AVALON 2017: Grand France for Wine Lovers with Aix-en-Provence & Nice (WPL1-T3)
19 days from Paris to Nice
This splendid vacation showcases France's exciting scenery, history, and culture as you sail along its beautiful rivers. Embark in Paris and head northwest along the Seine River up to the picturesque Normandy region. Dock at Vernon and choose between a guided visit of Claude Monet's stunning gardens at Giverny or remarkable Bizy Castle. Continue to Les Andelys-home of Chateau Gaillard, built by England's King Richard the Lionheart in 1196. Then, on to Caudebec, where you choose between an included excursion to the poignant Normandy landing beaches or a fascinating 'Taste of Normandy.' Visit Joan of Arc's historic Rouen, and in Conflans, choose between a guided excursion to Vincent van Gogh's Auvers-sur-Oise or Napoleon and Josephine's elegant Chateau de Malmaison before heading back to Paris for sightseeing that includes the Arc de Triomphe and Eiffel Tower. Disembark and travel south to fascinating Beaune for a visit of the Hotel-Dieu. In St. Jean de Losne board your second cruise ship and sail on to Macon, the twin cities of Tournon and Tain l'Hermitage, Viviers, Avignon, and Arles, as well as France's gastronomic capital of Lyon, where you have time to explore this fascinating city. And because this cruise has a Wine Appreciation theme, you will be joined on board by a Master of Wine, who will share his knowledge of French wines while hosting a tasting of cheese and wine, and chocolate and wine, as well as a food and wine pairing dinner. Disembark your cruise ship and transfer to Aix en Provence for two nights for the start of your Monograms extension. Enjoy guided sightseeing with an expert Local Guide, walking along the 17th-century Cours Mirabeau, a lively area with fountains, elegant homes, and famous cafes, and visit the Cathedral of the Holy Savior, known for its mishmash of architectural styles. This was Cezanne's hometown, and in your free time, you may want to take a tour following in his footsteps. Perhaps take an excursion to Cassis with an included cruise, soak in Aix-en-Provence's healing thermal baths, or shop for lavender and other local specialties. Finally, we'll whisk you via high-speed TGV train to Nice for your final two nights in France. Here, guided sightseeing with a local expert includes a walk through the Old Town and the Promenade des Anglais, Nice's most famous boulevard. In your free time, you may want to take an excursion to Monaco, to St. Tropez, or to Cannes, known for its famous film festival. In both cities we provide the services of Local Hosts-a "friend in the city" to answer questions, share inside information, help you arrange your activities and excursions, and provide you with suggestions for the best places to sample the local specialties, as well as be there to help you feel comfortable in each city. Transfers from/to your hotels to/from the train stations, and hotel reservations with daily breakfast, are included.
Call (520) 445-6812 for more information or to book today! Mention code 12744176
- Tour Operator
- 19 Days
- Escorted - Yes
|Day 1||Paris||Welcome to Paris, France's capital on the River Seine, the 'City of Light,' where romance fills the air. This afternoon, board your river cruise vessel and meet your crew at an evening welcome reception. Before dinner, your ship glides smoothly out of Paris. (D)NOTE:Flights into Paris must arrive by 2:30 pm. Guests must be on board ship by 5 pm.|
|Day 2||Les Andelys||This morning in Vernon, choose between a guided visit of Giverny and a visit to Bizy Castle. Claude Monet lived at GIVERNY from 1883-1926, and viewed his gardens as works of art-just like his paintings. See his collection of Japanese prints, his charming house, and his biggest sources of inspiration. Or, visit BIZY CASTLE, built in 1740 and nicknamed 'Normandy's Versailles.' It is known for its famous stables-inspired by those at Versailles-and its magnificent courtyard and water garden. This afternoon, your ship arrives in Les Andelys, situated on a bend of the Seine and one of the most beautiful places in France. Join a Local Guide for a GUIDED WALK of the town, visiting the PARISH CHURCH OF LE PETIT ANDELY. Imposing Chateau Gaillard, built by England's King Richard the Lionheart as a fortress in 1196, is seen above the town. Constructed in only a year, it is a masterpiece of medieval military architecture. (B,L,D)|
|Day 3||Caudebec||Today, join either a guided excursion along the Route des Chaumieres, 'NORMANDY VILLAGES ROUTE,' to see some of Normandy's charming and traditional half-timbered houses with their long, sloping thatched roofs, often sporting blue wooden doors and window shutters, or along the 'NORMANDY ABBEYS ROUTE,' a short drive from Caudebec. More than 100 abbeys once covered this region, which has a microclimate particularly suited to the production of fruit such as apples, pears, plums and cherries. The afternoon is free to explore on your own or to join an optional excursion to the pretty coastal town of Honfleur. (B,L,D)|
|Day 4||Caudebec||Make your choice today between an included full-day excursion to the historic NORMANDY LANDING BEACHES-with poignant sites such as Omaha Beach, the Pointe du Hoc monument, and the American Cemetery-or a 'TASTE OF NORMANDY' for a more in-depth look at this picturesque, mainly agricultural region. The most important products are dairy, apples, and grain. Camembert cheese is a specialty, as is CALVADOS, a strong apple brandy that you'll have the chance to taste at a local distillery. And for a touch of history, visit the famous BAYEUX TAPESTRY. (B,L,D)|
|Day 5||Rouen||Rouen, the capital of Upper Normandy, is an important commercial city perhaps best known for its connection to Joan of Arc, who lived, was imprisoned, and burned at the stake in the marketplace of this town in 1431. Enjoy the included GUIDED WALK through the medieval quarter with its half-timbered, glazed-tile houses, and take your pictures of the intricate Gros Horloge astronomical clock, dating back to the 16th century. Visit the gothic CATHEDRAL, which was once the tallest building in the world and the subject of a series of paintings by Claude Monet. The afternoon is free to explore on your own. (B,L,D)|
|Day 6||Conflans||After breakfast you may either join our guided excursion to AUVERS-SUR-OISE, the quaint town where Vincent Van Gogh lived and died, or to Napoleon and Josephine's CHATEAU DE MALMAISON just outside Paris. Requiring extensive renovations, this large country estate was purchased by Josephine Bonaparte in 1799 while Napoleon was fighting in Egypt. It was her aim to make it 'the most beautiful and curious garden in Europe, a model of good cultivation.' (B,L,D)|
|Day 7||Paris||One of the world's most romantic and lively cities, Paris delights the senses. Included CITY SIGHTSEEING shows off the must-see attractions: Notre Dame Cathedral, the Louvre Museum with its glass pyramid as a contrast to its ancient architecture, the Arc de Triomphe, and the Eiffel Tower. Alternatively, you may wish to join a GUIDED WALK through historic Ile St. Louis with its narrow one-way streets and Ile de la Cite, the center of Paris where the medieval city was founded and home to NOTRE DAME CATHEDRAL. In your free time, stroll down the Champs-Elysees with its lavish cafes, or perhaps visit the world-famous Louvre or Montmartre with its Sacre Coeur Basilica and bevy of artists on Place du Tertre. Paris is known for its colorful nightlife, and an optional outing to one of the cabaret shows makes the perfect finale to the Seine portion of your cruise. (B,L,D)|
|Day 8||Seurre||This morning, say goodbye to your crew and board the TGV train to Dijon. From there, drive to Beaune, the unofficial capital of the Cote d'Or area. Beaune owes its wealth to the production, aging, and selling of fine wines. Although life here centers around wine, Beaune offers much more. Visit the HOTEL-DIEU charity hospital, built in 1443 and paid for by the chancellor of Burgundy after the Hundred Years' War left many of the town's population destitute. Today, it houses Van der Weyden's painting of The Last Judgment and is one of France's architectural highlights. Alternatively, enjoy a TASTING of different Cremant in Beaune. Continue to St. Jean de Losne, where your ship awaits. Before dinner, meet your crew at a welcome reception as you depart for Seurre. (B,D)|
|Day 9||Macon||Enjoy some leisurely cruising this morning, before arriving in Macon, a city that plays an important role in the wine trade. Free time allows you to explore at your own pace. A master of wine will join you on board and will introduce you to some of France's wines in the coming days. He/She will be happy to answer any questions you may have. After lunch, we will take you to visit a WINERY and TASTE the Chardonnay wine of the region through which you are cruising. (B,L,D)|
|Day 10||Lyon||Enjoy some relaxing time on board before arriving in Lyon, France's third-largest city and its gastronomic capital. Founded by the Romans in 43 BC, the city's prosperity dates back to the 16th century and is due to commercial, industrial, and banking activities. Roman remains, excellent museums, and renaissance architecture delight visitors. A LOCAL GUIDE joins you as you survey the city from Fourviere Hill and explore the Old Town with its maze of medieval alleyways and Place des Terreaux, a popular area with lively cafes, monuments, and the famous fountain often depicted on postcards. This evening enjoy an onboard CHEESE AND WINE TASTING, hosted by the Master of Wine. (B,L,D)|
|Day 11||Lyon||Enjoy a free day to explore at leisure. Early risers might like to visit the local produce market. Perhaps wander through one of Lyon's parks, discover some of the murals (there are over 100 of them), or select one of the available optional excursions. Be sure to taste the gastronomic delights and sample Beaujolais, the wine of the region; wine connoisseurs know the grapes must be hand picked. Your Cruise Director will have suggestions for things to do. And tonight there's a special FOOD AND WINE PAIRING DINNER to look forward to! The Master of Wine has specially chosen the wines for this occasion. (B,L,D)|
|Day 12||Viviers||The twin cities of Tournon and Tain l'Hermitage lie nestled among vineyards between the Rhone River and the granite slopes of the Hermitage. A LOCAL GUIDE will show you Tournon, one of France's oldest medieval cities, with its imposing 16th-century castle and Roman ruins. As you cruise this afternoon there's a treat in store for chocaholics (and the lovers of wine): an onboard CHOCOLATE AND WINE TASTING to delight the palate! Here too, the Master of Wine will guide you through this wonderful experience. Arriving in Viviers in the afternoon, an included GUIDED WALK shows you this charming town that developed around its ROMANESQUE CATHEDRAL. The OLD TOWN has an appealing mix of Christian, Roman, and medieval influences. (B,L,D)|
|Day 13||Avignon||The fortified city of Avignon is the capital of the Vaucluse region-the most picturesque part of Provence with its intact ramparts encircling the entire city, cobblestone streets and squares, and private mansions built in the 18th and 19th centuries. Known as the 'City of Popes,' it was the center of the Catholic Church in the 14th century. Your GUIDED TOUR includes a visit of the PALACE OF THE POPES, built in the 14th century as the sovereign popes' residency. A photo of the famous Pont Saint Benezet (Saint Benezet Bridge), of the popular song Sur le Pont d'Avignon, is a must. This afternoon an excursion takes you to the famed wine cellars of CHATEAUNEUF-DU-PAPE to learn about and to taste the wine. Optional outings to Pont du Gard. (B,L,D)|
|Day 14||Arles||This morning wake up early to the tranquil vistas of Camargue National Park (daylight permitting), before arriving in Arles after breakfast. Located on the northern tip of the Camargue, Arles is the capital of the Provence region. Your LOCAL GUIDE will show you highlights of the city and you'll visit the ROMAN AMPHITHEATER. Still used today, it dates to the 1st century and was constructed to hold over 20,000 spectators. This evening, sail toward the mouth of the Rhone for a taste of the tranquil vistas of Camargue National Park (daylight permitting). (B,L,D)|
|Day 15||Aix-en-Provence||Disembark your Avalon ship for your included transfer to Aix-en-Provence to join your Monograms vacation. Your guided walking tour takes in 17th-century Cours Mirabeau boulevard, a lively area with fountains, elegant homes, and famous cafes. Admire the Mazarin Quarter, City Hall, the Jewish Quarter, and visit the CATHEDRAL OF THE HOLY SAVIOUR, known for its interesting combination of architectural styles and The Burning Bush triptych art masterpiece by Nicolas Froment. (B)|
|Day 16||Aix-en-Provence||Your Local Host can suggest some wonderful options for your day at leisure in Cezanne's hometown-like a visit to the artist's studio; a French cooking lesson; where to sample Cote-de-Provence wine and boeuf-en-daube; and the best places to shop for faience pottery and colorful Provencal cloth. (B)|
|Day 17||Nice||Travel by HIGH-SPEED TGV TRAIN (first-class) to Nice. Your guided sightseeing features the PROMENADE DES ANGLAIS, originally built in the second half of the 18th century and the most famous boulevard in Nice. Walk through the OLD TOWN to admire fine examples of the Belle Epoque. See Cours Saleya with the Kings of Sardinia Palace and flower market; and lovely Palace Square with Palais de Justice and PALAIS RUSCA. (B)|
|Day 18||Nice||Your Local Host has recommendations for your full day at leisure on the beautiful Cote d'Azur, such as an excursion to picturesque Eze and Monaco, a round of golf in beautiful Cannes, a visit to the Marc Chagall Museum, or the best place to relax on the beach. (B)|
|Day 19||Nice||Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. (B)|
- US$ Price Details
Port charges:$336Gratuities to Local Guides & Excursion Drivers are included. Please call for single accommodation price. Triples not available.Extra nights per person in Paris:in single room from $303 to $777, in twin room from $251 to $404Extra nights per person in Nice:in single room from $103 to $261, in twin room from $60 to $139Prices shown include cruise in Category E in a deluxe outside stateroom on Indigo Deck.To upgrade to a higher category, add per person:Creativity/AffinityCategory / Decks / PriceB / Sapphire Deck / $1,298A / Sapphire Deck / $1,398P / Royal Deck / $1,598Avalon Suite / Royal Deck / $2,798Tapestry II/Poetry IICategory / Decks / PriceD / Indigo / Deck / $398B / Sapphire Deck / $2,298A / Sapphire Deck / $2,398P / Royal Deck / $2,598Royal Suite / Royal Deck / $3,798Travel Terms & Conditions
The purchase of any travel services offered by Avalon Waterways, constitutes a contractual arrangement between you (the Traveler) and Avalon Waterways, and represents your acceptance of the Terms & Conditions. Please ensure that you read carefully and understand the Terms & Conditions prior to booking. These Terms & Conditions cover Deposit & Final Payment information, Air-Inclusive Deposits & Final Payment, Revisions & Revision Fees, Air Arrangements, Participation, Travelers Who Need Special Assistance, Young Travelers, Smoking, Price Policy, Visas and Passports, Hotels & Accommodations, Baggage Allowance, Travel Documents, Not Included in the Land Price, Refunds, Service Inquires After the Vacation, Holidays, Safety, Photos & Pictures, Optional Excursions, and Responsibility.
- Vacation departures, itineraries and prices are subject to change.
- A non-refundable, non-transferable deposit is required for Avalon Waterways to reserve space for you. View Terms & Conditions for limited exceptions.
- The following charges are not included in the land/cruise vacation price unless otherwise noted: airfare to and from the start of your vacation; intra-vacation air, unless specified in the itinerary; airline baggage fees including checked and/or excess baggage fees; Federal inspection fees for the Federal U.S. Customs and Immigrations; International Air Transportation tax; agricultural tax; other per person taxes imposed by government entities; airport taxes and fees, including the September 11th Security fee up to $11.20 per person, passenger facility charges up to $18 per person, Federal domestic flight segment fees up to $4.00 per segment, and U.S. and international arrival and departure and other government-imposed added by the airline and applicable at time of booking; port taxes; passports; visas and vaccinations; tips to your Cruise Director, Local Host, driver, Local Guides, and/or ship's crew; gratuities on ferries, trains, and cruise ships; laundry; telephone; minibar; alcohol, beverages, and food outside of the contracted Avalon menu as presented at a hotel or restaurant or onboard your vessel (these extra items will be billed to you before leaving the hotel, ship, or restaurant); airport transfers on non-qualifying flights; optional excursions; additional activities and excursions purchased online; porterage at airports and train stations; Travel Protection; and all other items of a personal nature.
Booking your Vacation with Air
Our volume buying power saves you money. We may be able to provide you with flight arrangements from your gateway city. Avalon Waterways offers 2 air options: Flex Air and Instant Purchase Air. For Europe vacations with return air outside of 331 days, Flex air is available under the Early Airfare Price Guarantee. Early Airfare Price Guarantee locks in a price that is guaranteed not to increase. Flight schedules are unavailable with Early Airfare. Schedules will be confirmed when your air departure date is within 331 days to departure. At that time the best air price will be utilized and a new invoice with the air cost and confirmed schedule will be sent. The identity of the carrier, which may include the carrier?s codeshare partner, will be assigned and disclosed at this time. If the guaranteed price is the lowest, the schedule with the lowest fare per contract classes of service will be booked. Any voluntary change to the confirmed flights negates the guaranteed price and is subject to air pricing at the time of the change.
For air departure dates within 331 days, you'll be offered a choice of carriers and flight schedules as well as price points to choose from when selecting your flights. Your schedule will be provided to you at the time of booking (schedules are subject to change by carriers). Flex Air allows flexibility if you want to make changes to your vacation schedule. Instant Purchase Air may offer additional airline options but has more restrictions. Some vacations may only offer one Air type option. Guaranteed air-inclusive prices: air is only available to passengers traveling from the United States and only available when booked in conjunction with a land vacation. An additional $300 per person non-refundable air deposit is required for Flex Air booked in conjunction with any land vacation (i.e. air-inclusive vacation). Air can only be booked by Avalon Waterways in conjunction with a vacation package. Instant Purchase Air requires air payment in full at time of booking (i.e. air-inclusive vacation) plus non-refundable service fee ($30 per person for North America, $50 per person for International air). Once booked, Instant Purchase Air is non-refundable, and non-changeable. Some vacations may only offer one Air type option. Early Airfare Price Guarantee is not available with Instant Purchase Air. However, once your airfare is confirmed and Avalon Waterways has received your full land and air deposit or full air payment as noted above, your air-inclusive vacation price is guaranteed.
Air-Inclusive Vacations - Applicable Taxes & Fees
Air-inclusive vacations include government-imposed taxes and fees applicable at the time of booking and will be shown as a Total Amount. Additional airline fees for baggage may apply. At the time of booking your air-inclusive vacation online, carrier Websites will be provided to check baggage fees, or you can visit www.iflybags.com for up-to-date baggage pricing/restrictions. For return travel from some countries, international travelers are required to pay entry and/or exit fees at the airport. These fees will be collected by the local government and are payable by the traveler at time of travel. Your confirmation booking information will contain information about these fees.