September 30 – October 10, 2020
Journey with us through time as we dive deeply into the rich history of the Sacred Feminine in the south of France. Beginning with some of the oldest cave art ever discovered on the planet, standing stone dolman dating back 25,000 years and ancient sites of goddess worship, we weave together diverse threads of spiritual history that create the container for the sacred teachings of Mary Magdalene and the culture of the Black Madonnas in this region. We will connect with nature, with the elements and with each other. Daily time to sit in circle, in ceremony and ritual offers us space to deepen our spiritual connection to this sacred land and listen for Her messages. With ‘eyes to see and ears to hear’ we can celebrate and activate our spiritual authority as woman in preparation for what is coming.
TRAVEL DATES : Plan to arrive at Toulouse Airport (TLS) on Wednesday , September 30th before 4 PM and depart from Marseille Airport (MRS) on Saturday morning, October 10th. Transfer on your own to your hotel in Toulouse. Group transfer to MRS from the hotel in Maximin.
PART 1: GETTING SETTLED ON THIS SACRED LAND
Le Raymond 4 Hotel in Toulouse https://hotelraymond4toulouse.com/eng/
Day 1 – Wednesday, 9/30
We will gather informally at our hotel at 5 pm for conversation, connection and an Overview of our sacred journey.
Day 2 – Thursday, 10/1
After breakfast at the hotel, our group will travel by bus to Rocamadour, famous for its Black Madonna, Our Lady of Rocamadour. This has been a pilgrimage destination since 1166.
Our afternoon will take us to an ornate prehistoric cave to explore some of the most ancient cave paintings ever discovered on the planet. We’ll connect to the artistic soul of our ancestors from more than 25,000 years ago.
PART 2: CATHAR COUNTRY: FIRE AND WATER
La Chaumiere Hotel in Quillan http://www.pyren.fr/en/
Day 3 – Friday, 10/2
Today, we’ll drive to Cathar country and begin to explore the rich and tragic history and philosophy of the Cathar people. First we visit the ancient city of Fanjeaux. It is here, in the heart of Cathar Country, that Simon de Montfort and Saint Dominique launched their fight against heresy
In the afternoon, we will visit Laurac, a place recognizing the important role of Cathar women.
Day 4 – Saturday, 10/3
A day under the sign of water! Creator of life, it springs, flows, sings in all its forms: thermal and hot waters, small springs, lakes and rivers. Here water abounds!
After breakfast, departure to Rennes les Bains. Stop at the old Roman baths and at the Bains Doux, the hot springs. This area is rich in Celtic/Druid history. Hike to the Seat of Isis and Magdalene spring.
In the afternoon, drive to the Hermitage at Gorges de Galamus, a troglodyte monastery with a Chapel
carved into the rock in the 7th century, also called Chapelle Mary Magdalene.
Day 5 – Sunday, 10/4
Our guided excursion today takes us to Chateau de Montsegur, the last pyre of the Cathar resistance. At the beginning of the 13th century, the last of the remaining Cathars, who were declared heretical by the Pope, settled in this place. At the end of a terrible siege of 11 months, March 16, 1244, the Cathars were led to the stake.
Day 6 – Monday, 10/5
This is our last day in Cathar country. We’ll make a stop at a Dolmen, undoubtedly the finest megalithic monument of the Aude, dating back to 5000 years BC and older than Stoneheng. Then, we visit Minerve, a small village where almost 200 Cathar leaders were burned in 1210 as heretics by the Catholic Church for refusing to recant their truth.
PART THREE: IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF MARY MAGDALENE
Hotel de France in St. Maximin http://www.hotelsaintmaximin.com/
Day 7 – Tuesday, 10/6
On the way to Saint Maximin, we’ll stop at Les Saintes Maries de la Mer, crossing the unique landscape of Camargue with its salted marshes with white farms, wild horses and red flamingoes. Here we find the relics of Saints Mary Jacob and Mary Salome and their servant, Sarah, the Black Madonna. The church of Saintes Marie de la Mer
welcomes every year thousands of Gypsies who come to pay tribute to Sara, their patron saint.
Day 8 –Wednesday, 10/7
Today we visit the Basilica of Mary Magdalene at Saint Maximin La Saint Baume. We will see the tomb created in Magdalene’s honor, the reliquary and hear the stories of the festivals that continue in an unbroken tradition each summer. The afternoon will include an initiation to aromatherapy at a perfume workshop. Often identified in Christian iconography by her vase of perfumes and sacred oils, Mary Magdalene gives the use of spikenard a theological dimension. You will compose your own perfume as a tribute to Mary Magdalene.
Day 9 : Thursday, 10/8
After breakfast, we’ll depart for Aix en Provence. The first church of Aix en Provence was built on the site of the preaching of Maximin and Magdalene. Everywhere in the cathedral, Mary Magdalene’s presence is found. We’ll end the day with a visit to the 17th century chapel where a Black Madonna, Notre-Dame-de-l’Espérance, is sheltered. She is carrying the Infant Jesus and a dog is lying at her feet. Free time to stroll around the colorful open air market + lunch by your own. In the afternoon, we’ll drive to the Temple of Diana. Of the 3 remaining ancient temples in France, it is the only one still standing in the countryside. This Temple dedicated to Diana is dated from the 1st century BC.
Day 10: Friday, 10/9
To end our journey, we’ll spend the day at the Holy Mountain. We will focus on how Mary Magdalene calls us to the inner life. We will travel to La Sainte-Baume, Mary Magdalene’s legendary last home. We will silently hike up the mountain ascending the steep pathway trod for centuries by both famous and anonymous pilgrims who came to receive Magdalene’s grâces. (a journey that takes about an hour of strenuous walking). We will pass through the ancient forest dedicated to the Greek goddess Artemis for 700 years, before arriving at the grotto. Inside, where Magdalene dwelt for 30 years, time seems to stop.
Day 11: Saturday, 10/10 Departure : Group transfer to Marseille Airport
My name is Véronique Flayol; my friends call me Roni. I am a lecturer specializing in pilgrimages and spiritual tours and a certified aromatherapist. I was born in Provence and since my youngest age, I have a special devotion to Mary Magdalene. A descendant of an old Provençal family and deeply attached to my origins, I have been involved for many years in the Association Santo Madaleno that upholds the traditions of Provence and the cult of St. Mary Magdalene. Every year, I organize the Feast of Mary Magdalene in Saint Maximin-la-Sainte-Baume where she is buried. In 2008 I created my own tour company to share my love for her. In 2017, I passed my certification of aromatherapist to be able to work with the plants and the energy properties of the essential oils, a way to get closer and better understand the lineage of myrrh-bearing women of which Mary Magdalene was part. More than the Apostle to the Apostles, I would say that Mary Magdalene is an Apostle of Love and the more I study and seek her, the more I discover a beautiful woman. From this passion is born this spiritual journey.
Pricing, Deposits and Payment Details
Price per person
Early Bird Tour price: (applicable until January 15, 2020)
$3,300 U.S. per person based on sharing a double or twin room
$4,000 U.S. per person for Single room (only 2 singles available)
After January 15: (increase of $200)
$3,500 U.S. per person based on sharing a double or twin room
$4,200 U.S. per person based on single occupancy
Deposit due on booking: $1,000
2nd installment due by April 15, 2020: $1,500
3rd and final installment due by August 1, 2020
[Double $1,000/ Early bird $800. Single $1,700 / Early bird $1,500]
Tour price includes:
▪ Hotels for 10 nights as described: 2 nights at Le Raymond 4 Hotel in Toulouse: 4 nights at La Chaumiere Hotel in Quillan; 4 nights at Hotel de France in St. Maximin
▪ Private tourist-licensed bus for 9 days of excursions from Toulouse to Saint-Maximin-la-Sainte-Baume from October, 1st to 10th, 2020, with experienced professional bus driver.
▪ Private English-speaking guide Veronique Flayol for 9 days of guidance from Toulouse to Saint-Maximin-la-Sainte-Baume from October 1 to 10, 2020.
▪ Private airport group transfer from St Maximin to Marseille Airport on October 10
▪ Breakfast everyday except arrival day
- Lunch on Day 3, 4, 5, 6, 7,10
- Dinner on Day 7,8,9,10
▪ Closing Cocktail on Day 10
▪ Entrance fees at all sites
▪ Perfume workshop in private hall including space rental, tuition, all ingredients & material
▪ Provence Premium Transport organization, reservations follow-up, professional transportation insurances.
Tour price does not include your round trip air travel expenses to France and airport transport to your hotel in Toulouse upon arrival September 30. It also does not include some of your meals (3 lunches/ 6 dinners).
Please note that in unavoidable circumstances the schedule as described may alter but we will aim to undertake all the tours and visits as described. We strongly encourage you to consider purchasing private travel insurance for this tour.
Cancellation costs up to 100 days before departure of the trip: deposit
Cancellation costs between 100 days up to 50 days before departure of the trip: 50% of the total invoice
Cancellation costs from 50 days up to the day of departure: costs of the total invoice
For More Information
Contact us at email@example.com
Booking will be done through Kathe Schaaf.
Please email the booking form when completed to firstname.lastname@example.org or mail
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Once you have submitted the booking form, you will be sent information on how to pay the deposit for the tour. All payments can be made by check or Venmo.