It's a slower pace of life here in southern France. Amid the Alpilles, where olive trees glisten silver in the breeze. Where limestone hills press wavelike against the ultra-blue sky. And sun-drenched villages tempt you to linger, relax over a pastis or a local rosé. In the Lubéron, it's a celebration of color, be it poppies and wildflowers in spring, lavender in summer or changing grape leaves in fall. Pedal quiet roads to medieval hilltop towns. Soak up views of vineyards, orchards and windswept countryside. And rejoice in the Provençal cornucopia: fresh goat cheese, honey, olives, tapenade, sun-dried tomatoes and heavenly pastries. Find bliss in Provence, with Backroads, on a bicycle.
Day 1 Incredible biking through perched villages, vineyards, olive groves and orchards Warm up your cycling muscles and get to know the Alpilles, a world of windswept crags dotted with oak, pine and cypress trees Explore Les Baux, perched high above a limestone landscape pockmarked with caves and said to be frequented by witches and goblins.
Day 2 Discover the vibrant artist community of St-Rémy, filled with fountains, gardens, cheery cafés and tree-lined boulevards Join a historian on a visit to the asylum where Vincent van Gogh spent his last days Drop in at a delightful olive oil mill, for a tour and tasting.
Day 3 Before bidding adieu to the dramatic scenery of the Alpilles, bike to Eygalières, a small terraced town guarded by an ancient castle Spin to the picturesque walled village of Ménerbes nestled in the Lubéron mountains Ride along the route de Jean Moulin, a scenic road bordered by pine trees, vineyards and quintessential Provençal scenery.
Day 4 Marvel at the beauty of Gordes, a striking <i>village perché</i> clinging to the craggy southern face of the high Vaucluse Plateau Quiet roads lead through rolling fields of lavender and wheat into the foothills of Mont Ventoux, the "Giant of Provence" Rub shoulders with the locals in quintessential Provençal villages such as Venasque, listed among Les Plus Beaux Villages de France (France's Most Beautiful Villages).
Days 5-6 Savor farm-fresh cuisine and noteworthy regional wines Views of Mont Ventoux, the "Giant of Provence" are unsurpassed on your ride today Surrounded by venerable Côtes du Ventoux vineyards, relish a final spin through idyllic hamlets of the Vaucluse.
- Incredible biking through perched villages, vineyards and orchards
- Discover the vibrant artist community of St-Rémy
- A tour and tasting at an olive oil mill
- Soak up Provençal life in renowned Gordes and ochre-hued Roussillon
Auberge de la Benvengudo (2 nights): Situated at the base of Les Baux and surrounded by a tranquil garden, this hotel was once a typical Provence family home. (pool, tennis)
Le Roy Soleil (1 night): You are sure to feel connected to nature at this lovely hotel nestled among the Lubéron mountain range. (pool, spa)
Château de Mazan (2 nights): This elegant 18th-century château, former residence of the Marquis de Sade, rests at the foot of towering Mount Ventoux. (pool)
Every Backroads trip is designed to appeal to a wide variety of
interests and fitness levels. We know your pace may vary from one
day to the next-and your traveling companion's may differ somewhat
from yours. So we present a range of mileage options, and each
day you decide exactly what and how much you want to do.
Routes For All Abilities
|Daily Route Options|
|Level 1||Level 2||Level 3||Level 4||Level 5|
|miles||feet gain||miles||feet gain||miles||feet gain||miles||feet gain||miles||feet gain|
* Includes a shuttle
2013 Dates & Pricing*
- 5/26-31 Price: $3398 pp dbl. occ., (+ $680 for sgl. occ.)
- 6/2-7 Price: $3298 pp dbl. occ., (+ $680 for sgl. occ.)
- 6/9-14 Price: $3398 pp dbl. occ., (+ $680 for sgl. occ.)
- 6/16-21 Price: $3398 pp dbl. occ., (+ $680 for sgl. occ.)
- 6/23-28 Price: $3398 pp dbl. occ., (+ $680 for sgl. occ.)
- 6/30-7/5 Price: $3398 pp dbl. occ., (+ $680 for sgl. occ.)
- 7/7-12 Price: $3398 pp dbl. occ., (+ $680 for sgl. occ.)
- 7/14-19 Price: $3398 pp dbl. occ., (+ $680 for sgl. occ.)
- 7/28-8/2 Price: $3398 pp dbl. occ., (+ $680 for sgl. occ.)
- 8/25-30 Price: $3298 pp dbl. occ., (+ $680 for sgl. occ.)
- 9/1-6 Price: $3298 pp dbl. occ., (+ $680 for sgl. occ.)
- 9/8-13 Price: $3398 pp dbl. occ., (+ $680 for sgl. occ.)
- 9/10-15 Price: $3098 pp dbl. occ., (+ $680 for sgl. occ.)
- 9/15-20 Price: $3298 pp dbl. occ., (+ $680 for sgl. occ.)
- 9/22-27 Price: $3098 pp dbl. occ., (+ $680 for sgl. occ.)
- 9/24-29 Price: $3398 pp dbl. occ., (+ $680 for sgl. occ.)
- 9/29-10/4 Price: $3098 pp dbl. occ., (+ $680 for sgl. occ.)
- 10/1-6 Price: $3098 pp dbl. occ., (+ $680 for sgl. occ.)
- 10/6-11 Price: $3098 pp dbl. occ., (+ $680 for sgl. occ.)
*Prices may change. Once you book your trip, your price is guaranteed.
Guest Trip Reviews
I just got home a few minutes ago and can honestly say that this was about the best trip I have ever taken!! The guides were just fantastic, the trip itinerary was amazing, the food and lodging were superb, and the other participants were just terrific. We ended up like a big extended family, although no one really knew anyone else when we started. We all had a blast and I for one can't wait to sign up for the next trip!!- Boston, MA
This was the quintessential Backroads trip- fantastic biking, culture, food, scenery and people. It keeps getting better!- Clayton, MO
This was a great overall experience. I liked the "casual inn" format. It fit our needs for a good balance of physical activity, accommodations and dining. We are already scanning the catalog for another trip.- Portland, OR
It was the trip of a lifetime and was the perfect recipe of all that we find essential to the ideal trip: beautiful scenery, interesting culture with opportunity to use a foreign language, historical sites, gourmet food, and active outdoors time--yet without any of the associated stressors that usually come with planning such adventures. It didn't hurt that the weather was beyond unbelievable as well! Thanks for such an unreal experience that provided memories for a lifetime!- Philadelphia, PA
This trip far exceeded our expectations -- fantastic, competent guides, great equipment, beautiful region, wonderful food and accommodations and more. I calibrate the enjoyment of a vacation is how long the memories stay with me after it is over. Six weeks later, I still reflect on our week in Provence every day. I regard it as one of our best vacations ever.- Potomac, MD
I can't think of a more exciting way to be introduced to France! Everything from the ride routes to the food was superb, well planned, and of the highest quality. I had a wonderful experience, and would recommend Backroads to anyone without hesitation.- Ketchum, ID
This was the best trip I have ever taken in my life. It was exceedingly well organized. Dare I say perfect? This is the first time that I continually miss a place where I just took a vacation. I miss the multisensory experience of biking through the back roads of Provence - the lavender fields, sunflower fields, bread and cheese (nothing like these to be found anywhere in the US), winding through perched medieval villages, the satisfaction of completing a long ride and getting to eat whatever I want. I really appreciated the well-written directions that enabled me to safely bicycle alone when I wanted to. I appreciated the thoughtful inclusion of features of Provence that in 6 days made me feel like I got a taste of everything that it had to offer. I tend to live in my head a lot in real life. The biking experience kept me in the here and now, which leaves me with a flood of what feels like several weeks worth of memories. Our trip leaders were quite literally omniscient and omnipresent. I put a photo of the experience on my laptop desktop as well as on my desk to bring back the feelings of amazement, expansiveness, connectedness with the earth that I experienced while biking with Backroads in Provence.- Santa Monica, CA
Provence is sheer heaven for "real bikers" who want to experience the essence of French culture!- Potsdam, NY
As soon as I said "au revoir!" to our delightful guides, I was overcome with awe and appreciation for the trip. I was nervous about the biking. That ended up being a wonderful challenge that I am proud to say I accomplished. And it was worth it! Eating the cheeses and breads, drinking the local wines, the espresso. Seeing the sights of lavender, poppies, cherry trees. Staying at lovely country inns and a chateau....it was a dream come true. Anyone considering this trip- Go!!!- Boulder, CO
This trip far exceeded my expectations. I really got to experience the best of Provence: its cultural and historical heritage, the food, and the sites and smells (gardenia, roses, lavender, and honeysuckle ). What a fantastic treat for the senses and for the mind.- Hoboken, NJ
Once again Backroads has done an outstanding job of providing the ultimate in both service and fun! The Provence area was incredible to see and our leaders were so knowledgeable about everything in the area, I was amazed. The accommodations were beyond my expectations as well as the food. The bikes were incredible. I won't be able to get back on mine at home!- Columbus, OH
It became very evident over the past week for what reason you are the operation everyone tries to emulate in the adventure travel business.- Norfolk, VA
This was a wonderful trip in all aspects. Our leaders worked extremely hard to ensure our every need was not only met, but anticipated before we even realized we had a need! We've taken many active trips with various companies, starting with Backroads many years ago, then tried others. We're now back home with Backroads and will be loyal riders and walkers with your company for years to come. From the first communiqué with your company to the goodbyes with the trip leaders, we couldn't have asked for a more comprehensive, well-planned vacation in a beautiful part of the world!
Wildly exceeded my expectations! I have never taken a "tour" vacation before and wasn't sure how I would like the experience. I loved this trip! The accommodations were exactly what I would pick for myself and it was a treat to have someone else deal with the arrangements, luggage, etc. The biking was terrific. We got to do and see so much each day but it was never overwhelming. I also liked that I could bike at my pace and my husband could find faster people in the group to ride with so that each of us could enjoy the experience.- Glendale, CA
Being able to proceed at my own pace allowed me to make the trip what I wanted it to be. I enjoyed the variety of activities: the Van Gogh tour, shopping in St-Remy, the winery, to name a few. And our leaders were so friendly and attentive - their picnic lunches were gourmet experiences!- Portland, ME
We had a wonderful time. Loved the experience. Thanks for helping us celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary and my 60th birthday!!- San Anselmo, CA
We have many friends who have taken Backroads trips in the past and highly recommended every one to us. We were not disappointed. We know one couple who traveled to Tuscany on a Premiere trip last year, but when we told them about this Casual Inn trip, they were pleased to know such options were available. Although we can't compare the two experiences, we certainly can't say anything was lacking. We would truly recommend this to anyone and will take another trip with Backroads in the future.- Salt Lake City, UT
This was the best week of my long life! I can't stop talking about it to friends. The leaders could not have been better. Absolutely the best! The bikes were comfortable and the support from the leaders great. The food and accommodations were even better than I anticipated.- Jacksonville, FL
The trip surpassed any vacation I could ever imagine! The biking was physically and mentally challenging, I felt great, I enjoyed having everything pre-planned! I loved the countryside, loved Provence, the smells and the sites!- Palm Beach, FL