Rhone River + Nice
April – October
RHONE RIVER CRUISE / CHALON
MARTIGUES – 6 Nights
NICE – 3 Nights
Suggested Program Inclusives
- Transfer by deluxe motorcoach with airport porterage and English-speaking guide from Lyon Airport to the pier for ship embarkation in Chalon-sur-Saone via Tournus. Full day coach and driver services on DAY 1.
- Guided touring transfer through the Burgundy region with a visit to the town of Tournus on DAY 1.
- Three course lunch with coffee at a local Burgundy restaurant on DAY 1.
- Six night Rhone River cruise from Chalon (north of Lyon) to Martigues (just west of Marseilles) with port taxes, daily buffet breakfast, lunch and dinner included. (Excursions from the ship are not included but they can be kept optional or costed into the program on a group basis only.)
- Transfer by private motorcoach with porterage and English-speaking guide from the ship pier in Martigues to the hotel in Nice, via Aix-en-Provence. Full day coach and driver services on DAY 7.
- Three course lunch with coffee on the Martigues-Nice transfer at a local restaurant in Aix-en-Provence on DAY 7.
- Three nights first class accommodations with daily buffet breakfast, in/out hotel porterage, all current local taxes and service charges at the Mercure Promenade des Anglais Hotel in Nice, or similar, from DAYS 7-10. (Please note that Nice hotels are usually closed for group travel during the annual Monte Carlo Formula 1 races and the Cannes Film Festival. Also note that there is a slight supplement for group programs in July and August.)
- Full day guided motorcoach tour of Nice and the French Riviera, including St. Paul de Vence on DAY 8. Lunch is also included.
- Half day guided coach tour to the eastern portion of the French Riviera, including Eze, Villefranche and Monaco on DAY 9.
- Farewell dinner with coffee at a local Nice restaurant on DAY 9.
- Transfer by coach with English-speaking escort & porterage from the hotel to Nice Airport on DAY 10.
Proposed Daily Itinerary
Arrival into Lyon Airport where a private motorcoach and guide are waiting to take tour participants to explore the Burgundy countryside. Along the way, we will stop in the town of Tournus with a special visit to the Romanesque Abbey of St. Phillibert. This well-fortified abbey church of pale pink stone was built in the 9th century. A group lunch is planned at a local restaurant before continuing on through the vineyards & orchards of Burgundy to meet the ship in Chalon-sur-Saone.
After breakfast on board, there will be time for a stroll around the “old town” of Macon. The ship departs Macon at about 11:00 AM and there will be a stop after lunch on board in Montmerle. Upon arrival, an optional tour is offered to the Beaujolais vineyards, as well as, to the Hameau du Vin, one of the most unique wine museums in Europe. After the tour is completed, it is back on board the ship for dinner. The ship will arrive in Lyon between 10:00-11:00 PM and sail around the city by night. Overnight in Lyon.
After breakfast on board, the morning begins with an optional excursion through Lyon. You will discover France’s second largest city which is situated at the junction of the Saone and the Rhone Rivers. Lunch will be on board the ship as it heads south, now sailing on the Rhone River. Dinner is served on board with arrival in the evening in Tain L’Hermitage at about 7:00 PM. Overnight in Tain L’Hermitage.
The ship departs Tain L’Hermitage early in the morning with breakfast on board. We sail past the towns of Valence, Montelimar and Viviers in the morning. After lunch on board, the ship disembarks passengers interested in the taking the optional excursions through the Gorge d’Ardeche. In this area, the Eyrieux River has carved a path through the cliffs and left a grandiose natural arch. The tour route winds through the famous Gorges Road from where you can observe the harmonious meandering of the river. It is a beautiful area of south central France. The tour returns to the ship in the evening with dinner on board. There will be another night sailing heading south towards Avignon.
Arrival in Avignon is early in the morning with breakfast on board. An optional excursion is offered in Avignon to the Palace of the Popes, a veritable citadel perched on a rocky outcropping that is entirely surrounded by ramparts. Avignon is a wonderful medieval city with an ancient wall encircling the “old town” section. After the tour, it is back to the ship for lunch on board while sailing south. Arrival in Arles is sometime in the afternoon with plenty of time to explore this old Roman town on your own. It is a very user-friendly place with plenty of shops to buy souvenirs and beautiful crafts, cafes to take a coffee or a glass of wine, plus, the “little yellow house” made famous by Van Gogh when he lived and painted in Arles for a time back in the late 1890’s. Dinner is back on board the ship and the overnight is scheduled in Arles.
After breakfast on board, passengers will depart the ship for an optional excursion to The Camargue. It is an immense plain where the Rhone River delta meets the Mediterranean Sea with marshes and lakes inhabited by an extraordinary population of aquatic birds, including pink flamingos. It is also famous for its black bulls and white horses. During the tour of this unique and wild region, we also visit the delightful town of Saintes-Maries de la Mer. This town is the traditional, “capital of The Camargue” legendary for its gypsy religious pilgrimages and a remarkable church built back in the 12th century. The ship continues sailing south from Arles and embarks the tour participants in Port Saint-Louis, just in time for lunch. In the afternoon, we sail through the Canal de Fos, which runs alongside the Mediterranean Sea all the way to Martigues, our final stop. The gala evening is planned and overnight is in Martigues.
After breakfast on board, disembarkation of the cruise passengers takes place. In Martigues, a private motorcoach and guide is waiting to take the group on a touring transfer to Nice. There will be a stop along the way east in the city of Aix-en-Provence for some sightseeing and a group lunch. After leaving Aix, we will continue on to Nice. Upon arrival in Nice, the group will checkin to the Mercure Promenade des Anglais Hotel. The rest of the day is free and dinner is on your own. Overnight in Nice.
After breakfast, your private coach and guide arrive to take the group on a full day tour around Nice and the western part of the French Riviera. This day includes a stop in the beautiful town of St. Paul de Vence. A group lunch is planned at a local restaurant. After the tour, the rest of the day is free and dinner is on your own. Overnight in Nice.
After breakfast, your private coach and guide arrive to take the group on a half day tour to the eastern portion of the French Riviera. This tour includes stops in Eze, Villefranche and Monaco. The group returns to the hotel in the afternoon. The remainder of the day is free to walk around Nice and shop for souvenirs. Maybe you would even like to pay a visit to the world famous Casino in Monte Carlo. That evening, a farewell group dinner is planned at a local restaurant in Nice. Overnight in Nice.
After breakfast, hotel checkout and according to flight schedule, your coach and guide returns to the hotel to take everyone to the Nice Airport and the flight back to the U.S.
Please note the following:
- Land program inclusives can be altered according to client itinerary specifications, time considerations and budget concerns.
- Additional ground services, hotel overnights and group meals can also be added as each land program is customized.
- We might suggest pre-cruise land programs for the group in Paris or Geneva.
- Group flight arrival can also be into the Geneva Airport. This could be combined with a different DAY 1 touring transfer program to the ship pier in Chalon.
- This program could also be combined with a 4-7 night Seine River cruise and overnights in Paris.