Tour Code WLJE-T1 2019 2019

13 Day River Cruise Cote d'Azur to Bordeaux

2019 Information

Take a wondrous journey through beautiful France along the Rhône and Saône Rivers with guided sightseeing in the well-known French treasures and some hidden gems too! Begin with an overnight on the captivating French Riviera, also known as the Côte d’Azur. Explore this elegant area and relax along the remarkably blue water of the Mediterranean Sea.

On the Rhône River sits Arles, France—famous for inspiring the paintings of Van Gogh and its 1st-century Roman Amphitheater, which hosts plays and concerts to this day. On a guided tour of historical Avignon, see the 14th-century Palace of the Popes—the largest gothic fortress in the world–and, later on join an excursion to the wine region of Châteauneuf du Pape. Travel to the twin cities of Tournon and Tain l’Hermitage, beautifully nestled among vineyards, and on to Lyon, France’s gastronomic capital. Visit the popular Place des Terreaux and stand in front of the famous fountain you’ve seen on postcards. Take a guided tour to Beaujolais, followed by the next day’s excursion to Chardonnay to taste delightful local wines.

A Master of Wine will travel with you on this cruise and will hold lectures, tastings and will introduce you to food and wine pairing. After disembarkation, taste some of Burgundy wines before reaching Paris—one of the world’s most romantic and vibrant cities! Discover its true heart on a guided walk through the sites of Paris’ rich history, or take a tour showing you the iconic sites of the Louvre Museum, Arc de Triomphe, Eiffel Tower, and more.

Your Wine Lovers experience gets even better with a trip to Bordeaux. Enjoy a 2-day excursion to sample world-famous wines from the region, and try your hand at wine-making!


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Cruise at-a-Glance

Day 1 Côte d’Azur: Welcome to FranceDay 2 Côte d’Azur–Transfer to Arles (Embarkation):Onboard welcome reception; scenic cruising in the Camargue region (daylight permitting)Day 3 Arles: Choice of guided sightseeing, visit the Roman Amphitheatre, or painting workshopDay 4 Avignon:Guided sightseeing, visit Palace of the Popes; guided tour to Châteauneuf du PapeDay 5 Cruising–Viviers:Onboard lecture; guided walk, visit the Old Town and the cathedralDay 6 Tournon/Tain l’Hermitage–Vienne: Guided walk in Tournon; onboard chocolate and wine tasting; guided walk in Vienne; onboard food & wine pairing dinnerDay 7 Lyon: Guided sightseeing, picture stop on Fourvière Hill; guided tour to BeaujolaisDay 8 Cruising–St. Jean de Losne:Chardonnay excursion; wine & cheese tasting on boardDay 9 St. Jean de Losne (Disembarkation)–Beaune–Dijon–Paris:Choice of visit the Hôtel-Dieu in Beaune or visit a wine cellar; TGV train from Dijon to ParisDay 10 Paris:Choice of guided sightseeing or “Heart of Paris” walking tour to see Paris’ historic sightsDay 11 Paris-Bordeaux: Take a TGV train to Bordeaux; guided sightseeingDay 12 Bordeaux:St.Emillion area full day excursionDay 13 Bordeaux:Your vacation ends this morning

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Always Included

You've always forged your own path...with your own distinct perspective of looking at the world. Avalon Waterways presents a river cruise experience with your unique style in mind—offering expansive views and wider perspectives. That's why we've designed a cruise experience that's just a bit different.

Here are just some of the features and amenities you'll experience on board our Avalon ships. See the Ship Amenities Section below for more information about the amenities in our fleet’s unique ships.

Throughout the Ship
Suites & Staterooms
Health & Fitness
Dining

Throughout the Ship:

  • Complimentary Wi-Fi
  • Panoramic windows
  • Elegant, contemporary design & decor
  • Friendly, English-speaking crew & Cruise Director
  • Sky Deck with whirlpool, shade awnings, game area and premium lounges
  • Covered Observation Lounge
  • Club Lounge with 24-hour self-serve beverage station with complimentary cappuccinos, lattes, tea, hot chocolate & premium coffees, as well as treats throughout the day

Suites & Staterooms:

  • Comfort Collection BedsSM with choice of mattress firmness
  • Egyptian super-combed cotton linens
  • Bathrobes & slippers
  • Premium L'Occitane bath products
  • Large bathroom featuring shower with glass door
  • Flatscreen satellite TV with free movie channels
  • Individual climate control and in-room safe
  • USB Ports
  • Complimentary bottled water daily
  • And, much more.

Health & Fitness:

  • Bikes
  • Canoe, kayak and jogging excursions
  • Maps for hiking, biking and jogging routes
  • Fitness and wellness activities
  • Fitbits®
  • All through your Avalon Adventure HostSM

Dining

  • FlexDining® for more venue and seating options, including flexible seating times in our Panorama Dining Room
  • Avalon Fresh® healthy cuisine options at every meal
  • Complimentary sparkling wine with breakfast; wine, beer, or soft drinks with every lunch and dinner
  • Early and Late Riser breakfast options
  • Daily full buffet breakfast with made-to-order egg station, hot and cold menu items
  • Daily lunch buffet with pasta or carving stations
  • Alternative light lunch at Sky Grill on the Sky Deck (weather permitting)
  • Daily Afternoon Tea featuring tea, coffee, sweet treats & sandwiches
  • Daily four-course a la carte dinner in the Panorama Dining Room with choice of appetizers, soups, salads, entrees and desserts. Includes selections of regional recipes, Western dishes and vegetarian options.
  • Enjoy a tasting menu with a view in the Panorama Bistro - a less formal "sit-down" atmosphere while lingering over several satisfying selections
  • Captain’s welcome & farewell receptions and dinners with sparkling wine and canapés
  • Panorama Lounge featuring premium spirits and Avalon specialty cocktails, along with local entertainment special guests
  • Cocktails available on the Sky Deck
  • Fresh fruit available throughout the day

Avalon has designed included activities with a choice of experiences. We invite you to select the tours, activities, and events that interest you most, so you can experience your cruise your way. There are 3 types of included shore excursion on every Europe cruise:

Classic
Your local expert is ready to guide you through the history and heritage of local destinations. You’ll marvel at the legends, lore, and spectacular architecture of iconic and historic sites.
Discovery
We’ve found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore.
Active
Embark on energetic excursions to keep you in motion and on the go - from a guided jogging tour of Amsterdam, to biking, paddling, and hiking your way through scenic locales.
  • Plus independent exploration options and use of our exclusive AvalonGO APP.

Day-By-Day Itinerary

(B) = Breakfast   (L) = Lunch   (D) = Dinner

Day 1

CÔTE D’AZUR, FRANCE

Bienvenue en France!

Take free time today to admire Côte d’Azur-with its enchanting yachts, glamorous villas, and famous events. Known also as the French Riviera, the spectacular Côte d’Azur stretches along France’s Mediterranean coast from Toulon to the border of Italy.

Day 2

(B, D)

CÔTE D’AZUR–ARLES (EMBARKATION)

The Camargue National Park

This morning enjoy free time to explore. In the early afternoon, you’ll drive to Arles to board your Suite Ship®. Before dinner sail toward the mouth of the Rhône for a taste of the tranquil vistas of Camargue National Park (daylight permitting).

Day 3

(B, L, D)

ARLES

Inspiring Sights and Avant-Garde Lights

Classic
Enjoy a Guided Walking Tour of Arles—the captivating city of the Provence region. You’ll visit the Roman Amphitheater in this visually stunning city that inspired the works of Vincent van Gogh, OR:
Discovery
Attend a Painting Workshop to learn the style and techniques of Vincent van Gogh. You’ll create your own painting in the style of the classic master who took inspiration from the Provence light and landscape in Arles.
Discovery
Join an Onboard Lecture hosted by your Master of Wine while sailing.

Consider a Guided Optional Excursion to the Carrières de Lumières (Cathedral of Images) to immerse yourself in a truly unique experience of art, sound, and light in the old quarries of Val d’Enfer.

Take advantage of any free time remaining with a stop in Le Café Van Gogh for a glass of wine, to relax and watch the world go by.

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN AVIGNON

Day 4

(B, L, D)

AVIGNON

The City of Popes in Picturesque Provence

Classic
Take a Guided Sightseeing Tour of the fortress city of Avignon—with its ramparts encircling the city—and a visit to the amazing Palace of the Popes.
Discovery
Enjoy a trip to the famed wine cellars of Châteauneuf-du-Pape for a true taste of the Rhône wine region.

Guided Optional Excursions include a visit to the ancient Roman aqueduct of Pont du Gard. Explore Avignon on your own for the city’s art and culture, theatre, and museums. Be sure to snap photos of the captivating countryside, historic monuments, and the medieval Pont Saint-Bénézet.

Later, enjoy onboard live entertainment.

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN AVIGNON

Day 5

(B, L, D)

VIVIERS

World History in a Charming French Country Village

Discovery
Join an Onboard Lecture hosted by your Master of Wine while sailing to Viviers.
Classic
Explore the pale-stone buildings of Viviers on a late afternoon Guided Walking Tour of this charming village. You’ll see its Romanesque cathedral and Old Town with a mix of historical Christian, Roman, and medieval influences.
EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO TOURNON

Day 6

(B, L, D)

TOURNON/TAIN L’HERMITAGE

A Rendezvous with Castle Views and Vineyards

Classic
Take a morning Guided Walking Tour to explore Tournon—one of France’s oldest medieval cities. See its 16th-century castle, and Roman ruins between the Rhône River and the granite slopes of the Hermitage.

In the late morning cruise to Vienne

Discovery
Enjoy an Onboard hocolate and ine tasting hosted by your Master of Wine while sailing.
VIENNE

Roman and Middle Age History

Classic
Join a Guided Walking Tour of Vienne and discover this charming little town surrounded by steep hills.
Discovery
This evening, join an Onboard food and wine pairing dinner hosted by your Master of Wine.

Enjoy live entertainment while sailing to Lyon.

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN LYON

Day 7

(B, L, D)

LYON

Adventures in Food and Wine in the Gastronomy Capital of France

Classic
Join a Guided Sightseeing Tour to survey Lyon from Fourvière Hill with its numerous churches. You’ll also explore the Old Town with its maze of medieval alleyways, and the lively cafés, monuments, and famed fountain of Place des Terreaux.
Discovery
Take a guided tour to the lovely Beaujolais area and learn more about its light and pleasant wine.

Spend free time riding a bike through Lyon’s town squares, over bridges, and along the banks where the Rhône and Saône rivers meet.

EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO ST. JEAN DE LOSNE

Day 8

(B, L, D)

ST. JEAN DE LOSNE

Wine and Cheese on the Stunning Saône

Enjoy a leisurely cruising day along the majestic Saône River.

Discovery
Join an excursion that will take you to a Chardonnay cellar for a wine tasting.
Discovery
Later, enjoy a delicious wine and cheese tasting hosted by your Master of Wine while sailing to St. Jean de Losne.

Enjoy live entertainment on board this evening.

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN ST. JEAN DE LOSNE

Day 9

(B)

ST. JEAN DE LOSNE (DISEMBARKATION)–BEAUNE– DIJON– PARIS

Drive to Beaune and take a High-Speed Train from Dijon to Paris.

Classic
Visit the Hôtel-Dieu Charity Hospital in Beaune, built in 1443, today home of the Van der Weyden’s painting of the Last Judgment and is one of France’s architectural highlights, OR:
Discovery
Visit a typical Burgundy wine cellar.

This afternoon, take a high-speed train from Dijon to Paris.

Day 10

(B)

PARIS

Cafés, Cathedrals, and Canvases—The City of Lights Truly Shines

Classic
Discover the ancient heart of Paris on a captivating Guided Walk featuring the Palais-Royal, Louvre pyramid, ancient sites on Île de la Cité, the Left Bank, bustling Latin Quarter, and more, OR:
Classic
Join a Guided City Tour that shows the iconic sites of Paris, such as the Louvre Museum, the Arc de Triomphe, the Eiffel Tower, Opéra Garnier, and the famous Champs-Élysées.

Spend your free time strolling through the Champs-Élysées for café au lait and croissants, see the exhibits at the Louvre, visit Montmartre’s Basilica of the Sacré Cœur.

Day 11

(B)

PARIS–BORDEAUX

This morning.after breakfast take a high speed train from Paris to Bordeaux.

Classic
Take a Guided Walking Tour though the fascinating streets of the world's major wine industry capital.

Day 12

(B, L)

BORDEAUX

Discovery
Drive to the World UNESCO site of Saint Emilion, famous for its vineyards and for its intact medieval town. Enjoy a wine tasting in a local wine estate, and a wine blending workshop followed by a food and wine pairing lunch. In the afternoon a guided walking tour,will show you the mediavel town of St.Emillion. Afterwards, visit the Cordelier Cloister, where you will admire the spectacular network of underground cellars and passages where superior sparkling wines have been produced since 1892.

Spend a free evening in the city of Bordeaux.

Day 13

(B)

BORDEAUX

Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning.

Notes

  • 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.
  • Please check visa requirements with your local consulate(s); responsibility for obtaining visas rests with the traveler.


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Burgundy & Provence – Northbound

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 Optional Excursions

No matter what you’re into: food, wine, history, art, music or anything else, we give you the freedom to personalize your vacation with optional excursions that speak to your interests.

When you book your excursions with us, you can be assured that every optional excursion that we offer coordinates with the free time that you'll have in your destination, so you'll never have conflicts between included and optional activities. Our team of travel experts carefully selects each optional excursion that we offer to ensure that you receive the highest quality at a great value. Our tried-and-true partners have a finger on the pulse of the city in which they operate so they deliver the very best experiences. We offer experiences you cannot create on your own and because you’re booking with us, we coordinate all your transportation and timing needs.

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). Optional excursions are available for purchase on our MyAvalon site 90 days prior to the tour start date.

Price Ranges

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

No Excursions are available at this time.