Self-Guided Art Walks in Provence
With so many things closed right now, maybe seizing the opportunity of a sunny January day to wrap up and have a walk around some purely Provencal sites might be just the ticket to lift the spirits; and if you’re not in Provence right now, these seven art walks may be useful for when you are!
Self-Guided Art Walks
Aix-en-Provence: In the Footsteps of Cézanne. If you are new to Aix, this is a good guide to the locations where Paul Cézanne lived, worked and died. The tourism office has a map and a downloadable guide. This walk is roughly 3.3 kilometres in length and should take about two (3) hours to complete on foot, depending on your pace and the number of photo stops. Learn about the painter’s life and admire the architecture of Aix-en-Provence as you follow the bronze “C” stamps along the route.
Additional reading on Paul Cézanne:
Le Cannet: In Bonnard’s Footsteps. This walk is an intermediate stroll that is steep in some places and takes around 2 hours. It starts at the Bonnard Museum, travels along the Siagne canal, and past the Le Bosquet studio-house. You’ll get a look at some of the breathtaking landscapes that inspired some of Bonnard’s famous pieces. Read more about this gorgeous stroll here!
The tour map to “In the footsteps of Bonnard” is available at the reception of the museum and tourism information desks. In the summer, a guided tour* is organized upon request.
*Reservations must be made 48 hours in advance. Phone: +33 (0)4 93 45 34 27
Le Lavandou: Path of the Painters. This guided pathway is a quiet stroll that spans around 2.5km takes around an hour to complete. It gives you a glimpse into the creative minds of two painters, Henri-Edmond Cross and Theo Van Rysselberghe. These two artists were important figures of the neo-impressionist movement in Lavandou. Read more about le Chemin des Peintres here!
83980 Le Lavandou
L’Estaque: Chemin des Peintres. This 2-hour stroll along the harbour and along the painters’ path in the little port of Estaque presents the history of the working-class district that many painters knew and loved. The small town has little changed from the one major painters like Cézanne and Braque found inspiration in. You’ll get to view 8 enamelled lava information panels to delve deeper into what these painters found so beautiful about the area.
St Remy: La Route Vincent Van Gogh. This walk is around 1km and should take an hour to complete, and is relatively easy. It leads through the picturesque countryside that inspired some of the most famous works of the one and only Vincent Van Gogh. You’ll get a close look at 19 reproductions painted by the artist during his stay in Saint Rémy.
Arles: Nine walks with 5 themes. If you’d like to get to know this ever-developing town, this walk is a great way to do so! Each stroll or tour has its own unique purpose, from Roman monuments to sites that inspired some of Van Gogh’s most famous pieces. Each walk or tour has its own length and varying times to complete, but all are relatively easy to complete. Read here for more information!
Arles Tourism Office
9 Boulevard des Lices
Andy Goldsworthy’s Refuge d’Art. If you’re a mid-level, avid hiker with a particular interest in the arts, this 8-10 day hike is an excellent option for you! Compiled of several hikes that span a collective 150km, these trails promise stunning landscapes and contemporary art, making for a stimulating experience for all! If you’re interested in learning more about these hikes, read more here!
Château la Coste Art & Architecture Walk. If vineyards are more your pace, the Château La Coste is a great place to visit all year round! The stunning domain is nestled along rolling vineyards and offers more than just wine. You’ll find art, architecture, and fabulous dining options that are sure to impress. The Art & Architecture walk offered at the Château takes around 2 hours to complete, is suitable for any experience level, and gives you the option to relax with a glass of wine afterwards! For more information, read here!