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Avalon Waterways Reviews – 11 Day River Cruise from Côte d’Azur to Paris

Avalon Waterways Reviews – 11 Day River Cruise from Côte d’Azur to Paris. Burgundy & Provence – Northbound

11 Day River Cruise from Côte d’Azur to Paris River Cruise Description
This fascinating vacation cruise provides many opportunities and sights that will educate and excite you about the historic France and the French culture. Your adventure begins with an overnight on the exciting French Riviera, also known as the Côte d’Azur. Then, travel to Arles in the Provence region to board your ship and sail into the tranquil Camargue area during a wonderful dinner (daylight permitting), before returning to Arles. Avignon, charming Viviers, medieval Tournon, Vienne, France’s culinary capital of Lyon, as well as, Chalon-sur-Saône, and fascinating Beaune await you. Take the TGV train from Dijon to Paris, the “City of Light,” where your vacation ends with two overnights, guided sightseeing, and free time to explore the remarkable city on your own! You’re sure to return home with lots of memories and photos to share. This cruise vacation has it all – historic sites, delightful towns, and more!

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River Cruise Itinerary
Day 1 Arrive in Côte d’Azur, France
Welcome to France! Located between the mountains and the deep-blue Mediterranean Sea. The Côte d’Azur, with its glamorous yachts, stunning villas, and famous events, is synonymous with prestige and beauty. Time at leisure lets you get acquainted with this amazing place.
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Day 2 Côte d’Azur–Arles (Embarkation)
This morning, enjoy your free time to explore the city or join an optional excursion. In the early afternoon, ride by motor coach to Arles in the Provence region, where you’ll board your river cruise ship. Meet your crew at a casual welcome reception, before dinner while sailing toward the mouth of the Rhône for a taste of the tranquil vistas of Camargue National Park (daylight permitting). (Breakfast, Dinner)

Day 3 Arles
In Arles, capital of the Provence, join your Local Guide for a GUIDED CITY TOUR. See the church of historic St. Trophime, dating from the 12th century, and visit the dramatic ROMAN AMPHITHEATER. Still used today, the amphitheater dates to the 1st century, and was built to hold more than 20,000 spectators. World-renowned artist, Vincent Van Gogh, was inspired by the special light of the Provence and spent a very productive year in Arles. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

avalon-river-cruises-Cote-paris1Day 4 Avignon
During the night, you will set sail for Avignon, the most picturesque part of Provence is this fortified city, the capital of the Vaucluse region. You will arrive during a wonderful breakfast onboard ship. It’s a marvelous place to visit, with its intact ramparts encircling the entire city, cobblestone streets and squares, and private mansions built in the 18th and 19th centuries. 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. Or, 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 5 Cruising–Viviers
Spend a leisurely morning on board ship to relax and enjoy the fantastic passing scenery. After lunch, join your LOCAL GUIDE for a walk around the fascinating little town of Viviers, which developed around its ROMANESQUE CATHEDRAL. The OLD TOWN offers visitors an appealing mix of Christian, Roman, and medieval influences. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner) avalon-river-cruises-Cote-paris3

Day 6 Tournon/Tain l’Hermitage–Vienne
The twin cities of Tournon and Tain l’Hermitage lie nestled among grape 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. You’ll marvel at its imposing 16th-century castle and Roman ruins. Arriving in Vienne in the late afternoon, a GUIDED WALK shows you the best of this quaint little village, one of the oldest in the region, 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 7 Lyon
Lyon is France’s third-largest city and its culinary capital. Founded by the Romans in 43 BC, the city’s prosperity dates back to the 16th century. Lyon’s successful economy was attributed to commercial, industrial, and banking activities. Roman remains, many excellent museums, and much renaissance architecture have delighted visitors for centuries. You are joined by a LOCAL GUIDE as you survey the city from Fourvière Hill and explore the Old Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with its maze of medieval alleyways. Enjoy Place des Terreaux, a popular area with lively cafés, monuments, and the famous fountain often depicted on postcards. Be sure to sample Beaujolais, the popular wine of the region. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
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Day 8 Cruising–Chalon-sur-Saône
You will enjoy a leisurely day cruising – your final experience aboard ship. If you prefer to stay busy, however, a choice of optional excursions, including a visit to a wine cellar, is available. While sailing to Chalon-sur-Saône, enjoy an onboard CHEESE TASTING of France’s best. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 9 Chalon-sur-Saône (Disembarkation)–Beaune–Dijon–Paris
After breakfast, head by motor coach 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. You can also visit the HÔTEL-DIEU charity hospital. avalon-river-cruises-Cote-paris7Built in 1443, this facility was 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 must-sees. After lunch, continue to Dijon, where you board the high-speed TGV to Paris, the “City of Light.” (Breakfast)

Day 10 Paris
Known as one of the world’s most romantic and active cities, Paris is certainly a delight for all your senses. Your included CITY SIGHTSEEING shows you all the magnificent must-see sights, including 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. Or, you may choose 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 the stunning NOTRE DAME CATHEDRAL. In your free time, take a leisurely walk down the Champs-Elysées with its posh cafés, or perhaps visit the world-famous Louvre or Montmartre with its gleaming white Sacré Coeur Basilica and cluster of artists on Place du Tertre. The excitement doesn’t stop there.
Paris is also well known for its colorful and exhilarating nightlife, which includes some of the world’s most famous cabaret shows. All of this awaits your discovery! (Breakfast)Avalon-cruise-river-travel-europe-cruises-love-paris


Day 11 Paris

While your vacation ends with breakfast this morning, please make note of the wonderful experiences you’ve enjoyed on your Avalon River Cruise. Hopefully you have numerous personal photos and lasting memories of your journey to take home with you. (Breakfast)

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