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Grand France WWII Remembrance & History Cruise with 1 Night in Marseille 2020 (Southbound)

16 days with Avalon Waterways  Rating: Deluxe

Book this River Cruise Now and Save!


  • Save $1,000 per couple off this cruise. Click here for eligible departures.
  • Fly from $299 per person from select gateways on certain 2020 Europe river cruises. This deal is combinable with select promotions. Click here for eligible departures.
  • Pay no single supplement in certain cabin categories on select river cruises. Limited availability on each departure. Expires February 19. Click here for eligible departures.
  • Travel with Avalon Waterways in 2019 or later and receive a Welcome Back Credit of $100 to $250 per person after your trip. The credit can be applied toward a subsequent trip with Avalon Waterways or its sister brands Globus, Cosmos and Monograms. Click here for eligible departures.

Offers subject to change or withdrawal, availability is limited. Some discounts are not combinable.

River Cruise Itinerary
Day 1 PARIS, FRANCE (EMBARKATION)
Welcome to France. Your Suite Ship® is Ready for Boarding.

Flights into Paris must arrive by 2:30 pm.

Guests must be on board ship by 5 pm.

Your day is free to explore the world's most romantic city before starting your cruise on the Seine. Get acquainted with the City of Lights today with some shopping, strolling, or with a croissant and café au lait to watch the world go by amid the Parisian cityscape.

EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO VERNON. (D)

Day 2 VERNON
Monet’s Muses, Castle Courtyards, and Crêpes du Jour.

Start the day with a Morning Stretch with your Avalon Adventure Host.

CLASSIC Take a Guided Tour of Giverny, home and inspiration of the master impressionist painter Claude Monet. Walk the grounds and see Monet’s charming residence, and the flower and water gardens captured in his masterpieces, OR:

CLASSIC Join a Guided Visit to Bizy Castle—called “Normandy’s Versailles” for its magnificent courtyard, water garden, and stables.

DISCOVERY While sailing, enjoy a traditional French Luncheon of authentic French crêpes, followed by an onboard history lecture.


This afternoon, enjoy cruising to the picturesque town of Les Andelys.

LES ANDELYS

Serenity on the Seine’s Most Beautiful Riverbends

CLASSIC Take a Guided Walking Tour of Les Andelys—one of France’s most picturesque spots on the Seine, OR:

ACTIVE Join a Guided Hike up to the castle ruins of Château Gaillard—historic home of King Richard the Lionheart.

EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO CAUDEBEC. (B,L,D)

Day 3 CAUDEBEC
Churches, Cherry Orchards, and White Cliffs of Normandy.

ACTIVE Join your Avalon Adventure Host for a Morning Jog in Normandy’s town of Caudebec.

CLASSIC Take a Guided Trip along the Normandy Abbeys Route—where more than 100 medieval Benedictine and Augustine abbeys and churches were built along the Seine, OR:

ACTIVE Explore Boucles de la Seine Normande with a Guided Hike of Normandy’s vast regional nature park in a region rich in apple, plum, pear, and cherry orchards.

This afternoon, you may choose a Guided Optional Excursion to the old seaside town of Honfleur.

DISCOVERY Onboard lecture about WWII hosted by your history expert.

Later enjoy live entertainment on board.

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN CAUDEBEC. (B,L,D)

Day 4 CAUDEBEC. EXCURSION TO NORMANDY
Heroic Bravery on Normandy Beaches and French Farming Traditions.

CLASSIC Join a Guided Tour of Normandy’s WWII landing beaches, visit significant U.S. sites, including Omaha Beach, the Pointe du Hoc monument, and the American Cemetery, OR:

CLASSIC Take a full-day Guided Tour of the British and Canadian commemorative sites, including the British cemetery, Pegasus Memorial, the seaside town of Arromanches, the Juno Beach Center, and the Bény-sur-Mer Canadian War Cemetery, OR:

CLASSIC Join “A Taste of Normandy” Guided Tour for an in-depth look at this rich agricultural region. See the famous Bayeux Tapestry, visit the beautiful village of Beuvron en Auge and taste Calvados apple brandy at a local distillery.

Later, enjoy live entertainment on board your ship.

EVENING CRUISE TO ROUEN. (B,L,D)

Day 5 ROUEN
The Cathedral of Notre-Dame, and a Heroine for France.

CLASSIC Take a Guided Walking Tour of Rouen—site of Saint Joan of Arc’s martyrdom—and see the medieval quarter with its 16th-century Astronomical Clock, and Notre-Dame Cathedral.

DISCOVERY Take a full day excursion in the areas of Vimy Ridge and Beaumont-Hamel, where the Canadian Forces fought and won the German Army during WWI.

Enjoy onboard entertainment before setting sail this evening.

EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO CONFLANS. (B,L,D)

Day 6 CONFLANS
Walk in the Footsteps of Van Gogh, Bonaparte, and Louis XIV.

CLASSIC Join a Guided Visit to Auvers-sur-Oise, home and resting place of Vincent van Gogh, OR:

CLASSIC Take a Guided Tour of the opulent Château de Malmaison—home of Napoléon Bonaparte and his wife Josephine.

Perhaps, join a Guided Optional Excursion tour of the Palace of Versailles—home to a succession of French kings.

EVENING CRUISE TO PARIS. (B,L,D)

Day 7 PARIS
Cafés, Cathedrals, & Canvases—The City of Lights Truly Shines.

ACTIVE Take a Morning Walk with your Avalon Adventure Host to see Paris at first light.

CLASSIC Take a Guided Walking Tour through the Heart of Paris to see the historic Île St. Louis, Île de la Cité, and Notre-Dame Cathedral, OR:

CLASSIC Join a Guided City Tour, that shows you the iconic sites of Paris, such as the Louvre Museum, the Arc de Triomphe, the Eiffel Tower, Opéra Garnier, and the famous Champs-Élysées.

DISCOVERY Take a WWII tour of Paris which will include a visit to the museum of Les Invalides, dedicated to the Ordre de la Libération which was created in 1940 by General Charles de Gaulle, leader of the Free French Forces.

Stroll through Paris on your own, or linger over wine in a literary café on the Left Bank.

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN PARIS. (B,L,D)

Day 8 PARIS (DISEMBARKATION) DIJON—BEAUNE—ST. JEAN DE LOSNE (EMBARKATION)
Take a High-Speed Train from Paris to Dijon, to drive on to Beaune.

CLASSIC Visit the Hôtel-Dieu Charity Hospital in Beaune, built in 1443, today home of the Van der Weyden’s painting of the Last Judgement.

This afternoon, travel to St. Jean de Losne to board your Suite Ship®.

OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO MÂCON. (B,D)

Day 9 MÂCON
Wine and Cheese on the Stunning Saône.

Enjoy leisurely cruising en route to Mâcon along the majestic Saône River. Consider a Guided Optional Excursion to a Chardonnay wine cellar, or to the Castle of Cormatin.

DISCOVERY Later, enjoy a delicious Cheese Tasting on board your ship.

Enjoy live entertainment while sailing for Trévoux this evening.

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN TRÉVOUX. (B,L,D)

Day 10 LYON
Adventures in Food and Wine in the Gastronomy Capital of France.

Sail for lovely Lyon this morning.

CLASSIC Join a Guided Sightseeing Tour to survey Lyon with its numerous churches from Fourvière Hill. You’ll also explore the Old Town with its maze of medieval alleyways, and the lively cafés, monuments, and famed fountain of Place des Terreaux.

Spend free time biking through Lyon’s town squares, over bridges, and along the banks where the Rhône and Saône rivers meet.

DISCOVERY Be our guest for a WWII & French Resistance lecture on board your ship.

Later enjoy live entertainment after dinner.

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN LYON. (B,L,D)

Day 11 LYON
French Food and Wine—La Vie En Rose in Lyon.

CLASSIC Join a Culinary Walk through the city to discover why it is known as the gastronomic capital of France.

The rest of your day is free to explore, relax, or shop in France’s third largest city. Take a bike from the ship and explore local produce markets and parks, or take a leisurely tour of the city’s more than 100 murals. Later, enjoy live entertainment on board.

EVENING CRUISE TO TOURNON. (B,L,D)

Day 12 TOURNON
A Rendezvous with Castle Views and Vineyards.

CLASSIC Take a morning Guided Walking Tour to explore Tournon—one of France’s oldest medieval cities. See its 16th-century castle, and Roman ruins between the Rhône River and the granite slopes of the Hermitage.

Enjoy a leisurely sail to Viviers after lunch.

VIVIERS

World History in a Charming French Country Village.

CLASSIC Explore the pale-stone buildings of Viviers on a late afternoon Guided Walking Tour of this charming village. You’ll see its Romanesque cathedral and Old Town with a mix of historical Christian, Roman, and medieval influences.

EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO AVIGNON. (B,L,D)

Day 13 AVIGNON
The City of Popes in Picturesque Provence.

CLASSIC Take a Guided Sightseeing Tour of the fortress city of Avignon—with its ramparts encircling the city—and a visit to the amazing Palace of the Popes.

Guided Optional Excursions include a visit to the ancient Roman aqueduct of Pont du Gard, or a trip to the famed wine cellars of Châteauneuf-du-Pape for a true taste of the Rhône wine region.

Explore Avignon on your own for the city’s art and culture, theatre, and museums. Be sure to snap photos of the captivating countryside, historic monuments, and the medieval Pont Saint-Bénézet.

Later, enjoy onboard live entertainment.

EVENING CRUISE TO ARLES. (B,L,D)

Day 14 ARLES
Inspiring Sights and Avant-Garde Lights.

ACTIVE Join your Avalon Adventure Host for a Morning Walk.

CLASSIC Enjoy a Guided Walking Tour of Arles—the captivating city of the Provence region. You’ll visit the Roman Amphitheater in this visually stunning city, OR:

DISCOVERY Attend a Painting Workshop to learn the style and techniques of Vincent van Gogh. You’ll create your own painting in the style of the classic master who took inspiration from the Provence light and landscape in Arles.

Consider also a Guided Optional Excursion to the Carrières de Lumières (Cathedral of Images) to immerse yourself in a truly unique experience of art, sound, and light in the old quarries of Val d’Enfer.

Take advantage of any free time with a stop in Le Café Van Gogh for a glass of wine to relax and watch the world go by.

EVENING CRUISE TO PORT ST. LOUIS. (B,L,D)

Day 15 PORT ST. LOUIS (DISEMBARKATION)—MARSEILLE
Spectacular Seascapes of the Mediterranean Coast.

Disembark your ship and join a motorcoach transfer to Marseille.

CLASSIC Enjoy a Guided Sightseeing in Marseille—France’s second-largest city. (B)

Day 16 MARSEILLE
Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. (B)
Tour Map
River Cruise Highlights
  • Day 1 Paris (Embarkation): onboard welcome reception
  • Day 2 Vernon–Les Andelys: choice of excursions to Giverny or Bizy Castle; choice of guided walk, or guided hike in Les Andelys; crêpes tasting on board
  • Day 3 Caudebec: choice of excursion along the “Normandy Abbeys Route”, or walk in the Natural Park, onboard lecture
  • Day 4 Caudebec: choice of full day excursions to Normandy landing beaches, or “A Taste of Normandy” excursion
  • Day 5 Rouen: guided sightseeing related to the French Resistance, see the Astronomical Clock and visit the cathedral, or full day excursion to Vimy and Beaumont-Hamel
  • Day 6 Conflans: choice of excursions to Auvers-sur-Oise, or Napoleon and Josephine’s Château de Malmaison
  • Day 7 Paris: choice of guided sightseeing, or “Heart of Paris” walk, visit Notre Dame Cathedral, or WWII theme tour with visit to Museum of Les Invalides
  • Day 8 Paris (Disembarkation)–Dijon–Beaune–St. Jean de Losne (Embarkation): high-speed train from Paris to Dijon; motor coach transfer to Beaune, visit the Hôtel-Dieu; onboard welcome reception
  • Day 9 Mâcon: leisurely cruising; onboard cheese tasting
  • Day 10 Lyon: guided sightseeing; picture stop on Fourvière Hill; lecture on board
  • Day 11 Lyon: culinary tour
  • Day 12 Tournon–Viviers: guided walk in Tournon; guided walk in Viviers, visit the Old Town and the cathedral
  • Day 13 Avignon: guided sightseeing, visit Palace of the Popes
  • Day 14 Arles: choice of guided sightseeing in Arles, visit the Roman Amphitheatre, or painting workshop
  • Day 15 Port St. Louis (Disembarkation)–Marseille: transfer to Marseille; guided tour
  • Day 16 Marseille: your vacation ends this morning
All This Included
On this France river cruise vacation, enjoy wine, cheese, history lectures hold by an expert travelling with you, beau-tiful views, and stops in the most charming and historical parts of France. Sail along the Seine River to the pictur-esque Normandy region. 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.” Go on an excursion to the historic Normandy Landing Beaches, including Omaha Beach, the Point du Hoc monument, and the American Cemetery. In Rouen, go on a guided walk through the medieval quarter, visit the gothic Rouen Cathedral and learn the important role played by this city during the French Resistance. Alternatively visit the battlefields in the area of Vimy Ridge and Beaumont-Hamel.

Before you depart the beautiful Seine River, spend time in Paris—one of the world’s most romantic cities! The “City of Light” has Notre Dame Cathedral, the Eiffel Tower, and the Louvre Museum. Delight in a guided walk through the historic Île St. Louis or take a tour focused on WWII and visit the Museum of Les Invalides. Lyon, sitting at the con-fluence of the Saône and Rhône Rivers, is France’s third-largest city and a showcase of medieval and Renaissance architecture. The city of Tournon is beautifully nestled among vineyards. You’ll go on a guided walk of this medieval treasure with plenty of Roman ruins and a fascinating 16th-century castle. In historical Avignon, see the 14th-century Palace of the Popes—the largest gothic fortress in the world. Situated on the Rhône River, Arles is famous for in-spiring the paintings of Van Gogh and its 1st-century Roman Amphitheater, which hosts plays and concerts to this day. As a perfect finale to your river cruise vacation, spend time in the captivating Marseille. Explore this elegant ar-ea and relax along the remarkably blue water of the Mediterranean Sea.

Ship Amenities - Avalon Poetry II:
  • Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Windows
  • Sky Deck with premium lounge chairs, whirlpool, shade awnings, & outdoor deck game area
  • Non-smoking staterooms & ship interior
  • Convenient Elevator Service
  • Elegant, contemporary design
  • Outside viewing deck
  • Headsets for guided shore excursions in Europe
  • English-speaking friendly crew, staff & professional Cruise Director
  • Sightseeing with Expert Local Guides
  • Onboard lectures, activities & entertainment
  • Room service for Continental breakfast & beverages (service fee applies)
  • Sky Deck whirlpool
  • Complimentary computer use in public areas
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi access
  • Biking excursions available in Amsterdam and Breisach
  • Onboard Adventure Center with active gear, bikes, Nordic walking sticks, watercraft & maps
  • Light lunch & casual dinner in the Panorama Bistro
  • Avalon Choice® cruising experience
  • Behind-the-scenes galley tour
  • Choice of Leisurely, Traditional or Independent sightseeing pace options
  • Nordic walking sticks available onboard for complimentary check-out
  • Onshore & Onboard experiences with regional customs, cultures & tastings with local artisans, experts & entertainers
  • Flatscreen satellite TV with English-speaking channels & over 100 free movie options
  • Onboard assistance is available to recommend, reserve and further personalize your cruise
  • Linger over several selections from the Panorama Bistro's tasting menu for a less formal "sit-down" atmosphere
  • Sky Deck game area
  • Self-serve beverage station with complimentary tea, hot chocolate & premium coffees, including decaf options
  • Well-stocked library with books, cards, and board games
  • State-of-the-art fitness center
  • Complimentary bottled water, fresh fruit, and cookies available throughout the day
  • Full-size closet mirror

Ship Dining - Avalon Poetry II:
  • Avalon FreshSM healthy cuisine options at every meal
  • Self-serve beverage station with complimentary tea, hot chocolate & premium coffees, including decaf options
  • Welcome & farewell cocktails with sparkling wine & canapés
  • Welcome dinner
  • Five-course farewell dinner
  • Spacious, open-seating dining room
  • Daily early-riser breakfast
  • Daily late-riser breakfast
  • Full buffet breakfast with sparkling wine and made-to-order egg station
  • Lunch buffet with carving and pasta stations
  • Al fresco lunch in the Sky Grill
  • Cocktails with a view on the Sky Deck
  • Healthy Corner options including low calorie, low fat, high fiber, low cholesterol, and high energy choices
  • Vegetarian options at every meal, as well as vegan and allergy-free selections
  • Afternoon Tea featuring tea, coffee, and sweet treats
  • Happy Hour every evening including featured drink specials
  • Seasonal cuisine featuring the freshest local ingredients
  • Chef-prepared onboard meals with regional cuisine and familiar favorites
  • Four-course dinners with choice of appetizers, soups, salads, entrées and desserts or cheese
  • Complimentary wine, beer, or soft drinks with lunch and dinner
  • Room service for Continental breakfast & beverages (service fee applies)
  • Panorama Lounge & Bar with premium spirits, cozy seating, panoramic windows & dance floor
  • Night Fare served at 10:30 pm
  • Healthy meal options
  • Light lunch & casual dinner in the Panorama Bistro
  • Linger over several selections from the Panorama Bistro's tasting menu for a less formal "sit-down" atmosphere
  • Tastings - sample the destination's famous delicacies
  • Coffee or tea after dinner
Accommodations on this Tour
Cruising: Cabin onboard Avalon Poetry II, Avalon Tapestry II
Pre and Post Add-ons
Extra nights per person in Paris:
in singleroom from $327 to $435, in twin room from $193 to $247

Extra nights per person in Marseille:
in single room from $228 to $287, in twin room from $133 to $165
Notes
  • In the event of technical or water level issues, it may be necessary to operate the itinerary by motorcoach or alter the program, including hotel overnight when necessary.
  • Included visits and special features are subject to change. If a change becomes necessary, a substitute will be offered.
  • Please check visa requirements with your local consulate(s); responsibility for obtaining visas rests with the traveler.
  • Port charges: $364
  • Gratuities to Local Guides & Excursion Drivers are included on Avalon portion only.
  • Avalon offers the opportunity for solo travelers to sail with no single supplement (subject to availability). Please call for single accommodation price. Triples not available.
  • All prices per person based on double occupancy. Cruise price based on Category E in a deluxe outside stateroom on Indigo Deck. 
  • Cabin upgrades are available.
  • Please ask your Vacations To Go travel counselor for more information.
Terms and Conditions

* 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.



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