Exploring France: The Little Prince, van Gogh & lavender scent

Exploring France: The Little Prince, van Gogh & lavender scent

Ancient monuments, elegant chateaux, picturesque mountains, Romanesque architecture and the most beautiful village in France. Come and explore a historic area just outside Paris and fairytale Provence.

Gérard Trang is a photographer who lives in Paris with his children and wife Clémentine. They went on three road trips together. The first took them just outside the capital, and on the second they explored sunny Provence, both on foot and by bike. The itinerary for their third trip was designed in a way that’s very 21st century: they let artificial intelligence choose the route. And how did they get to their destinations? In two Škodas: a Karoq and an Enyaq Coupé.

First road trip: Chantilly

Chantilly a true pearl of French history, is situated just a couple of kilometres outside Paris. Its chateau and park make it a popular film location: it featured in the recent hit The Gray Man, for example. At the wheel of an Enyaq Coupé, Gérard took his children here so that “they can create their own memories and impressions and maybe take their own children here one day”, as he said.

The chateau restaurant La Capitainerie is well worth a visit – here you can try a local dessert filled with Chantilly cream, a famous local speciality. So Gérard treated himself and his kids to a sweet treat before heading south.

My Enyaq

Second road trip: Provence and the Little Prince

With its olive groves, sand and gravel tracks and historic villages, Provence never disappoints. “It’s fascinating to see what there is to be discovered when you start looking at things differently,” Gérard says. This time, Gérard and Clémentine left the children at home. They drove south in a Škoda Karoq, and then explored the countryside on foot and by bike. The day starts on Clémentine’s parents’ farm. The family grows olives, which they turn into one of the best olive oils in the region. They sell their olive oil in London and to a long list of aristocrats. But the family home is just as interesting: the previous owners were friends of the family of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, who used to play there as a child – and it’s possible that his famous story of The Little Prince was inspired by his childhood stays here.

But the Trangs can’t stay long. They drive through Chaîne des Alpilles, a small mountain range about twenty kilometres south of Avignon. At the foot of the hills lies the village of Eygalières, a popular destination for cycling enthusiasts, who use it as a starting point for rides through the gorgeous limestone countryside full of olive groves and vineyards. Follow the Trangs’ example and stop here to sample the local cheeses and charcuterie in one of the cafés or taverns.

My Enyaq: test drive was an eye-opener

As a photographer, Gérard can’t leave out the medieval Chapelle Saint-Sixte. There are tall cypresses beside the chapel and a short, withered tree in front of it. Being one of the most famous images of Provençale Romanesque art, the site is a magnet for social media influencers. But of greater interest to Gérard was the fact that Vincent van Gogh painted the chapel in the years 1889–1890

The Škoda Karoq is a reliable companion on any journey, even for a photographer like Gérard. With its combination of comfort and utility, it is the ideal car for taking in the beauty of France and beyond. Its spacious interior means there’s plenty of room for all your photographic equipment and the whole family’s luggage. The Karoq ensures that even the longest journeys through the countryside are enjoyable, allowing the family to focus on the adventures ahead and the memories etched on their minds.

Third road trip: designed by AI

TFor the third act, Gérard and his family explored Provence using the latest technology: they let artificial intelligence design their itinerary and took to the road again in a fully electric Škoda Enyaq Coupé.

Their first stop chosen for them by AI was in Saint-Rémy-de-Provence. With its mix of ancient lanes, bustling markets and historical sites, this charming town also inspired van Gogh and other artists. “We explored the stalls in the local market and sampled local delicacies,” says Gérard, praising AI’s choice of first destination. From there, it was on to Les Antiques. This collection of Roman monuments, including a triumphal arch and a first-century BC mausoleum, is the gateway to an archaeological site called Glanum. “It’s incredible how well preserved both monuments are,” Gérard points out while enthusiastically taking photos.

My Enyaq: test drive was an eye-opener

Their AI-designed journey ended in Les Baux-de-Provence. The fortress village is a testament to the region’s rich history and enduring charm. Cobbled streets lined with ancient stone houses wind their way up to the ruins of a once imposing castle, offering breathtaking views of the surrounding valley and olive groves. No wonder this scenery attracts not only photographers like Gérard, but legions of art, history and gastronomy lovers from all over the world. “Thanks to AI we had a great day out, and saving time on planning let us spend more time with the kids at all these amazing places.”

The Škoda Enyaq Coupé blends eco-friendliness with elegance, making it the ideal choice for Gérard, who ranks caring for the environment among his top priorities but doesn’t want to compromise on style either. The electric car offers a quiet drive through the picturesque villages and lavender fields of Provence, allowing the family to fully immerse themselves in the tranquillity of the local atmosphere. The large battery capacity ensures that there’s no need to worry about finding a charger. The spacious and technologically advanced interior is a tech-savvy photographer’s paradise, with plenty of charging ports for a variety of gadgets and an intuitive infotainment system to keep the family entertained on long journeys.