Day 1 Arrive in Paris, France (Embarkation)
Welcome to Paris, France’s capital on the Seine River, the “City of Light,” where romance fills the air. This afternoon, board your river cruise vessel and meet your crew at an evening welcome reception. Take the opportunity to meet the Avalon executives, who will join this cruise to share this experience with our guests. Before dinner, your ship glides out of Paris. (Dinner)
NOTE: Flights into Paris must arrive by 2:30 pm. Guests must be on board ship by 5 pm.
Day 2 Vernon–Les Andelys
This morning in Vernon, choose between a guided visit of Giverny and a visit to Bizy Castle. Claude Monet lived at GIVERNY for almost 43 years (1883-1926), and viewed his flower and water gardens as works of art—just like his paintings. See his collection of Japanese prints, charming house, and his biggest sources of inspiration. Or, after a WALKING TOUR in Vernon, visit BIZY CASTLE, built in 1740 and nicknamed “Normandy’s Versailles.” It is known for its famous stables—inspired by those at Versailles—and its magnificent courtyard and water garden. This afternoon, arrive in Les Andelys, situated on a bend of the Seine and one of the most beautiful places in France. You may want to attend a PAINTING CLASS and learn how to become an artist and how to find the inspiration to paint a real masterpiece. In the afternoon, join a Local Guide for a GUIDED WALK of the town, visiting the PARISH CHURCH OF LE PETIT ANDELY. Alternatively, you may wish to join your guide on a hike up to the ruins of imposing Château Gaillard, built by England’s King Richard the Lionheart as a fortress in 1196. Constructed in only a year, it is a masterpiece of medieval military architecture. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 3 Caudebec
Make your choice today between an included full-day excursion to the historic NORMANDY LANDING BEACHES—with poignant sites, such as Omaha Beach, the Pointe du Hoc monument, and the American Cemetery—or a “TASTE OF NORMANDY” for an in-depth look at this picturesque, mainly agricultural region. The most important products are dairy, apples, and grain. Camembert cheese is a specialty, as is CALVADOS, a strong apple brandy you’ll have the chance to taste at a local distillery. And for a touch of history, visit the famous BAYEUX TAPESTRY. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 4 Le Havre
This morning, wake up in Le Havre and join a guided excursion along the “NORMANDY ABBEYS ROUTE." More than 100 abbeys once covered this region, which has a microclimate suited to growing fruit such as apples, pears, plums, and cherries. Alternatively, explore the city of Le Havre during GUIDED SIGHTSEEING and don’t miss the opportunity to take a picture in ETRETAT, one of the most suggestive panoramic views in the north of France. The afternoon is at your disposal to experience HIKING TOURS in the Regional Park La Boucle de La Seine or to visit the pretty coastal town of HONFLEUR. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 5 Rouen
Rouen, capital of Upper Normandy, is an important commercial city perhaps best known for its connection to Joan of Arc, who lived, was imprisoned, and burned at the stake in the marketplace of this town in 1431. Enjoy the included GUIDED WALK through the medieval quarter with its half-timbered, glazed-tile houses, and take photos of the intricate Gros Horloge astronomical clock, dating back to the 16th century. Visit the gothic CATHEDRAL, which was once the tallest building in the world and the subject of a series of paintings by Claude Monet. The afternoon is free to explore on your own. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 6 Conflans
After breakfast, you may either join our included guided excursion to AUVERS-SUR-OISE, the quaint little town where Vincent Van Gogh lived and died, or to Napoleon and Josephine’s CHÂTEAU DE MALMAISON just outside Paris. Requiring extensive renovations, this large country estate was purchased by Josephine Bonaparte in 1799 while Napoleon was fighting in Egypt. It was her aim to make it “the most beautiful and curious garden in Europe, a model of good cultivation.” After lunch, visit the unique PALACE OF VERSAILLES, and learn all about Louis XVI and his kingdom. Tonight, dress up for a gala dinner on board and delight in the special menu the chef has created just for you! (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 7 Paris
Known as one of the world’s most romantic and lively cities, Paris delights the senses. Choose from a choice of GUIDED WALKS through Paris’ history and habits. In your free time, stroll down the Champs-Elysées with its lavish cafés, or perhaps join one of our included excursions and visit the world-famous LOUVRE or MONTMARTRE with its gleaming white Sacré Coeur Basilica and bevy of artists on Place du Tertre. This evening end your cruise with an unforgettable panoramic view of the “City of Light” from the EIFFEL TOWER. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 8 Paris–London, England
Say goodbye to the Avalon portion of your vacation after breakfast. An included transfer delivers you to the train station, where you join your Monograms package. Travel to London by HIGH-SPEED EUROSTAR TRAIN (standard class). Your Local Hosts will be on hand to help you make the most of your time. (Breakfast)
Day 9 London
Morning guided sightseeing includes all of London’s famous landmarks. Drive past the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben; Westminster Abbey, where Prince William and Kate Middleton were married; Whitehall’s mounted horseguards; the Prime Minister’s Downing Street; and Piccadilly Circus. Take photos of the London Eye, the giant Ferris wheel situated on the river bank, and the Shard, the tallest building in Western Europe. Then, visit ST. PAUL’S CATHEDRAL (except on Sundays). Sir Christopher Wren’s masterpiece with its world-famous dome is an iconic feature of London’s skyline, and the awe-inspiring interior holds fascinating stories about its history. The final highlight is the ceremonial pageantry of the Changing of the Guard (if held). (Breakfast)
Day 10 London
Your Local Hosts will help you make the most of your day. You could take a flight on the London Eye for fantastic views over the city, or visit Windsor Castle, one of the official residences of Queen Elizabeth II, for a tour of the magnificent State Apartments. In the evening, see one of the dozens of celebrated West End shows, or enjoy dinner at a traditional London pub, followed by a relaxing night-time cruise on the Thames River. There are so many possibilities to make your stay unforgettable. (Breakfast)
Day 11 London
Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. (Breakfast)
This fabulous river cruise combines time in France’s unparalleled capital of Paris and exciting London, with beautiful scenery along the Seine River and the picturesque and historical region of Normandy.
In Vernon, choose between two exciting guided visits—Claude Monet’s stunning gardens at Giverny or the remarkable Bizy Castle, known as “Normandy’s Versailles.” You may choose to go on an excursion to the historic Normandy Landing Beaches, including Omaha Beach, the Point du Hoc monument, and the American Cemetery. In Rouen, best known as the home of Joan of Arc, you’ll go on a guided walk through the medieval quarter and visit the gothic Rouen Cathedral—once the tallest building in the world. From Conflans, go on an excursion to the quaint and inspiring town of Auvers-Sur-Oise—associated with several famous artists, including Vincent Van Gogh—or visit Napoleon and Josephine’s Malmaison.
On this enchanting river cruise, enjoy wine, cheese, beautiful scenery along the Seine River, and stops in charming and historical parts of France, but your adventure is not complete without some time in two of the most popular cities in the world—Paris and London! Paris, the “City of Light” has Notre Dame Cathedral, the Eiffel Tower, and the Louvre Museum with its elegant glass pyramid contrasting its ancient architecture. Trade your “Bonjours” for “Cheerios” as an included high-speed train transfer whisks you to London for three exciting nights. Your Monograms package includes hotel reservations, guided sightseeing, daily breakfasts, and the services of a Monograms Local Host®. This “friend in the city” can answer your questions, offer suggestions, and help make your vacation what you want it to be. During your guided sightseeing tour with a local expert, see the London sights you cannot go home without seeing—Parliament, Big Ben, Westminster Abbey, Piccadilly Circus, and more!
Captain’s welcome & farewell receptions with sparkling wine and canapés; Welcome dinner; Daily Afternoon Tea; Daily Night Fare; Farewell dinner; Complimentary sparkling wine with breakfast; soft drinks with lunch; and wine, beer, or soft drinks with dinner are included daily on board your vessel
Included excursions with Certified Local Guide; sightseeing as outlined in the day by-day itinerary; inside visits and special features are shown in UPPERCASE.
Deluxe cruise in an outside stateroom with hotel-style beds
Headsets for shore excursions
Complimentary Wi-Fi access
Personalized room options & excursions
The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines. Sorry, we are unable to offer air from countries other than the U.S. However, for those international customers who are able to arrange their own transportation to the trip origination city, we are able to offer the land/cruise portion of the package at the price quoted.