Magnificent Camargue

7.5 hours | Marseille (Provence) | MRS-700
From
$ 99.95
Medical restriction (See special notes)
Shorex Best Price Guarantee
Find a better price for any excursion we offer and we will refund you 110% of the price difference.
Shopping Opportunities, Moderate activity

Description

Be sure to read the Special Notes further down this page for important requirements and restriction.

Grab your binoculars and explore the wild and wonderful region of the Camargue, one third of which consists of wildlife-rich lakes and marshland. Located south of Arles, between the Mediterranean and the Rhone River delta, the largest river delta in Western Europe, it is home to numerous bird species, bulls, wild horses and special saltwater flora. This full-day adventure includes a guided tour of a wild-bird sanctuary, a walking tour and free time for lunch and shopping in the charming former fishing town of Saintes Maries de la Mer.

Your day will begin with a scenic motorcoach ride through the countryside. Keep your eyes open as you might be able to see some famous white horse breed specific to this region, the Camarguais. These horses are the traditional mount of the gardians, the local "cowboys" who herd the black Camargue bulls that are raised for "courses camarguaises" (bull run race).

You will stop at the Parc Ornithologique de Pont de Gau, a nature reserve that is home to thousands of birds, including the emblematic bird of the Camargue, the striking and graceful flamingo. Once on the verge of extinction, it now thrives in this region, which is one of only a few European habitats for this bird. The park hosts a nesting ground built on a small island that was built specifically to support flamingo breeding and has helped to rebuild the local population. Other wading birds that can be found at the park include herons, egrets and storks.

Your guide will tell you about the park, which ranges over 150 acres of saltwater marsh, and the various species of birds, insects and plants that live there. You will also hear how injured birds are treated and released. A series of boardwalks (including a short, child-friendly inner loop) extend over the wetlands.

From here, it is a short and beautiful drive to the charming capital of the Camargue, Saintes Maries de la Mer. Along the way you may catch a glimpse of herds of bulls and horses! The town's name means "Marys of the Sea" and refers to a local legend in which three biblical Saints arrived here from across the Mediterranean: Marie Jacobee, Jesus' aunt, Marie Salomee, mother of Saint Jacques Major, and Sarah patron saint of the gypsies also called "saint" Sarah but she is not canonized.

In town, your guide will take you on a brief walking tour of this former fishing village, now a popular seaside resort town, which is also a yearly pilgrimage destination for the Roma (Gypsies). You'll then have some time to explore independently, browse the shops and stop for lunch at a local cafe or restaurant before returning to your motorcoach for the relaxing drive back to the port in Marseille.

Special Notes:

Comfortable shoes are highly recommended as well as a camera. Shopping is limited in villages outside of the main touristic season.

Medical Restriction:

Not suitable for wheelchair users or those with mobility issues

Tour timeline may vary to avoid overcrowding, etc.

Drive to Camargue

Transport type:
Air Conditioned Motorcoach
Transport Capacity:
49
Travel time:
01:45
Air conditioned:
Yes
Wheelchair accessible:
No
Restroom available:
No
Shopping available:
No

Guided visit of the Parc Ornithologique de Pont de Gau, complete with its fauna and flora

Transport type:
Walking
Time at site:
01:30
Inside visit:
No
Wheelchair accessible:
No
Restroom available:
Yes
Shopping available:
No
Photo/video opportunity:
Yes

Drive to Saintes Maries de la Mer

Transport type:
Air Conditioned Motorcoach
Transport Capacity:
49
Travel time:
00:10
Air conditioned:
Yes
Wheelchair accessible:
No
Restroom available:
No
Shopping available:
No

Guided walking tour of the city

Transport type:
Walking
Time at site:
00:30
Inside visit:
No
Wheelchair accessible:
No

Free time and lunch on your own

Time at site:
01:30
Wheelchair accessible:
No
Restroom available:
Yes
Shopping available:
Yes
Photo/video opportunity:
Yes

Drive back to ship

Transport type:
Air Conditioned Motorcoach
Transport Capacity:
49
Travel time:
01:45
Air conditioned:
Yes
Wheelchair accessible:
No
Restroom available:
No
Shopping available:
No