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Best of France: Paris, Provence and the Côte d’Azur
Learn how to make macarons in Paris, stay in an 18th-century Provençal château and explore the Calanques of Cassis by boat
About your trip
From elegant Paris to the French Riviera, uncover the best that France has to offer in 8 days.
Your adventure begins in Paris, where you’ll explore the charming Quartier Latin on an immersive scavenger hunt, and create traditional macarons in one of the city’s most upmarket destinations. Then, travel south to uncover France’s wild beauty along the Côte d’Azur, and weave your way through Old Town Cannes and Monaco for a taste of glamorous Riviera living.
- Local transport
- Most meals included
- Max 14 Flashpackers
- Atol protected
- Private airport transfers
Remember, flights aren't included. We're happy to help you find the best ones for you.
Day 01 Pigalle, Montmartre and the Moulin Rouge
Bienvenue à Paris. Touch down in one of the world’s most celebrated cities – renowned for its fashion, food and formidable heritage – where you’ll meet your fellow travellers and guide. Head out to Montmartre, where you’ll get to know your group over a glass of champagne by the stairs of Sacre Coeur, with panoramic views of Paris unfolding before you. Then work up an appetite as you explore Pigalle (your home for the next few days) by foot. Home to the Moulin Rouge and a famous red-light district, this characterful neighbourhood boasts a historical charm. Dinner tonight will be a three-course affair in a Montmartre restaurant, followed by an evening stroll through the streets.
Day 02 A scavenger hunt in Quartier Latin
This morning, hop on Paris’ metro to make your way to Le Marais – a neighbourhood famed for its boutiques, galleries and vibrant LGBT community. Stop by the market for a fresh smoothie, before making your way to Le Luxembourg for a typically French picnic consisting of local wines, cheeses and fresh pastries. This afternoon will take you to the Quartier Latin, where you’ll explore the streets on a scavenger hunt. Follow this with a leisurely evening on the Seine, enjoying a refreshing drink as your boat carries down the river.
Day 03 Making macarons in Galeries Lafayette
Start the morning in style with a tour of Paris’ most iconic landmarks in a charming 50s-style Citroen car. Then, in the afternoon, make your way to the upmarket Galeries Lafayette, where you’ll learn how to make macarons in pastel hues (consumption included). Continue your foodie adventure this evening, with dinner in a former squat (it’s a nice squat, we promise). During the 80s, this former railway depot became an industrial wasteland, inhabited by artists and musicians. Experience a unique taste of Parisian gastronomy, surrounded by graffiti and street art from ages past.
Day 04 From Paris to Aix-en-Provence
This morning will see you travel south to Aix-en-Provence (pronounced like the letter X), a sun-soaked city on the Côte d’Azur with an impressive artistic legacy. Upon arrival, enjoy a wholesome lunch at a family-run restaurant, with fresh local products transformed into regional dishes. Then, following tradition, your afternoon will be spent mastering the basics of watercolour painting in the gardens of an 18th century castle (your grand home for the next few days), under the guidance of a Provençal artist. In the evening, experience an exclusive wine tasting, before enjoying a sumptuous meal in your castle lodgings.
Day 05 Explore the coves of Cassis
Take a transfer to Cassis this morning, a fishing port lined with restaurants, bars and pebbled beaches. En route to Cassis, make time for a quick stop in Gardanne to explore its picturesque streets and morning market stalls, with fresh regional produce to stock up on. Then, once you arrive in Cassis, take a scenic boat ride through the beautiful fjord-like calanques that the region is famed for. These rugged cliffs and inlets are a wonder to explore; be sure to bring your swimming gear, because you’ll have the chance to dive in for some snorkelling. Savour the sparkling blues of the water (which gives the Côte d’Azur its name) before returning to Cassis for a leisurely lunch. Back at the château, the rest of the afternoon is yours to enjoy the luxurious beauty of your surroundings.
Day 06 A day in Cannes and Nice
Your adventure today will take you to the streets of Cannes, celebrated for its iconic film festival. Venture beyond its glamorous facade into the cobbled alleys of Le Suquet – the ancient Old Town dating back to Roman times. Explore the labyrinthine streets that, for a long time, belonged to a sleepy fishing village on the French Riviera, before expanding into world-famous Cannes as we know it today. Enjoy lunch in one of its charming bistros, before making your way to Nice. As evening falls, head out to find dinner with your group in one of the city’s many fine restaurants.
Day 07 Good morning, Monaco
Onwards to Monaco – a tiny city state with a huge reputation. The world’s second smallest country (after the Vatican City) is home to famous casinos and a yacht-lined harbour. Spend the morning cycling the legendary Grand Prix circuit, savouring the unique atmosphere of the city. Find a local restaurant for lunch with your group, then head back to Nice for a leisurely afternoon on the beach. In the evening, head out together for a farewell dinner by the sea, as the sun fades over the French Riviera.
Day 08 Until next time, France
Make the most of your final breakfast at your hotel, before checking out at midday. It’s now over to you to make your own way onwards. Spend the afternoon exploring lovely Nice if your flight departs later, or extend your European adventure with a yoga escape in Tuscany.
Our Favourite Hotels
Browse a selection of our favourite hotels, for a flavour of where you may stay on this trip.
Château de Fonscolombe, Provence
A 5* hotel immersed in the Provencal countryside
Located a short drive from Aix-en-Provence, this 18th century castle is brimming with history and opulent splendour.
Why we stay here
This beautiful hotel is all about luxurious comforts. Expect a heated outdoor pool, a wellness centre and a vineyard estate at your fingertips.
Hôtel Sacha, Paris
Stylish hotel located in the heart of Montmartre
With the theatre district, the Moulin Rouge and vibrant Pigalle all within reach, this hotel is located in an up-and-coming area that is well-connected to Central Paris.
Why we stay here
The biggest draw of this hotel is undoubtedly its location. Offering a simple but comfortable experience, this is the perfect place to put your feet up after a day spent exploring Pigalle.
*Hotel rooms in Paris are typically smaller than in other parts of France, and this is no exception.
The Deck Hotel, Nice
Four-star hotel with charming nautical theme
Decorated in riviera blues, the sense of escapism you’ll feel here is palpable. Close your eyes, and you could be drifting along the Côte d’Azur.
Why we stay here
This hotel comes with lovely, comfortable bedrooms and a games room complete with a pool table, and it’s only a short walk to the seafront.
Fly into Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG) and fly out of Nice Côte d’Azur Airport (NCE).
We recommend arriving before 3pm, to allow you enough time to check into your hotel and freshen up before meeting your group at 5.30pm.
As the airport is well-connected to the city through public transport, we suggest taking the train to Gare du Nord – this will be the quickest and cheapest option for you. We can, however, arrange an arrival and departure transfer for you, but please note that this is an optional extra and not included in the price.
Please be aware that the itinerary, activities and hotels are subject to change. These changes can happen with little notice due to availability, poor weather, seasonal changes, or other circumstances beyond our control – but we’ll always do our best to ensure it has little impact on your experience. From time to time, we may also make changes to your itinerary to try out new ideas and keep things fresh and exciting
We take safety very seriously on Flash Pack adventures – read more here.
Joining the Flash Pack community comes with a few special guarantees...
Our trips are for like-minded people in their 30s and 40s – and 98% of them join us solo. It’s almost a given you’ll make friends.
We know the world’s best bits, so your adventure will always be immersive and authentic, and your accommodation hand-picked.
Our guides on the ground know their destinations better than anyone, so expect unprecedented access to local living and cultural secrets.
We take all the hassle out of travel planning for you. Unique accommodation? Activities? People? Sorted.
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