crillon or "Le Brave Crillon" (1541–1615) was one of Henri IV's fiercest and most valiant generals during the French Wars of Religion in the late 16th century. The same Crillon family also gave its name to the famous Hôtel de Crillon in Paris. Before dinner you can enjoy the swimming pool.
Day 6: Crillon le Brave – Gigondas
You will ride through villages, with the “Mont Ventoux” in the background. Picnic near the Barroux village and chateau. In the afternoon you will discover the “Dentelles de Montmirail”, needle thin spikes and ridges (“dentelle” means lace). Wine taste at Domaine de Cassan, in the heart of this beautifull range. End of the ride at Gigondas. Transfer to Lauris.
Transfer to the airport and train station after an optional stop at the Aix en Provence market.