The third stop for our summer adventure was Provence, a beautiful half-day road trip from Amboise. We chose Aix-en-Provence as our base for the week, and took several day trips out to explore the countryside and small provincial towns.
Our AirBnB apartment in Aix was just off the Cours Mirabeau - a wide boulevard lined with shops, restaurants, and some of the city's many fountains. It's a pedestrian-only street that's remarkably peaceful in the morning, full of shoppers in the afternoon, and has a busy social scene after dark. You'll also find Les Deux Garçons here, an historic brasserie that's served many famous artists, visionaries and entertainers since 1792.
Not too far away is the instagram-famous Maison Nosh, home to delicious breakfast (brewed coffee + egg sandwiches) and lunch (artisan hot dogs + juices). Also near the city center is Parc Jourdan, a small and pretty park where local students often hang out.
If you haven't just spent a week in museums, Cézanne's Atelier is one of Aix's most popular attractions. Exploring around the city and driving out for day trips gave us plenty of stunning views of Montagne Sainte Victoire, which Cézanne painted repeatedly.
Throughout the week, various markets pop up along Cours Mirabeau, but our favorite was the Saturday Market in Vieil Aix. Start at the flower market in Place de la Mairie, then visit the fruit and vegetable market in the neighboring Place Richelme for produce, honey, and lots of lavender. Stop at Patisserie Weibel for pastries or ice cream before wandering through the flea market along Place des Prêcheurs.
Next Stop, Provence: Luberon Villages