Jazz & WWII History France River Cruise - Avalon Waterways®

A Culinary Experience on the Grand France with London 2017

19 Day River Cruise from Côte d’Azur to London

2017 Information

This fantastic cruise vacation showcases France’s breathtaking scenery, amazing history, and exciting variety. Your adventure begins on the stunning Côte d’Azur, then travel to Arles to board your ship and sail into the peaceful Camargue area during dinner (daylight permitting), before returning to Arles. Then, sail north up the scenic Rhône and Saône Rivers. Along the way, explore Arles, Avignon, delightful Viviers, medieval Tournon, charming Vienne, France’s gastronomic capital of Lyon, as well as St. Jean de Losne, and fascinating Beaune. Take the TGV train from Dijon to Paris, embark your second cruise ship, and begin your journey along the Seine River into the picturesque Normandy region. In Vernon, choose between a guided visit of Claude Monet’s stunning gardens at Giverny or magnificent Bizy Castle. Continue to Les Andelys, home of dramatic Château Gaillard, then on to Caudebec, where you choose between an included excursion to Normandy’s historic landing beaches or an interesting “Taste of Normandy.” Next up: Joan of Arc’s historic Rouen. In Conflans, it’s your choice of excursions to either Vincent van Gogh’s Auvers-sur-Oise or Napoleon and Josephine’s elegant Château de Malmaison. The Seine portion of this cruise has a culinary theme, with an onboard pastry demo and a Master of Wine will join you on the ship to host a cheese and wine tasting as well as a special food and wine pairing dinner. Return to Paris for guided sightseeing, taking in the most famous sights of this magnificent city. Then, trade your “Bonjours” for “Cheerios” as an included high-speed train transfer whisks you to London for three exciting nights. Your Monograms package includes hotel reservations, guided sightseeing, daily breakfast, a destination guide to familiarize you with the city, and best of all—the services of a Monograms Local Host® to welcome you and lend a helping hand throughout your stay. This “friend in the city” can answer your questions, offer suggestions, and help make your vacation what you want it to be. During your guided sightseeing tour with a local expert, see the sights you cannot go home without seeing—Parliament, Big Ben, Westminster Abbey, Piccadilly Circus, and more. Enjoy VIP access to St. Paul’s Cathedral, the wedding site for Lady Diana and Prince Charles, and witness the Changing of the Guard (if held). You’ll have plenty of free time to maybe take in a West End theater show, join a guided tour of Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, check out the Wimbledon Lawn & Tennis Museum, and explore the Churchill Museum Cabinet War Rooms—the secret underground headquarters during WWII. Day trips are available out of the city to Oxford, Warwick Castle, or mysterious Stonehenge. Monograms offers over 40 exciting activities and excursions, so you have loads of options.


Dates & Prices Get A Quote Book Online

Highlights & Sightseeing

Cruise: deluxe 14-night cruise in an outside stateroom with Avalon’s exclusive Comfort Collection BedsSM

Day 1 Côte d’Azur: welcome to France

Day 2 Côte d’Azur–Transfer to Arles (Embarkation): onboard welcome reception; sail into the Camargue region (daylight permitting)

Day 3 Arles: guided sightseeing, visit the Roman Amphitheater

Day 4 Avignon: guided sightseeing, visit the Palace of the Popes

Day 5 Cruising–Viviers: guided walk, visit Old Town and the cathedral

Day 6 Tournon/Tain l’Hermitage–Vienne: guided walk in Tournon; guided walk in Vienne

Day 7 Lyon: guided sightseeing, picture stop on Fourvière Hill

Day 8 Cruising–St. Jean de Losne: day at leisure; cheese tasting

Day 9 St. Jean de Losne (Disembarkation)–Beaune–Dijon–Paris (Embarkation): visit the Hôtel-Dieu in Beaune; TGV train from Dijon to Paris; onboard welcome reception

Day 10 Vernon–Les Andelys: choice of guided excursions to Giverny or Bizy Castle; on board crêpes lunch and pastry demonstration; guided walk in Les Andelys, visit the Parish Church of Le Petit Andely

Days 11-12 Caudebec: choice of excursion along either the “Normandy Villages Route” or the “Normandy Abbeys Route”; choice of excursions to Normandy landing beaches or “A Taste of Normandy” – including visit and lunch at a local cheese farm.

Day 13 Rouen: guided walk, see the Gros Horloge astronomical clock and visit the cathedral; on board cheese and wine tasting

Day 14 Conflans–Paris: choice of guided excursions to Auvers-sur-Oise or Château de Malmaison; special food and wine pairing dinner

Day 15 Paris: choice of guided sightseeing or “Heart of Paris” walk, visit Notre Dame Cathedral

London: 3 nights hotel accommodation with buffet breakfast (B); Monograms Local Host Service & Destination Guide with city map; guided sightseeing, inside visits and special features are shown in UPPERCASE; high-speed Eurostar train from Paris to London (standard class*) with porterage for one suitcase; transfers to/from train stations.

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

Learn from a local expert about D-Day, and attend an onboard “les guitares de camargue” musical presentation.

Meals

  • Captain’s welcome & farewell receptions with sparkling wine and canapés
  • Welcome dinner
  • Farewell dinner
  • Daily full buffet breakfast with made-to-order egg station, hot and cold menu items
  • Early and Late Riser breakfast
  • Daily lunch buffet with pasta or carving stations
  • Alternative light lunch or (weather permitting) grill fare at the Sky Bistro on the Sky Deck
  • Daily four-course à la carte dinner in the main dining room
  • Alternative dinner of petite portions or regional specialties with wines, in the Panorama Bistro
  • Daily Afternoon Tea
  • Daily Night Fare
  • Complimentary sparkling wine with breakfast; wine, beer, or soft drinks with lunch and dinner are included daily on board your vessel

NOTES:

  • In the event that a high-speed train is unavailable due to strikes or technical reasons, the route will be operated by motorcoach.
  • In the event of water level problems or any problems of a technical nature, it may be necessary to operate the itinerary by motorcoach or to alter the program.
  • Included visits and special features are subject to change. If a change becomes necessary, a substitute will be offered.

Day-By-Day Itinerary

Day 1Arrive in Côte d’Azur, France

Welcome to France! Located between the mountains and the deep-blue Mediterranean Sea, the Côte d’Azur is synonymous with prestige and beauty with its enchanting yachts, glamorous villas, and famous events. Time at leisure lets you get acquainted with this amazing place.

Day 2Côte d’Azur–Transfer to Arles (Embarkation)

This morning, enjoy free time to explore further or join an optional excursion. In the early afternoon, transfer by motorcoach to Arles in the Provence region, where you’ll board your river cruise vessel. Before dinner, meet your crew at a welcome reception, then sail toward the mouth of the Rhône for a taste of the tranquil vistas of Camargue National Park (daylight permitting). (Breakfast, Dinner)

Day 3Arles

In Arles, capital of the Provence, join your LOCAL GUIDE for a tour of the city. See the church of St. Trophime, dating from the 12th century, and visit the ROMAN AMPHITHEATER. Still used today, the amphitheater dates to the 1st century, and was constructed to hold over 20,000 spectators. Vincent Van Gogh was inspired by the special light of the Provence and spent a very productive year in Arles. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 4Avignon

During the night, set sail for Avignon, where you arrive during breakfast. During your GUIDED TOUR you may choose to join an included visit of the PALACE OF THE POPES, built in the 14th century as the sovereign popes’ residence. With a living space equivalent to four gothic cathedrals, it is the largest gothic fortress in the world. Alternatively, you may opt for only city sightseeing and more free time to explore on your own, or to join an optional outing to Pont du Gard or to the famed wine cellars of Châteauneuf-du-Pape. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 5Cruising–Viviers

A leisurely morning on board to relax and enjoy the passing scenery. After lunch, join your LOCAL GUIDE for a walk around the charming town of Viviers, which developed around its ROMANESQUE CATHEDRAL. The OLD TOWN has an appealing mix of Christian, Roman, and medieval influences. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 6Tournon/Tain l’Hermitage–Vienne

The twin cities of Tournon and Tain l’Hermitage lie nestled among vineyards between the Rhône River and the granite slopes of the Hermitage. Enjoy a GUIDED WALK of Tournon, one of France’s oldest medieval cities, with its imposing 16th-century castle and Roman ruins. Arriving in Vienne in the late afternoon, a GUIDED WALK shows you the charming little town surrounded by steep hills. Explore the town center to see the Roman Theater, which once held 13,000 spectators, and the Augustus and Livia Temple, built around 20 BC and converted into a church in the Middle Ages. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 7Lyon

Lyon is 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, many excellent museums, and much renaissance architecture delight visitors. You are joined by a LOCAL GUIDE as you survey the city from Fourvière Hill—with its splendid views over the city—and explore the Old Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site with its maze of medieval alleyways and Place des Terreaux, a popular area with lively cafés, monuments, and the famous fountain often depicted on postcards. Be sure to sample Beaujolais, the wine of the region. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 8Cruising–St. Jean de Losne

A leisurely day today to enjoy your final day on board. If you prefer to stay busy, a choice of optional excursions is available, including a visit to a wine cellar. While sailing to Chalon-sur-Saône, enjoy an onboard CHEESE TASTING. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 9St. Jean de Losne. (Disembarkation)–Beaune–Dijon–Paris (Embarkation)

After breakfast, disembark and head by motorcoach to Beaune, the unofficial capital of the Côte d’Or area and Burgundy’s wine capital. Although life here centers around wine, Beaune offers much more with its ramparts, medieval houses, cobblestone streets, and historical monuments. Visit the HÔTEL-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. After lunch, continue to Dijon and board the TGV train to Paris, the “City of Light,” where your ship is docked on the River Seine. Meet your crew at a welcome reception; before dinner, your ship glides smoothly out of Paris. (Breakfast, Dinner)

Day 10Vernon–Les Andelys

This morning in Vernon, choose between a guided visit of Giverny and a visit to Bizy Castle. Claude Monet lived at GIVERNY for almost 43 years (1883-1926) and viewed his flower and water 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. Enjoy an onboard CRÊPES LUNCH and afterwards a PASTRY DEMONSTRATION, during which you will be shown how to make a local specialty. 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 Château 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. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 11Caudebec

Today, join either a guided excursion along the “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. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 12Caudebec

Today, choose 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. This tour will include a guided visit followed by lunch at a local cheese farm, the Domaine St Hippolyte in St Martin de la Lieu. During lunch, among other Norman specialties, clients will taste some AOP cheeses produced on the farm. And for a touch of history, visit the famous BAYEUX TAPESTRY. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 13Rouen

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 GUIDED WALK through the medieval quarter with its half-timbered, glazed-tile houses, and take your pictures of the Gros Horloge, an intricate astronomical clock dating back to the 16th century. Visit the splendid gothic CATHEDRAL, which was once the tallest building in the world and the subject of a series of Claude Monet’s paintings. The afternoon is free for you to explore on your own. Back on board, the Master of Wine will tempt you with a TASTING of cheese and wine. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 14Conflans

After breakfast you may either join our included guided excursion to AUVERS-SUR-OISE, the quaint town where Vincent Van Gogh lived and died, or to Napoleon and Josephine’s CHÂTEAU DE MALMAISON 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.” This evening enjoy an on board FOOD AND WINE PAIRING DINNER hosted by the Master of Wine, who has specifically chosen the wines for this occasion. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 15Paris

Known as one of the world’s most romantic and lively cities, Paris is a delight for all your senses. Your included CITY SIGHTSEEING shows you magnificent must-see sights, such as Notre Dame Cathedral, the unique Louvre Museum with its glass pyramid as a contrast to its ancient architecture, the commemorative Arc de Triomphe, and the Eiffel Tower. Alternatively, you may wish to join a GUIDED WALK through historic Île St. Louis with its narrow one-way streets and Île de la Cité, the center of Paris where the medieval city was founded and home to NOTRE DAME CATHEDRAL. In your free time, stroll down the Champs-Elysées with its lavish cafés, or perhaps visit the world-famous Louvre or Montmartre with its gleaming white Sacré Coeur Basilica and bevy of artists on Place du Tertre. Paris is also well known for its colorful nightlife and an optional outing to one of the world’s most famous cabaret shows might make the perfect finale to your vacation. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 16Paris–London, England

Say goodbye to the Avalon portion of your vacation after breakfast. An included transfer delivers you to the train station, where you join your Monograms package. Travel to London by HIGH-SPEED EUROSTAR TRAIN (standard class). Your Local Hosts will be on hand to help you make the most of your time. (Breakfast)

Day 17London

Morning guided sightseeing includes all of London’s famous landmarks. Drive past the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben; Westminster Abbey, where Prince William and Kate Middleton were married; Whitehall’s mounted horseguards; the Prime Minister’s Downing Street; and Piccadilly Circus. Take photos of the London Eye, the giant Ferris wheel situated on the river bank, and the Shard, the tallest building in Western Europe. Then, visit ST. PAUL’S CATHEDRAL (except on Sundays). Sir Christopher Wren’s masterpiece with its world-famous dome is an iconic feature of London’s skyline, and the awe-inspiring interior holds fascinating stories about its history. The final highlight is the ceremonial pageantry of the Changing of the Guard (if held). (Breakfast)

Day 18

London. Your Local Hosts will help you make the most of your day. You could take a flight on the London Eye for fantastic views over the city, or visit Windsor Castle, one of the official residences of Queen Elizabeth II, for a tour of the magnificent State Apartments. In the evening, see one of the dozens of celebrated West End shows, or enjoy dinner at a traditional London pub, followed by a relaxing night-time cruise on the Thames River. There are so many possibilities to make your stay unforgettable. (Breakfast)

Day 19London

Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. (Breakfast)

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Hotels

Cote d'Azur
London
Paris

Cote d'Azur

Fairmont Monte Carlo

Fairmont Monte Carlo 12 Avenue des Spelugues, Monte Carlo,   Monaco 12 Avenue des Spelugues
Monte Carlo, Monaco

Free WifiFree Wifi

Hotel as shown or similar
Deluxe

Resort and Convention Complex jutting over the Mediterranean, overlooking the Grand Prix Racecourse - 35 minutes from airport.

Hotel Amenities

Free WiFi
Elevator
Fitness Room
Concierge desk
Bar/Lounge
Spa Services
Dry Cleaning
Pool
Currency Exchange
Business Center
Gift Shop
Beauty Salon
Parking/Valet
Restaurant On-Site
ATM
Room Amenities

Coffee Maker
Non-smoking Rooms
Television
Window Opens
Cable/Satellite
Mini-bar
Hair Dryer
Voicemail
Room Service
Internet Access
In-Room Safe
Climate Control
Desk
Complimentary Toiletries
Air Conditioning
Phone

Le Meridien Beach Plaza

Le Meridien Beach Plaza 22 Avenue Princesse Grace, Monte Carlo,  Monaco 22 Avenue Princesse Grace
Monte Carlo, Monaco

Free WifiFree Wifi

Hotel as shown or similar
Superior First-Class

Situated on the Famed Avenue Princess Grace overlooking the Mediterranean sea, this stylish property is the only hotel in Monaco with direct access to its own private beach and is the perfect location from which to discover the Principality. The hotel has two outdoor seasonal swimming pools with sun terraces, a spa/wellness center with indoor swimming pool and offers Free Wi-Fi in the hotel lobby. Food and beverages can be enjoyed in an array of venues including a fine-dining restaurant with a live cooking station, a summer restaurant with breathtaking views over the bay of Monte Carlo and a sophisticated 24 hour bar.

Hotel Amenities

Business Center
Pool
Gift Shop
Restaurant On-Site
Currency Exchange
Free WiFi
Concierge desk
Dry Cleaning
Ice Machine
Fitness Room
Parking/Valet
Bar/Lounge
Luggage Storage
Elevator
Room Amenities

In-Room Safe
Cable/Satellite
Non-smoking Rooms
Window Opens
Disabled Access / Rooms
Mini-bar
Alarm Clock
Pay Movies
Wake-Up Calls
Phone
Room Service
Air Conditioning
Television
Voicemail
Air Conditioning (Seasonal)
Climate Control
Hair Dryer
Desk
Iron/Ironing Board
Complimentary Toiletries
Internet Access

Carlton Intercontinental

Carlton Intercontinental 58 Blvd De La Croisette Bp155, Cannes,  France 58 Blvd De La Croisette Bp155
Cannes, France

Free WifiFree Wifi

Hotel as shown or similar
Deluxe

This glamorous hotel is a true landmark overlooking the Mediterranean Sea that has been enjoyed by prestigious guests for over a century. Facilities include a Belle-Epoque style restaurant, a private sandy beach with a summer restaurant (open April - Oct) and pier, the legendary Carlton Bar and Terrace as well as a fitness center. Free Wi-Fi internet access is avilable in all public areas, access in guestrooms is subject to a fee (payable locally).

Hotel Amenities

Free WiFi
Bar/Lounge
Fitness Room
Concierge desk
Gift Shop
Dry Cleaning
Beauty Salon
Business Center
Parking/Valet
Hot Tub
Luggage Storage
Restaurant On-Site
Elevator
Currency Exchange
Room Amenities

Room Service
In-Room Safe
Alarm Clock
Pay Movies
Hair Dryer
Complimentary Newspaper
Climate Control
Iron/Ironing Board
Wake-Up Calls
Desk
Complimentary Toiletries
Air Conditioning (Seasonal)
Mini-bar
Smoking Rooms
Window Opens
Internet Access
Phone
Voicemail
Disabled Access / Rooms
Non-smoking Rooms
Television
Cable/Satellite

London

Park Plaza Westminster Bridge

Park Plaza Westminster Bridge 200 Westminster Bridge, London,  United Kingdom 200 Westminster Bridge
London, United Kingdom

Free WifiFree Wifi

Hotel as shown or similar
Superior First-Class

This contemporary hotel is located within minutes of London's famous landmarks in the heart of city. Dining options include Brasserie Joël, Ichi Sushi & Sashimi, 1WB Lounge & Patisserie and Primo Bar. The hotel also boasts a fitness centre with 15-metre pool and Mandara Spa. Complimentary Wi-Fi is available for guest throughout the hotel.

Hotel Amenities

Parking/Valet
Business Center
Dry Cleaning
Pool
Ice Machine
Free WiFi
Concierge desk
ATM
Currency Exchange
Fitness Room
Spa Services
Elevator
Restaurant On-Site
Bar/Lounge
Luggage Storage
Room Amenities

Room Service
Climate Control
Wake-Up Calls
In-Room Safe
Iron/Ironing Board
Television
Internet Access
Phone
Alarm Clock
Complimentary Toiletries
Pay Movies
Mini-bar
Coffee Maker
Hair Dryer
Air Conditioning
Desk
Cable/Satellite
Voicemail

Paris

Paris Marriott Opéra Ambassador

Paris Marriott Opéra Ambassador 16 Bld.Haussmann, Paris,  France 16 Bld.Haussmann
Paris, France

Free WifiFree Wifi

Hotel as shown or similar
Superior First-Class

With an exceptional location in the heart of Paris' illustrious Opera District, this stylish 297-room hotel has impressive Haussmann-style architecture and effortlessly combines Art Deco-styling dating back from its original opening in 1927 with state-of-the-art amenities. Free Wi-Fi access is available in all guestrooms and public areas of the hotel and there is also a fitness room. All-day dining including elegant French cuisine is available in the smart contemporary restaurant and the tranquil lobby bar offers an extensive selection of drinks and light meals.

Hotel Amenities

Bar/Lounge
Business Center
Luggage Storage
Free WiFi
Fitness Room
Parking/Valet
Restaurant On-Site
Ice Machine
Elevator
Currency Exchange
Concierge desk
Dry Cleaning
Room Amenities

Iron/Ironing Board
Wake-Up Calls
Air Conditioning (Seasonal)
Non-smoking Rooms
Coffee Maker
Hair Dryer
Room Service
Mini-bar
In-Room Safe
Alarm Clock
Air Conditioning
Complimentary Toiletries
Phone
Pay Movies
Disabled Access / Rooms
Television
Complimentary Newspaper
Desk
Internet Access
Voicemail

 Optional Excursions

The following optional excursions are examples only for this vacation. These may or may not be offered, and availability is subject to days of operation and seasonality. Please select a departure date to view optional excursions and pricing for a specific date (due to currency fluctuation, pricing shown is subject to change until purchased).

Price Ranges

$ ($50 USD and under)
$$ ($51 - $100 USD)
$$$ ($101 - $150 USD)
$$$$ (Over $150)

No Excursions are available at this time.

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