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AIX-EN-PROVENCE REGION

The city of art, the city of light and activity. Aix was the capitol of Provence in the 15th century. Wealthy merchants and local dignitaries helped turn this city into the Florence of Provence as we know it today. Aix is surrounded by a countryside full of authentic Provencal houses and traditional French style gardens.

AIX EN PROVENCE

Aix-en-Provence is the city of art, and a city of light and activity. Aix is also a home of art schools and several universities. Aix is also ancient: a Celtic-Ligurian capital from the 3rd century BC was pushed aside for the founding of Aix in 122 BC, as Aquae Sextiae

THE AREA

Aix is a city located in the Provence region of southeastern France. A university town, it is a recognized center of art in the region, being the site of a number of art schools and universities. As with many other towns that have a large student population, Aix has a lively and vibrant atmosphere that blends remarkably well with its rich historical heritage. That history goes back a long way. The area in which Aix now stands has actually served as an important center of culture and civilization since ancient times. Before the city was founded in 122 BC, it was the capital of the Celtic-Ligurian settlement dating back to 3 BC. It was then that Aquae Sextiae–which would later be renamed Aix-en-Provence–was founded. The old town–known locally as vieille ville–is located in the center of the city. Surrounded by a concentric array of squares and boulevards, it is a fairly small area that can be traversed within a few minutes walk. Despite its relatively small area however, the old town holds a wealth of sights and attractions, from markets and shops to museums, churches, historical monuments, and more, the town center offers a rewarding array of sights to explore.

RESTAURANTS

Aix-en-Provence has every kind of restaurant imaginable, from fast-foods to the highest of haute-cuisine (two Michelin 3-stars). L’Esprit de la Violette - led by chef Marc de Passorio, this high-quality restaurant sits in a beautiful French garden, the menu is extremely creative, with options from the amuse-bouche to dessert. Le Poivre D’Ane - located in the city square, this restaurant is the perfect place to visit for a night out on the town. The classic cuisine is personalized with touches from international influences. for a great price, try the Discovery menu. Le Contrepoint - this cozy brasserie serves the perfect blend of classic French and American cuisine, and is known for their attentive staff, relaxed atmosphere, Mitch - located in the city center of Aix. The fine French cuisine is delicious and presented beautifully. The romantic music and comfortable lounge atmosphere are idyllic for a warm, summer evening. Le Millefeuille - provincial plates made with farm fresh, local market ingredients at Le Millefeuille. The tasty food is served in this stylishly decorated restaurant. Lavault - where contemporary meets classic, in both the food and decor. Le Formal – Caves Hevri IV - located in a cave underneath the old city of Aix, Le Formal offers a seven-course fixed menu in a warm, cozy environment.

NIGHTCLUBS AND BARS

Aix-en-Provence is a great place to try all the local French wine that you normally wouldn’t find elsewhere. Given the relatively small nature of Aix, it’s amazing the number of bars and discotheques that they’ve managed to fit into the vicinity.

Activities

Aix's Mediterranean geography creates a warm climate; with more than 300 sunny days per year, it's great for an outdoor holiday. One can find all the beauty of the noble Provence of the17th and 18th centuries: handsome houses of the upper class, private mansions, city squeres bursting with flowers, ancient fountains and shaded narrow streets.

CULTURE

Aix was the inspiration to many of the greatest writers and painters : Guigou, Stendhal, Mistral, Zola, and Cézanne. There is even a special Cezanne tour which one can follow through the streets of Aix stopping at points marked with a C. As a city of art and culture Aix possesses a wealth of superbe architecture that has been carefully preserved and restored. Walking through the Cours Mirabeau and the Rue Gaston de Saporta one can admire the private mansions with their sculptured doors and windows and the intricate iron work on the balconies.

More about Aix

MARKETS

Main Market - Mon, Tue, Thur, Sat. The main market by the Palais de Justice is a big affair of fresh produce and food, bric-à-brac and flea-market. The flower market is on the Place de Verdun and Place des Prêcheurs, by the Ste-Madeleine church. The clothing market that used to be around the old prison is now along the "other side" of the Cours Mirabeau. The old prison, smack in the center of town, was rebuilt as an administrative building [1996-97]. Food Market. A daily market with food and fresh produce is held in the Place Richelme, between the post office and the old grain market.

EVENTS

The "Semaine des Spectacles" is a weekly guide available from newsstands. It comes out every Wednesday, and contains everything that's going on in the towns of Provence and the Côte d'Azur (including Aix, Cannes, Nice). It lists restaurants, nightclubs, movies, museums, and other diversions. "La Semaine" is a weekly guide for Aix, available free from the Office de Tourisme. In addition to the movies, theaters and concerts for Aix, it has a calendar of expositions for most of the Beyond region.

Travel to Aix

AIRPORTS

The nearest major airport is Marseille Provence Airport (MRS / LFML). This airport has international and domestic flights from Marseille, France and is 27 km from the center of Aix-en-Provence. Another major airport is Avignon Caumont Airport (AVN / LFMV), which has domestic flights from Avignon, France and is 71 km from Aix-en-Provence. Toulon-Hyères Airport (TLN / LFTH) has international and domestic flights from Toulon, France and is 106 km from Aix-en-Provence.

TRANSFERS

We can arrange for a mini bus, taxi, or chauffeur-driven service from your chosen airport to your luxury chalet in Aix.

RAIL

Two train stations serve Aix en Provence, the high-speed train station outside the city and Aix Centre, the downtown regional (TER) station.

SELF-DRIVING

Most of our properties in Aix offer off-road parking and otherwise we can make arrangements for your vehicle to be safely stored while you enjoy your stay.

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