Day 1 PARIS, FRANCE
Welcome to Paris! The day is yours to explore the City of Lights at your leisure. Consider browsing along Paris’ classic shopping avenues and literary cafés for a true Parisian experience.
Day 2 PARIS
Join a Guided Sightseeing which will show you magnificent must-see sights. Alternatively, join a Guided Biking Tour which will reveal some of the highlights of Paris—such as the Eiffel Tower and Place de la Concorde—from a different point of view; enjoy a peaceful break on the Seine river banks. (B)
Day 3 PARIS-LYON (EMBARKATION)
Board the TGV train to Lyon where your Suite Ship® is ready for boarding. (B,D)
Day 4 LYON
A Festival of Colors, Aromas, and Taste
ACTIVE Take a Guided Urban Hiking through Lyon’s secret passageways (Traboules) for a glimpse into the city’s 19th-century silk trade, OR:
DISCOVERY Take a Guided Culinary Walk through Lyon to discover architecture and local specialties in a festival of colors, aromas and taste—exclusive for Avalon guests, OR:
DISCOVERY Join our Cooking Class to learn to make your own Lyonnaise specialty.
This afternoon, you might take an off-the-beaten-path Guided Optional Tour through private and public terraces for panoramic views of Lyon, starting on the roof of the Basilica de Fourvière, or you may opt for a
Guided Optional Mountain Bike Excursion through the Beaujolais wine country.
EVENING CRUISE TO TAIN L’HERMITAGE/TOURNON. (B,L,D)
Day 5 TAIN L’HERMITAGE/TOURNON
Chocolatiers and Railway Engineers in the Twin City Gorge
ACTIVE For a unique experience and panoramic views, join a Guided Excursion this morning on a rail-bike along the descent of the Gorges du Doux, OR:
ACTIVE Join a Guided Hike in the picturesque vineyards surrounding the twin cities of Tournon and Tain-l’Hermitage, OR:
DISCOVERY Have a true “chocolate experience” with a tour of the Valrhona Chocolate Factory and Museum, OR:
CLASSIC Take a Guided Sightseeing Tour of Tournon—twin city to Tain-l’Hermitage and one of France’s oldest medieval cities. You’ll see its imposing 16th-century castle and Roman ruins.
DISCOVERY Join a Cooking Demonstration and learn how to prepare a Lyonnaise treat while sailing to Viviers.
Fascinating History, and Nighttime Ghost Stories
DISCOVERY For a different perspective on the town, join us on a nighttime Guided Tour of Viviers, discovering the legends, tales and ghost stories of this enchanting town.
OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN VIVIERS. (B,L,D)
Day 6 VIVIERS—LOCK BOLLÈNE
River Gorge Canoeing, Crocodiles, and Wine Caves
ACTIVE Immerse yourself in the scenery with a Guided Canoe Trip in the Gorges de l’Ardèche on the spectacular canyons of this Rhône tributary, OR:
ACTIVE Find inspiration from the amazing landscape of the region with a Guided Hike through the Natural Reserve of Cirque d’Estre, OR:
ACTIVE Join a Guided Visit for a surprising underground Wine Tasting—under the direction of an expert Speleologist (cave guide) and an oenologist (wine-making expert), OR:
DISCOVERY Learn about the planting, harvesting and production of lavender cosmetics and essential oil and discover why Provence and lavender have become synonymous with each other over the centuries as the delicate fragrance and shades of purple fill the fields each summer, OR:
CLASSIC Visit the owe-inspiring water facility at Bollène and tour the power plant of this immense lock along the Rhône.
Cruise through the soaring walls of the Lock Bollène on your way to Avignon this afternoon.
OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN AVIGNON. (B,L,D)
Day 7 AVIGNON
Essential Oils, and Ancient Roman Aqueducts
ACTIVE Join a leisurely Guided E-Bike Ride through Tavel—birthplace of French Rosé. After the tour, enjoy a Wine Tasting in a local cave; after all, no need to pedal on the way back, OR:
DISCOVERY Visit an authentic Provencal farmhouse for a delightful experience to fill your senses as you see how essential oils are created, OR:
CLASSIC Take a Guided Sightseeing Tour of Avignon, including a visit to the world’s largest gothic fortress—the 14th-century Palace Of the Popes. Also, explore Les Halles’ covered market.
This afternoon, you may choose to join a Guided Optional Tour of the famed wine cellars of Châteauneuf-du-Pape for a wine tasting, as well as the chance to make your own wine blend, or you may opt for a
Guided Optional Excursion on a canoe through the waters of Pont du Gard—the highest of all elevated Roman aqueducts.
You may choose to spend free time to explore Avignon—known as the heart of Provence. Take a leisurely stroll or a bike ride through the tree-lined streets and leafy squares within Avignon’s medieval walls.
EVENING CRUISE TO ARLES. (B,L,D)
Day 8 ARLES
A Master Class, Mysterious Images, and a Matador in Provence
ACTIVE Experience the legends of Val d’Enfer, with a Guided Hike; an area taking its name from the unique white limestone rock formations. The excursion includes an unforgettable later be entranced by a magical Audio/Visual Experience of light, images, and music at the Carrières de Lumières, 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, OR:
CLASSIC Join a Guided Sightseeing Tour of Arles to get to know this charming town, including a visit with a local bullfighter to learn about the secrets and traditions handed down through generations.
You may choose to join a Guided Optional Excursion to the natural salt marsh at Salin d’Aigues-Mortes, to discover the magic of the pink waters of the Camargue.
Alternatively, enjoy free time to shop, stroll, or just relax in a lovely park along Arles’ Boulevard des Lices.
Later, enjoy onboard live entertainment.
OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN ARLES. (B,L,D)
Day 9 PORT-SAINT-LOUIS
Oysters and Flamingos in the Rhône Delta
Enjoy a morning cruise to Port-Saint-Louis on the Sky Deck of your ship.
ACTIVE Join a Guided Hike through the Camargue Regional Nature Park. You’ll see its lush marshland habitat at the mouth of the Rhône—home to a wide variety of flora and fauna—in one of France’s most protected and natural reserves, OR:
ACTIVE Take a Guided Bike Ride through the Camargue Natural Park with an eye out for more than 400 bird species—including pink flamingos—along the trails of the Mediterranean’s Rhône delta, OR:
DISCOVERY Enjoy a taste of local life with a visit to an oyster farm in the Camargue Natural Park on a Guided Tour to enjoy an oyster tasting and learn how this delicacy is farmed.
OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN PORT-SAINT-LOUIS. (B,L,D)
Day 10 PORT-SAINT-LOUIS (DISEMBARKATION)
Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning.
Flights should not leave Marseille airport before 10 am. (B)
River Cruise Highlights
Day 1 Paris: welcome to France!
Day 2 Paris: choice of city sightseeing, or bike tour in Paris
Day 3 Paris–Lyon (Embarkation): onboard welcome reception
Day 4 Lyon: choice of culinary tour, or guided urban hike, or cooking class
Day 5 Tain l’hermitage/Tournon–Viviers: choice of rail-bike tour along the Gorges du Doux, or guided hike in the vineyards, or guided tour of Tournon, or tour of the Valrhona factory and museum; Lyonnaise specialties cooking demonstration; evening guided tour in Viviers
Day 6 Viviers–Avignon: in Avignon choice of guided canoe trip down the Gorges de l’Ardèche, or guided hike in the Natural Reserve of Cirque d’Estre, or visit lock Bollène and its power plant, or guided speleological excursion with wine tasting in the caves
Day 7 Avignon: choice of guided tour, or guided e-bike tour with wine tasting
Day 8 Arles: choice of guided tour in Arles, meet a bullfighter, or guided hike through the Hell Valley with a visit to Carrières de Lumière, or painting workshop
Day 9 Port-Saint-Louis: choice of excursion to a local oyster farm with tasting, or either guided hike or bike tour through the Camargue Regional Natural Park
Day 10 Arles (Disembarkation): your vacation ends this morning
All This Included
Treat yourself to a French prelude to your Active Discovery cruise on the Rhône River with two nights in the “City of Light”—Paris. Spend your first day in the romantic city with an unhurried stroll along the Champs-Élysées, or linger over wine and crepes in a Montparnasse literary café—once frequented by Hemingway, Fitzgerald, and Picasso. The following day, select included excursions such as a guided sightseeing tour of the must-see sites, or a guided biking tour through Paris’ highlights, including the Eiffel Tower and Place de la Concorde—with a peaceful rest along the Seine River.
From Paris, ride the high-speed train to begin in Lyon, the culinary capital of France! With Avalon Choice included excursions, you’ll find a variety of ways to explore each port you visit. Choose from Active, Classic, and Discovery included excursions that interest you—from casual and leisurely to cultural and active.
Admire the lovely views of the French countryside, join a culinary walk to discover architecture and local specialties, or take a cooking class in Lyon. Embark on a canoe excursion or simply linger in a sidewalk café; stroll Avignon’s papal palace or attend a wine tasting in an underground cave. With so many Avalon Choice inclusions, you’ll find the perfect way to spend your day—from a ghost tour in Viviers to a guided bike ride through the birthplace of rosé wines, to a chocolate factory tour. In addition to classic sightseeing and relaxed free time, you can visit an oyster farm, bike through Camargue Regional Nature Park to spot flamingos, or take a painting workshop in Arles—in the style of Van Gogh. You’ll have the classic sightseeing and relaxing activities in each destination, along with your choice of included arts, culture, and cuisine excursions. Our Active Discovery Rhône River cruise with Avalon Choice includes activities and excursions to experience the Rhône River at your pace in every place along the way. It’s a vacation in France made just for you.
Accommodations on this Tour
Cruising: Cabin onboard Avalon Poetry II
Paris: Paris Marriott Opéra Ambassador, Pullman Paris Tour Eiffel or Hotel du Collectionneur Arc de Triomphe Paris
Pre and Post Add-ons
Extra nights per person in Paris:
in single room from $430 to $496, in twin room from $243 to $276
Extra nights per person in Marseille:
in single room from $228 to $287, in twin room from $133 to $165
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 is necessary, a substitute will be offered.
Please check visa requirements with your local consulate(s); responsibility for obtaining visas rests with the traveler.
Gateway city for departures is Marseille.
Port charges: $182
Gratuities to Local Guides & Excursion Drivers are included.
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.