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Paris, Burgundy and a South of France Cruise (Connections Journey)

11-day River Cruise with Abercrombie & Kent

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River Cruise Itinerary
Day 1: ARRIVE PARIS, FRANCE
Arrive in Paris, where you are met and transferred to your elegant boutique hotel for check-in. This evening, meet your Resident Tour Director — exclusive to Connections guests — for dinner atop Tour Montparnasse. (D)
 
Day 2: PARIS / Baking at a Boulangerie
Set out with your group for a tour of the city, including stops at the iconic Eiffel Tower and the lovely Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Paris. After lunch, try your skills as a baker during a hands-on class at a traditional boulangerie. (B L)
 
Day 3: BEAUNE / Prelude to the Journey
After a morning at leisure in Paris, travel with Connections guests by private vehicle to the winelands of Beaune. Visit the Hôtel-Dieu before settling into your boutique accommodations, a collection of connected 14th-through-16th-century buildings that epitomize the historic town, complete with period furnishings and trompe-l’oeil and Renaissance sculptures. (B)
 
Day 4: BEAUNE / Wine Capital of Burgundy
Meet your Resident Tour Director and travel to a traditional, family-run mustard mill for a private small-group tour and opportunity to make the piquant condiment. Join a local expert sommelier in his home for a tutored tasting of memorable vintage wines, followed by lunch. Next, travel to Lyon for priority embarkation aboard ‘Amadeus Provence.’ Take time to settle into your premium cabin or suite with an open-air French or walk-out balcony. Then, gather this evening for a welcome cocktail and dinner. (B L D)
 
Day 5: MÂCON / Medieval Wonder
Arrive this morning in Mâcon. Travel privately by small group to Cluny to tour the abbey. After lunch, continue to Chardonnay on a Connections-only excursion. Sample its namesake grape for yourself at a private wine tasting. (B L D)
 
Day 6: CHALON-SUR-SAÔNE / Riverside Town
Dock in picturesque Chalon-sur-Saône. Your Resident Tour Director shares an orientation before you set off on a morning at leisure to explore this delightful riverside town with its graceful cathedral. After lunch on board, visit medieval Brancion, continuing to the 17th-century Château de Cormatin. See its turrets, gilded rooms and ornate, English-style gardens. Half in ruins, it remains under the same private ownership today. (B L D)
 
Day 7: LYON / Historic Old Quarter
Arrive in Lyon to tour its old quarter, walking the charming, centuries-old streets of this UNESCO World Heritage Site by small group, with insight from your Resident Tour Director and local guide. See the traboules (hidden passageways) of Croix-Rousse Hill. Proceed to the Gallo-Roman amphitheater, and attend a Connections-only silk-screening demonstration in the heart of this region known for the craft. Later, cruise the Rhône River and enjoy a private pre-dinner cocktail party in the ship’s Amadeus Club, hosted by your Resident Tour Director. End the evening at an exclusive Chef's Highlights dinner with fellow Connections guests. (B L D)
 
Day 8: AVIGNON / Magnificent Palais des Papes
Meet your intimate group and embark on a full-day excursion, starting at the Pont du Gard, a towering Roman aqueduct. Enjoy a Connections-exclusive lunch in its shadow before taking a fascinating tour of Avignon. Its center, surrounded by medieval stone ramparts, features the prominent Palais des Papes and the remains of Saint-Bénezet bridge (Pont d’Avignon). After visiting the Palais des Papes, explore the city at your own pace, with time at leisure. This evening, step ashore to experience the flavors of the South of France during a Connections-only dinner at a specially chosen restaurant. (B L D)
 
Day 9: SÉNANQUE & ARLES / An Exclusive Experience
Begin your exclusive, day-long Connections excursion at the Cistercian Abbey of Sénanque, famous for its fields of lavender. In Saint Paul-de-Mausole, see the asylum where Vincent van Gogh was voluntarily interned for a year, taking note of the gardens that inspired some of his famous paintings. Then, stop at Mas de la Pyramide — a family-run Provençal farm — for a lunch brimming with fresh-plucked, home-grown produce. Talk with your hosts as you gain an inside perspective on rural life. Complete the day in Arles, a city settled since 800 BC. Discover its massive Roman amphitheater, beautiful basilica and the Place du Forum, where Van Gogh painted his Café Terrace at Night. You have the chance to stand in the exact spot where the master artist set up his easel. (B L D)
 
Day 10: VIVIERS / Local Pastimes
Arrive this morning in Viviers, a small walled city steeped in history and nestled on the Rhône River. Travel by Connections vehicle to meet locals and learn about — and play — a traditional game of pétanque. Tonight, gather a final time with fellow guests and join the captain for a celebratory gala dinner. (B L D)
 
Day 11: DEPART LYON
After breakfast, transfer to the Lyon airport, where you board your homebound flight for departure. (B)
Tour Map
River Cruise Highlights
  • Cruise the Saône and Rhône rivers, experiencing 11 days of exclusive Connections sightseeing in your private small-group vehicle, escorted by your own Resident Tour Director
  • Stay at intimate hotels in Paris and Beaune, carefully chosen for their central locations and historic splendor
  • Enjoy seven meals ashore that highlight authentic, local cuisine, including lunch at a Provençal farmhouse
  • Disembark for enlightening Connections-exclusive shore excursions, including a hands-on baking class at a Parisianboulangerie and a day trip to Sénanque and Arles
  • Enjoy lunch beneath the ancient Pont du Gard and a tour of Avignon, where you marvel at the Roman aqueduct
  • Walk in the footsteps of Van Gogh, visiting the hospital where the artist admitted himself and painted his surroundings

All This Included
Stay in boutique hotels in Paris and Beaune; attend an exclusive, hands-on baking class at a boulangerie; and ply the Saône and Rhône rivers during a seven-night cruise through the south of France, disembarking for Connections-exclusive shore excursions, including a day trip to Sénanque and Arles.
  • All accommodations as noted in the itinerary
  • Meals as specified
  • Arrival and departure transfers
  • Fully guided sightseeing as noted in the itinerary (including entrance fees)
  • Local bottled water on vehicles during sightseeing
  • Selected beverages at included dinners
  • Services of an A&K Tour Director throughout
  • Handling of two pieces of baggage per person for international flights 
  • Hotel and port taxes
  • Gratuities for local guides/drivers on any included excursions
Accommodations on this Tour
Paris: Hôtel Napoléon
Beaune: Hotel Le Cep
Cruising: Cabin onboard Amadeus Provence
Notes
  • Cabin upgrades are available.
  • High or low water levels may impact sailing and require changes to the itinerary.
  • Minimum age is 12 years. 
  • First group event: welcome dinner at 6:00 p.m. on Day 1. 
  • Last group event: ship arrival in Lyon at 8:00 a.m. on Day 11.
  • Please ask your Vacations to Go travel counselor for more information.
Terms and Conditions

* The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines. Sorry, we are unable to offer air from countries other than the U.S. However, for those international customers who are able to arrange their own transportation to the trip origination city, we are able to offer the land/cruise portion of the package at the price quoted.


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