River Cruise Itinerary
Day 1 DEPART USA/CANADA
Board your overnight flight to Paris, France.
Day 2 ARRIVE IN PARIS, FRANCE
Arrive in Paris and transfer to your hotel. The balance of the day is yours to start exploring this beautiful city.
Day 3 PARIS
Enjoy Paris’ famous sights during this morning’s guided tour where you will see the Champs Élysées, Place de la Concorde, and the Eiffel Tower. Conclude your visit at the famous Notre Dame Cathedral. The afternoon is free for you to explore the “City of Light.” This evening, an optional Parisian Cabaret dinner theater excursion is available. (B)
Day 4 PARIS
Your last day in Paris is free for you to enjoy at your leisure. Or, you may decide to join the optional Seine Cruise & Eiffel Tower excursion this morning or the optional Montmartre & Illuminations tour this evening. (B)
Day 5 PARIS - LYON - EMBARKATION
After checking out of your hotel, you will board the TGV high-speed train that will whisk you through the French countryside to Lyon. Nestled between the Saone and Rhone rivers, Lyon is one of France’s most important cities and gastronomic capitals. Upon arrival, enjoy some free time for lunch on your own before your included Lyon Cooking Demonstration. Later, transfer to your luxurious ship. Gather this evening on board for a Welcome Dinner. (B,D)
Day 6 LYON - TRÉVOUX
Today your panoramic tour of Lyon will take you to the “Place Bellecour” with its equestrian statue of Louis XIV, the “Place des Terreaux,” with Bartholdi’s Fountain and the Town Hall. Afterwards, visit Fourvière, part of the historic region designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Known as the “Hill of Prayers,” Fourvière is famous for its iconic white Basilica of Notre-Dame; ruins of a Roman theater, and majestic views of the city below. Later, your ship will depart for the historic village of Trévoux. Upon arrival, you will take a walking tour of this former capital of the ancient principality of Dombes. The town’s landmarks include a Parliament building, medieval ramparts and a hillside Chateau. You will also enjoy a traditional game of boules, otherwise known as pétanque. (B,L,D)
Day 7 TRÉVOUX - VIENNE
This morning’s tour will take you through the chateaux, fields and vineyards of the Beaujolais wine region, the Pays d’Or or “land of the golden stones,” named for the ochre limestone of its homes and castles. You will visit the medieval hilltop village of Oingt. You will also visit the winery and home of a local vintner, which will include wine tasting, a vineyard tour and explanation of the history of wine production in the region. Return to the ship in the early afternoon and continue cruising towards Vienne. (B,L,D)
Day 8 VIENNE - TOURNON
Situated between the wine regions of Burgundy and Beaujolais, Vienne has a significant Roman history, which is highlighted by its marvelously preserved ruins and remains. This morning, you will take a mini train tour and see the 1st-century Roman Temple of Augustus and Livia, the ruins of a Roman theater and the medieval churches of St. Andre-Le-Bas and Abbey St. Pierre. As an alternative, you may choose to visit the castle (when available). Your ship will depart at midday for Tournon. This evening, explore the town on your own. (B,L,D)
Day 9 TOURNON - VIVIERS
This morning, visit Tain L’Hermitage, Tournon’s “twin” town located across the Rhone River and linked by a 19th-century suspension bridge. The fertile soil and ideal climate of the region has made Tain L’Hermitage the premier producer of the Côtes du Rhone wines. Enjoy a wine tasting and then free time this afternoon to visit the 16th-century castle which is now a town hall. Return to the ship for lunch as we cruise to Viviers. Arriving this evening, you will enjoy a unique view of the town’s history and legends. Participate in an onboard nougat demonstration or follow along on a “ghost walk” through this once-thriving medieval town, as fascinating and poignant stories of its past are brought to life by the town’s current residents. (B,L,D)
Day 10 VIVIERS - AVIGNON
After breakfast, enjoy an excursion to Grignan, a magnificent village perched upon a hill surrounded by lavender fields, topped by a Renaissance castle. From the castle, enjoy a commanding view of the surrounding countryside. Return to the ship and cruise to Avignon. As your ship docks, look for the Avignon Bridge, made famous by the French children’s song “Sur le pont d’Avignon” (“On the Bridge of Avignon”). Seven popes resided in the magnificent Gothic Papal Palace, which you will visit during your walking tour. You will also see the well-preserved medieval walls surrounding the historic center of town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In the alternative, you can take an excursion to the Pont du Gard, a Roman aqueduct that is a masterpiece of engineering and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Your tour will also visit Uzes, a lovely Provencal small town known for its Castle of the Duke of Uzes (still occupied by the Duke and his family), medieval streets and a picturesque town square framed by archways. Enjoy free time for shopping in Uzes before returning to your ship. (B,L,D)
Day 11 AVIGNON - LES BAUX - ARLES
This morning, you will arrive in Arles and board a motor coach for an excursion to the village of Les Baux de Provence. This hilltop village and fortress was a Protestant stronghold during the French Wars of Religion until destroyed by Louis XIII and Cardinal Richelieu in 1633. At the castle, you will see examples of medieval siege weaponry. In the alternative, choose to take the “Van Gogh” tour which will take you the Saint Paul de Mausole Asylum. Here, Van Gogh painted some of his most well-known paintings such as The Irises and Starry Night. Later, visit an olive farm to learn about this age-old Provençal farming tradition. Late this afternoon, your city tour of Arles takes you to the Romanesque cathedral and the Roman Amphitheater. The ship moors overnight in Arles. (B,L,D)
Day 12 ARLES - DISEMBARKATION - BARCELONA, SPAIN
Disembark your ship in Arles and transfer to Barcelona. Along the way, pass through the Camargue, the unique marshland that extends to the sea. Stop in the medieval town of Perpignan, France, where you will have free time for lunch and some exploring on your own. (B)
Day 13 BARCELONA
Your full day in Barcelona begins with a driving tour to the top of Montjuic Hill where you will enjoy glorious views of the city below. Continue along the waterfront to Las Ramblas, the iconic tree-lined boulevard at the heart of the city. You will explore the Gothic Quarter, the medieval center of the city. Your tour also includes the unique architectural works of Antoni Gaudí, including Casa Milà, Casa Batlló and La Sagrada Familia, the basilica and UNESCO World Heritage Site that has been under construction for over a century. In the alternative, choose the “tapas and boqueria” excursion where you will visit tapas bars and sample local favorites. Also, discover why Mediterranean cuisine is internationally known due to its ingredients during your guided tour of the “Market of la Boqueria.” (B)
Day 14 BARCELONA
Enjoy a full day at your leisure, or take part in the optional Montserrat excursion, visiting the famous Benedictine Abbey atop Montserrat Mountain. (B)
Day 15 DEPART BARCELONA
Transfer to the airport for your homeward flight. (B)
All This Included
From magical Paris to romantic Barcelona, this itinerary is truly captivating. Begin with three nights in Paris then travel aboard the high speed TGV train to Lyon, France’s gastronomical capital. Cruise legendary wine growing regions, home to famous wines such as Beaujolais and Côte du Rhône. Enjoy wine tastings at local vintners, marvel at Roman ruins, and shop for Provencal crafts. See the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Avignon as well as Arles, once home to Vincent Van Gogh. Disembark and travel to medieval Perpignan for a stop en route to your post-cruise program in Barcelona.
3 nights hotel in Paris at the Pullman Paris Montparnasse (or similar), including daily buffet breakfast
Transfer to Lyon via High-speed TGV train
7 nights deluxe cruise accommodation in an outside stateroom, most with French balconies
Life enriching tours and excursions daily
“Culinary Delights – Bites & Sights” excursions
State-of-the-art Infotainment System in all staterooms featuring free high-speed Internet access, hit Hollywood movies, extensive music library & English language TV stations
Complimentary Wi-Fi access on board
Terry bathrobes and white-on-white plush bedding
Gourmet dining with all meals included during your cruise
Free-flowing red & white wines from France's great wine regions, beer & soft drinks with every dinner on board
Bottled water in every stateroom replenished daily
Cocktail Reception, Welcome Dinner & Captain's Gala Dinner
Motorcoach from Arles to Perpignan and on to Barcelona
3 nights hotel in Barcelona at the Grand Marina (or similar), including daily buffet breakfast
Special highlights including lectures, cooking demonstration, onboard music performances and piano music
Bicycles to explore on your own & guided bicycle tours
Services of professional Cruise Manager
All English language on board in a non-smoking environment (smoking permitted only on the Sun Deck)
All transfers with the purchase of cruise, land & air package
All local taxes
Accommodations on this Tour
Paris: Pullman Paris Montparnasse
Cruising: Cabin onboard MS AmaDagio
Barcelona: Grand Marina
Cabin upgrades are available.
Dates, prices & itineraries for 2013 sailings are subject to change.
Port Charges: $147 per person.
Single Supplement for Cruise: 50% of twin price; Jr. Suites 100% of twin price.
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.