French & Italian Rivieras & Cinque Terre

French & Italian Rivieras & Cinque Terre

The French and Italian Rivieras & Cinque Terre Snapshot

Looking for Riviera tours? Look no further. Medieval hilltop villages, Pastis on your veranda overlooking the Mediterranean, Chagall’s art in Saint Paul de Vence, the flowers of Provence, the pink and yellow houses of Portofino, Cinque Terre’s striking cliffs, the incredible beauty of the Côte d’Azur.

2019 Tour Dates: September 10 – 23, 2020

2019 Tour Price: $7,890

Tour price includes:

  • Round trip airfare from Boston or NY to Nice, and back from Pisa*
  • Transfers from Nice Airport to first hotel and from last hotel to Pisa Airport
  • 12 nights in charming, elegant hotels with magnificent mountain or Mediterranean views: (5) overnights in Saint Paul de Vence (Provence); (2) Beaulieu-sur-Mer (French Riviera); (2) Santa Margherita (Italian Riviera); (3) Lerici (Cinque Terre)
  • All breakfasts, 10 dinners (some with wine), 2 special wine tasting lunches
  • Transportation in comfortable, air-conditioned mini-van or mini-coach
  • Full time tour leader
  • Visits to: Saint Paul de Vence, Antibes, Cannes, Biot, Vence, Eze, Nice, Villefranche, Monaco, Santa Margherita, Portofino, Lerici, Cinque Terre
  • Guided tours by local experts
  • Fun cooking class in Lerici
  • Winery visit and wine-tasting on the Italian Riviera
  • All tour guides, all museum and monument entrance fees, tips and taxes
Tour price is per person based on double occupancy.
Single supplements are available for those traveling alone who would like their own room.
*Cost of airfare can be deducted if you wish to make your own arrangements.

French & Italian Rivieras & Cinque Terre Itinerary

Depart the United States, flying overnight to Nice, France

Day 1
We arrive at the Nice airport and head to our waterfront hotel in Beaulieu-sur-Mer.  We relax and take a stroll along the yacht-filled harbor directly in front of our hotel. After a Pastis-tasting lesson on the roof terrace, we enjoy a delicious welcome dinner.
Overnight: Beaulieu-sur-Mer Meals:  D
Day 2
After breakfast, we take a tour of the Villa Rothschild estate on the elegant peninsula of Saint Jean Cap Ferrat. (Hardy walkers may take a beautiful path along the sea). The Villa Ile-de-France was built by Beatrice Ephrussi de Rothschild in the early 1900s as the perfect “dream villa” of the Riviera. The acres of formal gardens are magnificent.  Next we ride along the coast to Monaco, where our local guide shows us glimpses of the behind-the-scenes life in this elegant city.  We have lunch at Le Rocher, the lively neighborhood behind the palace at the top of the mountain. Dinner tonight is on the waterfront in the village of Villefranche-sur-Mer.
Overnight: Beaulieu-sur-Mer Meals: B, D
Day 3
This morning we drive up the mountain above Beaulieu to the magical, medieval village of Eze, which commands a breathtaking panoramic vista of the surrounding mountains and the Mediterranean Sea. After touring the famous Fragonard perfume factory outside the village, we wander through the village’s narrow car-free streets, peeking into some of the adorable boutiques cleverly nestled among ancient archways and alleys. After “lunch with a view” we descend the mountain and head to our home for the next five nights, a beautiful country inn outside the idyllic hilltop village of Saint Paul de Vence. Tonight is a special dinner of wonderful Provençal specialties.
Overnight: Saint Paul de Vence Meals: B, D
Day 4
This morning we explore the unforgettable village of Saint Paul. You may want to try your luck at the ancient Provence game of “boules” (bocci), popular in this part of France. In the afternoon we can either relax by the pool of our beautiful hotel or visit one of the world’s most renowned modern art museums, the Fondation Maeght. Tonight’s dinner is at the famous Colombe d’Or restaurant. A number of French Impressionist painters left their works here as payment when they stayed at the inn years ago, so this is truly a unique dining experience.
Overnight: Saint Paul de Vence Meals: B, D
Day 5
Today we visit the lively Mediterranean fishing village of Antibes. Within an ancient fortress perched over the sea is the Musée Picasso, containing many of the pieces Picasso painted while living here. We have time to explore the colorful local market before lunch. Next we take a tour of the Biot glassworks factory to see how the famous Biot bubble glass is made using the ancient hand blown method.  We return to Saint Paul for some time to relax before enjoying another gourmet dinner.
Overnight: Saint Paul de Vence Meals: B, D
Day 6
Today’s excursion is to the lively city of Cannes. We are sure to see a movie star or two! We then head to the village of Mougins, incredibly picturesque and crammed with art galleries. Mougins is also known for its large number of gastronomic restaurants, and we will have a lunch to remember in this wonderful setting.  We return to our hotel for a swim and a free evening
Overnight: Saint Paul de Vence Meals: B, D (served mid-day)
Day 7
This morning we enjoy a guided tour of Vieux (Old) Nice, including an optional visit to the famous Matisse Museum. After lunch we return to Saint Paul for some free time. Tonight we dine in the lovely town of Vence.
Overnight: Saint Paul de Vence Meals: B, D
Day 8
Today we say au revoir to France as we drive along the mountainous seacoast to the Italian Riviera. Passing Genoa, we enter the Riviera di Levante and arrive at our destination of Santa Margherita. We explore this beautiful seaside resort, and this evening enjoy dinner on the picturesque harbor.
Overnight: Santa Margherita Meals: B, D
Day 9
A boat ride along the mountainous coast takes us to Portofino, known for its colorful medieval houses and spectacular scenic vistas. After lunch in Portofino, we take another boat ride to Fruttuoso and Camogli, two lovely fishing villages surrounded by high cliffs. We return to Santa Margherita for a relaxing free evening.
Overnight: Santa Margherita Meals: B
Day 10
Our next destination, on the Italian Ligurian coast, is the delightful harbor town of Lerici. Along the way we stop for a tour and a wine-tasting lunch at a friend’s family-owned winery. We then arrive at our beautiful hotel overlooking the sea in Lerici, gateway to the enchanting villages of the Cinque Terre. In the afternoon we enjoy a stroll along the water to a beautiful old castle. Tonight you can dine on fish or shellfish caught a few hours before dinner.
Overnight: Lerici Meals: B, L, D
Day 11
Today we spend the day visiting the five stunningly beautiful villages known as Cinque Terre. Be sure to bring your cameras for this photogenic experience. Each of these tiny villages- Riomaggiore, Manarola, Corniglia, Vernazza, and Monterosso- is unique and indescribably beautiful in a primitive, unspoiled way. We have the option of either taking a boat or hiking from village to village. We return to Lerici by boat for a relaxing evening. You are free to choose one of the many enticing outdoor restaurants along the promenade.
Overnight: Lerici Meals: B
Day 12
This morning we enjoy an entertaining cooking class in a local friend’s kitchen. In the afternoon we can walk off some calories on an oceanside hike, explore the streets of Lerici, or relax at our lovely hotel. In the evening we enjoy our farewell dinner at a charming restaurant with superb local dishes.
Overnight: Lerici Meals: B, L, D
Day 13
After breakfast, we drive to the Pisa Airport for the return flight.
Meals: B
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