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  • Golden Compass New Zealand Freephone number 0800-132-385
  • 0800-132-385

A Taste of Italy and Provence
Commences Milan 17 May and ends Nice 05 June 2019

  • Sénanque
  • Isola Bella, Lake Maggiore
    Isola Bella, Lake Maggiore
  • Wine cellar, Piedmont
    Wine cellar, Piedmont
  • Oysters, Nice
    Oysters, Nice
  • Gordes
  • Villa Ephrussi
    Villa Ephrussi
  • Program Status Guaranteed Departure
  • Price $14,150
  • Program Code GCTIP19
  • Single Supplement $2,290
  • Activity Rating Moderate
  • Program Leader Louise Shave

Tour Itinerary

  • 19 Nights
    • 2 - Milan
    • 2 - Lake Como
    • 3 - Lake Maggiore
    • 3 - Le Langhe 
    • 3 - Luberon
    • 3 - Aix-enProvence
    • 3 - Nice

Commences Milan 17 May and ends Nice 05 June 2019

Tour Highlights

  • The attractive and historic cities of Milan and Nice
  • The stunning scenery and gardens of the dramatic Lake Como and Lake Maggiore 
  • The charming hill-top villages and artistic haunts of Luberon and Provence
  • The fine wines and picturesque landscape of Le Langhe
  • The typical cuisine and local produce of Italy and Provence

Tour Overview

Our journey through north-western Italy and the south-east corner of France explores the lakes, gardens, wine-producing villages and artistic heritage of the Italian regions of Piedmont and Lombardy together with the enchanting artistic haunts, charming hilltop-villages, local cuisine and "effusive" gardens of France's Côte d'Azur and Provence.

In Italy, we experience the hidden gardens, fine art collections and palaces of Milan and Turin, view the awesome lake-land scenery of glorious Como, little-known Orta and magnificent Maggiore with their grand villas and exuberant gardens and explore the quintessential hilltop towns and villages of Le Langhe, famed for their Barolo wines and truffles. The Baroque extravagance of the Borromean Islands of Isola Bella and Isola Madre on Lake Maggiore, the exceptional gardens of the Villa Taranto and exquisite Bellagio with the stunning gardens of Villa Melzi on the shores of Lake Como are all visited.

In France, we discover the sun-drenched countryside of Provence, with its time-worn, hilltop villages, considered some of the most beautiful in France, such as Gordes, Venasque and Roussillon, so often the inspiration for artists such as Cézanne, Van Gogh and Chagall. We visit some of the great art galleries of the contrasting cities of Aix, Marseilles and Nice, as well as some of the more unusual artistic exhibition venues of the region, such as the converted quarries of Baux-de-Provence. We view ancient Gallo-Roman remains such as Vaison-Ia-Romaine, picturesque mediaeval abbeys, such as Senanque and breath-taking Mediterranean gardens such as the Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild.

We travel by coach, boat and narrow gauge railway to see the most stunning panoramas. We stroll lazily through narrow winding streets dotted with ochre-coloured houses, shady squares and ornate stone fountains. We pause to sample some of the colourful local dishes and taste some of the fine regional wines.


Tour Inclusions

    • 19 nights en-suite hotel accommodation
    • Typical local breakfast and dinner daily
    • Touring by comfortable modern coach
    • Transport, lectures and field trips as indicated
    • Services of a Program Leader
    • Applicable entry fees and services of local guides
    • Gratuities and necessary tips
    • Detailed Program Information Booklet
Louise Shave
Golden Compass France Ireland Scotland Tour Leader Louise Shave

Louise Shave graduated from the University of Auckland, in Languages, History and Music and with a Post Graduate Diploma in Teaching.

She has a passion for her chosen subjects and really enjoys sharing with travellers the history and culture of countries in which she has lived or experienced. The extensive time she has recently spent living in both France and Ireland has given her an in-depth knowledge of those particular countries. She is a fluent speaker of French.

For the past 14 years, she has led many outbound programmes, especially in Europe, the United Kingdom, the Channel Islands, Ireland, India, Bhutan and Nepal. She is much in demand as a guest speaker.

For six years, Louise and her husband explored the waterways of Europe on their 20 metre converted Dutch Barge. Not content with river travel, they also sailed a 10 metre boat across the Irish Sea and then back to England. Three years were spent in Ireland on the canals and rivers, with numerous adventures, followed by more time around the coast and in the English waterways.

As well as those noted above, her interests include art, architecture, theatre, film, reading, trekking, and, not least, her family!


This program includes placeswhich can only be explored on foot and where walking tours may be a little longer and not always on the flat. Accommodation may have some stairs and or have some rooms which may involve some walking to access.
All our programs naturally involve some walking in order to discover bet­ter the places visited and, although we arrange porterage where this is available, participants are expected to be able to handle their own bags. Our program leaders will always try to make as much of the program as possible available for those who find walking longer distances, uphill or down steps difficult but, in same places, this cannot always be avoided.
If you have any concerns at all about your level of fitness, please do not hesitate to talk to us and discuss further with the experts who know the particular demands of each program.

Register your interest early

Follow these simple steps to secure your place on one of our unique tours:

  1. Select the program or programs you are interested in joining and make a note of the program code that appears next to the program price (eg: GCTAD14).
  2. Access the Golden Compass booking form here.
  3. Complete the details you have available (we understand your flights and travel insurance details may not be confirmed when you make your booking).
  4. Print and sign your form, then simply scan and email your form direct to info@goldencompasstours.co.nz. If you prefer you can fax your form to +44 (0) 1494 431 144, or post it to our New Zealand postal address at:

  Golden Compass, P O Box 3452 Shortland St. Auckland 1140, New Zealand.

Please note we require a deposit of NZD500 per person per program with the full balance for each tour being due 70 days prior to the start of your program or programs in the UK, Europe, North Africa or Asia. 

Once the deposit payment has been taken you will then be sent your confirmation letter either by email or post (as you prefer). An invoice for the balance will be issued to you 12 weeks prior to the departure of your first tour or tours. Full payment by MasterCard, Visa or electronic bank transfer is required 70 days prior to the start of your tour. 

If you need any assistance please call our Freephone number on 0800 132 385.