Day 1 Bon Voyage
The ‘city of light’ is your host this evening, so kick off your holiday with a welcome drink at your luxurious hotel in Paris.
Day 2 Paris > Bordeaux
Traverse the landscapes of the Loire Valley aboard the TGV train to Bordeaux. Your friendly crew will welcome you on board the luxurious Scenic Diamond for your cruise through France’s southwestern pocket. (Breakfast, Dinner)
Day 3 Bordeaux > Saint-Émilion
Enjoy a relaxing morning on board as you cruise into the beautiful 13th century port of Libourne. While cruising, perhaps drop into Scenic Culinaire for a French cooking class. Spend the afternoon in the nearby town of Saint-Émilion, a visual feast and the jewel of this ancient wine growing region. You’ll also get to explore the underground catacombs of the Monolithic Church – a true trip highlight.
Celebrate the 2,000-year history of wine by enjoying a glass at the estate of Château de la Rivière. Surrounded by the vines, mingle with newfound friends, explore the spectacular property, or discover the artistic heritage of this region and admire a local artist painting the stunning landscape using paint made from the wine grown on the estate. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 4 Libourne > Pauillac
Freechoice: Enjoy a guided tour of Libourne and view its quaint 16th century town-houses and Gothic church. Alternatively, explore the exclusive estate of Château Franc Mayne and taste its Grand Cru Class wine, or view the eclectic city of Bergerac and enjoy a foie gras tasting at a charming local farm.
During your afternoon at leisure, opt to enhance your culinary prowess in Scenic Culinaire or simply take in the riverside panoramas while cruising to Pauillac. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 5 Médoc
Freechoice: Travel the scenic Médoc wine route and discover why this region is viewed as the world’s leading red wine producer. Afterwards, sample the region’s finest at the Château Gruaud-Larose estate. Alternatively, cycle through the region to a local château and sample delicious wine produced on the estate.
Set in spectacular surrounds in the Médoc countryside, Château Agassac is truly enchanting. Dating back to the 13th century, the Château is one of the oldest winemaking establishments in the region and is the venue for your unforgettable evening concert. Soak in the ambience of this magnificent property as live musicians perform classical masterpieces for your exclusive enjoyment. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 6 Pauillac > Cadillac
Soak in the vistas as you cruise on board the luxurious Scenic Diamond past the picturesque landscapes of the Garonne River into Cadillac, some of the most beautiful scenic cruising in the Bordeaux region. While on board, you may choose to further develop your cooking skills with a lesson in Scenic Culinaire. Tonight, this remarkable space comes to life when fabulous local entertainers perform live in the Panorama Lounge for your exclusive enjoyment. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 7 Cadillac
Freechoice: This morning, venture into the Sauternes region for a tasting of the prestigious Château Guiraud dessert wines. Alternatively, cycle through the rolling vineyards of Sauternes to the Grand Cru Class estate of Château Myrat for a tasting.
Freechoice: This afternoon visit Roquetaillade Castle; founded by Charlemagne, it’s one of the region’s most impressive historic sites, and you’ll tour it with the family that now lives within its walls. Alternatively, visit a truffle farm and sample the delicious regional delicacy, or perhaps enjoy a 12 kilometre roundtrip hike from Cadillac to the village of Loupiac. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 8 Bordeaux
Freechoice: Shop with a Chef at a local food market and cook up a storm in Scenic Culinaire afterwards (seasonal option, will be replaced with panoramic city tour when not available). Or, enjoy a guided tour of Bordeaux and her many attractions. For the more energetic, cycle the historic regions of Bordeaux. Cross beautiful bridges to witness sites such as the Royal Gate and the Palais Rohan, before cycling through public gardens back to the luxury of your floating hotel.
Spend the afternoon at leisure to immerse yourself in the culture of the Bordelais. Enjoy a special dinner on board showcasing regional delicacies before an illuminations cruise on the Garonne River. A fabulous local soloist will perform live in the Panorama Lounge to round off a magical evening. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 9 Arcachon > Bourg
Situated on the northern tip of Europe’s longest coastal beach, Arcachon is the jewel of France’s western coastline.
Freechoice: Journey to Arcachon and join a walking tour including a visit to the local Baltard market. Or climb Europe’s largest sand dune and take in the expansive panoramas. Alternatively, stay in Bordeaux and take a local tram to the Cité du Vin museum and enjoy an interactive journey of wine discovery. This afternoon, if you fancy something sweet, stay on board and enjoy a fabulous Mademoiselle de Margaux chocolate and wine-pairing event.
Later, take a leisurely cruise into Bourg, perhaps join a masterclass in French cooking in Scenic Culinaire. Tonight enjoy a lively jazz performance on board. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 10 Cognac
Today explore the unique northern shores of the Gironde Estuary.
Freechoice: Discover the Carriages Museum in the enchanting Bourg Castle including a visit to the 16th century passageway to the guards rooms and immense WWII oil tanks. Alternatively, spend a full day exploring the fortified town of Cognac, renowned for its production of fine brandy. Afterwards, enjoy a tasting at the acclaimed property of Rémy Martin.
This afternoon, unwind on the Sun Deck cruising on the Gironde River into the historic port of Blaye. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 11 Blaye > Bordeaux
Discover the remarkable Blaye region, established to protect the Bordeaux region from invasion.
Freechoice: Stroll through the charming Citadel of Blaye, or take a more active walk throughout the town. Alternatively, join a 30 kilometre roundtrip cycle along the Captain’s Road which is named in honour of the WWI Captains who chose to purchase their homes along this beautiful stretch of waterway in the early 20th century.
Enjoy a cooking class in Scenic Culinaire or simply relax on board as we cruise past beautiful uninhabited islands, bound for Bordeaux. Dine at the Captain’s farewell dinner on board this evening. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Day 12 Bordeaux > Madrid
Disembark and fly to Madrid where you’ll spend three nights at one of the city’s luxurious properties. (Breakfast)
Day 13 Madrid
Enjoy a tour of Madrid, including the 17th century Austrian Quarter, the Sabatini Gardens and the Cibeles and Neptuno Fountains.
Freechoice: Choose between the exceptional Prado Museum or the equally delightful 18th century Royal Palace of Madrid.
This evening, enjoy fine Spanish cuisine in a superb local restaurant. (Breakfast, Dinner)
Day 14 Madrid
Today is yours to enjoy at leisure in Spain’s largest city. Stroll the fashionable boutiques, relax in one of the manicured gardens, or simply explore the surrounding area. (Breakfast)
Day 15 Madrid
After breakfast you’ll be transferred to Madrid airport. (Breakfast)
From Paris to Madrid, discover the beautiful landscapes, gastronomy and wine of the beautiful Bordeaux region during your luxurious 15-day river cruise.
From sublime Bordeaux to lively Madrid, this journey combines the sensuality of rural France with the exuberance of urban Spain.
Experience two vastly different aspects of Europe as you journey from the fishing villages of Arcachon Bay to the sophisticated eateries of central Madrid. You’ll find no shortage of variety or surprise on your wonderful sojourn in the west, where you’ll be travelling through picture perfect French villages one day, and marvelling at Madrid’s Prado Museum or Royal Palace the next. If you’re looking for an experience that balances the delightful with the exotic, this is the itinerary for you.
City of light
Sundowners at Château de la Rivière
Foie Gras in Bergerac
Enrich concert at Château Agassac
Shop with a Chef
Arcachon Bay and surrounds
Tasting at Rémy-Martin property
Cycle the Captain’s Road
34 meals including 14 Breakfasts, 9 Lunches and 11 Dinners
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.