Provence with Lyle Railsback

October 4 - 10, 2023 | One Exclusive Departure

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Soul of Provence

Wine, art, culture, cuisine—Provence's heart & soul with Lyle Railsback

October 4 - 10, 2023

One exclusive departure — likely to sell out, reserve your spot

7 Days, 6 Nights

Marseilles, Calanques National Park, Avignon, Côte d’Azur

Price from


Per person, based on double occupancy

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+1 (855) 219-8018

You’re standing on a stone terrace as gentle hills giving way to an ancient medieval village, the peal of bells ringing from a centuries-old church tower over fields and vineyards. Yesterday, you sailed down a towering limestone calanque, turquoise waters shimmering against golden beaches; in the next few days,  you’ll explore the markets of Aix-en-Provence and Avignon, prepare a collaborative feast in Marseilles alongside a Michelin-starred chef. Right now, at a family-run vineyard with roots stretching back centuries, you raise a glass in celebration of a Provence that inspires all the senses. This is the France you’ve been dreaming of, this is the magic of Provence.

You’re joined on this incredible journey by Lyle Railsback, wine merchant extraordinaire and co-owner of Railsback Frères in California’s Santa Ynez Valley. Lyle embodies the Provençal spirit — he’s equal part chef, artist, and wine enthusiast. His career has been an endless pursuit of finding the most exquisite wines out there, from California’s coastline to the tiny villages of France, with plenty of other appellations in between. He’s been named a “40 Under 40 Tastemaker” by Wine Enthusiast and is as passionate about the wines of Provence as he is connected to the producers who make them. This trip’s itinerary teems with joie de vivre thanks to Lyle, and we can’t wait to be inspired.

If your idea of the perfect getaway is a cultural and culinary adventure in the most stunning settings, this trip is for you. We’ll meet vintners and chefs, farmers and cheesemakers, traditional producers and modern creatives. From buzzing cities to bucolic countryside, this is an exclusive, immersive expedition into the heart of Provence, one of France’s most storied regions. Join us for a true feast for the senses.


Colorful markets, majestic calanques, rolling vineyards, medieval hilltop villages


Exquisite local specialties, Michelin-star meals, exclusive tastings and pairings


In the finest accommodations—artful hotels and noble country villas, all perfectly located

Go Deeper

Connect with local winemakers, artists and chefs, alongside Lyle

Why We Love Lyle Railsback

Simply put, Lyle is passionate about wine — and loves to share that passion. By the age of 20, he'd already transformed from art student to a sommelier. Since then, he's travelled the backroads of France, made friends with winemaking luminaries and carved out an incredible career as a man who always seem to know where to find the perfect vintage. We cannot wait to follow in his footsteps in Provence.

Rosé All Day

Lyle and his brother, Eric, began Railsback Frères as a rosé project in 2015. They calll their rosé Les Rascasses ('scorpion' fish in French). It’s an homage to Lulu Peyraud, proprietress of Domaine Tempier in Bandol, maker of their favorite rosé in Provence.

Artist at Heart

Whether he’s creating cowboy shirts inspired by 1970s Hollywood, or a custom wine label for the farmers of one of his Bandol wines, Lyle pursues what sparks his creativity.

Man with Connections

From unforgettable tastings straight from the barrel to exploring hyper-local cuisines with families whose roots in Provence span generations., this trip is, above all, to the relationships he's cultivated over the years and decades.

Our Provence Experience

“There are so many reds from Bandol that are not on the radar. Once you see how they pair with food, it just clicks.”
Lyle Railsback

Marseilles, Côte d’Azur, Avignon

“Wherever you come from, you are at home in Marseilles.”
Jean-Claude Izzo

Day by Day

Day 1: Marseilles

Bienvenue à Marseilles! France’s ‘second’ city is one of the busiest seaports in Europe, with a buzzing energy, an infectious charm, and a sprawling patchwork of cultural influences: Provençal and Corsican, North African and Arab. We’ll dive right in at the Vieux Port, in the heart of Marseilles’ old town and continue our walking tour past Le Panier and through the electric streets toward La Catedral de la Major.

After this orientation for the senses, we’ll relax at our hotel or continue exploring Marseilles’ cobblestoned streets and steep twisting alleyways.

We’ll reconvene for some of Lyle’s favorite Champagne before a one-of-a-kind cooking workshop at Michelin-starred restaurant, Alcyone. Here, alongside a local chef, we’ll celebrate the traditionnel and moderne sides of Provençal cuisine, and make our way through a five-course meal, replete with regional wine pairings. This is true immersive indulgence and the only proper way to begin our journey through Provence. 

Day 1: Marseilles Highlights

  • Vieux Port walking tour
  • Cooking workshop & dinner at Michelin-star Alcyone
  • Stay at InterContinental Hotel in Marseilles

Day 2: Marseilles & Around

After a leisurely breakfast, we’ll walk to the port and board our private boat for a cruise through stunning Parc National des Calanques. Majestic limestone cliffs tower above narrow fjord-like channels of turquoise waters and golden beaches—the national park’s landscape is unique in the world. We’ll explore by sea, with plenty of time for swimming and soaking up the sun deck-side. Lunch on board is a light and local—Provençal cheese and charcuterie accompanied by a full-bodied white from the fishing village of Cassis, a tiny appellation that produces highly prized whites in a region famous for its rosés.

We’ll have free time late this afternoon back in Marseilles to flaneur our way around and maybe join a game of pétanque at one of the city’s many tree-lined parks.

Another night, another Michelin star. Tonight, we’ll dine at Ludovic Turac’s Une Table au Sud, overlooking the harbor. Chef Turac is one of the youngest chefs ever to earn a Michelin star; tonight we celebrate the catch-of-the-day, and our time together in France!

Day 2: Marseilles & Around Highlights

  • Private boat tour
  • Lunch & wine tasting on board
  • Dinner at Michelin-star Une Table au Sud
  • Stay at InterContinental Hotel

Day 3: Bandol

Our theme for today is wine in the coastal hills of Bandol, recognized among France’s most renowned wines–Bordeaux, Burgundy, Côte-Rôtie, Châteauneuf–with a traditional blend of earthy Mourvèdre grapes and Grenache, Cinsault, Carignan and Syrah. Bandol may be the most famous French terroir you’ve never heard of.

After breakfast in Marseilles, we’ll wind along the Côte d’Azur to le Domaine des Trois Filles, a true family-run winemaking estate and one of the few remaining estates to harvest by hand. We’ll move on for lunch above the vineyards of the heralded, Le Font Des Pères where we’ll sit on the terrace and enjoy bistro-style meal, with curated wine pairings, of course. Our backdrop? Just a stunning view of the vineyard and Mediterranean hills rolling majestically toward the sea.

In the late afternoon, we’ll check into our five-star ecolodge and bask in the bucolic sights and sounds of the Provençal countryside. Dinner is sumptuous and simple at the hotel. Head down a few minutes early to enjoy an apéritif with Lyle before we all sit down to dine.

Day 3: Bandol Highlights

  • Visit Bandol wine region
  • Vineyard tours & tastings
  • Dinner at hotel
  • Stay at Hameau des Pesquieres

Day 4: Bormes Les Mimosas

This morning we delve deep into the heart of Provence in Bormes Les Mimosas. We’ll have some time to explore independently—wander the hilly cobbled stone streets where bougainvillea flower over Renaissance-era homes or explore the hidden marina as fishermen deliver their daily haul. Lunch will be at a local vineyard.

Dinner tonight is  one of the more exquisite moments of the trip. Tonight, armed with ingredients from his secret market run, Lyle will give a cooking demonstration at Richard’s Place, a gastronomic institution. Though known more for his work with wine, Lyle is also a talented chef, and his private dinners are the stuff of legend. Here, we’ll toast the week so far and drink to the amazing journey ahead.

Day 4: Bormes Les Mimosas Highlights

  • Explore village of Bormes Les Mimosas
  • Vineyard lunch
  • Cooking demo & dinner with Lyle
  • Stay at Hameau des Pesquieres

Day 5: Aix-en-Provence & Avignon

In the morning, we leave our basecamp behind and point our compass to Aix-en-Provence for a walking tour and a visit to their legendary farmer’s market. After a hearty local lunch in the heart of the market, we head down the road to our new hotel in Avignon.

Before we arrive, we’ll make one special pit stop: the Palais des Papes (Palace of the Popes). This 14th-century marvel of Gothic architecture is the largest of its kind in the world, and we’ll have a guided tour through it all, including the stunning gardens. After a comprehensive visit, our chariot and chateau awaits. We’ll walk to our medieval five-star lodgings for the next two nights.

Day 5: Aix-en-Provence & Avignon Highlights

  • Aix-en-Provence market
  • Visit Palace of the Popes
  • Transfer to Avignon
  • Stay at Hotel La Mirande

Day 6: Les-Baux-de-Provence

Today it’s off to the countryside to take in Provence’s stunning beauty. We’ll climb up gentle hills, through the vineyards past picture-perfect villages and up in to the medieval hilltop town of Les-Baux-de-Provence, perched on a rocky outcrop crowned with a ruined castle. The town, is a storybook of cobbled alleyways, Renaissance facades and several magnificent hôtels particuliers that have been revived as art galleries and museums.

After soaking up the view and the history, we’ll meander down the hill into the heart of the Alpilles mountains to Carrières de Lumières, an immersive art museum unlike any other: from the limestone confines of a former quarry, we’ll take in the larger-than-life multimedia works by Cézanne, Gauguin, Van Gogh, Kandinsky and Dalí among others.

We’ll visit Saint-Rémy-de-Provence for a quick lunch and reserve the afternoon to relax and explore Avignon on our own. In the early evening we’ll reconvene for the ultimate pièce de résistance of our trip, a farewell dinner at the hotel, where Lyle will raise a toast, and we’ll all roll up our sleeves and prepare a magical meal together.

Day 6: Les-Baux-de-Provence Highlights

  • Explore Les-Baux-de-Provence
  • Lunch in St-Rémy-de-Provence
  • Farewell dinner
  • Stay at Hotel La Mirande

Day 7

It’s our last day, and after breakfast we’ll bid adieu to Lyle and to our fellow explorers. Then we’ll head to the airport in Marseilles, renewed and invigorated by the food, drink and memories of Provence. Until we meet again!

Day 7 Highlights

  • Transfer to Marseilles' MRS airport

Where We Sleep

Our elegant accommodations strike the perfect balance between luxury and intimacy, all delivered with incomparable Provençal hospitality.

InterContinental Hôtel Dieu


Housed in the majestic 18th-century Hôtel Dieu, a landmark designed by Louis XIV's own architect, this sumptuous property is accented with fragments of Roman mosaics and swirling wrought-iron staircases. Perched on a hill between the Vieux Port and the historic Panier district, it’s also an improbable oasis in the heart of bustling Marseilles, where the only sound you’ll hear is gentle chiming of bells from a nearby church. The hotel has all the comforts you'd expect, plus some you may not—the city's finest views from the outdoor terrace, and a mosaic swimming pool inspired by traditional Provençal fountains.

Hameau des Pesquieres

Côte d'Azur

Walk down the promenade and through its stately doors, and you'll immediately feel the warmth of this five-star ecolodge on the Côte d'Azur. Nestled inside a national park and just a stone's throw away from wine country, this is an idyllic basecamp for explorers like us.

La Mirande


In the heart of Avignon and just steps away from the Pope's palace, this stunning hotel is a masterclass in preservation and hospitality. Its story began in 1309; walking its corridors and marveling at its vaulted ceilings is to witness 700 years of history. The rooms, the facilities — everything is superb and elegant.

I've been telling so many people about the trip ever since I got back. Looking forward to another one!
Royce K.
It really was the trip of a lifetime. Perfectly curated and balanced, we did more than I ever would have organized myself... delightful from start to finish.
Julian C.
Unique experiences, well-organized, outstanding leadership and service.
Susan G.

Book Provence with Lyle Railsback

Number of Travelers


Reserve your spot today with a $1,500 per-person deposit plus room supplements (if relevant). Full payment is due 180 days prior to your trip departure date. We’ll email you a reminder. If your trip departs in less than 180 days, we’ll collect full payment either 30 days from when we receive your deposit, or 60 days prior to your trip departure date, whichever is sooner. For details read our Deposit FAQs

Price from


Per person, based on double occupancy

Can't travel on these dates?
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+1 (855) 219-8018


We have answers! Read our FAQs below. Or text or call us at +1 (855) 219-8018 to speak with a Modern Adventure trip specialist.

  1. What does the price include?

    Six nights at unique 5-star accommodations; private travel between destinations and for all day trips and excursions; departure airport transfer; private tours with local guides and cultural experts; exclusive access and tastings; guided activities and exclusive private tastings, tours and activities; entrance fees; daily breakfasts, most lunches and dinners; local beverages with meals; gratuities for local staff.

  2. What does the price not include?

    International roundtrip airfare; travel insurance; transportation to the trip start; activities not included in the trip itinerary; hotel incidentals including room service, laundry service and hotel bar tabs; food and beverage not included in itinerary; gratuity for tour leader.

  3. Where does this trip start and end?

    Our adventure begins at the InterContinental Hôtel Dieu in Marseilles. We recommend booking flights to/from Marseille Provence Airport (MRS). On the final day of our trip, we will organize a group transfer from Saint-Rémy-de-Provence to Marseille Provence Airport.

  4. What travel documents are needed?

    US citizens are not required to have a visa for stays in France under 90 days. Just bring a valid US passport. For citizens of other countries, please check with the French Embassy or Consulate for information and requirements.

  5. Do I need to pay a solo traveler supplement?

    For solo travelers, there is a $1,800 single-supplement fee—paid at the time of booking to secure a private room. These spots are limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis.

  6. Who is going on this trip?

    Our adventures typically have between 10 and 18 guests, plus our Modern Adventure team. This specific trip is limited to 20 guests. Our experiences are fun and inclusive and you can expect to be joined by a diverse group in terms of age, background and interests—including solo travelers, couples and friends traveling together. This adventure is for travelers age 18 and above.

  7. Who is leading this trip?

    This trip is led by an expert Modern Adventure trip leader. They’re an experienced travel guide, a representative of Modern Adventure and your go-to person for questions or concerns on the trip. We’ll be joined throughout our adventure by local, expert guides who are deeply knowledgeable with respect to local cultures, customs and history and are passionate about sharing that with us.

  8. Do I need travel insurance?

    We highly recommend purchasing travel insurance. Travel insurance allows you to seek reimbursement for your trip costs; if your trip plans change for unforeseeable reasons, or if you need to get medical help, emergency transport, and for theft, loss or damage of items while traveling. For best coverage, always insure the full trip cost within two weeks of your initial trip deposit and note that most ‘Cancel For Any Reason’ policies must be purchased on the date of your initial deposit.

  9. What is the cancellation policy?

    You may cancel before June 6, 2023 and receive a full refund minus a $500 per-person service fee. If you cancel on or after June 7, 2023, there is a 50% cancellation fee. On or after August 5, 2023 there is a 100% cancellation fee.We highly recommend purchasing travel insurance as we are not able to make exceptions to this policy in cases of family/medical emergency or cases of the trip being canceled (see our Terms and Conditions for full details).

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