The accommodations will be in our 19th century country house with breathtaking views of the valley. During the day, we will drive you to amazing places where you can paint extraordinary landscapes (Alpine lakes, snowy peaks, quaint villages, castle and gardens, etc.). There will always be time for cultural visits and local product tasting.
Back home, participate in the critique session or attend the demonstration run by the teacher while savoring appetizers and sweet wine in the garden, waiting for dinner to be served.
Day 1: Welcome Champagne Reception.
We will pick you up at the Lyon airport, early in the afternoon. Upon your arrival at our fully restored 19th-century French country home, you will relax and enjoy a champagne reception with authentic local finger foods and drinks. In the evening, a traditional sumptuous buffet will be prepared especially for you.
Day 2: Medieval castle.
Stroll in the village and pick your favorite house, door, to paint. In the afternoon, we will visit the 13th century Virieu Castle and its beautiful French style gardens. Possibility to visit the inside of this privately owned castle to see Louis XIII’s bedroom listed historical monument, the medieval kitchen and the courtyard with its canons.
Day 3: Magnificent Cliffs and Caves.
We will be heading towards the breathtaking mountainous region of Vercors, bordered by 300 km of cliffs on the very edge of the Alps. You will have the unique opportunity to take a memorable trip into the heart of the earth when we'll explore the famous Choranche cave, with its thousands of impressive tubular stalactites and its lake of emerald green. We will then have picnic by the river in Pont-en-Royans, the picturesque 16th century village where the houses are actually suspended above the river. Ideal painting site.
Day 4: Beautiful Annecy also called the little Venice of the Alps.
Annecy is the French showpiece of lakes-and-mountain beauty. The Canal crossing Annecy brings Venice to mind as you stroll along its banks. We will go to the local market in the old Annecy. Later, pick your spot to sit and paint, either the medieval narrow streets and the renaissance houses along the canal as well as the famous old prison, one of the most photographed monuments in France, the Annecy Lake, the cleanest lake in Europe, surrounded by majestic mountains. There will be time for shopping or renting a boat or even walk the beautiful trails by the lake.
Day 5: Walnut Oil Tasting.
We will drive east along the Rhone River, through beautiful vineyards and picturesque villages to the lovely village of Chanaz. We will attend a walnut oil making demonstration in a 19th-century mill. This is a unique opportunity that can't be missed since this mill is the only one left in France listed historical monument. You will of course have a chance to taste the delicious and organic walnut, hazelnut and almond oils as well as the homemade jams. We'll have lunch by the river and spend some time painting the villae across the river.
Day 6: Chocolate Tasting.
This day is designed to give you an authentic flavor of the French countryside and village life. Valerie will open her own house to you. Be her guest and feel at home. We will experience the local market day and buy fresh food at La Halle, a 13th-century covered market where the locals meet. In the afternoon, we will visit a chocolate exhibit and taste the best chocolate in the Dauphine region. During your free time, shop in the little town or find your favorite spot to paint.
Day 7: Breathtaking Mont Blanc, the heart of the Alps.
The Montenvers train will take us on a journey through deep forests and splendid vistas overlooking the valley. Traveling along impressive peaks, you will arrive at the unique Mer de Glace ("Sea of Ice") glacier. You will have the thrill of exploring the inside of this glacier through a tunnel carved in the ice and of viewing its never-to-be-forgotten exhibit of ice sculptures. The afternoon will be free so thay you can paint the breathtaking mountains.
Day 8: Painting the valley.
From our garden, we have view on the beautiful Bourbre Valley. This last day will be very relaxing. We will spend the day in the garden or in the village, painting flowers, cows, a church, a house and come back early enough for packing our luggage.
Day 9: Departure.
After our last breakfast together, we'll drive you to the Lyon airport in plenty of time to catch your flight home.
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