Style : River cruise
 French Escapade: Paris to the Riviera - Southbound 2021 tour
Avignon Cannes  French Escapade: Paris to the Riviera - Southbound 2021 Trip

French Escapade: Paris to the Riviera - Southbound 2021

Tauck
By Tauck
4.3 . Great
83%
Travel Style: N/A
Physical Level: Walking or physical activity half to most of day - no carrying equipment. Easy
Lodging Level: 3 to 4 star western hotel equivalents. While not all lodging will be 'luxury' they will be quite comfortable by western standards. Comfort (4*)
14 days
From: $ 6,990 $ 499 / day
Checking price

Overview

Highlights (Bullets)

  • If you’re dreaming of a France river cruise
  • come along with us on a French Escapade aboard ms Emerald along the rivers Rhône and Saône… and visit the 'City of Light' Paris
  • cultural Provence and the jet-setting city of Cannes on the Riviera along the way. Travel into the countryside past vineyards where some of the world’s best grapes become some of the world’s best wines
  • stopping to taste some of them. Discover river towns with Roman roots and lingering traces of medieval magic in their streets
  • experience the cowboy traditions and cuisine of La Camargue
  • and sample the pleasures of regional cuisine and wine throughout your trip. Explore a palace fit for a pope and an abbey that was once one of the most powerful in Europe. You'll find something new
  • something wonderful every day. And during two nights in Paris
  • you'll dine at chic Fouquet's on the Champs-Élysées!

Short Description

Spend two glorious nights in Paris... then cruise from Lyon, along the Saône and Rhône rivers, through some of Europe's most beautiful wine lands and into Provence to Arles... explore Nice and glamorous Monte-Carlo on the Mediterranean... and enjoy a true taste of all things Français on one of our most popular river cruises in France!

Style River cruise
Array
Itinerary Focus N/A
3 to 4 star western hotel equivalents. While not all lodging will be 'luxury' they will be quite comfortable by western standards.
Lodging Level Comfort (4*)
Flight & Transport Inclusions N/A
Start City Paris, France
End City Cannes

Destinations

France

Attractions & Cities Visited

Avignon Cannes Lyon Paris Vienne

Activities & Interests

Culture

N/A
See more

Itinerary

Day 1 Arrive Paris

Tour begins: 6:30 PM, InterContinental Paris Le Grand Hotel. A transfer from Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport, Gare de Lyon Station, Charles de Gaulle Station and Gare du Nord to InterContinental Paris Le Grand Hotel, in the heart of the city, is included. After your arrival just relax or head out to do some exploring on your own before joining us to meet your Tauck Directors and fellow voyagers at a welcome cocktail reception and dinner this evening at the exclusively chic Fouquet’s on the Champs-Élysées.

MEALS : D

LODGING : InterContinental Paris Le Grand

PORTOFCALL : Paris, France

Day 2 Paris sightseeing and a choice of museum

Your day begins with an orientation tour to help you get your bearings and consider all the ways that you can enjoy the "City of Light" at your leisure and as you please for the rest of the day. The remainder of the day is free. We’ve included admission to your choice of one of two of the city's finest museums (subject to availability). You may elect to view the priceless art inside the famous Musée du Louvre, home to da Vinci’s Mona Lisa, the Hellenistic Winged Victory, the beautiful Venus de Milo and others. Or perhaps you’re interested in viewing the impressive works exhibited at the Musée Jacquemart-André, a stunning museum in Paris’ 8th arrondissement created from the former private mansion of 19th-century husband-and-wife art collectors Édouard André and Nélie Jacquemart – he, a member of a wealthy banking family and she, a renowned society painter – to display the art masterpieces they acquired during their lives together. The collection includes works by Canaletto, Rembrandt, Hals, Gainsborough, Bernini, Botticelli and many others. Note: select departures join us this evening for a Tauck Exclusive – an after-hours guided visit to Musée du Louvre. A showcase of Impressionist paintings. the museum is housed in a former royal palace, astounds with an incomparable collection of some of the world's greatest art masterpieces – old masters, sculptures, antiquities – and the Mona Lisa; ask at booking.
 

MEALS : B

LODGING : InterContinental Paris Le Grand

PORTOFCALL : Paris, France

Day 3 A high-speed TGV train to Lyon... and your river cruise begins!

A free morning in Paris gives you an opportunity to do those last few things that will make your time in Paris memorable. Say au revoir to one of the world's great cities as you board the high-speed TGV train to Lyon, home to a bounty of wines produced by local vineyards, locally produced cheeses, spicy sausages, warm-from-the-oven baguettes... You'll return to Lyon in a few days – but today, embark ms Emerald late afternoon for the start of your France river cruise along the Rhône. Join us tonight for the ship's welcome reception and dinner.

MEALS : B, D

LODGING : ms Emerald

PORTOFCALL : Paris, France

Day 4 Tastings in Chalon-sur-Saône & Rully

Chalon-sur-Sâone on the River Saône lies in the heart of southern Burgundy. Although its history dates back to the time of Charlemagne, it has another significant claim to fame – this is considered the birthplace of photography. So you have local inventor Nicéphore Niépce, who started it all with several photographic firsts right here in the 1820s, to thank for the great photos of the town’s Romanesque churches and other monuments. Visit the walled city of Beaune – the “wine capital” of the famous Burgundy wine-producing region, and one of France’s most important wine centers. A walking tour includes a visit to Hospices de Beaune or Hôtel-Dieu de Beaune, considered one of the best-preserved examples of 15th-century French architecture; you may also see the old market (les Halles), the Beffroi (clock tower), parts of the medieval walls and ramparts, and more. This afternoon you have a choice of wine tasting in Burgundy or a walking tour (and tasting tour) of Chalon-sur-Saône, including a stop at the bakery, the chocolate shop and a mustard shop.

 

MEALS : B, L, D

LODGING : ms Emerald

Day 5 A day well spent in the south of Burgundy

With your riverboat docked in Tournus this morning, head out to explore the beautiful wine producing region of southern Burgundy, where history lies around every corner (this was a major crossroads during Roman times), and vineyards are everywhere. Picture in your mind what a typical French vineyard looks like... and then picture the most amazing landscape that surrounds you for miles and miles. Vineyards, gently rolling hills, orchards, red-tiled farmhouses, medieval cathedrals... and historic country estates like the 17th-century Château de Cormatin, which you'll explore on a visit today. With its moat, drawbridge, turrets, gilded rooms and parklike grounds – including the mazes and fountains of its completely restored "pleasure garden" that's now among the finest in France – this classic Burgundy château takes you back through the centuries. Return to the riverboat for lunch, and continue your cruise to Mâcon. There is an opportunity to follow the ship to Mâcon by bicycle for a 20-mile ride along the Saône River.

MEALS : B, L, D

LODGING : ms Emerald

Day 6 Mâcon & Cluny – Horses, an abbey & more

Your riverboat arrives in Mâcon on the Saône River this morning, for exploration in Cluny. During the reign of Charlemagne (742 - 814), monastic influences inspired a great revival in art, education and culture; today you'll visit one of the great monasteries of the period when you tour the great Benedictine Abbey of Cluny. Founded in 910, it was at the center of this major monastic reform movement and was also the largest Christian building in the world until the construction of St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. You'll also visit Haras National de Cluny (France's national equestrian center), which dates back to the 19th century, to learn about its high-quality thoroughbred stallions. Have lunch off the riverboat today; later, reboard ms Emerald and enjoy onboard entertainment after dinner as you cruise to Lyon.

MEALS : B, L, D

LODGING : ms Emerald

PORTOFCALL : Cluny, France

Day 7 Spend the day in Lyon, culinary capital of France

Ahh, Lyon. If you’re a serious foodie, Lyon is the place for you! Regarded as the culinary capital of France, there are more restaurants here per capita than anywhere else in the country. But of course, there is more to this 2,000-year-old city, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, than food. Begin your exploration with a panoramic view of Lyon from the district of Fouvière, set high on a hill. Check out the town's winding passageways and the Cathedrale Saint-Jean-Baptiste, with its 19th-century astronomical clock. Your day also includes the stunning Basilica of Notre-Dame-de-Fourvière – built in the 1870s, it features exquisite marble work, stained glass windows, colorful mosaics and gilt galore; and a tour of La Maison des Canuts, a silk factory where you'll discover the secrets behind the creation of these exceptional silks. Enjoy dinner onboard while continuing your France river cruise to Vienne this evening.

MEALS : B, L, D

LODGING : ms Emerald

PORTOFCALL : Lyon, France

Day 8 Roman Vienne or a bike tour along the Rhône

It seems that the Romans were everywhere along the Rhône, and Vienne (which they called "Vienna" in their day) was no exception. During your time on a walking tour here this morning, look for the theatre and temple they left behind, as well as other sights straight out of history. Alternatively, you may instead choose to join a guided bicycle tour following part of the ViaRhona cycling path system along the River Rhone. Return to the riverboat this afternoon to continue your cruise.

MEALS : B, L, D

LODGING : ms Emerald

PORTOFCALL : Vienne, France

Day 9 Avignon & a gala dinner in Uzès

The fortified city of Avignon was probably a much more peaceful place before Rome became "inconvenient" for the popes who moved the papacy here about 700 years ago. Although they stayed for less than a century, they kept busy during those years... as you’ll see on your visit to the impressive Palais des Papes that they built for themselves during this morning’s sightseeing in this key medieval city. After a free afternoon aboard ship, travel to the Duchy d'Uzès – a medieval city dating back to the 11th century, often called the “First Duchy of France,” that forms the heart of the town of Uzès – for a guided visit followed by a cocktail reception and a Tauck Exclusive gala dinner at the recently restored Chateau.

MEALS : B, L, D

LODGING : ms Emerald

PORTOFCALL : Avignon, France

Day 10 Avignon, Saint-Remy & Châteauneuf-du-Pape

With your riverboat docked in Avignon for the morning, you can spend more time exploring the medieval city or take a morning excursion to Saint-Remy-de-Provence – home to the ruins of the Roman city of Glanum, as well as the Saint-Paul Asylum where Vincent van Gogh was a patient. After returning to the ship for lunch onboard, head out again for an afternoon wine tasting at one of the select vineyards permitted to produce Châteauneuf-du-Pape – literally “the New Castle of the Pope” – the most famous of the Côtes du Rhône wines; your host reveals secrets of the terroir as you sample estate-crafted red and white wines from a region that's been producing wine for more than 2,500 years! Catch up with the riverboat in Châteauneuf-du-Pape and spend the evening onboard, bound for Arles.

MEALS : B, L, D

LODGING : ms Emerald

PORTOFCALL : Avignon, France

Day 11 Arles and a trip to a working farm in the Camargue

It may seem strange to encounter Roman ruins in Provence but Arles was, after all, once a Roman city; while the gladiators are gone, the arena they left behind – just one of the town's many Roman remnants – still hosts performances and bullfights today. You have a choice today of exploring Arles' medieval streets and city walls on a walking tour or embarking on a challenging, 2-hour bicycling excursion across the countryside surrounding Arles (which van Gogh found so enchanting). After lunch, it’s off to La Camargue, France’s "wild west." Visit a working farm to see an exciting demonstration by gardians (local cowboys) and the black bulls they raise here – not something usually experienced on a France river cruise; you'll also enjoy lunch and traditional Provençal entertainment. Join us this evening for the ship’s farewell reception followed by dinner.

MEALS : B, L, D

LODGING : ms Emerald

PORTOFCALL : Arles, France

Day 12 Disembark in Arles then on to Aix-en-Provence and Cannes

The France river cruise portion of your journey ends as you disembark ms Emerald in Arles, and bid farewell to the Captain and crew. Travel to lovely Aix-en-Provence; it's not hard to imagine great artists like Vincent van Gogh or Paul Cézanne at work amidst the spectrum of colors found in Provence as you view Mont Ste-Victoire and join your local guide for a walking tour among the fountains, squares and medieval center. After free time for lunch in Aix, continue on to Cannes for a two-night stay.

MEALS : B

LODGING : Hôtel Martinez

PORTOFCALL : Cannes, France

Day 13 A day in the magic of Monte-Carlo

Explore the south of France on a choice of sightseeing excursions today. Your first choice is an excursion that includes walking tours of Nice and Monte-Carlo plus a famed drive... mega-yachts from around the world bobbing in the bay… the rich, the famous, the jet setters… a casino world-renowned for its glamour… a real-life royal fairy-tale romance… it’s all part of Nice and Monte-Carlo’s magic spell... Alternatively, journey to the hills above Cannes for a visit to Grasse, one of the world's premiere centers for the perfume industry, and a visit to the picturesque walled town of Saint Paul de Vence, a Provençal hilltop town that was built in the 13th century, for a walking tour – you'll be taken with its medieval look and easily understand why it became an artists' enclave. Return to Cannes for a farewell reception and dinner at the hotel.

MEALS : B, D

LODGING : Hôtel Martinez

PORTOFCALL : Cannes, France

Day 14 Journey home

Tour ends: Cannes. A transfer from Hotel Martinez to the Nice Côte d’Azur Airport, Nice Ville Train Station and Nice Riquier Train Station is included. Fly home anytime, but be sure to allow 3 hours for flight check-in at the airport.

MEALS : B

PORTOFCALL : Cannes, France

Availability

Checking price
Price From $ 6,990
Price Per Day: $ 499 per day

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24 Tauck Travel Reviews & Ratings

83%
4.3 out of 5 (100+ reviews)
Excellent 16
Great 4
Average 0
Disappointing 3
Terrible 1
Value
4.2
Guide
4.5
Activities
4.4
Lodging
4.5
Transportation
4.7
Meals
4.3

French Escapade: Paris to the Riviera - Southbound 2021

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Company Reviews

Skip this cruise - not worth it

2.0
Details
Value2.0
Guide4.0
Activities1.0
Lodging4.0
Transportation4.0
Meals1.0
My husband and I went on the Treasures of the Mediterranean Isles Trip jn October 2022. This was our third Tauck cruise with Ponnant but our first post covid and the level of food and serive on Ponnant ships has dropped alot. The food was, at best, cafeteria food at a bad high school. My husband ate salad and cheese and crackers
For dinner every night because the entrees were terrible. You could be the first person at breakfast and everything on the buffet was cold, nothing was hot. there warming trays had tea light candles underneath them.
Wine served at dinner was low quality whicj says something since it was French wine. Tours were poorly
Planned, guides were ok at best. There is no time to shop or eat on land 9 times out 10. We were in Sicily but never got a chance to eat Sicilian food. So disappointed in this ver expensive cruise. The land portions in Malta and Marseiile were better but the tours in Malta were short, limited and subpar. This was our 8th Tauck trip and we have since cancelled our next three. We are not paying Tauck prices for mediocre experiences.
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Tauck/Aon terrible travel insurance

1.0
Details
Value1.0
Guide1.0
Activities1.0
Lodging1.0
Transportation1.0
Meals1.0
Tauck partners with Aon for travel insurance. We bought this insurance through Tauck specifically to cover us in case of a positive for test for Covid and could not go on the cruise. Three days before the trip, one of us tested positive with very mild symptoms. We contacted Tauck and they agreed to refund 1/2 of the tour cost and the insurance would pay for the other half. When we called the insurance they said they required a PCF test. The test was taken and came back positive. Two months later they denied the claim because we didn’t go to a doctor. That was not necessary or practical. We had proof of Covid. Tauck is not willing to help. This was the insurance they recommended and sold to customers. We have now read many reviews of terrible service from Aon. Why is Tauck a partner to this company and not willing to help their clients? BEWARE. Terrible customer service.
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Nice trip but not if you are a loyal Tauck Customer like myself

2.0
Details
Value2.0
Guide2.0
Activities4.0
Lodging2.0
Transportation5.0
Meals2.0
This was my 16th Tauck Tour. I was assigned a room with a "mountain" view only to be obstructed by lawn chairs, pool covers, large plants and buildings. It was a 1st floor room. I complained to tour director who said everyone got the same (NOT TRUE). I called Tauck 800 number on Sept 3 to request a call back from Customer Service. It took them until September 8 for a call back. The person on the phone was rude, non caring and (I'm paraphrasing) and told me just because you have taken 16 tours doesn't mean you deserve a better view that a first time customer. He went on to imply Tauck doesn't respect loyalty and wants to impress first time travelers. I ended the call and wrote an email to a good person at Tauck who was very helpful in the and requested this go to the top. I included pictures of my view and one dead fly because there were flies in the room and I guess Tauck thinks that makes the room special? I'm not done with them yet. Consider my treatment by this Customer Care agent before spending the big bucks to travel with Tauck.
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Great if you like 5-star hotels and lots of food

4.0
Details
Value3.0
Guide3.0
Activities3.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
The tour covered most of Switzerland, with one day in Italy, which could have been eliminated. If you want to see the country from a bus or train, and you desire luxury hotels and gourmet food, then this is the tour for you. If you want to have a closer connection to the local people, and walk a bit in the mountains, or even hear the cowbells up close, then don't take this trip. While the trip was nice, I felt a disconnect from the local people and the country itself. We were always separated in a private train car, or on a private tour. I came home not really knowing what it's like to live there, other than it's very expensive.
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Pay for a 4 star trip and get 2 star food

2.0
Details
Value1.0
Guide5.0
Activities4.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals1.0
My husband and I took the Treasures of the Mediterranean tour two weeks ago. The food off the ship was very good. The food on the ship was subpar (2 stars out of 4 stars). We ended up ordering French Fries at the beginning of each meal so we would at least have something to eat. I called Tauck and voiced my concerns. They offered us a $250 voucher each for another trip. I hardly think the food portion on the yacht was $250. Why would I go on another Tauck trip when my first one, which was our retirement celebration due to the poor food. The majority of the people on the trip were dissatisfied with the food and their reviews reflected it.
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Still Spellbound by the Grandeur of Alaska

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
Focused on the amazing wildness of Alaska without worrying about the mundane details. Expert, low-key tour director made everything look easy. Excursions enhanced appreciation for the history, terrain, wildlife, peoples, boom and bust cycles that make Alaska so unique. Clear view of Denali, great weather, days 'at sea' with binoculars in hand!

Most Memorable Moment:
Flightseeing, Tundra Wilderness tour (clear Denali, rare wolf sighting and grizzlies in distance), crossing Prince William Sound (sea-otters, orcas, stellar sea-lions, and more), Hubbard Glacier calving, Glacier Bay entire day, Whale Watching out of Juneau, and bald eagles everywhere!
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Details

Ship Name

MS EMERALD

Ship Description

MS EMERALD

Of the five 361-foot (110-meter) riverboats in Tauck's Destination Fleet, this newly redesigned riverboat debuts in 2017 with a new deck plan optimized for the utmost in spaciousness – with 70% of her cabins measuring 225 square feet or larger – and accommodating no more than 98 guests, while similar-sized riverboats average about 160. Guest amenities inside her 14 lush 300-square-foot Tauck Suites include brocade upholstery, roomy walk-in closets with built-in drawers, spacious marble baths with full-size tubs, and two French balconies with floor-to-ceiling windows that open to idyllic riverscapes. She also sports twenty roomy 225-square-foot cabins, four 183-square-foot cabins and one 182 square-foot cabin, similarly furnished. Eight 150-square-foot cabins are cozy and comfortable, and are similar in décor and style to our larger suites. 85% have floor-to-ceiling windows with real French balconies that open on to a balcony in the fresh air; all have in-room movies, minibar, adjustable heating and cooling, private bathroom and shower with pampering toiletries. In addition to our main dining room, The Compass Rose, the ship also features Arthur's, a second dining venue offering casual fare

Deck & Cabin Plans

MS EMERALD

Group Size

Standard Group - 25 + people

Trip ID#:

tauck-RPS2021

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