Journey from historic Normandy to breathtaking Provence and vineyard-rich Burgundy.
For Francophiles in love with the culture, history, cuisine, and romance of France, this grand voyage provides them all. Soak up the joie de vivre that makes France one of the most adored countries in the world. You’ll experience France from north to south, sailing three rivers and embarking upon in-depth shore excursions. Walk through Monet’s beloved Giverny, seeing the enchanting grounds that he made famous; kayak under the arches of the two-thousand-year-old Pont du Gard outside of Avignon; enjoy a recital of baroque favorites in a 12th- century cathedral in charming Viviers; and visit the famous food market (Les Halles) in lively Lyon. From the beaches of Normandy to the verve and romance of Paris, rich vineyard country to the sun-kissed shores of the Mediterranean, this itinerary in France is truly nonpareil!
Who will enjoy this cruise
Those who desire a taste of everything—art, architecture, history, culture, fine wine, and tantalizing cuisine—all in one grand adventure.
Grand France is a combination of:
Paris & Normandy
Burgundy & Provence
YOUR CRUISE PACKAGE INCLUDES:
14-night cruise in a riverview stateroom on the alluring River Baroness and the striking S.S. Catherine
All transfers on arrival and departure days
First class TGV train between Paris and Lyon
All meals onboard, prepared using the finest and freshest ingredients
14 breakfasts, 11 lunches, 14 dinners
2 Captain’s Welcome and 2 Captain’s Farewell Receptions
2 Welcome and 2 Farewell Gala Dinners
Unlimited beverages onboard, including fine wine, beer, spirits, soft drinks, specialty coffee and tea, and mineral water
12 days of excursions, including “Choice Is Yours” options, all fully hosted by English-speaking local experts
Guided “Go Active,” “Do as the Locals Do,” “Village Day,” and “Gentle Walking” programs
4 UNESCO World Heritage sites
Services of an experienced Uniworld Cruise Manager
State-of-the-art Quietvox portable audio–headset system on all excursions
Use of bicycles and Nordic walking sticks
Captivating onboard local entertainment
Cultural enrichment, including 2 Signature Lectures
You will visit the following 12 places:
Lyon, a city in east-central France, in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region, sits at the confluence of the Rhône and Saône rivers. Lyon, also written Lyons in English, is the third largest city in France and centre of the second largest metropolitan area in the country. It is the capital of the Rhone-Alpes region and the Rhône département. It is known as a gastronomic and historical city with a vibrant cultural scene. It is also the birthplace of cinema.
Avignon is a commune in the Vaucluse department in southeastern France. The city is well known for its Palais des Papes (Palace of the Popes), where several popes and antipopes lived from the early 14th to early 15th centuries. It is situated on the left bank of the Rhône, a few kilometres above its confluence with the Durance, about 580 km (360.4 mi) south-east of Paris, 229 km (142.3 mi) south of Lyon and 85 km (52.8 mi) north-north-west of Marseille. Avignon occupies a large oval-shaped area, not fully populated and covered in great part by parks and gardens. The historic centre, which includes the Palais des Papes, the cathedral, and the Pont d'Avignon, became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1995. The medieval monuments and the annual Festival d'Avignon have helped to make the town a major centre for tourism.
Rouen is a city on the River Seine in the north of France. It is the capital of the region of Normandy. Formerly one of the largest and most prosperous cities of medieval Europe, Rouen was the seat of the Exchequer of Normandy during the Middle Ages. It was one of the capitals of the Anglo-Norman dynasties, which ruled both England and large parts of modern France from the 11th to the 15th centuries. An important city in the Roman era and Middle Ages, it has Gothic churches and a cobblestoned pedestrian center with hundreds of medieval half-timbered houses.
Paris is the capital and largest city in France, situated on the river Seine in northern France, at the heart of the Île-de-France region. The city of Paris, within its administrative limits largely unchanged since 1860, has an estimated population of 2,193,031, but the Paris metropolitan area has a population of 11,836,970, and is one of the most populated metropolitan areas in Europe. In 2009 and 2010, the city has been ranked among the three most important and influential cities in the world, among the first three "European cities of the future" according to a research published by Financial Times and among the top ten cities in the world in which to live according to the British review Monocle. The city is the home of the most visited art museum in the world; ''the Louvre'' as well as the ''Musée d'Orsay'' noted for its collection of French Impressionist art, and the ''Musée National d'Art Moderne'' a museum of modern and contemporary art. The notable architectural landmarks of Paris include Notre Dame Cathedral (12th century); the Sainte-Chapelle (13th century); the Eiffel Tower (1889); and the Basilica of Sacré-Cœur on Montmartre (1914). In 2014 Paris received 22.4 million visitors, making it one of the world's top tourist destinations. It is also known for its fashion, particularly the twice-yearly Paris Fashion Week, and for its haute cuisine, and three-star restaurants. Most of France's major universities and grandes écoles are located in Paris, as are France's major newspapers, including Le Monde, Le Figaro, and Libération.
Known for it's historically acclaimed architectural and horticultural structures, Normandy is a popular destination when visiting France. Normandy's museums, memorials, concert halls, chateaux and manors, national parks and culinary culture are designed to pay homage to Norman architecture of England after the Normand Conquest of 1066. The culture and structure of this beautiful French region are sure to appeal to all tastes.
Honfleur is a commune in the Calvados department in northwestern France. It is located on the southern bank of the estuary of the Seine across from le Havre and very close to the exit of the Pont de Normandie. The most picturesque of the Côte Fleurie's seaside towns, its inhabitants are called Honfleurais. It is especially known for its old, beautiful picturesque port, characterized by its houses with slate-covered frontages, painted many times by artists, including in particular Gustave Courbet, Eugène Boudin, Claude Monet and Johan Jongkind, forming theécole de Honfleur (Honfleur school) which contributed to the appearance of the Impressionist movement. The Sainte-Catherine church, which has a bell tower separate from the principal building, is the largest church made out of wood in France.