Posts Tagged With: France

Paris and The Heart of Normandy

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PARIS & THE HEART OF NORMANDY

Combine the magic of Paris with the beauty of France’s Norman countryside and voilà! Experience history firsthand at the Normandy beaches, site of the famous Allied invasion on D-Day in 1944. Delight in the Gothic architecture of Rouen, and see where Joan of Arc was tried and executed. Lose yourself in the exquisite gardens of Giverny, whose rich palette inspired Impressionist Claude Monet for many years. Walk the cobblestone streets of provincial Vernon and share the splendor of Paris, the world’s most romantic city, with your companion. This fascinating 8-day journey has something for everyone.  AIRFARE REDUCED ON THIS CRUISE.

Eiffel Tower, Paris, France

DAY 1 | PARIS, FRANCE

Arrive in Paris, romance capital of the world. Transfer from the Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris to your ship.* After boarding, take free time to explore Paris, or join our “welcome walk” to stretch your legs and get oriented. (D)

Paris Louvre, France

DAY 2 | PARIS, FRANCE

Wake up to a full day in Paris. After breakfast, embark on a half-day tour of this dazzling city and take in its most remarkable sights, including the iconic Eiffel Tower. You’ll also see the École Militaire, Orsay Museum and Latin Quarter and the magnificent Cathedral of Notre Dame. Then we’ll drive past the Louvre and Opera House and along the famed Champs-Élysées. Return aboard for lunch. This afternoon you’re free to take in the Louvre, shop the fashionable boutiques, visit the artists’ district of Montmartre or enjoy a cruise along the Seine. As always, your Program Director can help you plan your free time. Dinner is served aboard your ship. (B, L, D)

UNESCO

Vernon Notre Dame, France

DAY 3 | GIVERNY & VERNON, FRANCE

Arrive in Vernon before breakfast; take a short ride into the town of Giverny, where Claude Monet resided from 1883 until his death in 1926. Visit the beautiful gardens and charming stone farmhouse where he lived and worked; see the water garden with the recognizable Japanese bridge, water lilies, wisteria and azaleas that inspired many of his masterpieces.†

After lunch, spend some time with your Program Director in the provincial town of Vernon. Take a stroll to see the Maison du Temps Jadis (House of Past Times), Vernon’s oldest house, and the 11th-century Church of Notre Dame. Dinner is served aboard. (B, L, D)

† Monet garden not available before April 1 or after November 1; a visit to the village of Auvers-sur-Oise, favored by van Gogh and other artists, will be substituted.

DAY 4 | ROUEN, FRANCE

Indulge in leisurely morning cruising along the Seine. You’ll spend the afternoon in the medieval city of Rouen, preeminent capital of Normandy. Begin with a walking tour through the center of Old Town, where you see the spectacular Gothic Notre Dame Cathedral, often painted by Claude Monet, and the famous Gros Horloge, a 16th-century astronomical clock. As you walk among the half-timbered storybook buildings, you’ll feel transported back through time; see the 14th-century courthouse where Joan of Arc was sentenced to death and the nearby Market Square where she was martyred.

Take free time to discover more of Rouen or visit one of its museums of art or antiquities. Dine aboard or at a sidewalk café. Your ship remains docked overnight. (B, L, D)

DAY 5 | NORMANDY BEACHES, FRANCE

After breakfast, begin your full-day tour to the historic beaches of Normandy. Drive past Gold Beach, Courseulles sur Mer and Juno Beach on your way to visit such World War II landmarks as Omaha Beach, the American Military Cemetery and Arromanches Debarkment D-Day Museum. Have dinner and relax aboard your ship or take an evening stroll. (B, L, D)

Les Andelys Chateau Galliard, France

DAY 6 | LES ANDELYS & CONFLANS, FRANCE

Enjoy a leisurely morning cruise to the small town of Les Andelys, known for its imposing castle, Château Gaillard, built in 1196 by Richard the Lionheart. After lunch, join a guided walk to this fatally flawed masterpiece of Middle Ages architecture. Return aboard for scenic cruising and dinner. Late in the evening we dock in Conflans, a riverside town whose unique culture reflects its status as a local hub for barge transportation along the Seine and its tributaries. (B, L, D)

Conflans Palace Versailles, France

DAY 7 | CONFLANS & PARIS, FRANCE

After breakfast, set out on a walking tour through the charming neighborhoods of Conflans. Or, join an optional tour to the luxurious Palace of Versailles, former home of Louis XIV. Lunch aboard your ship as you sail back to Paris this afternoon. Dine aboard and then enjoy some free time in the “City of Light.” (B, L, D)

UNESCO

Paris, France

DAY 8 | PARIS, FRANCE

After breakfast, disembark and proceed to the Paris airport for your return flight.* Or, extend your time in France’s romantic capital with a 3-night Paris extension. (B)

August, 2016 departures:  From $3556 per person cruise.  Airfare $695.
Hurry limited time offer on airfare:  Expires May 31, 2015.
Call today-919.708.8217
#river cruises
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Chateaux, Rivers and Wine

Bergerac-Wine-611x300 Beynac

CHÂTEAUX, RIVERS & WINE

Caressed by Atlantic breezes, the vineyards that cover the rolling hills along the rivers of Aquitaine have for centuries produced France’s most remarkable wines: Saint-Émilion, Pomerol, Sauternes, Médoc and Margaux are but a handful of the appellations that make Bordeaux wines world-famous. At the region’s heart, the city of Bordeaux stretches along the river bank, inviting visitors to savor its grand architecture, tempting cafés and superb museums. Celebrate joie de vivre in this land of wine and oysters, truffles and cognac, as you enjoy an in-depth view of this region and cruise the Dordogne, Garonne and Gironde Rivers.

Bordeaux, France

DAY 1 | BORDEAUX, FRANCE

Fly to Bordeaux. We meet you at the airport and take you to your ship*. The rest of the day is yours to relax or explore Bordeaux on your own. Second only to Paris in French historic monuments, Bordeaux’s thoughtfully preserved 18th-century urban areas make it a desirable film location, and its graceful port on the Garonne River is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We remain docked overnight. (D)

UNESCO

Pauillac Vineyards, France

DAY 2 | PAUILLAC (MARGAUX), FRANCE

This morning you’ll sail along the Gironde River, docking at Pauillac in the Médoc region before lunch. This afternoon, enjoy a wine country tour featuring several wine-tasting opportunities, including the area’s famous full-flavored Margaux. Travel through the rolling vineyard-laced hills to dinner at a château, accompanied by the château’s own wines. Relax aboard your ship this evening, or explore Pauillac’s marina and the Plaza Lafayette, where the Marquis de Lafayette set sail to the New World. Pauillac, the undisputed capital of the Médoc wine region, is home to Châteaux Lafite Rothschild, Latour and Mouton Rothschild, among others. Before returning to your ship, catch a glimpse of the Île de Patiras lighthouse in the middle of the Gironde. (B, L, D)

Blaye Vauban Citadel, France

DAY 3 | BLAYE (COGNAC), FRANCE

Early this morning we sail to Blaye and arrive during breakfast. Blaye boasts an extraordinary 17th-century citadel, dramatically set on a rock beside the river, incorporating the ruins of an ancient Gothic château that contains the tomb of Charibert II, king of Aquitaine. Legend has it that the Frankish hero Roland, who served Charlemagne, is also buried there. The citadel of Blaye, its city walls and two other forts are collectively listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Take a guided tour of the citadel, then enjoy some free time in Blaye. Or, you may choose to take an optional excursion to the charming medieval town of Cognac, birthplace of one of the world’s best-known types of brandy. Here, you will tour the family business of Camus, one of the most tradition-steeped Cognac houses in the area, and try your hand at blending. We lift anchor late this afternoon and dine while sailing toward Libourne, where the Isle and Dordogne Rivers meet. (B, L, D)

UNESCO

DAY 4 | LIBOURNE (SAINT-ÉMILION), FRANCE

Begin your day with a leisurely stroll to Libourne’s picturesque city square, lined with buildings dating as far back as the 16th century, or take part in one of two optional excursions: an exploration of the Bergerac area in the Dordogne to learn more about truffles, a great French delicacy; or a wine tasting at a nearby château, of some local vintages from the Saint-Émilion and the Pomerol appellations. Later, take a tour to Saint-Émilion, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, where you see the town’s superb medieval lanes and delightful views of the surrounding vineyards from the upper town. Spend a pleasant afternoon exploring the town’s streets and shops. (B, L, D)

UNESCO

Cadillac Alley, France

DAY 5 | CADILLAC (SAUTERNES), FRANCE

Enjoy scenic morning cruising along the idyllic Garonne River, stopping after lunch at Cadillac. Disembark for your excursion to Sauternes. Learn how the area’s sweet dessert wines are made and taste some examples during your tour. Return aboard for dinner. (B, L, D)

Bordeaux, France

DAY 6 | CADILLAC & BORDEAUX, FRANCE

We sail along the Garonne toward Bordeaux, enjoying a quiet morning. Tour the city center upon arrival and see some of Bordeaux’s highlights, including the Place des Quinconces, one of the largest squares in Europe; the neoclassical Grand Théâtre de Bordeaux; and several spectacular churches. We remain docked overnight so you can explore the city’s restaurants, bars and nightlife. (B, L, D)

Bordeaux, France

DAY 7 | BORDEAUX, FRANCE

You have a full day at leisure, giving you more time to appreciate the well-preserved architecture of Jacques Ange Gabriel and son, and to taste the city’s cuisine and wine appellations. Perhaps pick up a few bottles to take home with you. You won’t want to miss the Place de la Bourse, with its mirror-like reflecting pool, impressive by day but absolutely stunning at night. You also have the option of taking a full-day excursion to Arcachon, a commune on the Atlantic coast, to see the Victorian-era villas, walk on the boardwalk and taste the oysters, a local delicacy. Or, you have the option of participating in a market visit with the Viking Chef to see where the local chefs of Bordeaux find their fruit, vegetables, meats and fish. (B, L, D)

Bordeaux Palace Bourse, France

DAY 8 | BORDEAUX, FRANCE

After a final onboard breakfast, disembark and we take you to the airport for your flight home.* Or, extend your journey with 3 nights in Paris. (B)  Paris is always a good idea!

**November 7, 2015 sailing – 2 for 1 cruise and 2 for 1 airfare. Limited time offer.  Call today.

919.708.8217

French Balcony room – $3651 per person includes river cruise, airfare, round trip transfers, all meals, excursion in each port, entertainment and lots of wine tastings.  For the wine connoisseur, this is the cruise for you.

**Added bonus-As a thank you for joining me, receive a complimentary bottle of wine from one of the Bordeaux premium wineries.

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Rhine Getaway Cruise

2Burg_Katz_Above_St._Goarshausen_and_the_Rhine_River_Germany - Copy - CopyRhine Getaway Cruise

Visit all the highlights of the legendary Rhine in just 8 days. In Germany, see the many charming castles commanding the riverbanks as you sail by, tour both Marksburg Castle and the ruins of Heidelberg Castle. Admire Cologne, the jewel of the Rhine, with its awe-inspiring Dom, and experience the lush landscape of the Black Forest region. Also, explore Holland’s famous windmills and waterworks, encounter multicultural Strasbourg in France, and take part in the inviting nightlife in Rüdesheim’sDrosselgasse. On this itinerary you see a lot without spending a lot of time.  I have a guest taking this cruise soon and I wanted my readers to see where she is going.  This has a great itinerary and I know you will enjoy it as much as I do.

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DAY 1 | AMSTERDAM, NETHERLANDS

Arrive in Amsterdam, then transfer to your ship. After boarding, the afternoon is yours to relax or explore the city on your own. If your arrival schedule permits, you may wish to visit the Anne Frank House. (D)  Exploring is one of my favorite things to do in a foreign country.

Kinderdijk, Netherlands

DAY 2 | KINDERDIJK, NETHERLANDS

This morning you sail to Kinderdijk, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, for a tour of this ingenious network of windmills and other flood management devices. You learn why the windmills were built and see how they work, plus you enter a working windmill for a tour of its mechanisms and living quarters. Return aboard for lunch and an enjoyable afternoon of Dutch diversions: sample handcrafted Dutch cheeses and jenever, a distilled juniper liquor, and try your hand at sjoelen (Dutch table shuffleboard). Cruise through the night. (B, L, D)

The Dom Cathedral, Cologne, Germany

DAY 3 | COLOGNE, GERMANY

Continue along the Rhine this morning; arrive in Cologne and disembark for a walking tour. Stroll through Old Town past St. Martin’s Church, and spend some time inside Cologne’s Dom, a remarkable Gothic cathedral whose construction began in 1248 and was only completed in 1880. Explore the dockside taverns, cafés and shops on your own. As always, your Program Director can help you plan your free time. Dinner is served aboard and remain docked until late evening. (B, L, D) More exploring!

Marksburg Castle, Koblenz, Germany

DAY 4 | KOBLENZ & RÜDESHEIM , GERMANY

Proceed along the Rhine, disembarking to tour the 700-year-old Marksburg Castle and its museum. Enjoy an onboard lunch as you marvel at this scenic passage, a UNESCO World Heritage Site where castles overlook the river from their hilltop posts. Arrive in Rüdesheim in the late afternoon. Spend free time in the pedestrian-onlyDrosselgasse and sample a glass of locally produced wine at one of the restaurants or wine bars. Dine aboard the ship, or in town if you prefer. Depart after midnight. (B, L, D)

Heidelberg Turret Gate, Germany

DAY 5 | HEIDELBERG & SPEYER, GERMANY

Cruise through the morning as you enjoy breakfast and the passing scenery. Arrive in Mannheim and disembark for a tour of Heidelberg to see Germany’s oldest university, founded in 1386. Then, visit the beautiful sandstone ruins of imposing Heidelberg Castle and take in the scenery of the Neckar River Valley and the city’s many red rooftops from this hilltop post. Continue with a walking tour through the Old Town to Heidelberg’s renowned gates.

Rejoin the ship in Speyer this afternoon and take some time to look around. You dock in full view of the imposing Romanesque cathedral, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Built in the 11th century on the site of a former basilica, the building’s design influenced Romanesque architecture for centuries to come, and is the final resting place of eight German monarchs. Its soaring interior features graceful rows of sandstone columns and a large stained-glass window that was installed in the western façade during a later Gothic period. (B, L, D)

Old Town, Strasbourg, France

DAY 6 | STRASBOURG, FRANCE

Dock this morning in Kehl and disembark for a guided tour of Strasbourg. See the European Parliament and tour the interior of the city’s famed cathedral. The afternoon is free to further explore this Alsatian city’s blend of French and German cultures, resplendent churches, medieval covered bridges, verdant parks and handsome Art Nouveau and modernist architecture. Dine aboard and enjoy free time this evening in the amiable little city of Kehl. (B, L, D)  Time to explore again!

Braubach, Germany

DAY 7 | BREISACH, GERMANY

Arrive in Breisach this morning, gateway to the Black Forest. Take a scenic excursion through the area’s renowned mountain landscape, rolling meadows and dense forests. Once there, visit a local workshop and see a cuckoo clock-making demonstration. Return to Breisach or choose an optional excursion to the quaint Alsatian town of Colmar. Dine aboard and cruise on through the night. (B, L, D) This is a great place to buy your cuckoo clocks.

Basel, Switzerland

DAY 8 | BASEL, SWITZERLAND

After breakfast, disembark and proceed to the airport for your return flight.* Or, you may want to extend your journey with 2 nights in Lucerne. Enjoy the scenic landscape of the Swiss Alps with a view from your hotel, situated on the banks of beautiful Lake Lucerne. (B) When I take this cruise, I will be extending my stay in Lucerne,  There are a few attractions I would like to re-visit again.

The following meals are included: B = Breakfast; L = Lunch; D = Dinner with included complimentary wine, beer, and soft drinks.

Also, all the excursions included in the itinerary are included in the price.
Added bonus:  2 for 1 cruise and discounted airfare.  Be sure to call me for details.  I am looking forward to traveling on the Rhine in 2015 with some of my readers.
#river cruises
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Wine Cruise of Burgundy and Provence

AS_2011_Rhone_038Wine Cruise of Burgundy and Provence

Opportunities abound on this delightful vacation to learn about France and the French.  Our adventure begins with three overnights and guided sightseeing in Paris, the “City of Light.” Then we ride the TGV train to Dijon, where we continue on by motorcoach to fascinating Beaune for a Burgundy wine tasting or you may chose to visit Hotel-Dieu.  Next, we will board our ship in quaint Chalon-sur-Saone and set sail for lovely Tournus, Macon, France’s gastronomic capital of Lyon, as well as medieval Tournon, charming Viviers, Avignon, and Arles.  Before we disembark our ship in Arles, we will sail through the peaceful Carmague area. Our journey ends with an overnight in the French Riviera, also known as the Cote d’Azur where will will have time to visit Monte Carlo and Monaco.  This cruise vacation has it all-historic sites, delightful towns, picturesque wine country, and so much more!!!!  Seeing is believing.

This is a Wine Special Interest Cruise sailing on October 26, 2014.  On this cruise, a distinguished wine authority explains how grape varieties are cultivated, and teaches us what to look for in a good wine from each region we sail through.  We will mingle with others who share the same passion for wine and enjoy onboard wine tastings, wine and food paring dinners, and  visits to a local vineyard where we meet the winemaker.  Check out this amazing itinerary.

vineyards-champagne-france

Days 1-3 Paris: welcome to France; guided sightseeing on Day 2 and 3.

Day 4 Paris–Dijon–Beaune–Chalon-sur-Saône (Embarkation)–Tournus: TGV train from Paris to Dijon; choice of visit of the Hôtel-Dieu or Burgundy wine tasting in Beaune; onboard welcome reception

Day 5 Tournus–Mâcon: guided sightseeing of Tournus, visit the abbey of St. Philibertravenna

Day 6 Beaujolais Region–Lyon: guided sightseeing in Lyon, picture stop on Fourvière Hill; onboard lecture

Day 7 Lyon: day at leisureenhanced-buzz-25863-1308928054-8

Day 8 Tournon/Tain l’Hermitage–Viviers: guided walk in Tournon; onboard chocolate tasting; guided walk in Viviers, visit the Old Town and the cathedral

Day 9 Avignon: guided sightseeing, visit Palace of the Popes

11117853-rhone-river-and-the-pope-s-palace-in-avignon-france-photo-taken-at-26th-of-october-2011

Day 10 Camargue Region–Arles: sail through the Camargue region during breakfast; guided sightseeing in Arles, visit the Roman Amphitheater

Day 11 Arles (Disembarkation)–Côte d’Azur: evening in Côte d’AzurCote_dAzur_West

Day 12-13 Côte d’Azur: your vacation ends on day 13 and we travel home with a heart and head full of memories.

Special onboard and onshore experiences presented by local chefs, entertainers, artisans, and experts, designed to enrich your cruise.

Learn “all about the French” at an onboard lecture, and attend a lively performance  of gypsy music.

#River Cruises, #Moulin Rouge, #Paris, #Burgundy Wine, #France, Beaune, Vineyards

BONUS:  Early booking discount.

 

Added Bonus:  Private vineyard visit and wine tasting compliments of Cruise Like A VIP

Call for details at 919.708.8217

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Wine Cruise of Burgundy and Provence

AS_2011_Rhone_038Wine Cruise of Burgundy and Provence

Opportunities abound on this delightful vacation to learn about France and the French.  Our adventure begins with three overnights and guided sightseeing in Paris, the “City of Light.” Then we ride the TGV train to Dijon, where we continue on by motorcoach to fascinating Beaune for a Burgundy wine tasting or you may chose to visit Hotel-Dieu.  Next, we will board our ship in quaint Chalon-sur-Saone and set sail for lovely Tournus, Macon, France’s gastronomic capital of Lyon, as well as medieval Tournon, charming Viviers, Avignon, and Arles.  Before we disembark our ship in Arles, we will sail through the peaceful Carmague area. Our journey ends with an overnight in the French Riviera, also known as the Cote d’Azur where will will have time to visit Monte Carlo and Monaco.  This cruise vacation has it all-historic sites, delightful towns, picturesque wine country, and so much more!!!!  Seeing is believing.

This is a Wine Special Interest Cruise sailing on October 26, 2014.  On this cruise, a distinguished wine authority explains how grape varieties are cultivated, and teaches us what to look for in a good wine from each region we sail through.  We will mingle with others who share the same passion for wine and enjoy onboard wine tastings, wine and food paring dinners, and  visits to a local vineyard where we meet the winemaker.  Check out this amazing itinerary.

vineyards-champagne-france

Days 1-3 Paris: welcome to France; guided sightseeing on Day 2 and 3.

Day 4 Paris–Dijon–Beaune–Chalon-sur-Saône (Embarkation)–Tournus: TGV train from Paris to Dijon; choice of visit of the Hôtel-Dieu or Burgundy wine tasting in Beaune; onboard welcome reception

Day 5 Tournus–Mâcon: guided sightseeing of Tournus, visit the abbey of St. Philibertravenna

Day 6 Beaujolais Region–Lyon: guided sightseeing in Lyon, picture stop on Fourvière Hill; onboard lecture

Day 7 Lyon: day at leisureenhanced-buzz-25863-1308928054-8

Day 8 Tournon/Tain l’Hermitage–Viviers: guided walk in Tournon; onboard chocolate tasting; guided walk in Viviers, visit the Old Town and the cathedral

Day 9 Avignon: guided sightseeing, visit Palace of the Popes

11117853-rhone-river-and-the-pope-s-palace-in-avignon-france-photo-taken-at-26th-of-october-2011

Day 10 Camargue Region–Arles: sail through the Camargue region during breakfast; guided sightseeing in Arles, visit the Roman Amphitheater

Day 11 Arles (Disembarkation)–Côte d’Azur: evening in Côte d’AzurCote_dAzur_West

Day 12-13 Côte d’Azur: your vacation ends on day 13 and we travel home with a heart and head full of memories.

Special onboard and onshore experiences presented by local chefs, entertainers, artisans, and experts, designed to enrich your cruise.

Learn “all about the French” at an onboard lecture, and attend a lively performance  of gypsy music.

#River Cruises, #Moulin Rouge, #Paris, #Burgundy Wine, #France

BONUS:  Early booking discount of $500.00 per couple

moulin-rouge_1by7 

Added Bonus:  Moulin Rouge theatre and dinner show in Paris compliments of Cruise Like A VIP

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Categories: River Cruise Travel Posts | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment