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Grand France with 1 Night in Marseille, 3 Nights in Venice & 3 Nights in Rome 2021 (Northbound)

22 days with Avalon Waterways  Rating: Deluxe

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

River Cruise Itinerary
Day 1 MARSEILLE, FRANCE 
Welcome to Marseille. Enjoy free time to explore this vibrant city.

Day 2 MARSEILLE–PORT ST. LOUIS (EMBARKATION)
Spectacular Seascapes of the French Riviera

Join your expert Local Guide for an included sightseeing before joining a motorcoach transfer to board your Avalon Suite Ship.

EVENING CRUISE TO ARLES (B,D)

Day 3 ARLES
Inspiring Sights and Avant-Garde Lights

Visit the Adventure Center for today’s activities with your Adventure Host.

ACTIVE Grab a Nordic walking stick for a hike with your Adventure Host.

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 that inspired the works of Vincent van Gogh, 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 of light and landscape in Arles.

Consider 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 remaining with a stop in Le Café Van Gogh for a glass of wine, to relax and watch the world go by.

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN AVIGNON (B,L,D)

Day 4 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.

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN AVIGNON (B,L,D)

Day 5 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 TOURNON (B,L,D)

Day 6 TOURNON/TAIN L’HERMITAGE
A Rendezvous with Castle Views and Vineyards

Join your Adventure Host for today’s special activities.

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. 

In the late morning cruise to Vienne

VIENNE

Roman and Middle Age History

CLASSIC Join a Guided Walking Tour of Vienne and discover this charming little town surrounded by steep hills.

Enjoy live entertainment while sailing to Lyon.

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN LYON (B,L,D)

Day 7 LYON
Adventures in Food and Wine in the Gastronomy Capital of France

CLASSIC Join a Guided Sightseeing Tour to survey Lyon from Fourvière Hill with its numerous churches. 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 riding a bike through Lyon’s town squares, over bridges, and along the banks where the Rhône and Saône rivers meet.

EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO ST. JEAN DE LOSNE (B,L,D)

Day 8 ST. JEAN DE LOSNE
Wine and Cheese on the Stunning Saône

Enjoy a leisurely cruising day 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 on board this evening.

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN ST. JEAN DE LOSNE (B,L,D)

Day 9 ST. JEAN DE LOSNE (DISEMBARKATION) BEAUNE–DIJON–PARIS (EMBARKATION)
Drive to Beaune and take a High-Speed Train from Dijon to Paris.

CLASSIC Visit the Hôtel-Dieu Charity Hospital in Beaune, built in 1443, today home of the Van der Weyden’s painting of the Last Judgment and is one of France’s architectural highlights.

This afternoon, take a high-speed train from Dijon to Paris to board your Suite Ship®.

EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO VERNON (B,D)

Day 10 VERNON
Monet’s Muses, Castle Courtyards, and Crêpes du Jour

Visit the Adventure Center for today’s activities with your 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 a Pastry Demonstration.

This afternoon, enjoy a beautiful cruise 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 11 CAUDEBEC
Churches, Cherry Orchards, and White Cliffs of Normandy

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:

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

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN CAUDEBEC (B,L,D)

Day 12 CAUDEBEC. NORMANDY EXCURSIONS
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 at a local distillery.

Later, enjoy live entertainment on board your ship.

EVENING CRUISE TO ROUEN (B,L,D)

Day 13 ROUEN
The Cathedral of Notre-Dame, and a Heroine for France

CLASSIC Take a Guided Walking Tour of Rouen—home of the martyred Joan of Arc—and see the medieval quarter with its 16th-century Astronomical Clock, and Notre-Dame Cathedral, OR:

ACTIVE Take a Guided Bike Tour to discover and explore the most famous monuments and the lesser known hidden gems of Rouen on two wheels.

Spend free time this afternoon to explore Rouen’s city markets, shops, and bike paths.

Enjoy onboard entertainment before setting sail this evening.

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

Day 14 CONFLANS
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 to the Palace of Versailles—home to a succession of French kings.

EVENING CRUISE TO PARIS (B,L,D)

Day 15 PARIS
Cafés, Cathedrals, & Canvases—The City of Lights Truly Shines

Join your Adventure Host for today’s special activities.

CLASSIC Discover the ancient heart of Paris on a captivating Guided Walk featuring the Palais-Royal, Louvre pyramid, ancient sites on Île de la Cité, the Left Bank, bustling Latin Quarter, and more, 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. 

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 16 PARIS–VENICE, ITALY
Say goodbye to the Avalon portion of your vacation after breakfast and fly to Venice. Your Monograms Local Host will be on hand to help you make the most of your time. (B)

Day 17 VENICE
Your guided sightseeing in Venice includes St. Mark’s Square, inside visits of the Basilica, Doges’ Palace and the Bridge of Sighs. (B)

Day 18 VENICE
Your Local Host has many suggestions for your day at leisure. (B)

Day 19 VENICE–ROME
Travel by high-speed train (First class) to Rome. (B)

Day 20 ROME
With your included guided sightseeing visit St. Peter’s Square, and go inside the Basilica, Vatican Museums, Sistine Chapel, the Colosseum and Roman Forum. (B)

Day 21 ROME
A full day at leisure in Rome. Your Local Host will be on hand to help you make the most of your time. (B)

Day 22 ROME
Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. (B)
Tour Map
River Cruise Highlights
  • Day 1 Marseille: welcome to France
  • Day 2 Marseille–Port St. Louis (Embarkation): guided tour; transfer to the ship; onboard welcome reception
  • Day 3 Arles: guided sightseeing, visit the Roman Amphitheatre
  • Day 4 Avignon: guided sightseeing, visit the Palace of the Popes
  • Day 5 Cruising–Viviers: guided walk, visit Old Town and the cathedral
  • Day 6 Tournon/Tain l’Hermitage–Vienne: guided walk in Tournon; guided walk in Vienne
  • Day 7 Lyon: guided sightseeing, picture stop on Fourvière Hill
  • Day 8 Cruising–St. Jean de Losne: day at leisure; cheese tasting on board
  • Day 9 St. Jean de Losne (Disembarkation)–Beaune–Paris (Embarkation): visit the Hôtel-Dieu in Beaune; TGV train from Dijon to Paris; onboard welcome reception
  • Day 10 Vernon–Les Andelys: choice of excursions to Giverny or Bizy Castle; choice of guided tour, or guided hike to the castle in Les Andelys; onboard crêpe tasting
  • Day 11 Caudebec: excursion along the “Normandy Abbeys Route”
  • Day 12 Caudebec: choice of full-day excursions to Normandy landing beaches, or “A Taste of Normandy” excursion
  • Day 13 Rouen: choice of guided tour, see the Astronomical Clock and visit to the cathedral or bike tour
  • Day 14 Conflans: choice of excursion to Auvers-sur-Oise, or excursion to Napoleon and Josephine’s Château de Malmaison
  • Day 15 Paris: choice of guided sightseeing, or historic sights on “Heart of Paris” walking tour
  • Day 16 Paris–Venice, Italy: flight to Venice
  • Day 17 Venice: guided sightseeing, visit St. Mark’s Square and Basilica, Doges’ Palace and the Bridge of Sighs
  • Day 18 Venice: full day at leisure
  • Day 19 Venice–Rome: travel by high-speed train (First class) to Rome
  • Day 20 Rome: guided sightseeing, visit St Peter’s Square and Basilica, Vatican Museums, Sistine Chapel, Colosseum, Roman Forum
  • Day 21 Rome: full day at leisure
  • Day 22 Rome: your vacation ends this morning
All This Included
Begin your European vacation with an overnight stay in Marseille on the blue Mediterranean. Transfer to Port-Saint-Louis to board your Avalon Suite Ship® for your French river cruise. You’ll sail to beautiful Arles, Lyon, and Avignon where you will enjoy guided city sightseeing tours. Continue to Dijon for a high-speed train ride to Paris—“The City of Light,” to embark on your Seine River cruise.

See the home of master artist Claude Monet, and stroll his magnificent gardens and charming residence at Giverny. Cruise on the Seine to Caudebec, and take an excursion to Normandy. Here, you may select from two guided tours—Normandy’s historic beaches and WWII monuments, or a “Taste of Normandy” with a day in its beautiful agricultural region. Continue to Rouen for a guided walking tour. Next, you’ll sail to Conflans, for an excursion to Auvers-Sur-Oise— the village where Vincent Van Gogh painted, lived, and died—or to Château de Malmaison, the legendary home of Napoléon Bonaparte.

After returning to Paris, fly to Venice to begin your Monograms® vacation package with three nights each in Venice & Rome. Enjoy included guided sightseeing and ample free time with helpful onsite support from expert Local Hosts® in both cities. Your French river cruise, Normandy Beaches tour, and Italian vacation in Venice and Rome, will be hard to match for the beauty, culture, and new sights to recall for years to follow.
  • 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
    • English-speaking friendly crew, staff & professional Cruise Director
    • Sightseeing with Expert Local Guides
    • Onboard lectures, activities & entertainment
    • Complimentary room service for Continental breakfast
    • Sky Deck whirlpool
    • Complimentary Wi-Fi access
    • Biking excursions available in Amsterdam and Breisach
    • Onboard Adventure Center with active gear, bikes, Nordic walking sticks, watercraft & maps
    • Casual dinner in the Panorama Bistro
    • Avalon Choice® cruising experience
    • Behind-the-scenes galley tour
    • Choice of Classic, Active or Discovery excursions so that you can experience your cruise your way
    • 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
    • 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
    • Spacious, open-seating Panorama 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
    • Complimentary room service for Continental breakfast
    • Panorama Lounge & Bar with premium spirits, cozy seating, panoramic windows & dance floor
    • Healthy meal options
    • 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
    • Light lunch in the Panorama Lounge
    • FlexDining flexible dining times with menu & venue options
Accommodations on this Tour
Marseille: Intercontinental Marseille Hotel Dieu
Cruising: Cabin onboard Avalon Poetry II, Avalon Tapestry II
Venice: Palace Bonvecchiati
Rome: Starhotels Metropole
Notes
  • Cabin upgrades are available. 
  • 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.
  • Guided Tours, Optional Excursions, activities, sailing and docking schedules may be contingent on weather conditions or other issues outside of our control and could therefore be subject to change at any time.
  • Please check visa requirements with your local consulate(s); responsibility for obtaining visas rests with the traveler.
  • Dates and Prices do not include air travel. 
  • Participation in this vacation requires purchase of the following flights from Avalon Waterways, not included in the pricing: (1) roundtrip air from your U.S. gateway and intra-vacation air segments; or (2) intra-vacation air segments only, starting at $300. Required intra-vacation air segments: Paris/Venice. Air prices were effective on November 19, 2019, and their availability is limited. At the time you purchase your tour, air prices may be higher.
  • Port charges: $364.
  • Gratuities to Local Guides & Excursion Drivers are included for Avalon portion only.
  • Please call for single accommodation price. Triples not available.
  • Additional accommodations before or after your tour may be available.
  • Itineraries are subject to change. Final itineraries will be available April 2020.
  • 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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